Local guests under 25 to be banned from booking entire Airbnb homes

Feb 5 2020, 12:51 pm

Airbnb announced on Wednesday that it’s implementing new security measures in Canada, including the pilot of a ban on local guests under the age of 25 booking out entire homes.

The pilot will begin this month, and aims to reduce incidents of unauthorized parties.

The company will also be launching a new partnership with the Canadian Doctors for Protection from Guns, providing $300,000 over three years for initiatives revolving around gun protection awareness, and keeping communities safe.

News about the pilot and partnership comes days after a fatal shooting at a downtown Toronto Airbnb condo party left three men, aged 19 to 21, dead over the weekend.

“Everyone has a part to play in making our communities safer,” Dr. Najma Ahmed, a trauma surgeon and co-founder of the Canadian Doctors for Protection from Guns, said in a release.

“Today’s announcement demonstrates Airbnb’s commitment to our neighbourhoods. Our partnership will go a long way in helping to build public awareness around gun violence and providing insight on how to keep Canadians safe from guns.”

Guests across Canada, of all ages, will still have the ability to book hosted listings and hotel rooms during the pilot. And, Canadian guests under 25 who meet certain criteria — such as having as established track record of positive reviews on Airbnb — will still be able to book out entire homes, locally.

The company says it will continue to deploy additional security measures to further strengthen the platform. Already, Airbnb has banned party houses globally, and suspended listings in cities including Toronto, Montreal, Vancouver, Ottawa, and Edmonton under the policy.

“Canadian Doctors for Protection from Guns are vocal and active advocates on this issue and see first-hand the human toll that gun violence takes on patients, their families and their communities,” said Chris Lehane, Senior Vice President of Global Policy and Communications for Airbnb.

“We are committed to contributing positively to our communities, and that is why we are continuing to form new partnerships and update our security measures.”

Further, Airbnb is also introducing a 24/7 neighbourhood support telephone hotline in Canada. The hotline will serve as a way for neighbours to immediately and easily flag concerns to the company’s rapid response agents.

The hotline will go live on Monday, January 10. It will be available across the country in English, and French language support will come later this year.