Airbnb pledged $250m to help its hosts. Now some hosts ask, where’s the money?

Many hosts say they haven’t received payouts from the company’s coronavirus relief fund. A few who have are calling the payments chump change.

April 24, 2020

Hundreds of Airbnb hosts are complaining that they haven’t received any money under the $250m coronavirus relief program that the company announced last month, according to CNBC.

Airbnb’s stuck between a rock and a hard pillow

In March, the company said travelers could be eligible for refunds on trips through the end of May that were booked before March 15.

The policy angered the company’s hosts, who said, hey, whaddabout us?

A handful of hosts who have received money say the amount Airbnb’s offering — 25% of what they would have received under a host’s normal cancellation policy — is chump change.

  • One host told CNBC that he had lost $30k in reservations, but received a relief check for a whopping $106.02.
  • Airbnb’s explanation of the $250m program points out that some hosts could receive multiple payments.

In a statement to CNBC, Airbnb said it had begun sending out a 1st round of payments — totalling $140m+ — this week.

But the payouts have an expiration date: Airbnb told hosts that its $250m program only applies to reservations made through the end of May.

Will rentals rebound?

This week, Bloomberg Businessweek wrote about how Airbnb — which raised $2B in debt this month — hopes to endure.

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