Airbnb: A Great Way to Ruin your Vacation

As a young girl new to traveling, Airbnb sounded better than ever, yet it turned out to be one of the most stressful experiences. I highly regret using the site on my month-long travels in Australia. From the very beginning, a host cancelled a week before I was set to leave the states, so I was forced to spend more money on a different Airbnb. My first host kept me waiting for over three hours outside her apartment because she left the wrong key. After finally getting in, I discovered black mold (smelt horrible), no hot water in the shower, her cat whose fur was everywhere, and her whole studio smelt like cat pee; it was just a very dirty environment in which to stay. After staying up all night on my vacation dealing with Airbnb and trying to cancel, I was forced to spend even more money trying to find another place to rent.

Then we arrived at our next Airbnb. Everything was going better. However, I was promised wifi (which was much needed) which wasn’t available and was also told we had access to the pantry food items – so I ate some of course – then after leaving, I got a message from the host saying we had to pay $50 to replace the food. This was never mentioned and when she said “stocked pantry…” she actually should have said “stocked pantry that will cost $50 for a few tiny packages of hard cookies.”

Airbnb has ended up costing me an extra $700 and still hasn’t refunded my money. The customer service is horrible. I get different answers every time I call, I’ve gotten hung up on multiple times, I’ve been forced to hold for what feels like hours, and no one can ever seem to help me. They easily take your money and can’t seem to help you when there are problems or you are extremely unhappy. My vacation has turned into many late night phone calls to Airbnb, stress, confusion, and a lot of money down the drain. I will never use or recommend Airbnb again. Spend the extra money on a nice hotel; it’s not worth the stress on your vacation.

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


  1. I was referred to a airbnb by a friend who gave me a telephone number to call. I text the number and asked if a room was available. The host text me back with a address. I show up at address on stanton st in rancho Cucamonga. I stayed at this airbnb several times. At first everything was good. But each week and weeks after room became more and more dirty and linnen smells like pee. The hosts kids were very loud and bad. I try to complain to host and I find out host doesn’t speak read or write english. So needless to say I could not communicate to host. So I got on the airbnb Web site and I see the same room I had been staying in was advertised for $50 per night. I was paying $100 per night. This was a case of honest mistake (which I doubt) or a case of faults advertising. Or host just over charging. I contacted airbnb customer service and I was told that since I booked directly through the host and did not receive a booking number I could not get a refund. I believe that since the host was advertising on the airbnb Web site they should be responsible. The host did not generate any paperwork for me. How could she if she can not read write or speak english. I paid host directly if my host didn’t give receipt h I will was to prove my stays there. So I stayed at there 7 different times over charged seven times which comes out to $350. I feel host is a representative of airbnb and should honor the refund and mistake of the host since I could not committed to the host my concerns. I feel the host should have generated some kind of documents for my stays there. If host doesn’t speak read or write english how do I get refund for the over charges. Airbnb told me I was shit out of luck no refund without a booking numbet. Airbnb I feel should honor my requests. One give back the over charges and take airbnb host off there Web site.

  2. Hi HOlly, are you ok now or still on streets? Once I had a stupid website taking my money and leaving me broke in a foreign country without actually booking the airline ticket they supposed to have been able to book for me… That left me homeless for 2 nights until a relative sent me money to fly out. So i feel for you. Its a hard way to learn from mistake.

  3. SAME thing happened to me in the UK, including their system charged my card TWICE for a big amount of money for a single reservation, they see it in their system but because the system didn’t complete the reservation on their end – BUT TOOK MY MONEY 2x – they’re saying I don’t have a reservation but I’m out of ALL the money.

    I’m now stranded in the UK with NO place to sleep, can’t afford a hotel because they maxed out my card with their mistake, but won’t even pay for a hotel.

    I’m literally on the streets and they’re like, SORRY.

    Can we not sue them en mass? This is such B.S. It’s ILLEGAL crap!

  4. You have to pick and choose. The cheapest option wont be the best, and the deal too good to be true, probably, is too good to be true. Contact the host before, ask questions, ask for more pictures and show interest. Read their previous reviews, see who has left them reviews and check out their profiles etc. Do alot of research in and around the hosts profile in general.

    These things will help seed out the bad hosts and lower your chances of coming across one.

  5. I think airbnb has no quality control & has a lot of hosts that try to make money in an underhanded way and would never be able to make it as b&b hosts et c…. Have had the same experiences and most hosts lie in their descriptions…. many very ODD people seem to be hosts (desperate need of money??)

  6. I fully agree,
    spend more money for an Hotel…. My story is also terrible! wont write this here soon… one time airbnb and never again!

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