Racist Host Cancelled Over Holiday Weekend

What was supposed to be a peaceful, relaxing weekend away with some of our closest friends for Thanksgiving weekend turned out to be a nightmare. Our group consisted of a total of six individuals, ethnically diverse (east Indian and Korean) professionals, a mix of women and men. One might wonder why is it important to mention a description of our ethnic background — why does that need to be stated on an Airbnb review?

With everything happening in the United States, racial profiling and discrimination is something I felt free of in Canada, especially in British Columbia where our communities are multicultural. However, we were all victims of discriminatory behaviour by the host.

We booked accommodations at Campbell River about a month prior to our arrival. The intent of our stay was to have a weekend away with our friends and enjoy what we named “friendsgiving.” We were all excited to share a meal around a table, play some board games and enjoy nature. Upon our search we came across a “luxurious log cabin” and the six of us decided the cabin was to our liking and suited our needs and interests for the weekend. We proceeded to book the accommodation, and the host and hostess accepted our payment.

We started planning. We are all honest individuals and have immense respect for others’ homes. We did not want to bring or do anything which was not okay with the host so we took the liberty to be honest and asked the host if it would be okay if we cooked dinner for thanksgiving at the cabin. In addition to this, we asked if it would be okay if we brought our lovely Luna (our dog) with us. The host was quick and kind to reply that the kitchen is fully stocked for cooking purposes and we are more than welcome to host our dinner. However, she was not okay with our pet.

We respected her wishes and decided to let our dog stay with family and were very thankful that she was okay with us using the kitchen. It does state on the listing that the kitchen is available for use and we do have proof of the host’s messages agreeing to the use of the kitchen.

Two days before we were to leave for the weekend, we got a message from the host asking to change our cabin and to consider making changes to our accommodation. They send us pictures of a different cabin, which looks absolutely nothing like the log cabin we had originally booked — not nearly as nice. We kindly asked the host if we could continue to keep our original log cabin accommodation as the entire group is more comfortable with our initial choice. We promised her our dog is not coming with us and that we are all professionals and will leave the place with no damage. The host agreed to allow us to continue our stay at the originally booked log cabin.

All of our ducks were in a row. Ferries from horseshoe bay were booked. It was the day of departure and the six of us make the six-hour commute to Campbell River. During the drive in the morning, we got bombarded with messages from the host saying we could not stay at the log cabin. She was going to cancel our booking unless we agreed to stay at the other cabin.

We took the liberty of calling Airbnb customer support and explained the entire situation to them. They mentioned that the host is in the wrong and should not be changing accommodations without getting approval from the booking customer. The hostess was strong arming us to stay somewhere we didn’t book. Considering we had already commuted almost four hours at this point and it was a long thanksgiving weekend with no other place to stay that could accommodate six people, we had to agree to changing the cabin. However, our condition was that we wanted to see the cabin first upon our arrival.

Once the first half of our group arrived, the host refused to open the gate and let them in. We called her and messaged her to let us in — we paid for the accommodation and travelled a long way to be here. At first, she refused until we called Airbnb and agreed to cancel our original booking and accepted the new cabin. We politely told her that we would like to see the cabin she was recommending before agreeing to her request.

This is where it gets really ugly. When she finally came out to open the gate and take the group to the new cabin, we noticed that the cabin had not been cleaned at all. There was dirt and leaves everywhere, the sheets looked slept in, there were coffee stains on the tables, and a horrible smell. The cabin looked completely lived in and had not been cleaned at all.

Immediately the group refused to stay there — this was not what we paid for and this was not what we travelled six hours to stay at. When asked why we could not stay at the log cabin we originally booked her words to us were: “People like you stayed there last time and the people like you all burned the stovetop.”

At first we were taken aback by the phrase “people like you” and then expressed to her we had no intention of damaging the place. She could take a larger cash deposit from us and hold onto it until our stay was over and return it once she was content that there was indeed no damage.

Her response? “No, I cant trust people like you, you asked about bringing a dog.”

