Loyal Host Jaded: The Horror Stories are True

My family and I are staying in Dublin on St. Patrick’s Day and my host just cancelled my reservation. We leave for Ireland in twelve days – do you really expect that I can find reasonable accommodations less than two weeks out? I had been researching neighborhoods and looking at places months in advance.

I am honestly trying to be understanding about this situation because I am an Airbnb host as well as a traveler. I do get that stuff comes up and I definitely know the risks that come with hosting. Airbnb needs to have an insurance policy in place so that you can put people in a decent hotel accommodations when something like this happens. I am so angry with Airbnb that I would have absolutely booked an overpriced hotel just so I have the guarantee that I have a place to stay.

Unfortunately, I am planning this trip for my family. It is their first time out of the country and they cannot afford thousands of dollars for a hotel simply for two nights in Dublin — I had to persuade them to go on this trip in the first place. I had no choice but to book another Airbnb, but I really believe it should be comped for their mistake.

They gave me 100 dollars for my trouble. We just spent $1138.68 for two beds for two nights. It is a much smaller place, a shitty layout and only has one bathroom. It is a farther walk from where we will be spending our time and does not have an in-unit washer and dryer (which was a request from my mother). I am so disappointed in Airbnb. I’ve heard horror stories before, but I guess you just don’t know how it feels until you experience it yourself.

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


  1. So, as an Airbnb host I have a strict cancellation policy. Which means a guest can cancel 2 weeks prior with full refund. My place is in San Francisco & fairly expensive. I can never re-rent it in less than 2 weeks. I have never cancelled a reservation, but I’ve had multiple guests cancel with a full refund.

    I feel the pain. But have never made someone feel it. Read reviews. There are Airbnb “autopost” messages if a host has previously cancelled a reservation.

  2. I so agree that airbnb can only do so much; they are very limited in what they can do, and in what they are willing to do, when guests are placed in desperate situations like this, or when hosts’ places are trashed etc. As a result I don’t think I would rely on them again. For a couple of nights with a host you’ve used before and can trust, sure. For a big family holiday where a cancellation would be a disaster, as in this story; I just would not risk it. There are companies like HomeAway for that. Added to that there is always the possibility of renting an illegal let through Airbnb, especially in NYC. As we discovered. Unlikely to happen through a legitimate holiday accommodation company.

  3. It wasn’t a mistake. It was a bad host. Unfortunately there are bad hosts and bad guests. AirBnb can only do so much.

  4. I can relate, from personal experience, why I, as a host canceled my last five reservations. I bought a condominium and rented it through AirBnB for one year. Throughout that year I lost about $15,000 in the venture. These losses were real dollar losses, my expenses were $15,000 greater than my income. I decided that there was no point in continuing, since the unit was newly renovated I canceled those last five reservations so that the unit would be offered for sale in like-new condition and it would be vacant for showing.

    The canceled reservations were from one-week to three months after the cancelation date, I felt bad canceling on people, but I would feel even worse losing more money by keeping those reservations and having the unit deminised so it would need even more money for reconditioning before being sold.

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