Airbnb bans 1-night rentals over July Fourth as COVID-19 precaution; Indy 500 rentals unaffected

Indy 500

INDIANAPOLIS – As travel makes a comeback, Airbnb says it’s continuing to take steps to limit COVID-19 exposure. One step could affect people looking to book in Indianapolis over July Fourth weekend.

Airbnb, which allows people to rent-out their homes as vacation rentals, announced what they call the ‘Summer of Responsible Travel.’ This means, for those looking to book a place and those looking to list their place, the company put a ban on one-night rentals for July Fourth weekend.

The goal is to avoid one-night bookings that would host Fourth of July parties, bringing together a mass gathering of people in a home amid the coronavirus pandemic.

“One thing that appears to be remaining consistent based on the public health guidance is people should be avoiding mass gatherings, particularly mass parties, and that’s something where we’re going to be continuing to be taking a really hard line on,” said Ben Breit with Airbnb Trust Communications.

This is a nationwide effort by the company for the July Fourth holiday weekend. But no similar ban is in place for Indy 500 weekend when up to 135,000 fans are allowed to attend the race.

“What we’ve found historically in places like Indy that have this mega event once a year, I think also a parallel could be Louisville with the Kentucky Derby, cities like that where the hosts kind of know what they need to do, they do it every year, they understand the type of guests that they want to be hosting over a stretch like that, they have rules in place,” Breit said. “I think traditionally we’ve seen pretty good behavior in Indy over the Indy 500 weekend.”

The one-night booking ban for July Fourth weekend does have some exceptions, including for guests who have a documented history of positive reviews.

Click here to learn more about Airbnb’s Summer of Responsible Travel initiative.

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