Airbnb and Minut target anti-social behaviour with new campaign

UK: As part of its ongoing commitment to healthy and responsible tourism in the UK, Airbnb is collaborating with property monitoring company Minut to support its Good Neighbour Campaign, bringing together a a series of measures and resources to help combat anti-social behaviour in short-term rentals.

Fresh data released by Airbnb has revealed the extent to which the company is enforcing its global ban on [unauthorised] parties, deterring community disturbances and preventing issues before they start in short-term rentals across the UK over the last 12 months. This includes blocking more than 55,000 people from making certain bookings on Airbnb over this time, and in the two years since the technology launched, approximately 135,000 people in the UK have been prevented from making certain bookings.

According to Airbnb, the system focuses primarily on guests “under the age of 25 without positive reviews who are booking locally”.

By partnering with Minut, hosts in more than 60 countries and regions including the UK are being offered a free Minut noise sensor and three months of free subscription to the company’s noise and occupancy monitoring service. That is accompanied by the integration of Minut noise alerts [through Minut’s guest communication feature Guest Connect] and Airbnb’s messaging tool to help make resolution of potential noise issues between hosts and guests faster and more seamless.

The integration of Minut noise alerts with Airbnb’s messaging tool means if a device detects noise in a listing exceeds the decibel level set by the host, an automatic notification can be sent by Minut through the Airbnb messaging tool to inform the host and guest. Though the technology is privacy-safe, hosts must disclose the presence of these devices on their listing page in advance of bookings, and they are strictly prohibited in spaces like bedrooms and other sleeping areas.

The measures build on Airbnb’s partnership with the Neighbourhood Watch on guides that will be issued to hosts and guests in the UK on being a good neighbour, the company’s newly-launched UK Trust and Safety hub, which brings together information and resources from experts on topics such as home, community and online safety, and virtual events being held with the Neighbourhood Watch and other experts to further equip hosts with the resources and tools they need to get ahead of issues before they arise.

Previously, Airbnb introduced the UK Trust Safety and Alliance, bringing together a network of experts to provide information and resources for Airbnb’s UK community, as well as a 24-hour safety line and Neighbourhood Support Line in this year’s 2022 Summer Release.

Meanwhile in June, Airbnb announced the rollout of its “Solo Traveler” in-app experience, a new product aimed at promoting a safe and secure experience for solo travellers.

Amanda Cupples, general manager of Northern Europe at Airbnb, said: “Thousands of stays take place across the UK each night on Airbnb, with the vast majority being respectful of hosts’ homes and neighbourhoods and sharing the benefits of tourism with local communities. We are committed to promoting responsible and respectful travel and cracking down on disruptive behaviour that isn’t welcome on Airbnb, and we believe proactive steps like our anti-party measures and collaborations with experts like Minut and Neighbourhood Watch help us to do just that.”

After going public via an initial public offering [IPO] at the end of 2020, Airbnb has sought to repair its relationship with communities, as well as hosts and guests, that had in some cases become strained by disturbances in its short-term rental listings, including unauthorised parties and anti-social behaviour incidents.

Nils Mattisson, co-founder and CEO of Minut, said: “We’re excited to bring our seamless noise resolution to the four million-plus hosts who share their homes and neighbourhoods with guests through Airbnb. With listings in 100,000+ cities and towns and 220+ countries and regions, they’re the definition of a global community, and we’re proud to be able to offer them our global solution.”

Neighbourhood Watch Network CEO John Hayward-Cripps said: “We are delighted to be partnering with Airbnb and really support the launch of the Good Neighbour campaign. By supporting Hosts to stay ahead of parties and anti-social behaviour we can ensure they stay positive and valued in parts of their communities.

“We all enjoy the fantastic benefits of Airbnb and know Hosts and Airbnb are committed to reduce and address the few instances of unwanted behaviour. We have developed our Neighbourhood Watch guide for Hosts to support this and look forward to developing the work together,” he added.

Minut, which raised $14 million in Series B funding in February, has previously collaborated with Airbnb for noise detection trials in Edinburgh, which led to the launch of a joint pilot programme in the Czech capital Prague last year.

Subsequently, Minut claims to be the only noise monitoring solution that integrates with Airbnb.

To support hosts on Airbnb in promoting responsible travel in their communities, Minut is offering a sensor and three months of subscription [Pro or Standard] for free. The offer is now open to hosts in over 60 countries and regions at this link.