Airbnb Stole $600 from a Loyal Superhost

I’m a Superhost and have a five-star guest rating as well. Recently I had a last minute reservation cancellation due to another guest refusing to leave so I could check in. When I went to book another place I immediately got the same request denial onscreen message, which seemed weird. I made a third attempt and the reservation was accepted.

However, afterwards the second reservation got accepted as well because the request denial message I’d received from Airbnb was a mistake, thus causing a double booking. When the host of the third place refused to “refund” me (before check-in), Airbnb basically shrugged their shoulders and charged me for booking two places at once.

Common sense clearly suggests that a customer with a long history would not do such a thing and that the burden wouldn’ be given to the Superhost/customer, but no. Airbnb’s policies when it comes to such situations are not only bad for customers. They are bad for the company and brand.

Fleeced and Kicked Out by Crazy Airbnb Host

This nightmare began when I saw an ad for a three-bedroom house on a cul-de-sac in Walton, Kentucky. I contacted Airbnb and made a reservation only to find out the address that I was sent to wasn’t the correct address. I called the host who gave me an address some 30 minutes away.

When I got there, there wasn’t any three-bedroom cul-de-sac; it was a rundown trailer park with a bunch of rundown trailers. When I got inside, the nightmare turned real: the floors had large holes in it with pieces of carpet trying to conceal it.

There was another guest there that told me to run but I thought he was joking. The host put him out for telling me and I told her she should put locks on the doors so guests could have privacy. She flipped out on me.

I stayed up that entire night and went to work the next day. When I came back, she had changed the locks and kept my stuff. I contacted Airbnb because I had nowhere to sleep outside. For three days I called Airbnb and they had the nerve to say go get pictures.

Then they said the host refused to give me a refund. Did you really think that I would ever get any resolution? No refund, no calls back, nothing. I just got ripped off. I am going to the news stations to sue.

Egregious Charges After Airbnb Stay in LA

We booked a lovely looking house in the Los Feliz neighborhood of Los Angeles. Upon arrival, it was very clear the house was not as advertised. Photos were very misleading but worse than this, the house was filthy.

I contacted the owner and we actually resolved the issue quickly. He agreed to refund us the days we did not stay and he did not charge us a cleaning fee (we ended up spending two nights there as we tried to resolve the issue). Airbnb was really responsive and my initial reaction was that their service was great.

That’s when it started to go wrong. I was charged over $600 for two nights in a house that I agreed to pay $152/night. I spent the next four days calling and emailing Airbnb, consistently told by customers service reps that they were going to call me back or get someone to call me back. I emailed them repeatedly asking for an itemized list of charges and asking why I was charged. I was ignored.

I finally got them back on the phone and was on hold for an hour and a half until the case manager and I spoke and she agreed to review the case. They refunded me $101, which still had me paying over $500 for a filthy house that was $152/night. The itemized list included a $191 VAT charge because I live in New Zealand. She also said I must have paid with an NZ card and that’s why I accured a VAT charge when I had not in the past.

I’m American and a California resident; I paid with my American bank card. Additionally, and more damning, Airbnb does not mention New Zealand in the list of countries that are charged VAT – the countries that do get charged VAT are on their website.

When I posted the words from the site directly and asked for the justification of the charges the case was closed on me without response. I’m now on hold as I write this review – it will probably be over an hour – insisting that I speak to someone who can help me and have them explain why I was charged VAT for NZ when its not listed on their site or get my $200 back. As it is, I’ll be using VRBO from now on.

Don’t Fall for Airbnb Listings like this House

There were three big issues and a whole lot of headache for nothing in return. We were deceived by Airbnb. A weekend ruined due to this host, her husband, and Airbnb.

A hot tub was listed as part of the home. Five beds for eight people were in the listing. Free wifi was to be included. The supposed “hot tub” is not a hot tub but a container that one would have to actually put water in it and see if it would even get “hot”.

When someone advertises for a hot tub it should be that, and ready to use. Especially because I asked the host prior to booking if she had certain hours on when it is open – is it a community pool/hot tub? She said it was at the house so I could use it any time. Is it not suspicious now looking back that there is hidden fine print that one needs to pay them to use it each time?

