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.