Airbnb Construction Holiday in Palm Springs

My daughter and I have taken a yearly road trip to Palm Springs during Spring Break for the last four years. Last March, we rented a 3-bedroom and 2.5-bath townhouse in a small gated development just a block off Palm Canyon Drive. It was a two-story building, so I took the master bedroom upstairs and my daughter took the bedroom on the main floor so she wouldn’t keep me up all night watching TV. I was awoken on the first morning by what I sleepily dreamed was a cleaning crew giving someone maid service. I wondered why they were cleaning a room at 7:00 AM and realized I wasn’t in a hotel and the noise was above my head on the roof. Workers were redoing the asphalt. We had rented this condo for seven days and four mornings were ruined by the workers. We even woke on the third morning of work to find plastic sheeting was covering the entire patio. Because our access to the carport was through the patio gate, we couldn’t drive away.

I’m easy going, but after being awakened three mornings in a row before 7:00 AM, my daughter asked if we could go elsewhere. I did not want to move everything (clothes, food, liquor, a 42″ flat screen to replace the analog TV shown in the pictures, and an Apple TV), so I rented a room for her at the Hard Rock, while I stayed in the condo. I was going there to use the pool and to go out with my daughter. After renting the hotel room, I texted the property manager to tell her I would like a partial refund of the $1800 I had paid for six nights, and to tell her the wifi had been out since the previous night, meaning I had no TV or Internet. She immediately got an attitude with me. She asked why I had waited “so long” to tell her about the workers. I told her it was because I was a property owner and knew that things can happen, so I gave them the benefit of the doubt and hoped it was short-lived. However, by the third day I was getting really annoyed and knew the owners knew about it, because the Homeowners Association had sent letters to each owner several months earlier, as required by law (I spoke to some neighboring owners). She said the owners lived in another state and she would get back to me after she talked to them.

By the fifth day I had a large amount of video evidence regarding the level of noise. Pounding, dragging, pressure washing, etc. at 6:30-7:00 AM lasting until 5:00 PM. I had video of the back door covered in plastic, the back patio still blocked, and the grill and patio furniture, which was unusable. She finally responded, but only after we arrived home, to inform me the owners felt they could have stopped the workers if I had made an immediate complaint (right… the entire complex was being roofed, but one owner could have stopped it). She said because I waited until halfway through my stay I left them unable to do anything to assist me.

At that point my daughter told me to send a complaint with the attachment videos to Airbnb, which I did. After two weeks I received their response. “There was insufficient evidence for even a partial refund due to the timing of my complaint, but the property manager offered a 10% goodwill discount if I booked with them the following year.” As if it’s somewhere I would ever stay again. I think there are only two big property management agencies in Palm Springs and the property managers are all well known in the city. They all protect themselves and their paychecks by discouraging reporting with rude behavior. They delay complaints and give ridiculous explanations for why they can’t help you. Airbnb only makes money if it protects the hosts. Without hosts there are no travelers, therefore they will protect them before us. Especially the more expensive postings in popular destinations.

The People Who Run Airbnb Are Thieves

Thieves! Never trust the listing and pictures. What you see is never what you get. I arrived with my family at the place we booked for our dream vacation on Boxing Day and we could not believe what we paid for. We paid four months before our vacation. The holiday turned into hell for us immediately. After going through a painful negotiation with the host and Airbnb they agreed to partially refund us on difficult terms if we left immediately. I spent all of Christmas Day and night listening to my kids crying from cold and exhaustion in the cold dungeon we booked as a luxury apartment. Now after 20 days, Airbnb refused to refund me, even the host did not receive any payment from them. They are just sitting on the money and not replying to email and phone calls.

Host Refuses Early Check In, No Refund

We reserved and paid 502 USD for three nights’ lodging and the cleaning fee in September 2016 for lodging from September 16th to December 19th, 2016. Prior to December we requested to store our luggage the morning of the 16th because we were arriving on the Holland American cruise ship that morning. We had reserved a slot for two people for the 12:05 PM Sydney Bridge Climb which lasted until 3:30 PM. The host said we could not check in prior to that afternoon, so we stored our two suitcases at the dock’s storage rental. We had also booked a performance at the Sydney Opera House for 7:00 PM on the evening of the 16th. So at 3:40 PM we retrieved our luggage and got a taxi to the lodging we booked in Surry Hills.

