Travel and the Coronavirus: Answers to Your Top Questions

 Travel and the Coronavirus: Answers to Your Top Questions


In the United States, if you have a reservation and you choose to cancel it, the company will fully refund you (including any fees) if you booked on or before March 13, with a check-in date of April 1, or earlier. (Check Airbnb’s website for the policy for mainland China, South Korea and Italy.)

You will also get a full refund if you are traveling from the United States and have a reservation in Europe’s Schengen Area. (The policy applies to reservations that have been made on or before March 11, for travel between March 13 and April 13.)

If you are a guest in any other country and you cancel, the company will fully refund your booking if you meet the following criteria: If you cannot complete your trip because of official travel restrictions, medical or disease control duties related to the coronavirus; if your flight or ground transportation is canceled by your carrier because of Covid-19 — or a suspected or confirmed cases of Covid-19; or if you are complying with disease control restrictions implemented by relevant governmental or health authorities.

Additionally, in an effort to calm other guests’ travel anxieties, the company recently announced that, through June 1, guests who choose to cancel a home or an apartment booking — and who do not meet the circumstances and time frames already mentioned — will get a refund of Airbnb’s guest fee, which can be up to 14.2 percent of the total cost, excluding taxes. (The refund is a coupon that you can use during your next stay.)

For any other cancellations, how much money you get back will depend on your host’s cancellation policy (flexible, moderate or strict) advertised in the property listing. (For more details on cancellation policies, visit the Airbnb page.)

A growing number of states have declared a state of emergency or a public health emergency, including Washington, California, New York and Florida. As a practical matter, that does not affect travel — flights are not canceled and the C.D.C. has not issued any travel restrictions. States of emergency are used by local and state governments to help them shift funding, as well as to have the authority to close schools and other facilities.

“State of emergency or not, the same measures should be taken everywhere in the United States,” said Anne W. Rimoin, a professor of epidemiology at U.C.L.A. Jonathan and Karin Fielding School of Public Health and director of the Center for Global and Immigrant Health.



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