Airbnb Guest from Hell Blackmails Host to Not Pay Damages

I was a host for five years and didn’t have a singe issue with tenants, but still, a guest from hell arrived to rent a room in my beautiful apartment. He violated all the rules of my home immediately. He smoked cigarettes and then weed day and night. He slammed the doors 24/7. He was extremely dirty and the apartment had a horrible smell.

Then he claimed he had a medical prescription to smoke weed. He informed me that he arrived in my city to see a psychiatrist, as he was ‘crazy’. He showed me other medicine he was taking. The man was very tall and huge, triple my size, and he was screaming and shouting. He was throwing his things against the wall.

I thought I was in a horror movie. I was absolutely terrified and scared for my life as a single female being in the house with him. I contacted Airbnb and they told me that they were cancelling this reservation. However, they couldn’t “reach” the tenant and it was I who had to inform him, evict him, and to involve police. They washed their hands of it, leaving me by myself with an aggressive man who was threatening me and refusing to leave.

That was not the end of it. Airbnb sent me two emails informing me about their Million Dollar Guarantee, probably expecting me to claim a lot (fortunately, nothing was damaged). At the same time, in a third email Airbnb immediately accused me – instead of apologizing for their total lack of help to evict this tenant from hell – by issuing me a warning that my email to the customer service was discriminating.

Just to clarity, in my email I simply asked them how they ensured the safety of hosts because people who have mental issues of such proportions get on the platform. What policy is there in place to protect the hosts? Apparently hosts cannot ask valid questions like that, or they are shut down immediately as it is deemed “discrimination” by Airbnb. They even sent me a link to anti-discrimination policy.

What a scam. They lie in all their communications. They abuse and effectively blackmail hosts – preemptively – to ensure no claims for damages are filed, and so they don’t pay. When I asked what action they did take against the tenant, they didn’t give me any details; as per their policy, it’s an “internal” matter. They do what they want and how they want, as long as these guests from hell pay them commissions.

Airbnb really scams hosts because they provide no guarantees for safety and security for our homes. Even if Airbnb covertly turns our homes effectively into asylums for mentally ill people, it’s okay because Airbnb can still make some money off it. They don’t care about hosts, just use and abuse us to make commissions. I really can’t wait till they file for IPO as then all their scams and abuses will explode right in their face, and the market will punish their abuse immediately. Airbnb won’t be able to avoid class action lawsuits at that point.

Mental Health: Airbnb Doesn’t Put your Safety First

This is a long post with a very disturbing video and story.

My husband and I arrived to an Airbnb host’s free backyard cottage on Thursday, January 23rd Around 9:20 PM. All went as planned as far as going in the backyard and finding the key in the shed behind the main house just as the owner’s form message instructed. The accommodations were exactly as described, very clean and very cute.

At 8:00 AM the next morning, a woman came to our door and began to rattle it very hard in an attempt to get in. We told her several times that we were in there and she responded with, “ha ha ha ha ha ha” and then screamed, “YOU SCARED ME!” We again said we were in there and she began to yell at us: “Don’t stress, don’t stress.”

She then returned to the main house. A few minutes later I heard a very disturbing and very loud scream from the house. Shortly after the young woman came outside wearing a dress and a towel wrapped around her shoulders/head. She had a hammer and a wicker cylinder shaped basket of some sort.

She then began to hammer the basket very loudly and aggressively on the concrete patio located less than ten feet from where we staying. At one point she took a break and she turned around as if she were looking at the neighbor’s house and gave them the finger. It was at this point I told my husband that we were not staying here another night and that we were leaving ASAP.

We quickly packed our things and took them to the car parked in front of the main house. As we put our luggage in the trunk we saw the curtains move in the front window. Suddenly, the woman in the house threw her face against the glass and started shrieking violently and making pain-filled faces. She was yelling inaudible things through the glass.

She then opened the screen-less window and it was clear that we were not dealing with a mentally healthy person. She told me that I smelled bad because I smelled like lanolin. There were several other odd things said and many disturbing screams.

I then got my phone and made a video and asked if she was okay. She defensively and calmly said she was fine and I asked if she was the host. She replied with, “F$%k no, she doesn’t live here but I bet she didn’t tell you that she had a mentally ill daughter.”

