Host Agrees to a Refund, but Can’t Contact Anyone

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I can’t travel to Spain from Australia due to COVID-19. I tried to contact the host, to no avail. I left a negative Google review, and the host made contact with us by email and said if we removed the negative review they would refund our money. Since then, no contact.

Airbnb originally sent a request for the host to reply with authorization for us to cancel but the host didn’t respond to them. So we are stuck in the middle with no one to talk to. Airbnb won’t deal with us anymore as their system email to the host ‘timed out’ and so they say our case is closed. I have an email from the host confirming they will refund us and can’t put it in front of anyone at Airbnb because they won’t deal with me.

Airbnb’s Facebook chat tells me my case is closed as the ‘system timed out’ with no response from the host. Airbnb’s resolution centre just says my case is closed. When I try to phone Airbnb the message is that they won’t deal with anyone unless it’s just before your booked stay. I’ve tried emailing the host through other accommodation sites. I’ve tried to contact the host on Twitter and Facebook — no response. What can I do? Nobody will talk to me.

Airbnb is holding our money and their business partner, the host, is blackmailing us over our Google reviews and then not responding to anyone. Airbnb should refund our money and sort out the host who is messing their customers around.

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

2 Comments

  1. You may have a little recourse left.

    It sounds like your cancellation should’ve fallen either under the Covid-19 cancellation policy active at the time or the Extenuating circumstances cancellation policy. Airbnb responds to contact via twitter or Facebook slowly but responds.

    Have documentation of the cancellation reasons like travel ban, flight cancellation etc. anything generated by a third party like the airlines or a news article about the travel ban gives validity to your claim.

    Never communicate off platform with a host about a cancellation. If the Airbnb thread has the host agreeing to the refund, it gives Airbnb something to work with and verify your story

    I hate it happened. Best wishes on a resolution

  2. AirBnB users (guests and hosts) should be aware that the company is no longer responding to complaints, in fact, they are a shell of a corporation only responding to public complaints with Sprinklr (customer service platform for social media) generated canned responses if the company is specifically called out on Twitter/Facebook/etc. It seems that these empty placations are only a PR move to keep up appearances of a functioning platform pre-IPO. Unfortunately, though, there is no help to be had.

    On May 7 of this year Airbnb alerted the Better Business Bureau of the following: “Airbnb is experienced massive layoffs, therefore complaints at this time are no longer being responded to. We do not have a timeline as to if and when a response will happen again in the near future. So at this time, any outstanding complaints will go unanswered.” Unfortunately, Airbnb let go the contractors they hired to process these claims, and there is no longer a chain of escalation for even severe complaints involving personal safety, discrimination, and theft. I am not a representative of the company, and only discovered this in researching after my own issue, but if you’re interested in learning more, all of this information can be found online, via Twitter, and on bbb.org

    Very sorry about your experience, and sorry I don’t have better news to share! Make sure to warn your friends and family NOT to book with Airbnb, or to remove their listings from the platform, as the company can no longer provide any kind of help if needed!

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