Airbnb Aircover for hosts is a protection program that includes $1 million in Host damage protection and $1 million in Host liability insurance. This means that if there is any damage done to your property, or if a guest causes any legal issues, you will be protected. Additionally, AirCover now includes income loss protection, as well as new protections for pet damage and deep cleaning.
You as a host don’t need to do anything about Aircover. It is always included and free for both Airbnb hosts and guests. But let’s understand how we can do better overall as a host to get prioritised in case of any mishap to your property or your guests.
What is Aircover for hosts?
Aircover for hosts is a rebranding and expansion of the two previous Airbnb programs: $1 mln Host Guarantee and $1 mln Host Liability Protection.
It is designed to address the most significant barrier for new hosts listing their properties on Airbnb – the fear of damage. Another goal is to keep the hosts Airbnb already has.
Airbnb hopes that this will encourage hosts to lower excessive cleaning and pet fees to get higher bookings and revenue.
As work from home becomes increasingly popular, pet-friendly places are in higher demand, so Airbnb hopes to encourage hosts to allow animals on their listings.
Overall, this seems like a positive development for both new and existing Airbnb hosts. It will help to increase confidence in the platform and hopefully result in more properties being listed.
What is included in Aircover for hosts?
Aircover Host damage protection now includes protection from pet damage, deep cleaning costs, and lost income if you need to cancel a confirmed Airbnb booking. You also have 14 days (which is great!) to file a reimbursement request after the guest checks out, and Aircover will reimburse you quicker – within two weeks (on average 9 days).
Airbnb Aircover for hosts official release: https://www.airbnb.co.uk/resources/hosting-homes/a/everything-you-need-to-know-about-aircover-for-hosts-469
Pet-damage does not apply to cleaning services fees, but rather to some unexpected dirt or furniture damage by dogs or cats.
If previously you would need to make a claim in between the bookings, now the 14-days rule allows for a smoother booking experience.
Airbnb superhosts are prioritised by having the ‘fast track’ with a dedicated support line. It helps them to keep the booking availability at maximum.
Host liability insurance covers you if you’re found legally responsible for any bodily injury, damage to or theft of property, or damage caused by guests to common areas. If you need to file a claim, just go to the liability insurance intake form and Airbnb’s trusted third-party insurer will assign your claim to a representative.
Airbnb markets AirCover as an implicit advantage over its competitors, which is not exactly the case.
For instance, Vacasa has damage insurance (charged $7-8.54 per night). VRBO has its Liability insurance and is partnering with an insurance company Proper to provide damage protection.
Is Airbnb Aircover enough insurance?
No, the key items that are not included in AirCover damage protection are:
- Any damage to property that is not listed on the insurance policy (“excluded property”)
- Damage to hotels and similar listing categories defined by Airbnb
- Any accidental damage that is not a direct result of an eligible event (e.g. act of nature, wear and tear)
- Liability or legal costs incurred to properties outside of the United States (as of Nov 2022)
Airbnb hosts in mainland China and Japan, as well as those who offer accommodations through Airbnb Travel LLC are not included in the Host Damage Protection program. There are separate host protection programs for China and Japan.
If you’re looking for full protection for your property when it’s vacant, you’ll want to consider personal landlord insurance.
How does Aircover work?
The damage claiming process remains the same as in times of Host Guarantee program: the host first tries to convince the guest to pay for the damage. If the guest shies away from payment, Airbnb decides if the host is eligible for payment or not.
How to claim damage on Airbnb:
- Collect evidence of the damage caused – images, videos, receipts and estimated costs.
- In the Airbnb Resolution Center notify both the guest and Airbnb of the damages –within 14 days of the guest’s checkout. In case of the liability request use the Liability insurance form.
- If your guest agrees to pay the full amount within 24 hours, Airbnb will send payment via the app.
- If your guest refuses to pay or does not respond, the host becomes eligible for AirCover reimbursement.
- Submit your payment request within 30 days of the damage date.
- Wait for the Airbnb Support Ambassador to contact you regarding the claim.
When fulfilling your damage request you could face some technical issues, so we recommend using your desktop computer with the latest update of your browser and cleaned browser cookies.
Otherwise write to the Resolution center or try to look for answers in the Airbnb Community.
Debatable Aircover for guests
AirCover for guests is supposed to provide guarantees to guests, which also leaves some questions on the host side.
What is unclear in Airbnb statements is who exactly are “we” who’s going to refund the guest – Airbnb or the property manager? Probably, we will know about it as time goes on.
Also, according to the AirCover for guests policy, if the place isn’t properly cleaned at check-in, the guest must contact Airbnb within 72 hours after the issue discovery.
Even if you’re trying your best to be a perfect host it’s just not possible to please everyone. From time to time, you will receive angry messages with complaints.
So if guests can take advantage of taking the full refund based on the cleaning complaint, this could become a serious problem for some hosts.
Now that I have Aircover as a host, what should I do?
- Set fewer fee options for your listings. Not only this makes your prices more transparent and may affect your ranking on Airbnb, but also you raise your booking conversion rates. Aircover backs you up in flagrant cases.
- Welcome more pet-friendly guests. There is a trend for working in new places. If you target guest categories like digital nomads, raise the beauty of your apartment by letting in with beloved ones. Only set fees for expected costs.
- Welcome guests for the longer periods of STR. This is closely connected to the pets’ point, people would choose to stay longer if they can accommodate their extended families.
- Consider moving away from the security deposits. Again, you are Aircovered even without the guest’s deposit.
As a property manager you can save time by using the vacation rentals manager software, where you can easily adjust pricing policies, extra fees and amenities for Airbnb in particular or for all channels in bulk.
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The new AirCover program has its pros and cons for the hosts. But overall positive effect on host operations.
It will definitely have a big impact on bad hosts who don’t care about their guests. Some relaxed hosts would simply disappear if they don’t adjust their fees, guest policies, etc.
The good hosts and super-hosts are unlikely to be majorly affected by Airbnb AicCover, except for faster problem solving and reimbursements.
Some sly guests would definitely try to scam the hosts by misusing the 72 hour refund rule.
Every host should read the policies that apply in their country and potentially make some changes to the listings fees and guest policies.
“You as a host don’t need to do anything about Aircover. It is always included and free for both Airbnb hosts and guests.”
So I don’t have to agree on adding Aircover?
Like how does it work if I haven’t given my consent or Is it a part of new customers agreement?
Yes, you’re right, Ronald, Aircover is a part of new Airbnb agreement. You can actually see Aircover badge in all of your listings published on Airbnb.