Dream turned into a Nightmare

My husband and I have been planning a trip to Rio for the last five years. I’m Brazilian and he is American and he has been saving money in order to visit the city where I was born and spend time with my relatives there. We booked an apartment with Airbnb for $2188 to stay for six days and we were really satisfied with it based on the pictures online until relatives and friends raised concerns about the neighborhood and its far distance to all main attractions in Rio, which was contrary to the ad on Airbnb. My husband searched on Google Earth and found out that the apt was located on top of a mountain and that it would take us at least 20 minutes to walk down the mountain in order to get to public transportation, supermarkets, etc. My husband had a leg surgery recently and he can’t walk long distances, specially in an inclined terrain. We contacted Airbnb in order to request a cancellation and they asked us to send a letter from my husband’s doctor stating that he can’t walk such a steep mountain. We sent the letter to Airbnb on the same day as we spoke with the person on the phone and on the next day, they sent us an email stating that our cancellation refund has been denied and that they would only refund us a cleaning fee of $100 and $137 in service fee. This vacation has been a dream to us and Airbnb with its unfair strict cancellation policy had managed to turn it into a nightmare.

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


  1. If you file a dispute with paypal or your credit card issuer, you would probably win. Airbnb knows this, and they leave it up to you to file a dispute. If you file a dispute, they’re more than willing to refund because they don’t want the percentage of charge disputes to reach a certain level. You have 60 days from the date of the transaction to file a dispute in the US.

  2. Stay at your booked accomodation and hire a car like everyone else does. Why should the host lose out because YOU didn’t plan properly?

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