We reassured her there was no dog. We left her back home. She could have checked our car, but she continued to accuse us of lying about hiding the dog. Repeatedly she used the phrase “people like you.” She never once addressed us by our names. She called us violent people when a friend of ours tried to walk towards the other cabin and threatened to call the police.

Eventually we noticed that there was someone already staying at the log cabin we had originally booked. She accepted our payment but gave the accommodation to a family member of hers to stay at for the weekend and was forcing us to stay at another cabin so she wouldn’t have to return our payment. The host then admitted that she gave the log cabin to a family member to stay at and that she forgot to tell us earlier.

We as a group have never been so humiliated, insulted, discriminated, and racially profiled before. We have never had someone threaten to call the police on us, to be treated so inhumanely and to be referred to as “people like you.”

My advice to anyone of ethnic origin or of colour: please save yourself the long journey and headache and do not book accommodations unless you are okay with your weekend being sabotaged. The six of us had to resort to booking a one-bedroom place which slept three people. 600 square feet for the weekend because there was no other place to stay due to the long weekend. We tried to make the most of our weekend, but the horrendous behaviour from the host and hostess was unforgettable.

Racism from a Superhost over Airbnb Cancellation

I am writing this message on a serious issue of racial discrimination by a “Superhost” on Airbnb. I require Airbnb’s support or I will report this to mainstream media and trigger a public discussion on the Internet.

I made a reservation with this host for a trip March 29 – April 3. The host contacted me after the reservation had been confirmed, and asked me to cancel: “If you are traveling from China, just so you are aware, our government has imposed a 14-day quarantine upon arrival in the country.”

I told him that I was not traveling from China and have been staying in Canada for over three weeks. He insisted I cancel the booking. I found the official guidance on Airbnb: the host should initiate the cancellation on his end, otherwise the guest will lose half of the refund and service fees.

I followed this official guidance and asked the host to do so since it is his intention to cancel this booking, or he can contact Airbnb for help. Soon the host became rude, and said if he cancelled he would lose his “Superhost” status.

On the refund, he said: “It’s Airbnb that will take your money. We don’t handle the money.”

On the confirmed reservation, he said: “You will not be allowed to check in.”

On the cancellation policy, he said: “Let Airbnb take your money. I’m not cancelling.”

He keeps sending me messages like: “You need to start taking this pandemic seriously! For the health and safety of everyone.”

I am very confused. He accused me harming “the health and safety of everyone” just because I have an Asian name. My family and I are all German citizens.

Are such racist opinions from a “Superhost” tolerated in the Airbnb community? This kind of racist speech will damage the reputation of Airbnb and the trust from all its members. All the messages are on Airbnb as proof.

I ask for your support. I need a full refund because it is the host who wants to cancel but refuses to do so on his end. This host should not keep his “Superhost” status for his dishonest intentions. For that status, he blamed and pushed a guest to cancel a confirmed reservation.

Lastly, but the most dangerous issue: racism on Airbnb, a global community, should not be encouraged. I have been a member of Airbnb for five years and traveled a lot using it every year. I meet wonderful people and have good memories.

I treasure their work to build up a global platform to communicate with people around the world, to let people know each other better. So, please, do something to stop racism on it.

Rejected by a Host Because I’m from Taiwan?

Yesterday I asked a host in LA a few typical questions about housing conditions and parking, and I stated that I’m from Taiwan. The host, without asking further details, simply replied that she’s afraid of the coronavirus situation, and said she couldn’t help us. She rejected my request to book her place.

Now, of course, I’ve lost all interest in this host, but I feel very insulted that she assumed the virus situation in Taiwan (which is fairly safe at the moment) is the same in China (which is much worse). If the health inspectors at LAX let me through, why does she have the right to reject me just because I’m from Taiwan?

What’s more, my friend, who is Japanese and will be traveling with me to LA, also contacted the host and mentioned she was from Japan. Strangely, she was accepted. I’m not sure what’s on the host’s mind here. Either she can’t tell the difference between China and Taiwan or she is hostile toward Taiwanese guests.

