Had to Cancel due to Air Quality in Australia

Our Airbnb host is not honoring the stated policy of 60 days’ notice for a cancellation. We gave him notice today. Our check in date is April 22, 2020. That’s over 80 days’ notice.

I have health issues (asthma) that do not allow me and my wife to travel to Sydney, Australia because of the air quality; it is the worst it has ever been. According to the Australian government, these brush fires will continue through May. We are in our late 60s and our doctor has advised us not to travel to Sydney.

There is now the second concern of the Coronavirus. Many airports are not allowing unrestricted travel. The host wants to charge us $1800 for cancelling, based on a $3300 total. This seems to be excessive based on the requirements of a 60-day notice that was given to the host. Further information will be given when Airbnb contacts me at my email.

Airbnb a Totally Unreliable Service for Long-Term Stays

I booked my accommodation for a long-term stay of four months via Airbnb because I am a working professional in Berlin and my permanent flat was not yet ready. I was very clear about my plans and respected German policy (meaning the need to register at a flat if you stay for more than two months).

The host initially agreed to everything but then all of a sudden had a dispute with his landlord about my stay (my guess: he was dishonest to him about it) and decided to abruptly cancel my reservation three weeks before the end of the agreed period.

Airbnb literally did nothing about it except refunding the nights not spent in the apartment. No compensation about the mess or the double moving costs. I am never going to use Airbnb in the future and I advice you to be very careful when booking with them.

Airbnb is a Scam to Guests as well as Hosts

Airbnb supposedly gives you the opportunity of choosing a cancellation policy when you list your property. I have chosen a strict cancellation policy. A woman booked my apartment in Cap Cana three months ago for Christmas and New Years, a 14-day stay. I gave her a discount price for the two-week stay.

Six days before checking in, I received a message from Airbnb stating that they cancelled her reservation and fully refunded the client due to extenuating circumstances. Apparently the client lives in Venezuela and one of the guests needed a visa to visit Dominican Republic.

First of all, I did not know that the guest was coming from Venezuela since in her verified information she said that she lives in Miami. Secondly I never receive any call nor was contacted by Airbnb staff before they decided unilaterally to cancel and full refund her.

They said that she provided evidence to them. Airbnb had her rental money for three months and then cancelled and left me without any rental in the high season. They did not try to help at all. They even lied when confronted, saying that they contacted me, which was not true. If we were the ones cancelling in order to forfeit the penalty under extenuating circumstances we would have to have a lot of paperwork in order for them to consider it.

I asked them to reconsider. They rejected my plead. I asked them to at least give us a partial refund, but they did not. Airbnb does not consider hosts; they do not care about us at all. It seems they do not realize that without our properties they are just a mere application. Their customer service is the worst. They charge a fee for nothing.

Airbnb Host Nightmare: Cancellation Penalty for Hosts

A few days ago I relisted my two properties on Airbnb. I was not able to link my channel manager to Airbnb and had issues logging in to the Airbnb system. I kept requesting a password reset and never got any reset link. I contacted my channel manager and they were not helpful, saying I had to log in to Airbnb to sort the problem.

I finally logged in. To my horror, I had 14 booking received within a few days, all confirmed with dates and availability that were not correct. I had the nightmare of contacting all these people and be ashamed to say we had technical issues. To my horror, for each booking that I cancelled, I had to pay a penalty of 50 dollars. Do the math for 14 booking and see how much I had to pay Airbnb for cancelling.

I had no email confirmation for any of these bookings and no notification or any chance to accept or deny any of these bookings. Some of the guests were very helpful and some just pain and unhelpful. Airbnb technical issues turned into nightmare and Airbnb has no compassion to not change the penalty when you have a genuine problem. I had no idea about any booking or how to fix the problem. Not happy at all.

