Airbnb says it is investigating one of its hosts following a message allegedly sent to a same-sex couple. The host is suspended pending the outcome of the investigation
Curtis Kimberlin Jr. and his partner Jonathan were looking to book a room in Dallas, Texas. They were disappointed when one of their choices responded negatively to their inquiry.
Kimberlin took to Twitter to post about the experience. He re-printed a screenshot of the exchange between his partner and the host.
Jonathan excitedly told the host, “My partner and I will be flying into town for a weekend wedding and we’re really excited. It’ll be my first time in Texas and my partner is from Dallas, so he’ll be showing me around.”
He went on to detail their travel plans.
The host’s response was blunt: “So I’ll be hosting two men sleeping together… right?”
— Curtis Kimberlin Jr (@ckimberlinjr) January 7, 2023
Kimberlin’s tweet was retweeted almost a thousand times. A user asked him if he could cancel the booking and Kimberlin responded, “He luckily denied us before we could cancel but it still doesn’t feel great.”
Airbnb swung into action.
“Discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation has no place on Airbnb, and we take reports of violations of our nondiscrimination policy incredibly seriously,” a spokesperson told Travel Noire.
“We suspended this listing and host from the platform as we investigate further, and we have reached out to our impacted guests to offer our support,” it added.
Others offer support to couple
Others to respond to Kimberlin’s Tweet was the hotel brand Hilton, who offered to help the couple.
Curtis – if you and your partner still need help with a stay, we got you! Please meet us in the DMs!
— Hilton (@Hilton) January 9, 2023
In recent years, Airbnb has instigated a strongly-worded non-discrimination policy, and all users must agree to abide by it before using the platform.
However, a few bad apples still clearly slip through the net. On Twitter, others shared similar stories.
I once got a listing removed from Airbnb because they said they wouldn’t allow same sex couples in the description.. insane that they could even post that in the first place but glad Airbnb did the right thing by removing it.
— Maddie Dunne (@MadeleineDunne) January 8, 2023
I’ve had a lot of AirBnB hosts cancel as soon as they realise the booking is for two guys 🤷🏻♂️
— Vagabond Mike 😎 (@hobbitshollow) January 9, 2023
Other Airbnbs hosts came forward to offer their accommodations, while some users suggested the couple check out Misterb&b (a specifically LGBTQ-friendly accommodation platform) instead.