She then let out another super disturbing scream, horror movie style. I turned off my camera and she continued to flip us off and scream viciously as we pulled out of the driveway.

We never provoked her. We never spoke with her other than when she was trying to force herself into our locked room and when I took the video. We were just grateful that she didn’t display this behavior in the night and we didn’t have have time to properly respond.

Our biggest concern was our safety and hers. We contacted her mother via private message. The host responded quickly and wrote, “She has been stable for a week but apparently is not any longer.” According to a standard issue form message to her guests, the host is a traveling musician and is always looking for gigs in other people’s homes.

The host gave us our money back and Airbnb, while initially unresponsive to my urgent email, did handle things very smoothly and efficiently once I called them. The company canceled our reservation and refunded our $280 in record time.

During our phone call I asked if this woman would still be allowed to host. Airbnb, who is privy to all of this information, including the DMs with the host, told us that they would go over the rules and regulations with the host. Her cottage has been pre-booked for months of January, February and March for many weeks.

As of 7:00 PM CST on January 27, 2020, this property is still booked with previous reservations and and is still accepting new ones; because Airbnb canceled our reservation and refunded our money, company policy has revoked our privilege to post a review. This also explains why 168 people have given this property a 95% positive review.

Watch the video to the end.

Posted by Dana Moxie Minetos on Monday, January 27, 2020

Waking up to a Stranger in my Airbnb Room

I booked a place with Airbnb last night. It was a pretty neat place, nice and cozy. I had planned to go out but it was raining and cold. I was tired, so I decided to stay in. I watched lots of movies. It was pretty cool. Then I went to sleep.

I’ve been dealing with an itch due to dermatitis, so it was better for me to be naked after applying some anti-itch lotion. In the morning, I was woken up by the sound of snoring. I was like: what is that sound? How loud are the neighbours? I remember that there was this creepy video I watched online where a guy who claimed his house was haunted said he heard noises of someone snoring next to his bed, but I was like… nah… most likely the neighbours.

I tried to ignore it, but was trying to figure out where the sound was coming from. It sounded like it was coming from a wall where there was no room, so that was strange. Then I opened my eyes.

There was no ghost next to me, but there was a mass at the foot of my bed; some guy was sleeping there. Some random Korean dude… snoring at the foot of the bed… I was like wtf? So I woke him up and was like… what are you doing in my room? Get the f%$# out!

He’s like “Oh, it’s a double room. I thought it was booked for two people?”

I was like wtf? I didn’t even make sense. It was just a single room with a single bed. So I told him to get out. I couldn’t believe this… I was ready to leave. He called the host and gave me the phone. It turned out the host gave us both the same instructions to go to the same room. I promptly requested a refund.

Up in Flames – Airbnb from Hell over New Year’s

Last year’s New Years was the first and last time I ever used Airbnb. Every time someone says they use it, I pray to the almighty Airbnb gods that they make it out alive and in one piece.

Last year, I researched a place to stay in Chicago for New Years for a good couple hours. My budget was low, and I wanted somewhere close to the venue I was gonna be partying at that night. Airbnb was the cheapest and most convenient option I could find. I found a cute little place in Ukranian Village pretty close to the venue, and the host had pretty good reviews. The only bad reviews complained about how the place was kinda dirty and rundown. If that was the only thing people complained about, it had to be safe, right? Wrong.

I can handle a little dirt so I booked a night for ~$30. When I got there to check in, the host seemed like a decent guy. He made me food and showed me around. The place was beat up and he hadn’t shown some of the more rough areas of the place to me, but it was livable for a night.

What I should have done was run away screaming and never look back when I got to my room and found a broken window by the alleyway and stab marks on the walls. I wish I was exaggerating. I also wish I had had the frame of mind to take pictures. Some of the marks were small enough and at the right height that they could have been from nailing something into the wall and having the nail dragged down from the weight of a frame or something, but not all of them.

My stomach dropped but I wasn’t able to afford a hotel room that was any better than this. Since he seemed like a nice guy, I asked him about the stab marks on the walls. He told me he had had a crazy guest threaten him like that in a fit of rage. We left it at that and talked for a couple more hours before I left to get ready and go to my show. The show was amazing and I had a great time.

