Just had a host leave a nasty review due to the fact that the BBQ was used and the tank wasn’t “topped off”. If the host wants to charge to use the BBQ then I’m fine with that as long as the fee is reasonable. However, expecting a guest to remove a propane tank before they leave and hunt down a refilling station for a few ounces of gas seems excessive to me. The host actually banned me from the property and recommended other hosts do the same. I know this isn’t the worst experience but has anyone else had this happen to them?
Hotels are expensive, so I thought I would check out the bed and breakfast plan for accommodations. Having just returned from Canada and having paid more than I thought I would for a regular hotel – it advertised in and I booked in US dollar; I paid in Canadian – I got pulled over by customs for bringing back fruit (which was declared) and got the full inspection. I was in no mood for any more surprises.
I found a nice listing on Airbnb near Toronto and it mentioned a parking permit was required by the city. I asked the host what the procedure was: did she or her husband provide this, or did I have to obtain the permit? I also asked if there were 13% taxes on top of the listed price. She replied that she only responds to serious inquiries and I should get back to her when I “get my travel plans right.” Then she would explain the parking procedure.
How does she know if I’m serious or not? I found that to be very rude. I responded that I asked her politely and the site explicitly requests the guest to “explain a little about themselves.” I thought the story about the hotel was appropriate. She replied again: “No disrespect or rudeness intended. I am not comfortable with your story, your wording, your inquiry, and no picture.” A photo is not required by the website and she didn’t mention that the first time.
I replied with a full explanation of why I was inquiring. I found it very odd that she had a problem answering questions and that I found her insincere that she “meant no disrespect” when she disparaged everything in my brief inquiry. I contacted Airbnb. Everyone but the last person to whom I spoke was very courteous, and I will admit they said at the beginning it didn’t seem to violate their policy of nondiscrimination. However, I would say if you read their “about us” policy clearly, they go on and on about respect and inclusion. I see no reason they couldn’t have contacted the host and simply asked why it was such a problem to answer a question or two.
Oddly, they then sent an automated response “we hope you problem is resolved.” If it wasn’t, I had 24 hours to respond. I replied and didn’t hear anything for several days. I called back and the representative I spoke to refused to transfer me to a supervisor and told me it sounded like I had a “personality conflict” with the host. They advised me to “find other accommodations.” I already said that in my reply to the host that I would seek other lodging.
For a site that blathers on and on about respect and inclusion, at the very least they should have chastised the host for being so rude. Airbnb should have contacted me and let me know my complaint was dismissed, especially since they required a response within 24 hours.. If Airbnb can’t require hosts be courteous, I would never trust them to resolve a complicated issue.
I needed a room in Seattle for one night, while I picked up my 30-year-old daughter who lives there but doesn’t have an extra bed. I found a room near her, but the Airbnb post asked for a $1500 security deposit on a $90 basic room. I had the following exchange with the host:
Me: I’m interested in staying for one night while I visit my daughter, who lives in Seward Park. I read that you want a $1500 security deposit. I’ve never been asked such a thing before. I’m a 65+ year old woman, visiting a 30-year old daughter, and not about to trash your home! Promise. Do you really need that much up front?
Host: You may be interested in learning that the minimum wage in Seattle is now $15/hour
(She then declined me, saying the room was booked, but it remains posted as free.)
Me: I think that’s great that you have a $15 minimum wage. But did you decline me because I questioned the security deposit?
Host: Yes, in part. I’m not looking to get into any arguments with fussy guests. I’m sure plenty of hosts would be delighted to host you, I’m just not one of them.
Me: I wasn’t arguing. I was asking. Respectfully.
Host: You’re asking why I have a high security deposit? Why do you think? Anyway, I am not going to book you. I suggest writing or calling Airbnb or doing research on Airbnb Hell for further questions on the topic.
Me: Wow! This just feels rude, and no, there aren’t a lot of choices for one night near my daughter, who is in southeast Seattle. Her fiance unexpectedly returned from a trip abroad, or I wouldn’t be looking at the last minute. And I assumed you wanted $1500 because most of your guests are young, stay for longer, and are potentially unreliable. But I have excellent reviews, and think of myself as quite low risk. So this all feels rather harsh as a response to a reasonable query. But you are definitely wrong about there being a multitude of choices near her. And you’re losing a very easy guest.
I found her response to be unbelievably rude, and I wonder if this is actually age discrimination, because I did tell her I’m over 65. I can find no other host who asks for $1500 security on a one-night stay in a $90 room. I am really annoyed at her treatment of me. She runs these two properties.
We were looking for somewhere to stay in Hout Bay, South Africa and as a member of Airbnb we went onto their website and saw Villa Barry advertised. The picture clearly shows the villa with a swimming pool on the property. We pressed the “get a quote” button (which clearly states underneath “you will not be charged yet”). The agent emailed back to say the price would be £367. This seemed reasonable but we thought we would clarify that the swimming pool was included in the price. The agent mailed back and said there would be an additional charge for using the pool of approximately £5 per day. We thought this outrageous to be charged extra for the use of a pool which is clearly on the property so we did not take the matter any further as we had not confirmed the booking. Since then we received a rude email stating that we will only receive a refund of £167 instead of the full amount of £367. We contacted an Airbnb customer service agent to say that we never confirmed the booking; we only asked for information on the swimming pool so there was no reason for her to take any money at all. We expect a full refund. Since then, she has not had the good manners to even acknowledge our email and as yet, we have received no communication from her whatsoever. We have now put this case in the hands of our credit card fraud department. We have used Airbnb before but never been treated so badly by a so-called agent. As we have been treated so shamefully we would never recommend Airbnb.