30-Day Stay Cancellation Policy: Host in Wynwood, Miami

I made a 30-day reservation on Airbnb for my daughter who moved closer to home. The reservation was about two weeks before the arrival date. Well, long story short, she was not able to stay at the place, so I cancelled seven days before arrival. I only got back approximately $60 out of the $495. Why?

Because it was the host’s cancellation policy, which was not clearly mentioned before making the reservation. It was hidden apparently at the end (after making the reservation) and not very obvious. The $60 was for cleaning and admin fees. I contacted the host and Airbnb intervened too but the host declined to refund the money.

Apparently, there is a loophole in this policy, which Airbnb has not addressed. If you do not cancel a month before a long-term stay like a 30-day or longer stay, then you forfeit the money paid. But this does not account for reservations made a week or two before the arrival date. In theory, this policy should be null and void.

Talking to an attorney, most courts would not enforce this policy. From the advice of an attorney, the best route is pursuing it via the credit card company. There was no service received, it was cancelled timely, and the ad was seemingly misleading (since it was not clear it was a shared room from the site I initially went on, which was not an Airbnb site but directed me to Airbnb). I do not expect any help from this since it seems most people have lost this same cancellation issue too.

My advice: do not book long-term stays at all. Make sure they are one-week stays. Two weeks is cutting it close and apparently it appears to default to the long-term stay policy.

Note: if this has happened to you per a host’s cancellation policy, an attorney said if there are enough of people impacted by this, we could sue Airbnb and the individual hosts together. Airbnb’s practice is arguably similar to the fine print tactics but they hide the policies after booking. It is considered unfair and deceptive business practices under Florida state laws and federal consumer protection laws, with not making it clear of these policies.

Sites like Priceline and other sites make it very clear that the reservation is either nonrefundable or refundable. Why doesn’t Airbnb do the same?

Airbnb Service Charges not Returned on Cancellation

I was interested in a villa in Colombia for March (four months from booking). It was a large villa and I wanted to confirm the guest. I asked the host for three weeks to cancel, rather than his normal 48 hours. He agreed and this was documented clearly in Airbnb Messenger. I cancelled after two weeks as I could not organize the guests and Airbnb refused to return their service charges of $864.79, citing their policy.

The end result was Airbnb Customer Service protected the customer and left the host and the guest out to dry, the complete opposite of customer service and common sense. This wasn’t a last-minute cancellation. This was a documented exception for four months from now. Airbnb protected their bottom line and sold their soul.

I pity the poor people who are getting excited about the Tokyo Olympics with Airbnb. They are lined up for a living hell. Frankly, I think that any normal travel company would never have a strict 48-hour cancellation policy. That really is the opposite of customer service.

Cancelled after Four Minutes with Moderate Refund Policy

I booked an apartment in New York. I made sure there was a moderate refund policy. I immediately realized I had mixed up the dates and within the space of about four minutes, I cancelled the reservation (sending an apology and explanation to the host).

Now, this was a bit of a last-minute thing and the booking was for two days in the future (I actually had meant to book the day after, hence the mix up). I only received the cleaning fee back. No other refund was given. My request for a refund via the site was ignored. I called their customer service, who extremely patronizingly ‘explained’ to me that I hadn’t read the rules properly and I should be more careful in future to read the rules.

The rule listed is: “Free cancellation for 48 hours. After that, cancel up to 5 days before check-in and get a full refund minus the service fee.” I’m aware that I booked leaving only two days before checking in, but I’m pretty sure that the words “after that” signify that there are no strings attached so long as it is within 48 hours. Surely the “5 days” part of the rules only apply after 48 hours?

Hurricanes just aren’t in our Airbnb Policy

I loved Airbnb and thought it to be an amazing thing. Like many, I’d often browse the app for cool places to stay, daydreaming of my next opportunity to get away.

I’ve just returned home from a road trip with my partner and we had booked Airbnbs along our way out to east coast Canada. Due to a severe weather issue, we had decided to cancel our booking with one of the hosts. Before we cancelled, I was sure to make contact with them so we could talk it all over and come to a mutual decision of what would be best and safest.