If I specifically tell her this is a main amenity I was looking forward to, why would she hide this information? Why would she wait until I arrived to find the tiny one-person plastic/inflatable kiddie pool tub that did not even have water in it, let alone ice? The host said “Well, you know it is cold outside so how do you expect us to keep the hot tub warm?”

Should I send photos of what a hot tub is in the winter? I was just in Washington State with snow outside and 20 degrees with a real hot tub we used outside. It’s not rocket science. Do not advertise for things you do not actually have . Just like if a hotel says there is a pool would they tell customers to go fill up a pool with water? Who the heck in their mind would think this is acceptable, to go skiing all day and then have to do work to put water in a tub outside and see if it would even heat up?

The host is not that bright or they hid this information from me to find out when I arrived. It gets better. As stated above, there were holes all over the walls, and sockets hanging out, like where the TV and electronics were plugged in. Not safe. A fire could have started any time. This is right next to a fireplace. Are they trying to set up a situation for an accidental fire and then take the insurance? I wouldn’t put it past them.

We were so disappointed, but in addition, all of the furniture in the house – especially the living room and dining room – was patio furniture, cheap and wobbly patio furniture. How does anyone feel comfortable with that?

The description had said “five beds” for up to eight people. Before arriving that week, I told the host “I noticed the five beds, and eight people however I only originally planned for five people. Do you mind if I bring one more? There should be plenty of room, right?”

She actually responded saying, “There will be a $20 per person charge if there are more than six people.” Really? I am so glad nobody else came because in reality there were only three beds. The host said there was a futon in the living room. The futon which is the couch we sat on is supposed to just count as two other beds? Where is the fifth bed?

“Well, there is an air mattress that someone would have to blow up.” How do you list five beds but only have three? I am so so glad I did not invite more people. Nobody would have been comfortable sleeping on that futon of wood slats that hardly even passed as a couch, as it was an outdoor style temporary usable chair.

This one takes the cake: The TV is totally internet run. The internet and wifi were not working. We were out in the sticks so we hardly got our own phones to work at all. Without the free wifi/internet as advertised we would not have had anything to do. Not even basic TV channels. There were no board games or cards, nothing.

The place was much smaller than advertised. There were many locks on the kitchen cabinets like they were using most of that for storage. I didn’t even bother to check out if there were pots/pans/dishes so probably plan to bring your own things to cook with. The basement was locked.

Essentially guests would have the three bedrooms, and one open living room with kitchen attached. That is all. Meanwhile it was advertised as the “entire house”.

The host messaged me the wrong address, so it took longer than expected to even find the home. We found this gem of disappointment. I called the host right away. He told me after five minutes of talking and saying he was going to call the cable company to see if the internet could be fixed, that if I was unhappy he would call Airbnb for a refund. I said to refund me now and we would leave.

He told me multiple times that he was on the phone with them and trying to get me a refund/cancellation. He asked if I was leaving the property. It was a decision not so easily made because we just went skiing all day; we were all sweaty and tired. Nobody had changed or showered.

Home was three hours away in the snow that night. We tried to use our phones to find nearby hotels but no wifi was working. Since the host said he would just give me a refund we sucked it up and drove home in the snow, after only 40 minutes of being there on my anniversary celebration weekend. Our weekend was done at that point. Ruined. The snow was heavy; it was not an easy drive.

To make things even worse, the host told Airbnb (I found this out after I got home) that he did not promise me a refund. Well I have all the text messages and witnesses to this fact. I have video of the disappointments. I tried to contact Airbnb many times using many routes. I only got to speak to a live person once. That person said a case manager already looked at the case and said it was closed, that I should not get my money back.

I did not even get to talk to these people. I messaged and emailed Airbnb several times telling them to call me. Why are they not allowing me to talk and state what happened? I have evidence and witnesses. They are not giving me the time of day at all.

So beware folks. This house is a total scam. Nobody would be happy here for $250 a night. The title of the property also listed “free skiing and horse back riding”, yet the host also tried to tell me she charges $50 more if we wanted to use their community hill to ski. What? How does that make any sense? It says right in the title: “free”.

I challenged that before we arrived and only then did she say she would make an exception. I should have known it was a red flag. She is just trying to take money from people. I say “she” because the host is listed as a woman’s name but it was only the husband I spoke with on the phone when we arrived.

Lastly, she asked me if they could allow a realtor to show the home while we were there and it would have been during the time we paid to be there. Who has the nerve to even do that? It’s not like we were booked to stay there for a week. Who would want to buy this place anyway? A lot of work to do and definitely not in shape to be renting out on Airbnb.

The company needs to have reviewers of these places and listen to customers. I am never using Airbnb again. So upset. I have used it five times without issues.

These hosts are not good people and have no integrity. How could they try to keep my money when we left the place after shortly arriving? They made an agreement with me to give a refund, and then did the opposite. They ruined my weekend and what was supposed to be a memorable time with my loved ones. Despicable people.

30 Minutes of an Overwhelming Fume Experience for $500

I found what looked like the perfect Airbnb. It was an automated check-in, but I still reached out to the owners. I didn’t get a response, which I chalked up to it being a business trip and auto check-in/auto accept. The reviews were on point and recent.

I got to the location easily enough and was suddenly overcome with a stench; it was like a toxic fume. My eyes began burning. I thought, “Maybe I just need to give it a few minutes.” In the interim, I speed tested the wifi and it was awesome. I thought “This place could really work.”

Meanwhile, my eyes were on fire and the smell didn’t seem to dissipate. I reached out to the owners and said essentially: “Great place. Thanks for sharing your home with me. The fumes are overwhelming. I’m opening the windows and doors.”

I was super polite in every interaction. There was no response from the owners. I reached out to Airbnb and got a canned reply. Then I was able to chat with a real person who basically said that I need to cancel if it was unbearable.

I reached out to the hosts and said something to the effect: “Thank you, I can’t bear it. I need to cancel”. Again, no response. I canceled… and then the host finally responded with “open the windows and doors” – it was winter time, mind you. Anyway, that was the fastest $500 dollars I ever lost.

Nightmare in Quebec Followed by Inept Airbnb

I reserved a non-smoking room through Airbnb for 30 days at the last minute due to a change of plans. Upon arrival, the entire building smelled like an ashtray and the room was even worse. As a non-smoker, I was literally gagging and knew this wouldn’t work.

Upon further inspection, I discovered stains on the cover that looked liked dried blood. I pulled back the cover and saw dirt, a paw print, and hair (presumably from an animal but at this point, it didn’t matter). I notified the hosts who sent around an air freshener and finally some clean sheets.

The hosts refused to issue a refund and wanted to keep the entire fee (over 1,200 CAD) for a few hours’ stay. I was out of there as soon as another place could be found. I went through two case managers, who decided the best solution was to allow these creepy scamming hosts to keep half of the fees.

I pointed out to the case managers that it’s illegal to obtain funds through misrepresentation of goods or services but they evidently weren’t bright enough to grasp basic legal concepts. They gave me their final final decision tonight and basically told me to get over it. That’s not going to happen; I don’t like scammers. At least I will be going down swinging.

Airbnb Host Lied About Refund to Cover up her Mess

On March 21st this year, my niece, her husband, and I stayed at an Airbnb property in Merimbula NSW, Australia. The three of us were on a road trip taking in parts of NSW and Victoria, and unfortunately our stay there was near the beginning of the trip. This property was not a good introduction to travelling in this country for my relatives who were visiting from the U.K.

On arriving at the property and taking an initial look around, my niece, who was walking upstairs to the main bedroom, could see the side of the bed where the doona was not fully covering the mattress. She was horrified to see a mark on the sheet, and on closer inspection, to realise it was blood.

She then called me and her husband to take a look and we found several more blood stains on the bottom sheet. The doona had obviously been laid on top of the sheet while the blood was fresh as there was a mark on the doona cover directly above one of the blood stains on the sheet.

I immediately rang the host, who sounded genuinely horrified and asked me to send some photos over to her, which I did right away. On receiving them, she rang me straight back and told me that it was the first time she’d used the cleaner (her usual cleaner was away) and was appalled and what we’d found. At the time she couldn’t apologise enough, telling me there was nothing she could do to help as she was on a course in the mountains, but promised me a full refund.

