Airbnb Trashes Hosts Who Make You Do The Laundry In Announcing Major Changes

Airbnb makes sense in towns where there aren’t suitable hotels. It makes sense to rent a full house for a large family or when traveling with a group of friend. But the current homesharing model is very broken, and as a result choosing Airbnb makes no sense for most stays.

The company understands that and wants to change that. It’s updating how prices are shown, and shaming hosts that impose bizarre conditions on guests. In fact, the co-founder and CEO of Airbnb is shaming owners who make guests do laundry before they leave.

When you turn this on, you’ll see the total price (before taxes) in search results, as well as on the map, price filter, and listing page. You can also view a full price breakdown with Airbnb’s service fee, discounts, and taxes.

— Brian Chesky (@bchesky) November 7, 2022

Guests shouldn’t have to ‘turn this feature on’ it should be the default. And, to be clear, it’s pre-tax pricing that’s shown even when total price is selected. It’s fine to include fees but not taxes in display, in my view, but that isn’t really the ‘total price’.

What’s just as important here as making it easy to compare pricing, without having to click through each listing to calculate what a stay will really cost inclusive of fees like cleaning charges, is that Airbnb is also changing their search algorithm so that listings which charge higher fees, and thus have a higher total cost, will be rank lower. They’re also introducing host tools that they see as driving price competition and discounting, in hopes that Airbnb might re-capture some of the affordability which drove its early success. Remember, the company shares its growth projections are headed downward.

But it’s not just pricing. While Airbnb isn’t necessarily doing anything about it, its founder and CEO calls out unreasonable requests from hosts. And he defines what is reasonable.


  • Turn off lights
  • Throw food in trash
  • Lock doors

Not reasonable:

  • Strip beds
  • Do laundry
  • Vaccuum

If Hosts have checkout requests, they should be reasonable and shown to you before you book.

— Brian Chesky (@bchesky) November 7, 2022

Presumably chore lists like mowing the lawn or waiting for plumbers are also not considered reasonable.

These crazy fees will still exist, and so will crazy chores, but Airbnb will become more useful and less frustrating as you figure out what to book.

That’s just the tip of the iceberg solving problems with the platform. Just as big a deal is that there are too many scams (like properties listed for rent that aren’t actually being rented out, if they even exist); that when things go wrong with a booking it can be challenging to get your money back, let alone get help finding somewhere to stay; it doesn’t work well for short stays because of per-stay (rather than per-night) fees; and check-in and check-out times aren’t nearly as flexible as with hotels.

Baby steps are appreciated, because home sharing should be a viable alternative to hotels for more than just places where there are no hotels.

Related Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *