Last year The Consumer Authority initiated a collaboration with other European consumer authorities to get Airbnb to make a number of changes on its rental platform. Now, Airbnb has made several improvements to the benefit of consumers.
– It is very satisfying for consumers here in Norway and the rest of Europe that Airbnb changes its practice, says Elisabeth Lier Haugseth, director of the Consumer Authority.
– This will make it easier to see how much you pay when using Airbnb and to see who actually owns the property.
– It is not very pleasant to bring your family on a long-awaited holiday and then get an unexpected extra bill for the Airbnb apartment you just rented. It affects both your vacation in itself and your wallet. I am happy that Airbnb are now making changes. That will benefit the Norwegian consumers as it is now summer and it is high season for renting, says Minister for Consumer affairs Kjell Ingolf Ropstad. He praises the Norwegian Consumer Authority for taking the initiative to overcome this problem.
Airbnb has committed to several improvements. These are:
- Informing consumers of the full price of the rental object, including all costs, from the very beginning of the booking process. This includes both local taxes and fees, cleaning fees, and Airbnb’s administration fee.
- Through clear labelling, Airbnb will make it easier for consumers to distinguish between professional and private property owners. This is important because you have different rights depending on whether you rent from a professional or a private individual.
- Provide all necessary information on dispute resolution, e.g where consumers can send their complaint if any problems occur.
Changes in contracts terms and conditions
Airbnb has also committed to changing its terms and conditions on several points. These changes include:
- Airbnb will make it clear what kind of routines apply when it comes to compensation and liability in case of damage.
- Airbnb will not deprive consumers of the right to complain or sue against the company in their respective countries.
- The company will inform consumers when it makes changes in the terms and conditions.
– The Norwegian Consumer Authority has extensive experience in managing processes where we have made international companies change practices in favor of consumers in Norway and other countries. This work is very important for us, says Elisabeth Lier Haugseth.