Airbnb Experience Before Even Checking in

We have an upcoming booking through Airbnb here in South Africa. Our initial deposit was processed successfully in May this year and the remaining fees are supposed to be processed on the 13th of September 2019. Since May 2019, the visa card that was loaded as the payment method has since been replaced with another card.

I have been struggling for a week now to change the card number that has been saved as our payment method. The customer service consultant could not sort out the issue and eventually raised it with the web development department. I now get daily “updates” that she is still waiting for feedback from the web development team.

Earlier this week I asked to be provided/assisted with making the payment through an alternative method like EFT or PayPal as these options are not given when I want to change the payment method. Each time I indicate to the customer service consultant that I am unable to add a different payment method, the response is that they understand my frustration, but I should rather try a different payment method.

Is that not what I indicated I am unable to do? We have been going round and round in circles for a week now and the payment is due within the next two days. This is the first time that I used Airbnb and I am not sure that I will again if this is the experience prior to even checking in.

Posted in Airbnb Guest Stories and tagged , , , , , .


  1. Airbnb’s two biggest problems are their incompetent low-cost software development team and their incompetent low-cost customer support team. You’ve been raked over the coals by both. The tried and true method of getting them to fix anything is to start making a stink on social medial (Twitter seems to be best).

  2. Do make sure you communicate through the AirBnB platform only and keep those written copies to them detailing the problem. Do not ring them – you need written record through their messenger system as I fear you may need documented proof soon of your problem. If you’ve phoned them, write them immediately detailing the problem and summarise the telephone calls to place them on record.

    There’s a distinct risk that in a couple of days when your final payment is due that their system will attempt to automatically charge your card for the balance. When your old card’s payment is rejected their system will automatically cancel your booking and you will forfeit all money paid.

    Might be a good idea to contact the host immediately and explain the problem, telling them you still want the booking and you will pay them the balance direct. Ask the host for their paypal details. If you do this and make a direct payment to the host, do not give AirBnB your new card as they may charge it for the balance again.

    Welcome to the AirBnB nightmare!

  3. I was able to use another card once but for the life of me I cannot remember what I did. I know it was fairly easy and was no trouble at all.


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