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Airbnb Aims to Reduce the Spread of COVID-19 With New Host Cleaning Protocols

Airbnb has announced that under the guidance of the US Centres for Disease Control (CDC), hosts have the option to follow a new cleaning protocol. Those who elect to take part will be required to put in place a 24 hour minimum intermission period between bookings at each property in a bid to reduce the spread of COVID-19.

Labeled an “enhanced cleaning initiative,” hosts will gain access to detailed guidelines for improved hygiene practices during the pandemic, as well as preventative measure recommendations, such as the use of approved disinfectant products and personal protective gear like masks and gloves.

An Airbnb spokesperson explained that the initiative caters to the concerns of both guests and hosts. Guests can be assured that every measure has been taken to ensure that their stay is safe, and hosts are able to gain access to the resources needed to implement further precautions.

Since the onset of the pandemic, Airbnb has unsurprisingly taken a massive hit to sales, and recently had to take a reported 1$ billion from investors in order to stay afloat. That hasn’t stopped CEO Brian Chesky from looking ahead, stating confidently that he believes there will be a large upswing in the travel industry once global pandemic regulations have lifted.

Last month saw hosts criticising the company’s cancellation policies, stating that the guidelines were unclear, which lead to Airbnb establishing a $250 million fund to refund hosts who found themselves out of pocket after refunding guests who cancelled their bookings. There has been speculation that the announcement of the improved cleaning protocol and host support is a direct reaction to the criticism received at the start of the pandemic, but the effectiveness of the initiative remains to be seen.

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