Arriving at approximately 4:15 PM, we found an iron gate covering the door of the Airbnb lodging. No one answered our knocking on the window beside the locked gate. It was also raining and there was no overhang above the front locked gate. Our cellphones weren’t working so I remained with the two suitcases while my husband walked two blocks and found a restaurant. The owner was kind and made some calls for us. She was not able to get an answer at the number the host had listed on their posting. We found out two or three days ago they had sent a message to our email they had to go out for a couple of hours between 4:30 and 6:30 PM. They were not available when we arrived and they didn’t intend to be home until 6:30 PM. Since we needed a room to shower and dress for our 7:00 PM performance we had to get a cab and find a hotel. Since the host had been paid for three nights, I determined they had cancelled our lodging paid three months prior because they did not uphold the mid-afternoon check in request. Now we find out Airbnb is handling our request for a refund of the cleaning fee and two nights’ lodging. Instead they presented us with an Airbnb voucher for $200 to be used at one of their locations prior to January 2018. I have no use for this Airbnb voucher since we will never use their company again. When paid in advance, hotels will have someone available to check us in upon arrival even if we arrive at 11:00 PM on the day of the reservation.

“Grotesque, Lying Hag” Says Airbnb Review

Antler’s Inn was by far the worst lodging experience with Airbnb we’ve ever had. After we’d already gone to bed for the evening, the manager of Antler’s Inn woke us up and told us we had to move to a different cabin. We said that we’d gladly move in the morning, but we were in bed for the night. He said that his staff put us in the wrong cabin so we needed to get our things and move to another cabin now. We scrambled to pack our things (a guy in a Hummer was screaming at us to hurry up). The cleaning crew came in and didn’t change the sheets for the bed we’d just been sleeping in; they just remade the bed.

When we checked in, the cabin was not in very good condition (stains on the furniture and Budweiser cans in the freezer), but I’m horrified that they don’t change the bedding between guests. In the manager’s office, we were pissed. We had checked in seven hours ago and they waited until we were in bed to let us know we needed to leave? The manager told us, “I’d rather you just get out. I can rent the cabin in a heartbeat for hundreds more than what you’re paying.” He was also upset that we had a dog, though we mentioned it when we requested our booking and got a confirmation for two adults and one pet. He kept trying to pressure us to just leave, but it was freezing cold and dark, the winding mountain roads were icy, and we’d each had wine with our dinner. We didn’t feel like it was safe to leave.

He gave us a key to a new cabin (oddly, he let us keep the key to the original cabin, which seemed really unsafe), but didn’t check on it ahead of time. There wasn’t even a pathway cleared and we both slipped and fell on the ice. We left in the morning, still furious with them for treating us like this. He said he wasn’t going to charge us for the stay and we civilly left it at that. Then surprise: we got a charge. Because we settled the dispute with Airbnb (they felt the charge was inappropriate and refunded us in full), we weren’t going to write a review. Antler’s Inn felt differently. They called me “a grotesque, lying hag.”

Airbnb Customer Service Still Won’t Refund My Money

We stayed in an Airbnb apartment that had not been cleaned when we arrived. The place was filthy and smelled bad. We contacted our host who said the cleaner was running late because of the recent holiday period. We were very annoyed because we had both traveled a long way that morning and had already waited outside the apartment for two hours in the heat, as we arrived before check-in time. We asked for a partial refund due to the inconvenience, which our host kindly agreed to. Seven business days later and we still have not seen the refund in our account. First of all, it was really difficult to get in contact with Airbnb, and when we finally did after being on hold for a long time, the lady that answered was very rude and not helpful at all. We originally paid for our stay with my friend’s PayPal account. Months after we paid in full for our accommodation, her account was hacked, her money stolen, and then her account was permanently closed by the hacker. Airbnb refused to pay our refund to any other account other than the one with which we paid, fully aware of my friend’s unfortunate circumstance. Calls were made back and forth trying to get our money back and we spent a lot of time on hold. In the end, they did not give us our money back, even though PayPal customer service said it was their responsibility. Not only has our host missed out on money, so have we (and a substantial amount of time), Airbnb was the only one to benefit. I am really disappointed and annoyed, and will let everyone I know not to trust them. Their customer service is horrible, they are not empathetic at all, and their policies need some serious reviewing.

