Airbnb Cancels All DC Reservations, Will Pay Hosts Itself

It will block ability to make new bookings for the week of the inauguration as well
By Kate Seamons,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 13, 2021 11:00 AM CST
Airbnb's Bold Move: Canceling All DC Reservations
Preparations take place for President-elect Joe Biden's inauguration on the West Front of the US Capitol in Washington on Friday.   (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)

It's an Airbnb blackout: The company on Wednesday said it will cancel reservations in the Washington, DC, metro area for the week of Joe Biden's inauguration and prevent new ones from being made. The company on Monday said it was conducting a review of such reservations, reports the AP. CNBC reports people who see their reservations canceled will get a full refund, and the company also plans to compensate the associated hosts, who will receive the money they would have otherwise made.

In a statement, which NPR notes doesn't specify the dates of the block, Airbnb explained the move was in keeping with the advice of local officials, who've asked that people not travel to the city. It reads in part, "In particular, Mayor Bowser, Governor Hogan, and Governor Northam have been clear that visitors should not travel to the DC Metro area for the Inauguration. Additionally, we are aware of reports emerging yesterday afternoon regarding armed militias and known hate groups that are attempting to travel and disrupt the Inauguration." The move will also apply to HotelTonight, which is owned by Airbnb.

(More Airbnb stories.)

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