Tessa Read and Boyd Walker own six Airbnb rentals in Alexandria and had 20 cancellations last week.
Airbnb sent out an email on Saturday to hosts explaining that its extenuating circumstances policy is in effect until April 14, meaning that guests can cancel reservations for full refunds and without paying penalties.
“We had six cancellations on one day, even one who was coming Friday, who canceled just a few hours before they were scheduled to arrive,” Read said. “We are in the same category as other small businesses, like hotels. Even though we’ve offered discounts and are thoroughly cleaning between guests, it’s not helping.”
There are hundreds of Airbnb rentals available in Alexandria, and many have reduced their prices.
Walker said that discounts will be given to any guests officially working with the federal or local government on defeating the virus.
“If someone needs to be here related to this issue, we’d be happy to give them a deeper discount,” Walker said. “Being a small business owner in Old Town, I am very concerned about small businesses being able to survive. When we go out, we eat at the local businesses and not chain restaurants. We don’t want them to close. That would be terribly sad.”
In response to the global disruption to travel caused by COVID-19, our Extenuating Circumstances policy now applies globally to all existing reservations with check-in dates between March 14, 2020 and April 14, 2020. https://t.co/nf9gC09P2m
— Airbnb (@Airbnb) March 14, 2020
Photo via Boyd Walker
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Peace in Gaza: Prayer Liturgy and Community Discussion for Peace in Arlington VA, Sunday, Feb. 11, 10:15 AM
Prayer, liturgy, and community discussion for peace in Gaza, an immediate cease fire and resumption of humanitarian aid will be hosted by Nova Catholic Community. The focus will be Pope Francis’ call for an immediate ceasefire, the release of all hostages, resumption of humanitarian aid for Palestinians in Gaza, and peace talks for a lasting and just peace for all people in the region.
Discussion will follow at Noon on US military role in the conflict and appropriate steps the US should take to foster peace and rebuilding. Light lunch served.