Uncensored Airbnb Stories & Reasons Not To Use Airbnb

AirbnbHell.com is dedicated to helping Hosts and Guests share their stories about the risks and dangers of using Airbnb.  If you had a bad experience using Airbnb as a Host or Guest, please Share Your Story.

This website is ran in partnership with iPropertyManagement.com, a website that provides informational resources on short and long term property management.

Here is a summary list of reasons why you should NOT use Airbnb.  At the very least, be aware of these serious issues with the Airbnb service and consider other options including Airbnb Competitors.

If you are a potential Airbnb GUEST:

  1. If any of your personal items, cash, or valuables are stolen (by the host, other guests, or burglars) you have no protection from Airbnb.
  2. If there is a foul odor, loud noises, or any other problems with your room that are not easily documented with photos, you are out of luck and your claim for a refund will be denied.
  3. If you rent a single room, there is no guarantee regarding how many people might be living in a given home/condo while you are there.  If there is a shared bathroom, you might end up sharing it with 1 person, or 20.
  4. A “fully stocked kitchen” means very different things to different people.  One pot, 2 dishes and a handful of silverware does not mean you can actually cook a meal there, yet this is not enough evidence to seek a claim for refund
  5. If you buy groceries and another guest or the host uses them or throws them away, you’re out of luck.
  6. If the host or another guest has a party every night, you will have to thoroughly document each incident with video recordings and time stamps to seek any sort of claim or refund.  Even then, it will be a battle that may take weeks and you are unlikely to win.
  7. Airbnb charges you about 15% on top of what the host actually receives for your reservation (even more if you need to exchange currency).  That means you COULD get your reservation for about 15% LESS if you booked directly with the host.
  8. If you have to cancel your reservation at the last minute, the host has the right to keep some or all of your money for your entire stay.  You will not have any ability to write a review of your host if you cancel your reservation, even if you end up paying for your entire stay and the host double-books the rental space.

If you are a potential Airbnb HOST:

  1. If your guests claim any sort of insect/pest/vermin problem, airbnb will instantly return 50% of your guests money for their entire reservation, even if it’s a year long reservation and the claim is false.  This is a common scam tactic.
  2. If your guests steal your cash or other difficult-to-prove assets, airbnb will do nothing.
  3. If you make any claim regarding damage to reclaim part or all of the security deposit, airbnb will make your life a living hell by demanding receipts for your original purchase even if it’s furniture that you’ve owned for 20 years.  If you don’t have receipts, you’re out of luck, and even if you do, it will take weeks or months to get any resolution.
  4. If you wait more than 24 hours to make a claim regarding damage from guests, your claim will be denied by default.
  5. Airbnb takes 3% of every reservation from you, but they also take about 15% from the guest!  That means your guests are WILLING to pay 18% more than you’re actually receiving but you’re not getting any of that extra money.  Airbnb also takes a very aggressive 3% Exchange Rate Fee for transactions not in USD, for a total of about 21% in fees taken off the top!
  6. Even if you use a Strict Cancellation Policy to protect yourself from flaky guests canceling their reservation at the last minute, Airbnb has the right to override that policy at any time and without warning or explanation and refund the guest the entire amount of their reservation, even if it’s less than 24 hours before the guest is scheduled to check in.
  7. The “1 million dollar host guarantee” is virtually impossible to actually claim.  Don’t fall for this marketing ploy!
  8. Airbnb has been known to cancel and remove even long-term hosts listings without warning and without any explanation.  This may cause you to lose communication with your current guests, and lose significant income for all upcoming reservations which are also instantly canceled.

Read the 10 most recent uncensored Airbnb stories from Hosts & Guests:

Three Days of Pure Harassment over a Simple Misunderstanding

We arrived at our Airbnb today after 3:00 PM to check in. I walked in the backyard and found a pair of shoes — I didn’t know they were expensive, tried them on, and bought them back into the house. My son and I went out to dinner and when we came back we’re accused […]

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Banishment From Airbnb Platform After Years of Service

My account from Airbnb goes back to a time years before COVID. A time when hosts were treated fairly, a time when accounts were handled by representatives from my own country. I was inexperienced back then and made rookie mistakes like allowing parties. I didn’t look at how local drug dealers and prostitutes used the […]

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Followed Airbnb’s Rules and Got Shafted for it

I run a business where I frequently use Airbnb’s services for myself and crew from Washington to California on a bimonthly basis for the last five years spending tens of thousands of dollars with all (but one) perfect reviews from hosts. This last trip, while cleaning up, we did a load of dishes in the […]

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Airbnb and Host won’t Accept Weather-Related Cancellation

I had my flight cancelled twice due to hurricane conditions while travelling overseas. I contacted Airbnb and the host in Tokyo more than 24 hours before the check in time. I was told they would do everything to help me. I didn’t hear back from either for more than 46 hours despite constant attempts to […]

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Airbnb Made Me Homeless After Guests Refuse to Leave

I made a big mistake when I used Airbnb. I have had three tenants staying in my apartment for two months. While I know Airbnb is offering a very bad solution and not protecting its hosts when it comes to actual long stays , I took tenants who I made sure needed to leave the […]

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Airbnb Left My Family in the Desert without Air Conditioning

My brother, sister and I booked a luxury property through Airbnb for Father’s Day Weekend. The booking was made in May 2021 for a stay from June 18-20, 2021. The day before the trip, I learned that the owners fired the property manager who accepted the booking and the new property management company had no […]

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Dynamic Pricing = Fleecing the Client?

I browsed Airbnb for a property in Suffolk able to accommodate 13 for a family holiday in August 2022 and found a great contender. The listing quoted £3,141 for a week but there was no mention of COVID terms and conditions. I messaged the host who replied promptly with a satisfactory answer – so far […]

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Hosts Can Cancel up to 48 Hours Prior to your Reservation

I booked an Airbnb in Montana on July 10, 2020 for my son’s wedding for the following year on July 10, 2021. It’s a big home with four bedrooms, four beds and three baths, sleeps 10 plus room enough for two RVs in the driveway. After establishing right away that the RV spaces did not […]

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Rude Host Refuses to Take Lockdown Under Consideration

An Airbnb host in Australia seems to have difficulty grasping how travel may be affected due to the national lockdown.

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Everything That’s Wrong with Airbnb

What is wrong with Airbnb? As a host, it seems like there is a lot wrong with the company, thus the reason why I have decided to leave their platform. I am throwing in the towel after only three months working with the company. I wish I could point to one issue with the platform, […]

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