Airbnb Launches ‘Pay Less Upfront’ Option for Lower Reservation Deposits
Airbnb is changing the way people make reservations on their website. With the new Pay Less Upfront feature, users can book a room with a 50% deposit, rather than paying for the entire reservation upfront.
There are some restrictions to the program. The overall booking must be at least $250 USD, and the reservation must be made at least 14 days before check-in.
The accepted methods of payment remains the same: credit card, debit card, PayPal, Google Pay, Apple Pay, and other options specific to each country. During checkout, Airbnb will show when the remaining balance is due. They will automatically charge the original method of payment on that date. Airbnb holds the full payment for 24 hours after check-in before releasing it to the host.
There is no extra fee for using Pay Less Upfront, aside from the standard service fees they charge on all reservations. In their test run of this feature, Airbnb found 40% of users opted to pay a smaller deposit. Hosts saw an increase in the value of their bookings, and got more notice in advance for reservations.
In November, Airbnb made another adjustment to their payment options to make it easier for group trip reservations. Users now have the option to split payments for trips so one person does not have to pay all the money upfront. The trip organizer can send reminders to friends so they can pay their portion, and then each group member has 72 hours to complete the payment. Airbnb has not mentioned if this service will eventually be integrated with Pay Less Upfront.