After the call, they agreed it would be best we not take our chances in travelling out to where the stay was supposed to be, and they said they would consider what refund would be comfortable for them. They had also offered a free future stay in exchange for the cancellation, but now they have offered a future 15% discount in place of that offer.

After a few days passed, I contacted them again to see if they had thought more about a refund. They said they would contact Airbnb to see what they thought about my request, which later they then said that Airbnb didn’t take the weather seriously as it didn’t appear on their “weather radar”. In turn, they had no intention of refunding me at all.

Not being satisfied with the outcome, I contacted Airbnb myself in hopes of conveying the situation perhaps a little clearer from my position. I was put in touch with someone who asked if I could link them with some resources online that showed the weather conditions I had mentioned.

I linked her with the first article I could find, which came up right away when I searched “October 17th 2019 Nova Scotia weather” which mentioned the “weather bomb” my partner and I experienced and chose not to risk driving in. In the article there were plenty of videos and pictures from locals showing trees being ripped out of the ground, cranes falling into buildings, etc.

The article also mentioned the winds which had been blowing at 60-100 kph. They said it was “hurricane like conditions” and I was expected to drive through that in order to make my stay. I have family who lived an hour away from where I was staying before the storm, that said even if I had nowhere to go after cancelling the Airbnb, I shouldn’t drive to them to stay at their home because even that drive would not be safe. The reservation I had cancelled was a five and a half hour drive away. We even had our host contact us about the storm, asking if we had heard about it and what our plans were in case we needed help navigating that out last minute.

The customer service rep said there was nothing Airbnb could do and that if I were to get a refund it would need to come directly from the host, which the host clearly did not want to do and keep the money. After trying to explain my situation further, she then said that “the decision is final” and that I would be compensated nothing.

This is all coming after she apologized on behalf of Airbnb and said that Airbnb wants to treat their customers with respect and make them feel valued. It’s such a shame how ridiculous this situation became and how poorly this was handled. Clearly, the customer is not valued or respected and our safety and well-being was in no way a concern.

Airbnb would rather have my $200 then a valued user/guest who had once loved this service. I regret to say, I have decided to never again use the Airbnb service and have deleted my account. I will never be able to recommend anyone using Airbnb after all of this.

Worst Airbnb Experience Ever, no Refund

I paid $1471 for a two-week stay but had to leave after having vicious dogs running at myself and my dogs. I called Airbnb and told them I was going to have to find another place because our safety was a factor. I spent four hours with three different people on the phone with Airbnb and was assured my cancellation would be done by then. I paid another $1800 out of pocket to move an hour away to a private rental and gave Airbnb time to do my cancellation and let me know what was going on. I called every day trying to find out what was going on. This morning I got a refund for $289 out of $1471. I’m not going to sit and let this happen. This has been a horrible experience and completely wrecked my vacation. They are about to get sued.

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Free Cancellation in 48 Hours that Doesn’t Exist

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I looked for a month’s rental through Airbnb and I found one that I wanted. I read the cancellation policy carefully, stating that it could be cancelled within 48 hours for a full refund. I clicked first because I didn’t want to miss the rare room and figured if in two days I found it was something I didn’t like, e.g. the exact location, I could cancel.

It was a lot of money – 3000+ USD – and I suddenly thought that maybe it was better to find a way to be able to escape the long-term cancellation policy. I just cancelled it within hours. The refund was kind of a process but something they didn’t mention in the cancellation policy was that my payment method would be charged on March 26th for 600 USD. This amount was never mentioned.

I wanted to make sure before rebooking but it seemed like Airbnb just ignored me. That made me scared to proceed to any other booking; I was afraid of the fraudulent listings. Agoda and Expedia have never had this policy and the 30-day fine for advance notice was quite unfair. I then tried to figure it out by separating the booking into two periods. It’s more difficult but it should be more flexible.