Since I can’t book this place so I cannot leave a negative review for this host. I want others to know exactly who the host is and be aware of my encounter. I want people to be aware that there is more and more discrimination on Airbnb based on guests’ background due to fear of the coronavirus. I highly recommend others who are considering  staying at this place to look elsewhere.

Who knows? Maybe as the virus situation gets worse, she will cancel your reservation out of fear, especially those guests from Taiwan.

Guest Life Ban for Complaining About Racism

I recently learned about Airbnb’s regulatory and reputation risk strategy: make a complaint about racial intolerance, then get banned for life. Forever. Irreversibly. Or, as the Airbnb customer service representative explained to me:

“We are trying to cut down on racial complaints. And you made a racial complaint. I see you received a confirmation of your complaint. So your account was frozen.”

This sorry saga about how Airbnb implements their strategic anti-discrimination policy started over the holidays when we responded to an advert about an apartment in Santo Domingo. It was peak season, and this was the last unit showing any vacancies. You can guess why. It was in German – perhaps the only listing in the Western Hemisphere in German. The nearest German-speaking nation is about a nine-hour away flight away, with a stopover/transfer.

Most potential guests seeking to rent in the Dominican Republic would skip the translator and move on. We do not speak a word of German, but my girlfriend and I know how to use the Google translate function. We did. We booked.

We arrived at the unit and were greeted by the maid. She looked us over and asked where we are from (my girlfriend has a dark complexion). I detected a sneer, but I’m no mind reader. My Spanish is lousy, we were exhausted, and so I just took the key and left it at that.

The following week was a nightmare. The next morning at about 8:00 AM, while still asleep, I heard someone opening the bedroom door. I thought we were getting robbed.

It was not a burglary; it was the maid. She ordered us out of bed as she wanted to clean the room. No discussion would change her mind. We stumbled into the living room, waited for her to make the bed and sweep the floor, and then went back to sleep.

The fun did not end. She made herself at home in in the kitchen, turned on the radio, made coffee, and explained she was “working” until 3:00 PM. She was going nowhere, like it or not.

We explained that it was very kind of her, but we absolutely did not require a maid, thank you very much. My partner speaks fluent Spanish. There was zero miscommunication. We thought the problem was solved. If only. The next morning, yet again, the maid returned, walked in the bedroom, and rousted us out of bed again. It looked like we had a live-in roommate.

I repeatedly contacted the host to request she call off her maid and finally got a reply. The maid, she explained, must visit the apartment every morning to “see if everything is okay”. She explained that the maid told her we were not white Americans; my partner nor I do not exactly “look American”.

The host’s exact words, if memory serve me, were, “I don’t want any Spanish, blacks or anyone from the street in the apartment. It’s a dangerous neighborhood.” My girlfriend, who I met through friends in Boston some years back, “is from the street, may be dangerous and could steal things.” Thus, the host required a security guard/maid to check on us, and see what we were up to in the bedroom at 8:00 AM.

The host explained that her Airbnb listing was in German. I found that odd as this host speaks better English than I do. She preferred only Germanic guests: from Switzerland, Austria, Germany, Northern Italy – and perhaps the Sudetenland, which was German in late 1930s.

The host noted my partner was a dark-skinned Latina and I did not use an accurate profile photo. In my photo, I appeared 100% Caucasian, as did my small cousin sitting next to me.

I explained to the host that if there was a problem, we would move out ASAP. She apologized away adding that it was not her who had issues, but neighbors in the building complaining to the doorman. They did not want Haitians, blacks, or dangerous-looking people (?). The host simply wanted to make sure nothing was stolen. She was expecting a Caucasian American family; the apartment could house four or five people. Instead, she got an Asian guy, and a dark-skinned girl.

Nonetheless, we stayed and a week later even requested several more days from the host.

On the morning of check-out day, sure enough, the maid woke us up in bed. We got up and let her clean the bedroom. Instead of going back to sleep, I went to take a shower. Some minutes later, when I opened the shower door, I saw the maid was now cleaning the bathroom sink. I am not a prudish guy, but when I step out of the shower that means I am not dressed in business casual.

