SAN FRANCISCO (KRON) — Airbnb has rolled out new technology on their website that will make it harder for renters to get away with throwing a large party during Halloween.
Airbnb first started cracking down on large gatherings at short term rentals in 2020. At that time, it was a public health concern during the start of the pandemic.
Those policies have since evolved to avoid any unsanctioned parties. In California last year, new technology on the website stopped 12,000 people from renting.
“It was an over 60% year-over-year decrease. So, we’ve actually gone ahead and made that once temporary ban a codified policy,” said Ben Breit, the director of Airbnb trust and safety communications. He said the company has rolled out new policies just in time for Halloween.
Guests without a history of positive reviews, or no reviews, will not be able to make a one-night reservation in entire home listings. If someone without a positive review is trying to rent for two nights, they will be redirected to listings that are not entire homes.
The third update to Airbnb is that all guests attempting to make a local reservation during Halloween weekend will to need attest that they understand the companies ban on parties.
“We’re most focused on kind of the larger gatherings. The ones that are more likely to be disruptive and to cause property damage and to annoy neighbors and things along those lines,” said Breit.
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The company hopes it’s updated policy will avoid any complaints and 911 calls. An Airbnb was the scene of a deadly shooting in Oakland earlier this month.
Around 30 people were in attendance of the unsanctioned birthday party when brothers Jacey and Angel Sotelo Garcia were shot and killed.
“The police have finite amount of resources and you want them being able to focus on what’s really important in the neighborhood,” said Breit.
Airbnb already caps the number of guests at 16 people when you make a reservation online. Breit said most renters respect the rules and check with property owners to see what’s allowed.
Those who don’t and break the ban on large parties will be banned themselves, or have legal action taken against them. “Send a message that we are going to try to block as many parties as we can, but better yet don’t try,” added Breit.
For hosts, Airbnb has what’s called air cover. That provides up to 1 million dollars in property damage protection, in case any extensive damage is caused because of short-term renters.