I’m totally outraged. It was a total disaster my first time using Airbnb and it will definitely be my last. It was absolutely horrible and a traumatic experience. I have never witnessed anything like this before in my whole life. My guest and I were left stranded and homeless without our belongings because we trusted Airbnb to provide us with a property. We came back to the apartment rented to us which the host didn’t even show up at himself; we were let at the beginning by the neighbour who gave us one key and left us to it.
We stayed with no covers. I had a cold night. There were no pillows for the sofa. I slept in my T-shirt because I wasn’t comfortable laying my head on the sofa. The next day the shower water was freezing cold for some reason and we had small towels. I continued my day and returned from a festival. My mate and I only took out part of our money so that we didn’t spend it all as it got low.
We returned home to see the locks had been changed. We called the host and he sent his neighbour. The neighbour eventually came to me in a panic because he came a hour and a half after the call. He tried the key; it didn’t work. He told us to call the police; now the language barrier was bad. It was impossible for me to communicate through the phone to the police. I told him to call the police and he did.
He disappeared and the police arrived. He came back and told them the locks had been changed. We were told by the police the property was being squatted and our property had been closed by a judge. This was hours after literally being left without an idea or a clue as to what was actually happening. I was literally crying, having an anxiety attack, and felt defenseless to the situation out in the cold, tired.
My phone died. The police said they had to leave us. We were able to charge my phone up to 15% through the police car. Eventually the police said they had to go and I should go to the police station tomorrow. At this time I had no money, no clothes, no place to stay, and a low battery. Someone who had another property in the building offered to charge my phone and gave me their phone to make calls to Airbnb.
Airbnb kept saying they were going to get back to me within a hour. I called every hour and I was strung along until the early hours of the morning. The Spanish guy then offered to pay our cab to a friend who had woke up at 8:30 but said we couldn’t come to the property until later because he was staying with his mates and she wasn’t awake yet.
I called Airbnb back; they continued to say they were working on the situation. They then said I should go and get breakfast. Bear in mind we had no money. I explained this and was told basically to try make something happen. It wasn’t until later I managed to get my phone charged a little in order to get some money sent over and also borrow some money off my friend on holiday which wasn’t really suitable for the duration of our holiday but we made it stretch.
We had to buy temporary clothing and had nowhere to shower. That day Airbnb offered another room using the amount we used to make payment. They wouldn’t help us. We already felt let down by Airbnb and felt like they couldn’t be trusted. We declined their offer after choosing to pay a mate 150 euros each, in which I had to pay to my mate.
When I returned back to the UK because of not having any cash, Airbnb refunded the money. Up until then, the money had not come back so we couldn’t use it to get another room. We were doomed but certain that Airbnb was not going to help us locate as safe a place as the ones we could see. We didn’t want to witness any more madness than we already had. I was tired, stressed, and depressed.
I have severe depression and have been going to the doctors to get medical help. This trip was meant to be a break for me as I’ve been going through loads of things recently and have been feeling like harming myself. Feeling down and drained from this situation has made it far worse; I feel as if I’m cursed. The feeling and the things I went through out in Barcelona was a struggle I could have never imagined. The valuables I’ve lost were very expensive belongings.
The things that I can remember I’ve listed. I’m sure I forgot some things. We packed for a good time, a relaxing break away from the drama, and landed into drama the next day. I had to go to the police station in my old clothes smelling with not a lot of money for travel. I spent the majority of the day on my feet aching. I drove back home. This is the most walking I have done in ages.
Having to try to translate people for help, I got told to go to court. I have called Airbnb for assistance at least 30 times but wasn’t getting any calls back from either the case manager or host. It was horrible to know that I was out there and the company never took my case seriously enough to have my holiday recovered whilst I was out in Barcelona. I spent my whole holiday trying to recover my belongings calling Airbnb and finding ways to charge my phone.
I never managed to get to court until Saturday after many enquiries as to where my property was. I phoned Airbnb for help urgently to sort something. I explained about my flight being on Saturday; they didn’t even contact me to see if I was okay. My tablet for my mental state on the flight was in my bag I was so scared to fly. My friend had to buy me water, reassure me, hold my back, and give me a sick bag because I was panicking so much.
It was a terrible experience, one which I wanted to avoid because people were looking at me like I was crazy, like I didn’t go through enough already. I cried on the way to the airport knowing I had to travel without my belongings. I had taken my tablet for that reason. I was so worried and stunned that no one could even help. My work phone was left on the property with my contacts. I was meant to be in contact with them but I hadn’t had the means.
I’m still trying to get my belongings back. I only got through to someone yesterday, the first call I’ve actually had from Airbnb to try get a resolution. We weren’t safeguarded by this company; we were mistreated and no citizen should have to go through something like that in any country when paying for a service.
They have told me they cannot contact the court which has my stuff. I’ve had to find someone Spanish to try communicate for me. I’ve had to ring a number of Spanish numbers and Airbnb so many times my bill must be sky high. I’ve had this woman trying so hard to get my belongings back because Airbnb has opted that they can not speak to the courts. Why is beyond me – this is about a property we rented through Airbnb with our expensive belongings.
I would really like something to be done about this. In no way is this acceptable at all. If not, I’ll have to take my enquiries further. I have also asked for all conversations from June 14th until now be emailed to me. So far I’ve only received one and I’ve asked so many times. I’ve been told so many times I will get them all but never got anything.
I would like to be compensated for my stuff if it cannot be recovered. I would like to be compensated for my trip also as it was meant to be a break and we were not supported by Airbnb. We put our trust in them, thinking they were a trustworthy company. We want all our belongings and money back and our trip to be compensated which I think is fair after the mayhem we had to go through (what happened and what I sent to Airbnb).
I have a case manager who was meant to help me and understand that this is no way fair or a normal situation. He asked me to do the work in contacting the courts because he refused to talk to legal teams. I had to find a translator in the UK to speak to the Spanish judge who instructed me that this property has had massive problems and issues for a while and Airbnb should not be advertising it on their website. She instructed me to take it up with Airbnb who are now not responding.
They asked for this in writing, which I provided to them. Now they have said they cannot contact me until further notice, which I think is insane. I asked for all my information through my case manager. It been a week. I’ve been contacting Airbnb and they haven’t got back to me. My phone bill this month has gone from £50 to £181 as a result of all the calls I’ve made in attempts to resolve this. I’m fuming.