This was just too much. I asked the maid to leave and even offered her $40. Then I realized what I should have figured out from day one. The maid said she cleaned for five days, and wanted to be paid more – not simply $40. Unfortunately, I only had about $80 on hand. That’s why guests use Airbnb: no cash necessary.

This is an old trick often played on tourists by local scammers; offer the tourist something, hope you take it, and then demand as much money as possible afterwards.

This maid was absolutely not going to settle for $80, or $40. Nor, it turned out, was the host going to pay her a penny. I need to hand over some money. Now.

This explanation about paying online though Airbnb, in my limited Spanish, fell on deaf ears. The maid wanted money. I was a foreign tourist. The host declared open season on foreign tourists, and I was it. I fled to the bedroom, shut the door, and rang the host. No answer. I then texted. Now the maid was pushing in the door and having a go at me.

Excuse the typos. I was holding the door closed with one hand and texting with the other:

In the end, I simply emptied my wallet with whatever I could find (“cash only”, no cards accepted).

The maid finally agreed to wait downstairs for us to pack up and leave. An hour later, we left the apartment with the key under the doormat, as agreed.

The fun did still did not end. While trying to drive out, the doorman refused to open the gate from the parking garage. He asked asking about getting paid a fee for the garage. Yet another tourist scam. The really exciting part was that not only was he keeping us locked inside the garage, but he was backed up by the building security guard who was conveniently armed with a shot gun.

This is an OJ Simpson scenario, and how the Juice ultimately served seven years, i.e. “Give me what I want, my pal here has a gun, and we don’t want anyone hurt.” Hint Hint. Technically speaking, that’s assault with a deadly weapon and unlawful imprisonment.

Fortunately, another car arrived and entered the garage, the gate opened, and off we drove.

While I was at the airport, the host finally called. She said I should have paid the maid a lot more – as she met us to get the key and now was cleaning the unit. And, she added, I damaged the apartment. She sent a dozen photos, one showing stain on a large pillow. The apartment had two bedrooms, many sofas, and zillions of pillows everywhere. The maid did an inventory, found one with a stain, and now I was charged, indicted, tried and found guilty of leaving a stain on her pillow. She argued about the stain with great indignation.

The stain on the$15 IKEA pillowcase was ridiculous. I told it I never saw it, but would simply pay an invoice to drop the matter. I explained, again, we were essentially robbed by the maid, and then held at gunpoint by the guard demanding money for parking. Airbnb must be notified.

Before leaving, I had earlier sent a complaint to Airbnb.

I sought no refund, no discount, no nothing. I naively thought I would be a part of the Airbnb much publicized community.

The host threatened that as I had complained, she would retaliate and complain about me and my girlfriend; we were not white and we were not registered (I am thinking this meant we misrepresented ourselves, as I appear Caucasian on my profile photo, and I am not exactly).

My response to this host at this point was simply: do what you want. I reported the maid, and the attack. If you want to exclude non-Caucasians, Latinos, Haitians, whatever, and have a complaint about me – go right ahead. I suggested we drop the matter, I was about to board my plane, and in the future, she should pay the maid a decent wage.

End of story… or so I hoped.

Two days later, I was contacted by Airbnb customer service in response to my complaint. They said – as expected – the host made a complaint that I damaged the apartment.

I then made a very foolish mistake of addressing each and every photo, in admittedly a smart-alecky manner as the complaints were so trivial, and then pointed out that this host had some hospitality issues. I received a confirmation to my response. In truth, complaining to Airbnb about racism is a very stupid idea.

Later, I got this message that Airbnb was unable to support my account moving forward. They have exercised discretion under Terms and Conditions. They are obligated to provide an explanation.

I am a guest banned for life for making a racial complaint.

I soon learned from Airbnb customer service that my ban resulted from my discrimination complaint. “We automatically block the account after we get that type of complaint – it goes to Trust and Safety,” he proudly chimed, and advised that if I withdrew my complaint, my account would be reactivated.

