Airbnb bans house parties after illegal lockdown gatherings

Airbnb has banned all house parties worldwide in an effort to comply with coronavirus-related limits on gatherings.

People have been throwing illegal parties during lockdown at Airbnb rentals as nightclubs and bars remain shut due to the pandemic, the company said.

In a statement on its website, Airbnb said: ‘We think such conduct is incredibly irresponsible – we do not want that type of business, and anyone engaged in or allowing that behaviour does not belong on our platform.’

The company – based in San Francisco – said it will limit the amount of people who can stay in its rental homes to a maximum of 16 people, though exceptions may be made for boutique hotels or other hospitality venues. It also warned of legal action against guests and hosts who break the policy.

Airbnb began imposing stricter limits on events last year, banning listings that ‘create persistent neighbourhood nuisance’.

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It also recently removed the ‘event friendly’ search filter from its site in order to comply with social distancing rules.

In July, Airbnb banned guests under 25 in Canada and the US from booking homes if they had fewer than three positive reviews on their profile. This policy was extended to the UK, Spain, and France last week.

The company said on its website that nearly 75% of its listings already explicitly banned parties but guests that have thrown parties against lockdown and distancing rules have forced them to crack down.

The company said: ‘Based on these developments, instituting a global ban on parties and events is in the best interest of public health.’

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