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E.g., if I cancel an Airbnb reservation as a guest, can future hosts see I have canceled a reservation in the past? Is there a limit on how many free cancellation one can do? Are there any other potential downsides in cancelling an Airbnb reservation that has a free cancellation policy?

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I cancel an Airbnb reservation as a guest, can future hosts see I have canceled a reservation in the past?

There are multiple community posts clearly stating a host can not see the cancellation history of a guest. I would guess it is rather obvious Airbnb doesn't want to comment on this officially since it could have legal ramifications.

Is there a limit on how many free cancellation one can do?

If there is, no one is talking about it. When Airbnb bans someone for life, you will find yourself facing a brick wall Google would be envious of. No reason is ever given. Whether too many cancels play any role, it's anyone's guess. I would guess they have an algorithm which no human can fully understand any more and it just bans people depending on a myriad of inputs of which we can guess without any hard data the number of cancellations would be one. I would also guess the number for cancels must be ridiculously high to matter -- I would guess multiples of actual reservations would raise an eyebrow. (I had four cancels in 2019 -- and 11 trips.)

Are there any other potential downsides in cancelling an Airbnb reservation that has a free cancellation policy?

Well, you won't get back the service fees in most cases. But other than that, not that we know of.

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https://www.washingtonpost.com/travel/tips/airbnb-refund-policy-service-fees/

According to the Terms of Service found in Airbnb’s Help Center, “if the canceled reservation overlaps with another of your reservations or if you’ve already received 3 service fee refunds in the last 12 months, [the service fee] won’t be refunded.” There is no risk of getting your account banned for canceling too much or canceling an overlapping reservation; you will just stop getting the service fee back. Airbnb says these rules have been around well before the pandemic.

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