airbnb party toronto

Don't even think about throwing a Halloween party at an Airbnb in Toronto this year

There will be no shootings, violent brawls or destructive raves at Airbnbs in Toronto this Halloween... or so Airbnb is hoping.

The San Francisco-based short-term rental juggernaut announced in a media release on Tuesday that it would be implementing something called a "Halloween anti-party crackdown" this spooky season, aimed at preventing the kind of out-of-control gatherings that have drawn heat toward them in recent years.

"Today Airbnb is announcing the rollout of platform defences and policies aimed at reducing disruptive parties over Halloween weekend," the company told blogTO by email this week.

"Specifically, this Halloween Airbnb will take action on certain local reservations made by guests without a history of positive reviews, as part of our ongoing mission to promote responsible behavior and crack down on parties."

The tech-enabled vacation accommodation giant is confident that its new measures will work, based on similar measures that were implemented as recently as August.

"This Halloween action comes on the heels of two recent anti-party updates: we codified our Party Ban and introduced new anti-party technology in Canada and the U.S.," says Airbnb.

"We introduced these systems for Halloween 2021 and estimate that this crackdown resulted in a drop in incidents such as unauthorized parties by roughly 37 percent for Halloween 2021 in the U.S. and Canada."

Airbnb somehow determined that more than 5,000 people in Ontario were "deterred by our various anti-party defences from booking entire home listings over Halloween 2021."

This makes sense, given how strict Airbnb was last year about Halloween rentals. And this year, with a formalized Halloween anti-party crackdown program in place, it's only set to get harder.

Here are the rules, in case you're thinking about renting out someone else's home for a Halloween party this year, per Airbnb:

  • For one-night reservations: Guests without a history of positive reviews on Airbnb will be prohibited from making one-night reservations in entire home listings.
  • For two-night reservations: Guests attempting to book entire home listings without a history of positive reviews, within a certain locale, and/or last-minute reservations, will be redirected to listings that are not entire home listings or blocked altogether.  
  • Guests who have a history of positive reviews on Airbnb will not be subject to these restrictions.
  • For all guests attempting to make local reservations during the Halloween weekend, they must affirmatively attest that they understand that Airbnb bans parties and if they break that rule, they may be subject to legal action from the company.

That's right; if you're caught throwing a party at an Airbnb on October 31, 2022 (or more likely the two three days previous, as Halloween is a Monday this year), you could be in serious legal and financial trouble.

"These measures for holidays like Halloween are part of our larger strategy to partner with our hosts to combat disruptive parties," said Airbnb on Tuesday.

"This special Halloween system we're sharing today works on top of the 24/7 anti-party technology since we know that certain holidays, like Halloween and New Year's Eve, are more likely to encourage attempts to throw unauthorized parties."

You've been warned, Toronto.

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