Airbnb: Room for better handling of traces of ecz

Image copyright Airbnb Image caption Airbnb is helping travellers get to the bottom of the murky traces of Covid Airbnb users in Bali will have a tougher time getting out of unwitting rental agreements…

Airbnb: Room for better handling of traces of ecz

Image copyright Airbnb Image caption Airbnb is helping travellers get to the bottom of the murky traces of Covid

Airbnb users in Bali will have a tougher time getting out of unwitting rental agreements by turning up with bad noses and “rash” eyes if they’ve got traces of a known lung disease.

The BBC asked travellers to test for eczema or eczema-like skin conditions with staff of hostels and guest houses in Bali.

But it turned out some guest houses don’t handle eczema as well as others, allowing guests to get away with testing negative on arrival, and then bad nose and eye symptoms.

In most cases, the hostess was willing to offer a few hours of cleaning and help recovering from an Eczema flare-up.

However, in a small number of cases, staff who had previously interacted with travellers who’d tested positive were less willing to help in the aftermath.

In general, travellers were being treated respectfully and accommodating in their offers of help, the BBC staff found.

Abington House guest house in Bali originally removed a pair of swim goggles and headband, taking them off when travellers told them they had eczema.

However, a few days later, when the sunglasses were still on, staff stopped giving them to travellers, and the washing up basket was cleared out.

Carl Hubbard was a guest at Alice House in Ubud and, while staff washed the room after he tested positive for eczema, he said they also declined to give him any further assistance.

Image copyright Airbnb Image caption Guests with respiratory issues may need more help than others

Ann Kerr, managing director of Airbnb in Britain, said the company knew of over 450 cases of guests finding out they had eczema or eczema-like conditions while travelling, on average, about every three days.

She told the BBC travellers with respiratory conditions needed more help than others, and that that was a long-standing policy.

“Airbnb is not asking the airline or hotel to cancel. We have no way of tracking down the place where the guest has an issue,” she said.

“If they have a health problem, they need to get somebody else to assess it,” she added.

“They may not have anyone willing to come out to the hostel at the same time, because it can be very cold in the middle of the day.”

Ms Kerr said every single case of an Airbnb guest with a positive test for eczema or eczema-like conditions has not been cancelled.

“But if they have a really bad flare-up, or if they suddenly face a really cold day, it’s hard to give that person the same level of care,” she said.

But she said Airbnb was working with hosts and guests to help them better understand when to cancel a booking.

The BBC asked hundreds of travellers about air conditioners, fridges and bottled waters on a trip through Bali.

Most said they found out they were allergic to what they found.

The first test results we got on the 5th and 6th of July had a statement that read: “We currently have about nine cases of snot, watery stools, gas and coughing. Our team is keeping a close eye on the cases.”

Houdi Jabbar bought a hotel in Ubud for his wife – without realising he had a serious allergy to jet fumes and fresh food.

Image copyright Getty Images Image caption Hosts can be rude if guests want to ditch a holiday

When he later found out he had a serious case of hives, he was told by his host to burn the “junk” or he would be on his own.

“I will report this to the Minister of Tourism… We will also try to stop the airlines from bringing in these diseases,” he said.

“If they want to bring in these diseases, I say, you come back, but we can’t have you.”

Several hotels and guest houses we tested had heavily subsidised air conditioning units that offered at most a week of protection, as opposed to the recommended nine-day minimum.

The hotel we booked out of Bali’s famous Ubud cave also had a large fridge. Inside, we found countless bottles of baby milk and water, and a selection of condiments.

We gave the hotel a call to cancel the contract and returned the food, but never got an official response.

Ten days after we gave them the money, we called back with a rough plan.

The guide said to return the fridge, we needed to return the phone, but that it was in their possession.

Only ten days after, the group of thirteen backpackers returned to the caves looking much gaunter and emaciated than before.

They had been lying in a state of snot for the last

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