I also asked if this was about the pillowcase, or any other damages, charges or fees I owe. He assured me repeatedly that nothing was owed, no payment due. Withdrawing the racial complaint should unblock my account, “As we are trying to eliminate these types of complaints.”

Statistically, this makes sense. Out of, say, the last 100 instances of a guest making a complaint, in perhaps 75% of cases, a previous complaint had been earlier sent to “Trust and Safety”. So, if you ban guests upon their first racial complaint, you will likely eliminate most future complaints of racism.

This may have a vague degree of legitimacy from a risk management strategic point, but it is illegal. It is illegal retaliation under the New York City Human Rights Law (NYCHRL). It is illegal to retaliate under the federal Fair Housing Act (FHA). This is not only my opinion, but also the view of the attorneys at the NYC Human Rights Commission.

Nonetheless, I sent in my apology/withdrawal, later checked my account, and it seemed to work, although I did not book anything. Just last week, I discovered that the “unable to support my account moving forward” will not be reversed. That is what the Airbnb Customer Experience Trust and Safety had said, and they are good to their word.

Once you make a racial complaint, they will be unable to support your account going forward as Airbnb does not want you nor your big mouth complaining about racism. Forever. For life. As they are fighting racism.

So now Airbnb will test their “retaliate against loud mouth guests who complain about discrimination by banning them” policy with the NYC Human Rights Commission. We will go to AAA Arbitration, as per the Airbnb terms and conditions. This will be $10-20K for Airbnb in legal fees. But in the run up to their IPO, banning guests who complain about racism has become a top priority.

Airbnb shall fight on the seas and oceans, fight in the air, and fight on the beaches. But Airbnb shall never surrender in their struggle to eliminate racial complaints – by retaliating against and banning guests who complain, and being unable to support my account going forward.

Never complain about racism to Airbnb. You will be banned for life.

PS: The host was able to list her apartment on Airbnb a few days later.

Airbnb Host Abusing Power as Police Officer

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The story begins in December 2018. I booked a four-week stay in an annex attached to a house in an area I had spent part of my childhood, with my four-month pregnant wife. The host lived overseas and was co-hosted by a family who were quite noisy and very closed off.

We arrived at the beginning of the month and for two weeks every night was full of disturbances and parties. Then one evening, on a Saturday, the co-host had a party. I wrote a message on WhatsApp to ask him to keep the noise down. As you will see the situation escalated from there with antisemitic abuse to my wife and me, as well as anti-Muslim rhetoric.

The next day the situation became worse. They used the police to intimidate us, by falsely arresting my wife (the charges later dropped). My wife was assaulted in the police station, as the co-host was (as I later found out) a police officer who even harasses people who live on the street on which the property was located.

The message I sent to Airbnb is below. Nothing has been rectified. Multiple complaints and lawsuits were filed to the police and they covered up the incident. My wife, upon returning home, miscarried, on top of the fractured wrist and leg, multiple lacerations, and the continued antisemitic abuse she she suffered while in custody by the police. I attached multiple photos of her injuries and the abusive messages the co-host sent.

As you will see above, in regards to the actions taken by the co-host and his family and using the police to harass and assault my pregnant Jewish wife, find attached the racist messages received the day before from the co-host after I requested some peace and quiet, and also the photos of the beating by the police on my wife, this has gone far more now than just a simple civil disagreement. As it was explained to you the constant intrusion by the co-host and his family for the period we were resident in the property, my wife miscarried and lost our child, and under the laws of her home country, and that of the EU, this will be deemed a criminal offence committed by Airbnb and the co-host as well as the police officer who was sequestered by the co-host to cause harm to a pregnant woman.

Discrimination: Host Cancels Before Start of Trip

I booked a house recently. I don’t want to name names or share links, because I don’t want Airbnb retaliation. The host sent me a convoluted message about the cleaning lady but she’d try to fix it to make sure it was ready. She then followed up with a convoluted message about how she couldn’t have it cleaned, and now there was some other problem that would prevent us from staying (again, I’m avoiding details). My guess is that she added this new issue because she didn’t want me to say “Hey, no worries, we’ll find a way to clean it and change the sheets.”

