Airbnb fraud cost me 1460 Euros! They aren’t doing enough to protect their community from fraudsters. I have had many happy trips with airbnb, but after this I will never use them again. They simply aren’t doing enough to protect their customers. I went to book accommodation in Amsterdam for new year, when I saw a message in the description of the listing offering 20% discount through ‘instant book’ (on the actual airbnb.co.uk site), I just had to email the host and they would enable instant booking to make the payment. ‘Fair enough’ I thought, they want to get people in quickly. Makes sense. So I emailed the host with the dates and a request to instant book. I then received an email from Herman (the host) with a link to instant book. The URL is still active https://www.airbnb.com.book.srl/instant/rooms/5913502?checkin=12292015&checkout=01022016¤cy=&guests=8 You’ll notice the URL is airbnb.com.book.srl, which at the time i believed to be Airbnb, which it evidently is not. (these links are no longer active after I brought it to airbnbs attention!) So screenshots are attached. Once you click instant book and enter payment details the following page appears with a slightly confusing error message (images attached). https://www.airbnb.com.book.srl/instant/rooms/status?accepted=false&hosting_id=9652369 After a bit of back and forth with Herman (perfect English I might add) I requested the invoice to be sent. I then received the attached email (too long to put here) and stupidly made payment through transfer. I then received emails from a very a very convincing airbnb finance team representative (firstname.lastname@example.org). Emails written as though from one of Airbnb’s real employees, here’s the linked in profile… but i don’t think this poor guy has anything to do with it. At this moment, I started to realize I’d made a mistake! I called my bank who said you can’t stop a payment like this, also notified Barclays (where the money was being transferred to), seemingly to no avail. During this entire process Herman was continuing to email and reassure me that everything was OK and the payment hadn’t come through yet. I also contacted airbnb who said that they had removed his profile and very annoying then decided to tell me never to make a payment away from airbnb (which I didn’t think I had), until they specified bank transfer. I have now followed the link where the initial listing was and it’s still live, this is after airbnb said that Herman’s account has been blocked! It has the same reviews the same host, but different apartment pictures and is on the actual airbnb.co.uk site. So unfortunately it’s inevitable that this will happen again to someone else. https://www.airbnb.co.uk/rooms/1125879?checkin=29-12-2015&checkout=02-01-2016&guests=3&s=R92_NDn9 I really feel Airbnb could have done so much more to protect me during this absolute nightmare. Not only have they allowed the fraudulent account to continue, but make a bigger play on the fact that no payments should be done offline rather than display instant booking everywhere. They say “At Airbnb, we do everything we can to create a safe and trusted marketplace.” I don’t think this is true. I’m now completely skint 2 days before Christmas with a cancelled trip for the New Year. Thanks Airbnb, but NEVER EVER again.