We then spent some time searching the property for clean bed linen (most of the cupboards were locked), only finding two doona covers which were a screwed-up bundle in the bottom of a cupboard. We stripped the stained linen off the bed and replaced it with these two doona covers and as we had no other option, my niece and her husband spent a nervous and uncomfortable night, sleeping on bedding that they didn’t even know whether or not was clean, but felt it was better than sleeping on blood-stained linen.

I declined from writing a negative comment on Airbnb as the host had been so obliging in offering us a full refund for the inconvenience caused. It is a decision I have come to regret, as despite my contacting the host I have received no refund at all. My niece has also sent two emails to her from the U.K. through the Airbnb site, and heard nothing. We are assuming she is totally ignoring us.

The experience we had here was a great disappointment, very unsettling, extremely unhygienic and totally unacceptable. I feel that other people should be made aware of what might await them at this property and that this host should not be permitted to continue to offer it for use. I would also like to add that we stayed at many other Airbnb properties on our trip which were all lovely and restored our confidence in other hosts.

Unsafe Airbnb with Drug Dealers in Paris

We had a flat booked in Paris. When we got there the place was infested with a broken in main building door. There were drug dealers coming into the building offering us drugs. We of course turned around and got a hotel immediately. We let the booker know, who got in touch with Airbnb within 24 hours.

However, even though we took photographic evidence of all of this, we are still being refused a refund. The host even had the cheek to say we are just scared foreigners (we have been in Paris a year working). We are constantly fighting with Airbnb, who just seems to completely ignore their own terms and conditions on this. Even though the host provided no evidence, they believe him over our photos. How is this happening?

We have sadly now had to waste more time getting legal proceedings going. As we needed a place to stay, we had to fork out another 4000 euro; we are not made of money. The service is just appalling. They keep citing terms and conditions yet are actively ignoring them.

Denver Airbnb Horror Story – Just go to a Hotel

My fiancé booked three nights at an Airbnb in Denver. The listing said that it was multiple acres of beautiful mountain country. It was less than an acre and it backed up to a trailer park. She barely missed crossing direct paths with a bear because of poor composting practices.

The listing advertised no pets. She found evidence of animals and the person tending to the property admitted to a dog being in the room. The door didn’t lock. There were holes in the door looking directly at the bed. It was repulsively disgusting. She found white dried up bodily fluids in the bed. When the person changed the sheets she watched in horror as the girl crawled around in the bed with filthy dirty bare feet to put the sheets on.

The host was rude and never even present. Airbnb has been rude, uncaring and dismissive. This host is terrible and a scammer, and Airbnb is a terrible company.

Airbnb has gotten so bad that they received a D- on Better Business Bureau. Magically recently they appear as an A+ now. When the BBB was asked why, they said it was a glitch. There’s no accountability. Just the fact that there’s a website called Airbnbhell.com is probably a red flag, but hopefully after reading this you will come to the conclusion to just stay at a nice motel. At least they will answer and be courteous and there is a management system in place to deal customer concerns.

If you were wondering: even after all of this we only received half of what we paid.

Noise Issue with Greece Airbnb Vacation Home

I am a host and just started a vacation in Greece as a guest a few days ago. Unfortunately, as soon as we arrived we discovered that the place was very, very noisy because it is on a very traffic heavy road, and does not have proper modern windows. We could not sleep and after the first night, decided to change our accommodation, as we could not spend our vacation there.

We immediately contacted the host and Airbnb support to get refunded for the unused nights (we ended up staying for three nights, the time to find another place). The host denied the issue, saying we knew all about the place (which is not true, we knew it was near a street, but nothing was mentioned about the level of noise to expect).

Airbnb support has not been helpful at all so far; for three days they have been asking me to send sound recordings, which I have done, but their email address response@airbnb.com does not work, and they don’t understand it. The support staff seem to be very weak and unable to help me. I had to cancel my 21 days stay after three nights, and for now I still have to pay for 50% of the remaining 18 days, so we are paying 1700 Euros for three horrible nights.

Please can anyone help – what would you do in this situation to get a refund? Who can I contact at Airbnb to get a serious resolution and refund? Thanks very much.