She asked me to cancel the reservation, which I did not. I made her do it on her end. Of course, I thought this was all suspicious. I’m a person of color. I had my white wife attempt a reservation at the same place on the same days, an hour after the cancellation (we added two extra days to the end to make it slightly different). Guess what? She approved the reservation. And contacted my wife. Airbnb was informed, but we have no idea what happened. She’s a Superhost.

Seeking Advice On Current Airbnb Situation

This post is an appeal for advice on my current Airbnb long-term booking in Évry, France. Yesterday (June 9, 2019) the host knocked on the door of the room I am renting in her home and asked me to help her evict another non-paying Airbnb Guest.

The young man who was staying in another bedroom of her home is Middle Eastern – and she whispered, with tears in her eyes, that she was afraid he might have a bomb. She said she feared for her (undisclosed in the Airbnb listing) two kids, and wanted me – a 71-year old female paying long-term guest – to “back her up” when she knocked on the young man’s door, recording cell phone in hand, and tell him to pay up or get out.

I have only been in this rental for 12 days. There are a multitude of big problems with this accommodation, ranging from absolute filth (the communal fridge contained putrifying foodstuffs; the toilet seat was broken and slid off the porcelain base; the bathroom itself is disgusting with built-up human waste and dirt). There are no handrails on the staircase to the four second-floor rental bedrooms.

Last – but certainly not least – is the host’s four-year-old son, who dominates the household. He has no schedule or discipline, does not go to nursery school, and is typically left in the care of his teenage sister (who is glued to her iPhone and generally ignores him). The child chatters, laughs, shrieks, cries, and screams from morning to late night (1:30 AM is typically when the host and her teenage daughter finally leave the living room for their bedrooms). The living room is open to the second-floor staircase, permitting everything the young child says or does to be clearly heard upstairs.

When I emerge from my room to go to the bathroom, downstairs to the fridge, or to leave, or return to, the residence, the boy approaches, follows, and bombards me with pleas and demands for attention. It is constant. I am wearing earplugs as I write, but even so, I can hear his occasional shrieks and screams when the host or her daughter (ineffectively) admonish him.

I make this appeal for advice here, in this forum, because I have researched my options and learned that cancelling the remainder of this three-month booking (for which I have already paid the first of three installments) means I will owe the host the full second month’s installment equivalent to 30-days (to wit, Airbnb’s long-term cancellation policy during a stay: “If the guest books a reservation and decides to cancel the reservation during their stay, the guest must use the online alteration tool in order to agree to a new checkout date. Regardless of the checkout date chosen, the guest is required to pay the host for the 30 days following the cancellation date…”)

My funds are limited. My savings has been eaten up by the Airbnb host of the previous booking I had before this. There was the promise of wifi; the wifi code did not work; the host sent a different Livebox passcode, which was bounced by Google within three days due to a “proxy server”. Thereafter, the host ignored my desperate Airbnb messages, calls, and texts for nine days, well after the Airbnb 24-hour full-refund cancellation period for an accommodation-not-as-advertised guarantee.

This resulted in my having to rent a mobile wifi hotspot device in Paris which cost $200 per month for the three-month booking. Other necessary expenditures to make that “service room” livable cost an additional $1,000.

My goal (such as it is… I’ve just about given up hope at this point) would be to secure an alternative long-term Airbnb accommodation (perhaps a good one, with some hard-earned wisdom on my side now). However, my monthly retirement income will be sucked up later this month, when my host gets another installment paid to her, the funds I could use to secure a replacement accommodation. I would be most sincerely grateful for any and all advise, and I thank you in advance.

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Interracial Discrimination From Airbnb Rampant?

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After I was banned for life from Airbnb for absolutely no reason (booked twice, great reviews from my hosts, paid on time, went to book a third trip but was locked out), I went to try to contact them through Facebook and found a pattern: they are banning interracial couples for no reason.

They have us sign in through Facebook and most of us have photos with our partners. Then through a quick Google search I found out they’re being sued for discrimination at the moment. I ended up booking with HomeAway instead and highly recommend you do the same.

