Airbnb issues permanent party ban

PITTSBURGH — Back in April, two teenagers were shot and killed during a house party at an Airbnb in Pittsburgh’s North Side that had as many as 200 people in attendance. Now, Airbnb has issued a permanent party ban on all rental properties.

The move comes after a temporary party ban began in August 2020 in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. In late 2019, the company also began prohibiting “open-invite” parties, including those advertised on social media.

Airbnb believes the temporary ban and a 44% year-over-year drop in the rate of party reports go hand in hand. The company also said the ban was well received by hosts, community leaders and elected officials.

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Nevertheless, Airbnb is still putting measures in place to cut down on the number of parties.

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The temporary ban included a capacity limit of 16 people per listing, but after talking with Hosts, they’re removing that cap with the permanent ban for listings that can allow more than 16 people “comfortably,” according to Airbnb.

Even with the capacity limit lifted, there will continue to be serious consequences for guests who attempt to violate the party rules.

The person who rented the Pittsburgh Airbnb where the mass shooting took place was permanently banned from the rental service. Other guests who violate the rules could see this happen to them or get their account suspended.

Airbnb said that in 2021, 6,600 guests were suspended from the service for attempting to violate the temporary party ban.

There are also several anti-party measures that Airbnb has introduced in recent years to enforce the policy and try to stop both unauthorized parties and chronic party houses “to the best of our ability,” Airbnb said. These measures include “anti-party reservation prevention, special holiday anti-party measures, a 24-hour safety line, our Neighborhood Support Line, and a partnership with Vrbo to share information on repeat “party house” offenders in the US.”

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