Vacation rental Cleanliness: Airbnb’s Cleaning Checklist and Guidelines (COVID-19)

Thibault Masson

Updated on:

vacation rental cleaning cheklist

Airbnb published in April recommendations for hosts regarding the cleanliness of listings in a COVID-19 world. This Airbnb Cleaning Checklist should give you a pretty good idea of the step-by-step guidelines and protocol that the company will be releasing for its Enhanced Cleaning Initiative program.

These cleaning guidelines have been created to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Airbnb has created the following cleaning checklist based on recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Keep a copy to refer to while cleaning, or provide one for your cleaning professional.

Airbnb Cleaning Checklist (post coronavirus COVID-19)

vacation rental cleaning cheklist

Ventilate rooms before you clean.

Allow fresh air to circulate for at least 20 minutes. If possible, leave all windows open
during the entire cleaning process.

Wash your hands thoroughly before and after each cleaning.

Use soap and water, and scrub for at least 20 seconds. If that’s not possible, use a
hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol.

Wear disposable gloves while you clean.

Gloves should be thrown out after each cleaning. And make sure to wash your hands
immediately after gloves are removed.

Stock up on paper towels, disinfectant wipes, and other disposable
cleaning supplies.

If you prefer to clean with reusable products, machine-wash them at the highest
heat setting appropriate for the material.

Clean, then disinfect.

Cleaning is when you use soap or detergent and water to remove dirt, germs and
impurities. Disinfecting refers to the use of chemicals like bleach or alcohol to kill
germs. Doing both is the best way to reduce the spread of infection.

Use the right disinfectant.

Diluted household bleach solutions, cleaning products with at least 70% alcohol, and
most common disinfectants registered by the Environmental Protection Agency are
believed to be effective against the coronavirus.

Focus on frequently touched surfaces.

Light switches, doorknobs, remote controls, and faucet handles are just a few of the
areas you’ll need to disinfect. (Check out our list of frequently touched surfaces on
the next page.)

Don’t forget about sofas, rugs, drapes, and other soft, porous surfaces.

Carefully remove any visible dirt or grime, then use the appropriate cleaner for the
material. If possible, machine-wash items according to the manufacturer’s

Wash all linens at the highest heat setting recommended by the

That includes bedsheets, mattress covers, hand and bath towels, kitchen towels,
and blankets. Wear gloves when handling dirty laundry.

Clean and disinfect laundry baskets and hampers.

Consider using a liner that’s either disposable or machine washable.

Empty the vacuum cleaner after every cleaning.

Disinfect the vacuum cleaner, along with other cleaning appliances like the
dishwasher and washing machine.

Remember to check the expiration dates on your supplies.

And never mix household bleach with ammonia or other cleaning solutions – doing
so can release toxic gases.

What Airbnb recommends to clean and disinfect

Cleaning your space for a new guest? Pay special attention to these frequently
touched surfaces.


  • Doorknobs
  • Fans and lamp chains
  • Garbage and recycling bins 
  • Hairdryers
  • Ironing boards and irons 
  • Keys
  • Light switches 
  • Railings
  • Remote controls 
  • Tabletops
  • Thermostats
  • Window sills and window handles


  • Appliances: coffee maker, oven, pressure cooker, toaster, etc.
  • Cabinet handles and pulls 
  • Condiments: oil, salt and pepper shakers, commonly used spices and containers, etc. 
  • Hard-backed chairs 
  • Kitchenware that isn’t dishwasher safe: ceramic bowls, kids’ plasticware, etc.
  • Sinks


  • Faucet handles
  • Shampoo, conditioner, body wash, and soap dispensers 
  • Shower curtains and doors
  • Showers and tubs
  • Sinks
  • Toilets


  • Hangers and luggage racks
  • Nightstands

Cleaning appliances:

  • Dishwashers
  • Vacuum cleaners
  • Washer/dryer units

Kids’ items:

  • High chairs
  • Portable cribs and playpens 
  • Toys

Other amenities:

  • Bikes 
  • Books
  • Surfboards
  • Board games

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