What do you guys think of this?

Airbnb Closing my Account after Fake Review

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“In my experience communication with the host tends to be limited.”

What do other hosts think about? Would you allow someone into your house who doesn’t communicate? Even Airbnb encourages hosts to prepare a set of questions for the guest asking about their arrival time, reason for visiting, number of guests, luggage, house rules, etc. I literally copied and pasted the questions from the Airbnb site, but this guest used it against me.

I moved to a freshly renovated luxury apartment a month before this guest’s arrival and asked him to take care of it like his own home. I mentioned I had a guest who painted her hair black in my brand new white bathroom – leaving black stains – and told the guest I’m not into drama. This means if he doesn’t feel comfortable with my cleanliness he’s free to book other accommodations.

I spent too much money on this apartment and couldn’t afford further damages in my first month. I’d rather cancel and was open about it. I was sure I was polite and professional with my communications, therefore I didn’t understand this guest’s aggression towards me and it really upset me.

“Upon arrival in the city I reached out to the host to arrange a meet (something I’ve never had to do with any other host)”

Let me specify ‘the meet’ in the apartment. The correct term would be “meet and greet.” What do you think, hosts? Is it bad thing to meet your guest in person? Even Airbnb commercials shows hosts and guests meeting. Again, I didn’t understand my mistake.

“She provided me with a different address to the apartment.”

My building has two entrances: the north and south side. You are allowed to put only one address on the listing. Therefore I always ask my guests which side they’re coming from to give them a better address. I even send the map to Airbnb team showing it was the same place. This was ignored.

“I think she could tell by my facial expression, I knew something was not accurate.”

Well, what a politically correct way to cover the fact he looked at me with disgust, assuming I’m Russian upon first meeting face to face. I felt horrible and very uncomfortable, but couldn’t identify the feeling. I was thinking the guest thought I was from a third-world country and he was concern about the cleanliness.

I reassured him everything was clean and showed multiple cleaning supplies. I encouraged him to feel free to use them during his stay – whenever he wants. He attacked me again, saying I asked him to clean.

The apartment was sparkling clean; I put a lot of effort and heart in my new home. I’d never expect someone would want to clean it. Therefore I admit I left only one (thick ) roll of paper towels alongside several different types of clothes, but I didn’t expect guests would want to clean the whole apartment.

I felt like he wanted to clean after me… clean out my presence. If he asked about paper towels, I would have simply bought them, but he didn’t.

Finally, he complained about the ‘sparsely’ furnished apartment. Before I moved in, I checked approximately thirty luxury apartments with a real estate agent. I took pictures of furnished model apartments, I was collecting catalogs with recent home decor trends.

My style would have been named ‘urban minimalistic’ by an agent, but not the guest, who used it as another occasion to attack me, suggesting I was poor minded, maybe even mentally challenged (as he mentioned in further conversations due to my origin) and couldn’t afford furniture? Obviously he didn’t expect I would know any trends; he prejudged me and my place. This was a disgusting experience, but that was just the beginning.

Host Discriminates Against Guests’ Dietary Needs?

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My name is Ryan Lobo and I am an author, filmmaker, TED Talk speaker, and photographer based in India. I am writing to you because I believe that I have been discriminated against due to my Indian ethnicity by a host in Almaty, Kazakhstan. I had inquired with this host about renting his apartment in Almaty for my wife, child and myself and requested a discount as we were taking it for 20 days. My wife is of Russian ethnicity and I am Indian, evident from our photographs.

The host wrote me immediately, saying that Indian food or spices are strictly not allowed in his apartment and asked for an extra deposit/amount from me which he would return after ‘inspecting’ the apartment if I were to take the place. As far as I know, Airbnb’s terms state that people cannot be discriminated against or charged extra based on national origin/race and additional charges or deposits cannot be placed on them.

The host then declined my inquiry when I told him that I do not eat Indian food and requested to know why he was charging me extra. Do please look into this as I believe Airbnb is supposed to be inclusive and non-discriminatory. I have flagged the post.