Dec 20, 2023

Airbnb fined A$15m for misleading Australian customers

Airbnb has been fined A$15m and has agreed to pay compensation after it was found to have misled around 63,000 Australian customers. The fine was handed down by Australia's Federal Court on Wednesday after Airbnb admitted making false or misleading representations to Australian users between January 2018 and August 2021. Airbnb received more than 2,000 complaints from Australian consumers raising concerns about being charged in US dollars and the court found some of these consumers had been told they had selected for prices to be in US dollars, when in fact they had never made that selection. The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission, which brought the case, said customers should have been shown prices in Australian dollars, unless they had manually chosen to see the cost of their booking in another currency. The commission said the fine sent "a strong signal to large digital platforms like Airbnb that they must comply with the Australian Consumer Law and not mislead consumers".

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