Airbnb announced that they are codifying the party ban that was enacted in August of 2020 (as a temporary ban). According to Airbnb, the temporary ban has proved effective, and they officially codified the ban as their policy.
Airbnb provided some details that led them to codifying the party ban:
“Historically, we allowed Hosts to use their best judgement and authorize parties when appropriate for their home and neighborhood. In late 2018, we tightened our measures to prohibit both “open-invite” parties (i.e., those advertised on social media) as well as “chronic party houses” that had developed into neighborhood nuisances. At that time, we also launched our Neighborhood Support Line in a number of jurisdictions as a direct line for neighbors to communicate any concerns to Airbnb, which has helped us enforce that prohibition on party houses.
“When the pandemic hit, as many bars and clubs closed or restricted their occupancy, we began to see some people taking partying behavior to rented homes, including through Airbnb. This was concerning to use due to both the disruptive nature of unauthorized parties and the risk of such gatherings spreading the virus. As such, we announced the party ban to our community as being “in the best interest of public health”.
According to Airbnb, disruptive parties and events will continue to be prohibited, including open-invite gatherings. “Party house” properties will continue to be prohibited as well.
In addition, Airbnb says that the policy will continue to include serious consequences for guests who attempt to violate these rules, varying from account suspensions to full removal from the platform. In 2021, over 6,600 guests were suspended from Airbnb for attempting to violate Airbnb’s party ban.
The Verge reported that in addition to making the party ban permanent, Airbnb is lifting a 16-person occupancy limit it also introduced in 2020. The company says this is because there are plenty of properties that can comfortably host more than 16 people, and that many of these are used for “multi-generational family trips and larger groups.” This particular policy change will take effect “in the coming months”.
According to The Verge, Airbnb removed an “event-friendly” search filter in 2020, and also removed option for listings to be marked as “parties and events allowed”. It also banned “party houses” in 2019 after five people died during a 100-plus person Halloween event at an Airbnb in Orinda, California.
I think it makes sense for Airbnb to allow large families to make use of a home that has adequate room for everyone who is partaking in a family vacation together. To me, it seems unlikely that a family group would intentionally cause harm to the place they stayed at.
Airbnb no longer allows “party houses”, and I think that’s a good idea. Some people are entirely too irresponsible with places that they don’t own. Nobody wants to come back and find that their home has been trashed. Where will the people who want to attend huge parties go now? Perhaps they will start going to their local bars instead.