Jul 2, 2020 - Economy

Airbnb blocks some U.S. rentals from users under 25 to prevent house parties


Photo: Rafael Henrique/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

Airbnb announced new booking rules on Thursday barring American users under the age of 25 from renting entire homes near their own residences in order to prevent "unauthorized house parties," per a company statement.

The big picture: High-profile incidents — including a shooting that killed five at an Airbnb party last Halloween — have put the company on edge about the use of rentals for unauthorized gatherings.

  • Airbnb announced after the shooting that it would be "expanding manual screening of high-risk reservations" and "creating a dedicated 'party house' rapid response team."
  • Permanent residents of some tourist destinations have also complained that the frequency of partying at nearby Airbnb rentals has fundamentally changed their neighborhoods, as Axios' Kim Hart has reported.

Details: Users under the age of 25 will be unable to rent entire properties near their own homes until they've received at least three positive reviews and no negative reviews from hosts.

  • All users younger than 25 will still be eligible to book private rooms and hotel rooms through Airbnb.

What they're saying: Airbnb said a pilot of this system that debuted in Canada earlier this year has led to a "meaningful drop" in partying.

  • "There will always be people who work to find ways around our trust and safety protections, and we know that people over the age of 24 are perfectly capable of booking a home for the wrong reasons, too," Airbnb said.
  • "But based on the positive impact this policy has had on unauthorized parties booked by guests under 25, we believe this is the right action to continue to protect the safety of our community."
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