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Airbnb to block some one-night bookings for Halloween weekend

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Airbnb to block some one-night bookings for Halloween weekend
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Airbnb (ABNB) says it will block one-night reservations on Halloween weekend for any user who doesn't have a history of positive reviews. 

The move by the popular holiday rental app is part of a strategy to try to prevent unauthorized large parties amid the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Guests without a history of positive reviews on Airbnb will be banned from making one-night reservations across all home listings in Canada on Halloween weekend. The company is also setting restrictions on two-night reservations for users without a history of positive reviews. Airbnb says certain two-night local and last-minute bookings by guests will be blocked. 

"We believe this plan will help prevent large gatherings while supporting the type of safe, responsible travel that benefits guests, hosts and the neighbourhoods they call home," the company said in a statement. 

Airbnb introduced a ban on parties in homes listed on its platform in 2020, in an effort to help stem the spread of COVID-19. 

Last year, the company blocked all one-night reservations for listings that rent an entire home in Canada and the United States over the Halloween weekend. Airbnb says the decision resulted in a drop of more than 49 per cent of incidents such as large parties. In Toronto, the company says more than 1,300 people were barred from booking entire home listings last Halloween.  

Airbnb decided to tweak its policy this year, allowing users with positive review history to still book one-night stays, after rolling out a similar policy for New Year's Eve and July 1.

Alicja Siekierska is a senior reporter at Yahoo Finance Canada. Follow her on Twitter @alicjawithaj.

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