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Airbnb makes masks, enhanced cleanings mandatory

Not sure whether to use vacation rentals in times of social distancing and anti-masking? Airbnb implements mandatory health and safety protocols for guests and hosts that require masks, distancing and improved cleaning.

The company announced on Wednesday that from next week all hosts and guests will have to commit to wearing masks and distance themselves when interacting. From November 20th, hosts must adhere to a five-step cleaning protocol, otherwise there is a risk of being removed from the platform.

“This commitment will help provide additional collateral to protect all of our stakeholders – hosts, guests, their communities and governments,” Airbnb said in the announcement.

The guidelines for distancing state that guests must “maintain a reasonable distance from anyone who is not part of your reservation at all times,” while the hosts are expected to be “in a common area or room” from the guests Distance guests. Whole-home reservations with remote access are less likely to see these shared spaces than private room listings, where guests typically share a living space with the host. Hosts will be asked to agree to the new terms on their Airbnb account and guests will need to opt out of masking and distancing requirements when booking a stay.

Cleaning staff must wear a mask and gloves during cleaning, ventilate the rooms to be serviced, disinfect surfaces with approved cleaning agents, wash laundry and dishes at the highest possible temperature settings and refer to room-specific checklists.

The new mandatory cleaning protocols were developed in June as a program for hosts called “Enhanced Clean,” which was optional until this week. According to Airbnb, nearly 1.5 million rentals have participated and received an “Enhanced Clean” stamp on their list since the program launched in June.

The only exception to the new cleaning standards, according to Airbnb Listings, is China, which has its own public health guidelines for cleaning.

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