Airbnb Customer Service All But Impossible

We were supposed to spend a month in an apartment with good reviews. We arrived there pretty late. The place had not been cleaned at all. There were mounds of dust on one of the doors, a refrigerator filled with half-eaten food, a bed sheet that was very old with hairs of debatable origin on it, toothpaste on the countertop, brown stains and hair on the back of the bathroom door, soda cans and bottle caps under the bed, and hair and dust at accumulated levels in the bedroom. Large food particulates were in the toaster oven, most drawers had things in them, and nothing seemed cleaned. It was late and we called Airbnb for help. They told us we could not get a refund because the unit owner had a strict refund policy and we were already in the apartment. Of course we were in the apartment; that’s when we learned that it was disgusting. Are they really that stupid at Airbnb? Whatever genius was working that day should be fired. Supposedly I am getting some money back, but so far nothing has been refunded. We are talking about thousands of dollars, and I have heard nothing about getting my security deposit back even though we never stayed in the apartment. I tried calling Airbnb; it’s all so automated that you can’t speak to anyone. Big time nightmare. Bottom line: the concept seems good when it works. But if your host is a pig, Airbnb could care less. Never will I use that company again.

Dreadful Refund Policy, No Way to Speak to Airbnb

We had used Airbnb three times with no difficulties, until we made a reservation to stay in a log cabin at Christmas. We made the reservation in September and immediately after we made it we received a notification from the host that the rates that were posted on the Airbnb website were incorrect and that we owed a substantial amount more. The host recommended that we cancel and find something else if the additional cost was not acceptable. We went ahead and immediately cancelled the reservation. However, we didn’t receive a full refund. Airbnb retained $118 as a service fee! A service fee? They had done nothing! The host was very upset and tried to contact Airbnb without success. We tried repeatedly to contact Airbnb without success. We learned that if you need to cancel, the host must do the cancellation and then you get a full refund. If you try to do it as a guest, then Airbnb will keep a portion. Today again I have tried to find a phone number for Airbnb as a last ditch effort to express my frustration, with no luck. So I am writing on this site instead in the hopes that others will read it and not fall into the same trap that we did. We are done with Airbnb. We will never use them again.

Cancelled Bahamas Reservation, Could Not Request Refund

We booked a reservation for our Christmas vacation in the Bahamas three months in advance. I requested the host send me the agreement and instructions on how to get into the house no fewer than either times. He would not send it. The day before we were to fly from Michigan to the Bahamas, he cancelled (I highly suspect he rented it for much more money or a longer period of time). We could not find another place on the island. We had to pay to rebook our airfare and cancel deposits for fishing and diving trips. We lost $1500 and could not even contact Airbnb to request any type of resolution.

Host Didn’t Deliver on Property and Refuses Refund

It was my first time booking a place on Airbnb and I thought everything was so simple and easy. I made a reservation for seven nights over Christmas. The reservation was confirmed by Airbnb and I was sent contact information for the host. On the day of arrival I still hadn’t heard from my host so I tried to contact him without any luck. I finally got through to his phone and his first words were that I couldn’t have made a reservation because the room was already booked for three months, something that was apparently Airbnb’s fault, not his. Anyway, he wasn’t even in the same city but said to give him some time (this was after 4:00 PM local time on the day I was to check in) and he’d make something work. He called me back about an hour later and said that the room was available and that as long as I got to the house by 6:00 PM someone with a key would meet me there. Perfect, I thought.

I arrived at the property by 5:30 PM and the people there (there were two students) had no clue what I was talking about. Obviously, the host hadn’t contacted them. The house was dirty and the room for rent was barren; the bed wasn’t even made up. I told the host, over text, that I wasn’t impressed but I would still take the room if they could get it ready for a guest. The host decided it wasn’t worth the hassle and suggested I find somewhere else. I thought, “Could I find something at the last minute on the night i want to check in?” I did, but my problems with the host continued to grow. I asked for a refund and the idiot just repeated what his policy said, even though he never even delivered on his accommodation promise (availability and readiness for use). I’ve submitted a complaint and now have to wait for the host to get back to me before Airbnb will step in. There’s got to be more protection for guests when hosts misrepresent themselves and their property. I want all of my money back and this idiot to be blacklisted by Airbnb so no one else has the pleasure of dealing with such a corrupt person.