Airbnb announced it is canceling and blocking all future reservations in Washington, D.C. during the week of President-elect Joe Biden’s inauguration, according to the company in a statement made earlier Wednesday.
We have canceled all Airbnb reservations in DC for Inauguration week.
Guests will be issued a full refund and hosts will still be paid in full for these canceled bookings. https://t.co/K67zaRqdKJ
— Brian Chesky (@bchesky) January 13, 2021
“We are announcing that Airbnb will cancel reservations in the Washington, D.C. metro area during the Inauguration week,” the statement read. “Additionally, we will prevent any new reservations in the Washington, D.C. area from being booked during that time by blocking such reservations.”
The company promised to fully reimburse all guests who had their reservation canceled. It will also pay back hosts who would have been owed cancellation fees under normal circumstances.
This decision was made following a joint request by Democratic D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser, Democratic Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam, and Republican Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan. The request asked Americans to not travel to the nation’s capital, but rather to watch the inauguration virtually, according to Airbnb’s statement. (RELATED: DC Mayor Muriel Bowser Asks Trump And Several Federal Agencies To Help Prepare For Biden Inauguration)
Airbnb’s announcement is a pivot from its original plan for increased safety and security measures, according to CNBC. The platform stated it would remove people associated with the Jan. 6 Capitol riots from its mobile app.
The company’s decision comes after the announcement that the National Guard will deploy “at least” 10,000 troops by Saturday in preparation of Biden’s Jan. 20 inauguration, according to the Associated Press.
Airbnb concluded its statement saying it has identified multiple people who “are either associated with known hate groups or otherwise involved in the criminal activity at the Capitol Building.” These individuals have been banned from the platform.