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I found a place on Airbnb that goes for $90 a day or $1,000 a month. Since I need it for a month, it is going to cost me $1,000.

However, there is a possibility that I might have to leave little bit earlier. According to cancellation policies, host now has two options:

(1) accept the changes and enforce the cancellation policy or (2) accept the changes and only charge for the actual nights stayed

Am I understanding correctly that if my host chooses option 2 (and why wouldn't he?), my total is going to increase from $1,000 to 27 * $90 = $2,430. Reservation price calculator seems to confirm it: just one extra day makes the total go down by almost $1,500.

Can I really be asked to pay more if I stay less?

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Sorry I remove my earlier comment. The way I understand the policy is that the host is free to grant you a discount or not but if you are still ready to pay what you originally agreed to, it would seem difficult to force you to be there physically. But it's true that the language is somewhat confusing. – Relaxed Feb 5 '14 at 12:06
I think it depends how the checkout is enforced. If you have to see the host in person you will have to see directly with him/her. I would suggest to contact the host to find an agreement. – Vince Feb 5 '14 at 12:22
"Checkout" at an Airbnb place almost invariably means dropping the keys in an agreed location, unless you're sharing the place you may never even meet your host. – jpatokal Feb 6 '14 at 11:14
You should try to sublet to someone else the remaining days that you won't be there. If you can sublet the two or three days for, say, $400 or $500 per night, you could actually make money on the entire month. Just a thought. – user27631 Mar 14 at 15:33
This is probably illegal as per airbnb regulations. – JoErNanO Mar 14 at 16:22

2 Answers 2

up vote 23 down vote accepted

There's a simple third option -- don't change your booking. You've booked it for a month, so it's yours for a month, it's not the host's problem if you leave before the full month is up.

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Also, this way the OP does not end up paying additionally for airbnb's (ridiculous (IMO)) service fees. – happybuddha Feb 5 '14 at 12:16
Why do you think they are ridiculous? Airbnb is providing a service. Someone has to pay for it. It's not a charity. – André Peseur Feb 5 '14 at 13:29
@happybuddha The logic would dictate that if 28 nights or 1 month will cost $1000 and 27 nights will be charged at a daily rate the logical person would pay for a month and leave early. – Karlson Feb 5 '14 at 15:39
This is about business not ethics. Your are renting a room and you pay for it. Nobody will starve from hunger or die if you leave one or two days earlier. – André Peseur Feb 5 '14 at 20:37
If the host has indicated they are happy to incur the opportunity cost of daily rates for the stability of receiving $1000 on a monthly basis then that is the trade-off they are comfortable with. What this really means is that anyone who wants over 12 days will book it for the whole month. This probably means that they are only booking out 10 or so days a month in any case (for the discount decision to make economic sense). I don't see any ethical reason why it is your responsibility to maximise your host's profitability (which may not even change if they are unable to rent it out). – Matt Mitchell Feb 6 '14 at 3:44

You are required to pay for the nights that you book, not the nights that you sleep at the reservation. Think of the reverse scenario, if you don't know if you will actually sleep at a hotel, is it fair that you ask them to reserve it for 3 nights, and only charge you for the nights you stay there? Of course not. In the same manner, they can't enforce how much you choose use the room, just how long you can use it for.

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