Airbnb to display total prices up front, end 'unreasonable' checkout tasks

The Airbnb platform is shown in provided images. (Credit: Airbnb)

Airbnb is making its total prices of a stay more transparent at the beginning of the search process and preventing hosts from requiring "unreasonable" tasks at checkout after customer complaints.

The short-term rental platform has been fighting the perception among many guests that bookings on the site are no longer a bargain because of high cleaning fees and misleading listings.

"I’ve heard you loud and clear—you feel like prices aren’t transparent and checkout tasks are a pain," Airbnb CEO Brian Chesky tweeted on Monday

Starting in December, Airbnb users will be able to see the total price for a listing up front in the search process. The full price breakdown with Airbnb’s service fee, discounts, and taxes, will also be viewable. 

The platform is also prioritizing total price — instead of nightly price — in its search rankings. 

"The highest quality homes with the best total prices will rank higher in search results," Chesky tweeted. 

In 2023, Airbnb will also launch new pricing and discount tools for hosts, "so they can understand the ‘final price’ guests will pay" and set competitive prices, he added.

Another sore spot for Airbnb renters has been the detailed lists of chores that hosts demand upon checkout. Meanwhile, hosts are increasingly complaining about problem tenants.

To ease customer complaints, Airbnb will provide guidance to hosts on checkout requests, which should be "reasonable and displayed to guests before they book."

"Guests should not have to do unreasonable checkout tasks such as stripping the beds, doing the laundry, or vacuuming when leaving their Airbnb," the platform said in a statement. "But we think it’s reasonable to ask guests to turn off the lights, throw food in the trash, and lock the doors—just like they would when leaving their own home."

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This story was reported from Cincinnati.