It’s January in London and although it’s cold outside the sun has been out more than usual. We have been in various states of lockdown since November last year and the covid-19 virus seems to be as strong as ever. I have had a handful of bookings over the last few months but I expected even less. A fair number of enquires have come in from overseas guests who are coming to London for work or study but I have had to turn them away because of the self isolation rules.
Should you allow airbnb guests to self isolate in your listing?
The problem with self isolation is it’s almost impossible to do effectively. A guest in your airbnb listing who is self isolation will need to eat and have certain essentials. Unless there is someone who can constantly provide these things for the person in self isolation then sooner or later they will be forced to leave self isolation and go and get it.
Guests coming from overseas have to self isolate for 10 days if they have covid or not. It would not be workable for them to self isolate in my house because that would mean I would have to help them whenever they needed anything. I do not charge enough money to be their personal servant and bring whatever they need. Also I suspect many would not fully self isolate and break the rules. Also strictly speaking because of the lockdown rules anyone outside family ‘bubble’ cannot stay in my house. Therefore self isolation in my airbnb is impossible.
How long will it be before you can start taking airbnb guests again?
During lockdown (and the other stages of restrictions in the UK such as tier 3, and tier 4, etc) it has always been possible to have airbnb guests as long as they were key workers. The definition of key worker however is quite broad and apparently 33% of working people can be classed as key worker. Also construction has been allowed to continue somewhat. Therefore it has been relatively easy to still take bookings from anyone who claims to be a key worker.
Only during the first lockdown in March and April 2020 did airbnb forcibly block off my listing calendars. I was unable to take bookings as far as i could tell and was not keen to have any guests anyway. However as time went on I became more open to the idea of having guests again. I felt that I could not wait forever and eventually we would have to get used to this virus. Having one guest in at a time seemed sensible and would be manageable. The guest could be almost entirely left alone upstairs in my house and would have a separate bathroom etc. Only the shared use of the house front door could present any issues.
However this is all a bit mute as there are very few people travelling, especially from overseas. When will this start to change? Well perhaps the spring will bring some increase in the desire to travel. There should be a pent up desire to visit friends far away and holiday in famous places. But it’s possible this might not happened until much later. I would expect after July for things to suddenly pick up (no reason other than best guess). I am considering not to continue with airbnb as much as I have done in the past. I expect to continue to take guests in my house but less than previous years. I have gotten used to my privacy now. But we shall see.
I have finally become a airbnb super host!!
6 years into airbnb hosting and I believe as many as 2000 guests I have become a super host. Why did it take so long? Well my biggest let down has always been my location. every so often I would receive a 1 star rating for location and this would push my average score down. All i needed was a run of luck a few months and not get that one star but it never happened. Now I am taking much fewer guests it seems I have avoided this scenario. This system could be better I can’t help think to myself.