Airbnb has partnered with the American Red Cross and the International Federation of the Red Cross Red Crescent to provide our community with general safety resources. These resources, applicable in 191 countries, were developed by the Red Cross Red Crescent’s Global Disaster Preparedness Center, which is an international reference center created to build a global community for disaster preparedness innovation and learning. In an emergency situation please contact local police or emergency services immediately.

Everybody wants to be safe, whether they’re staying in a home or going on an experience. Unexpected accidents may occur, however, and we want you to be prepared. This guide offers some basic first aid tips prepared by the Red Cross and can help increase your awareness of guest safety. These tips are a great start, but we also strongly recommend that you to sign up for a First Aid & CPR training course near you.

Prepare a first aid kit

We recommend that both hosts and guests have first aid kits. As a host, make sure your guest knows where your kit is. Guests should make sure to ask their host if they have a kit and where it’s located.

Below is a list of recommended supplies to have on hand in case of emergency. These supplies may also be found in a Red Cross-approved first aid kit at your local pharmacy or medical clinic.

  • 2 pairs of latex-free gloves
  • Latex-free adhesive bandages with different sizes
  • Sterile gauze pads with different sizes
  • 1 roll adhesive cloth tape
  • Roller bandages with different sizes
  • 1 elastic bandage
  • 3 or 4 triangular bandages
  • 1 36’’ malleable radiolucent splint
  • 1 unit of antibiotic ointment, cream, or wound gel
  • 4 sealable plastic bags
  • 5 antiseptic wipe packets
  • 2 packets of chewable aspirin
  • 1 space blanket
  • 1 CPR breathing barrier (with a one-way valve)
  • 1 pair of utility shears or scissors
  • Oral thermometer
  • Tweezers

It’s important that you know how to use your kit and the supplies in it.  In an emergency, it can be difficult to remember every step. Check out the First Aid app offered by the Red Cross and Red Crescent Network in each country. 

How to react in an emergency

In the event of an emergency, your actions can make a difference. Whether or not you have received basic training, it’s important to not put somebody’s life or yours at risk. Let emergency medical professionals take care of the emergency. However, your quick action could save the life of a person if you activate the Check – Call – Care process.

  • Check the scene and the person: Recognize if an emergency exists. Check on the surroundings and if the person is in real risk or distress.
  • Call: If the emergency seems critical, do not hesitate to call the designated emergency number in your country.
  • Care: Stay with the person, monitoring his/her vital signals and providing information to the medical team.

How to provide first aid

Once called, emergency medical professionals might take some time to arrive, particularly if there is a lot of traffic or if you’re in a remote location. As a host, here are some first steps you can take to care for someone in specific types of emergencies before help arrives. The below steps each assume that you have already determined that help is needed and an emergency number has been called.

Seizure:

  • Protect them from injury
  • Do not restrain them
  • After the seizure, move them onto their side
  • Tilt their head back and check for breathing

Diabetic emergencies:

  • Give them a sweet, sugary drink or food.
  • Reassure them. Most people will gradually improve.

Stroke:

  • Identify if there is weakness on one side.
  • Check if the person can raise both arms.
  • Confirm if the person can easily talk and you can understand.

Choking:

  • Check for breathing by tilting their head backward.
  • Clear the airway if it is blocked.
  • Give five back blows between the shoulder blades to dislodge the object.
  • Give five abdominal thrusts.
  • Continue to monitor the person until help arrives.

Poisoning:

  • Establish what they have taken, when, and how much.
  • Do not make them vomit or give them anything to drink.

Heart attack:

  • Help the person sit down.
  • Give them aspirin (not ibuprofen or acetaminophen).
  • Give constant reassurance.

External bleeding:

  • Put pressure on the wound.
  • Keep pressure on the wound until help arrives.

Fractures, dislocations, sprains, and strains:

  • Support the injury to prevent movement.
  • Make sure the injury is supported until help arrives.

Neck, head, and spinal injuries

  • Be sure to tell the emergency services if the subject is drowsy, confused, or vomiting, or if the injury occurred from a fall two times their height or greater.
  • Ask them to rest and hold still.
  • Apply a cold compress to the injury 20 minutes on, ten minutes off.

In some cases, an emergency may not seem serious initially…

Burns:

  • Cool the burn under cool running water for at least ten minutes.
  • Cover the burn with plastic wrap or a clean plastic bag.
  • If a child is burned or if the burn is serious, call the designated emergency number.

Asthma emergencies:

  • Help the person sit in a comfortable position and take their medication if they have it.
  • Reassure them.
  • If the attack becomes severe or does not improve with medication, call the designated emergency number.

Heat-related environmental emergencies:

  • Move the person to a cool place.
  • Rehydrate  the person with sports water (carbohydrate electrolytes), coconut water, or milk. Use plain water only when the other options are not available.
  • Loosen or remove as much clothing as possible and apply cool wet cloths.
  • Fan and mist the person.
  • If the person is not responsive, call the designated emergency number.

Cold-related environmental emergencies:

  • Check for signs of hypothermia (reduced body temperature).
  • Warm the person very gently with a blanket or water no more than 100 degrees Fahrenheit/37 Celsius degrees.
  • Cover the person or the area with a blanket or jacket without putting pressure, so the person stays warm.
  • Provide warm liquids without alcohol or caffeine.
  • If the person doesn’t respond, call the designated emergency number.

Additional Guidance

Emergency planning
We recommend that all guests and hosts engaging in an Experience prepare an emergency plan in case of a natural disaster or any other kind of emergency that could occur during an Experience.

Here are several useful safety plan templates provided by the American Red Cross and the International Federation of the Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC):

Making an Emergency Plan

Airbnb Provided Trip Protections
All multi-day trips include 24/7 customer support. We also maintain $1 million of liability insurance under our Experience Protection Insurance program, in order to provide hosts and guests with peace of mind (certain exclusions apply). Additionally, in the event of a life-threatening injury, we also have partnered with an emergency medevac provider which may be activated to reach an injured party to support a medically necessary evacuation.

 

Courtesy of the American Red Cross. ©2019 The American National Red Cross ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

The American Red Cross and International Federation of the Red Cross Red Crescent name and emblem are used with its permission, which in no way constitutes an endorsement, express or implied, of any product, service, company, opinion or political position. The American Red Cross logo is a registered trademark owned by The American National Red Cross. For more information about the American Red Cross, please visit redcross.org.