Travellers are slamming Airbnb checkout chore lists

airbnb checkout has been criticised

A social media user has sparked a discussion about whether Airbnb hosts should be able to ask guests to complete a list of chores before they check out, as well as pay a cleaning fee.

The poster, lifestyle and fashion creator Melissa (@melworeit) shared that she was doing some research for an upcoming holiday and looking at Airbnbs that would be suitable for her and her husband. That’s when she came across a listing with what she believes are some odd requirements when weighed against the fees guests pay.

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“It does have a $125 cleaning fee as most Airbnbs do, and I don’t have a problem with that, but this is what I do have a problem with: in addition to that $125 cleaning fee, we ask that you remove the garbage, fine, remove bed linens, fine, start the dishwasher and a load of laundry,” she says in the video. “Now, maybe this is entitlement, or privilege talking, however, if I’m paying $225 a night to stay somewhere plus a $125 cleaning fee, I’m not doing any laundry. Full stop. I know it’s like one load of laundry, it will take me like two minutes to do, but it’s the principle that bothers me.”

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The post amassed 66,000 views and nearly 5000 comments, many of which shared similar encounters with Airbnb chore lists.

One commentator said: “Hotels do all that for me and don’t charge me an extra fee.”

Other travellers shared their stories of being asked to take out the rubbish, wash the sheets, and even mow the lawn during their stay.

Another Airbnb guest took the opportunity to ask whether it was “normal for a host to tell the guest to mow the lawn themselves?”

“Seems like a strange response given the premium being paid for staying here (to me, at least), but if that’s standard then I’ll roll with it,” the user wrote. “I just don’t want to be charged or poorly reviewed for ‘neglecting’ the lawn if I don’t do it.”

According to Insider, an Airbnb spokesperson said that while hosts choose their own cleaning fees, the company has provided recommendations for keeping the amount reasonable and suggests hosts consider not charging cleaning fees at all. According to the company, 45 per cent of global Airbnb listings do not charge a cleaning fee, and for those that do, the fee on average is less than 10 per cent of the total reservation cost.

Read: Study suggests Airbnb has a bigger carbon footprint than many realise

“Would you like guests to load dirty dishes into the dishwasher or strip the bed linen before checkout? If so, consider charging a very minimal cleaning fee – or no fee at all,” the Airbnb host resource page on cleaning fees says. “With a higher fee, guests may expect to just walk away from your space at checkout as they would a hotel room.”

Do you think hosts should be able to ask guests to complete chores on top of paying a cleaning fee? Why not share your opinions in the comments section below?

Written by Ellie Baxter

Writer and editor with interests in travel, health, wellbeing and food. Has knowledge of marketing psychology, social media management and is a keen observer and commentator on issues facing older Australians.

4 Comments

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  1. I would NOT do any chores requested if I am paying a cleaning fee, end of story. If there wasn’t a cleaning fee then maybe stacking the dishwasher, taking out the rubbish and stipping the bed would be OK but NOT mowing the lawn. Not my responsibility to upkeep the lawn and garden.

    • Why would anyone make themselves a meal and then not do the cleaning up after themselves? People should not need to be told to put their used crockery in a dishwasher! Just think what their own homes would be like. As for stripping beds – odd but not a big task. However, things such as cutting the lawn or other general maintenance tasks should not be allocated to guests.

      Having said all that, there are some people who absolutely no regard for other people’s belongings and no doubt leave their air bnb in a dreadful state. There should be processes in place to punish those people (and not just a ‘bad review’), not a blanket set of demands levied on all.

  2. I certainly won’t be stripping the beds or mowing the lawn or any of the other household chores I do when I’m at home. If I’m paying money to stay somewhere, then all cleaning is to be charged upfront. If I saw these chores listed if I was looking at a property then I just scroll on and not book with them. People have gone mad since the pandemic and are asking everyone else to do their work for them. Ridiculous.

  3. I’ll continue staying at hotels where I get full service and recourse when things aren’t right. The one time I stayed with an AirBnB, nothing was as advertised, the place was dirty and the owner “popped in” unannounced to check of something or other.

    When we arrived two appliances were broken. We reported this and the owners billed us for them.

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