Service Fees. Why pay them?

Aug 4, 2017

Guest Service Fees Explained


If you have arrived at this page then you may well have searched for “Guest Service Fees”, why you are being asked to pay them when booking a vacation rental and why they even exist!

NOTE: This article may be downloaded  as a pdf and mailed or used on any site where an explanation is needed for “Guest Service Fees”. Please feel free to link to the site aswell.

These terms are more and more often found when a booking for accommodation is made via an online travel site (OTA). There are two examples shown below relating specifically to holiday rentals.

AIRBNB Guest Fees

Extract Quote from investopedia: “The primary source of Airbnb’s revenue comes from service fees from bookings. Depending on the size of the reservation, guests are required to pay a 6% to 12% non-refundable fee.  With every completed booking, hosts are also charged a 3-5% fee to cover processing of guests payments. When a reservation is booked, guests pay the service fee unless the host cancels or retracts the listing. If the reservation is altered, Airbnb adjusts service fees to accommodate users.”

In the example below the Service Fee is $68 and the owner may be charged 3-5% on top of this. As a guest this could represent up to 15-17% of the cost of the stay. In the illustration below the guest service fee is approximately 12% of the cost.

What are Guest service fees