Safety is at the heart of everything we do at Airbnb, and it’s something we prioritize during every part of the reservation. That starts online, with technologies aimed at protecting your money and privacy during the booking process. And it extends into the real world, with policies and systems designed to help protect your offline safety during Airbnb reservations.
One part of this mission is safety and awareness around carbon monoxide (CO) detectors and smoke alarms. Put simply, these devices save lives. That’s why we’ve worked hard to reduce the barrier to access to these detectors globally, while working to educate and spread awareness of CO and fire safety for Hosts and guests alike.
- Free detectors
Access to carbon monoxide detectors is limited in certain parts of the world, so we’ve taken measures to help fill that gap. Since 2014, Airbnb has administered a program which offers free combination CO detectors and smoke alarms to active, qualifying Hosts. Upon request, Airbnb will purchase these detectors and ship them to Hosts in most regions.
More information on this program can be found here.
- Guest education
In 2018, we made changes to listing descriptions and the information we highlight during the guest booking process to disclose the presence (or lack thereof) of carbon monoxide detectors and smoke alarms. When guests book a listing where a Host has not yet reported having a smoke or carbon monoxide alarm present, we flag this to the guests so they’re aware and can take precautionary steps as needed. For guests, that could mean proceeding with the booking but bringing a portable CO detector of their own, or it could mean picking a different listing that does disclose having a CO detector and smoke alarm.
We also offer search filters for CO detectors and smoke alarms, meaning guests can filter their listing searches to only view listings that report these features in their amenity sections.
The objectives of these product changes were to give guests the information they need to make their booking decisions as well as to further incentivize Hosts to install CO detectors and smoke alarms if they had not already done so.
- Host education
We’ve managed awareness campaigns to help educate Hosts on the importance of CO detectors and smoke alarms, as well as the importance of adhering to local law and regulations which often speak to these types of safety issues. This is particularly important in parts of the world where these products are not as common or accessible to local communities. Along these lines, in 2018 we were proud to have contributed $1 million to support the Red Cross Home Fire Campaign to increase awareness around fire and carbon monoxide safety.