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Airbnb Instant Book – Pros & Cons

airbnb-instant-bookAirbnb Instant Book is a feature available to hosts that allows a traveller to book a property without any interaction with the potential host. Instant Book makes Airbnb easier for travellers to use as it gives them certainly that their reservation will be accepted rather than go through the standard request approval/decline routine. But should you use it? Well it depends on your circumstances.


The main reason to use it is that you get more bookings. End of story. This id due to the lack of friction that travellers have in booking as well as the fact that Airbnb promote Instant Book listings higher in the search results which also means you get more listing views and consequently more reservations.

You can set criteria that a traveller needs to fulfil such as only positive reviews as well as a minimum number of nights in advance you are willing to take a booking.


Well, if you are like me and your guests actually stay in your place with you then you may want to think twice about turning it on. (We haven’t)

The other issue if you don’t like the look of the person and want to cancel then this is a major hassle and will also blow up your Superhost status at the next review.

Some Rules of Thumb Around Airbnb Instant Booking

It’s pretty obvious that if a traveller has a number of positive reviews then they are less likely to be psychopaths or are intending to trash your place or throw a wild party. So our recommendation is to switch it on ONLY if the user has positive reviews. The last thing you want is a no verified , no review user without even a profile picture booking your place as cancelling is a search ranking killer.

It also a very good idea to set the minimum nights to at least one as you don’t want to get a reservation request at 11.30pm that you cannot fulfil as this is technically possible. You probably need at least that amount time to get the place together and arrange for a key drop etc.

Are you using Airbnb Instant Book? If so let us know your experiences in the comments.

About Brian

I'm an Airbnb Host and Evangelist living in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

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