When I got back to the house, the host was still awake and let me back in. I offered him a cigarette and we went outside to go smoke in the backyard. We were talking and smoking out there for a while before we heard a sort of muted bang and his fire alarm going off inside. He said that his fire alarm went off randomly sometimes and told me not to worry about it. It kept going off for a while, and a look of concern started to spread over his face. He kept his cool at this point in time, though, and went in to go see what had transpired.

Not more than five seconds later, a look of panic spread over his face and he jumped back, saying, “We need to get out of here.” He grabbed a couple things off the table and frantically ran out of the backyard around to the front of the house. Not knowing what was going on, I ran after him.

He opened the front door and I saw nothing but bright orange flames filling the house. He had been charging his lithium battery motorbike in the living room of the house and it exploded. Let me say that again. He had been charging his lithium battery motorbike in the living room of the Airbnb and it had exploded. Google “Ukranian Village fire Chicago January 1” if you don’t believe me.

Out of sheer panic, he started to abandon me and the apartment completely, running off down the alleyway to leave me there to deal with the entire thing. I was the one who had to call 911. I was the one who had to talk to the fire department and police and landlord and everyone else who contacted me as if I had been the one who had put everyone’s lives at risk, but nope.

This spineless idiot had just destroyed all of my and his belongings and the entire first floor of the complex, causing the people on the top floors to have to be rescued by the fire department, and he took off like a bitch. He told me to lie to the fire department and anyone else I made contact with, AKA put myself at risk to save his pathetic ass from the consequences of his own actions. Happy New Years.

I ran after him because I’m a small female without protection and I was in fishnets, out on the streets of Chicago, at 3:00 in the morning. When I ran after him he told me he’d take me to the train station so I’d at least be somewhere safer than out on the streets. Below the bare minimum of what he should have done, but fine.

It was freezing. We got followed by an intoxicated homeless dude who wanted my number and wouldn’t take no for an answer. The Amtrak station wasn’t open until 5:00 AM (and it was 3:45). The entire thing was a nightmare. We spent those hours walking the streets looking for a place that was open where we would be warm and off the streets.

I felt extremely unsafe and had no idea how I would get any of my valuable belongings back, such as my student ID and keys to get back into the dorms. At my school, if you lose your keys you have to pay $300 to get all the locks replaced for whatever reason. At this point, though, all I cared about was making it back in one piece. I missed my first train and had to pay for another ticket.

When I got back I had to report the incident to my school and Airbnb. I talked to the landlord, the fire department again, and the police. I spared no details. When I filed the claim, Airbnb basically laughed in my face and said they could assume no responsibility whatsoever for what happened.

Hundreds of dollars’ worth of belongings? Not their responsibility.

Multiple threats to my and many others’ safety? Not their problem.

They said it was up to the host to give me a refund or reimbursement. He did that for me, thank god, or I would have made sure every cop in the city knew about this host’s reckless endangerment. I eventually was able to get my belongings back, by some miracle. They were burnt and covered in ash and soot, but some of them were still usable (including my keys).

I had given the host my number so he could get my stuff mailed to the proper place and he started hitting on me, saying we should hang out, I’m kinda hot, etc. Unbelievable. Get a hostel or hotel where they actually care about peoples’ safety and well being. You 100% get what you pay for. Don’t trust reviews and don’t trust Airbnb; trust your instincts.

The Dark Side of Airbnb for Female Travelers

We are a group of backpackers who have stayed in many Airbnbs. In all our stays, we had pleasant and safe experiences apart from our most recent stay which was awful beyond words. Our stay at an Airbnb in Kalpakkam opened our eyes to the dark side of Airbnb and safety.

We had to encounter probably one of the most horrible experiences of our lives by staying at this place. We encountered a host who abused, insulted and shouted at us. It’s only now that I am reading the reviews of this property and I can see the abuses hurled at by the host even while answering. It was a grave mistake that we did not really read the reviews properly while booking.

On January 3rd, we had a long, tiresome journey from Pondicherry to reach this place at Kalpakkam, near Mahabalipuram. When we came to this Airbnb we were quite upset to see that the beach beside the property was littered with garbage and local people in the area openly defecating in the beachfront. In addition, the rooms were not really tidy. The air conditioning in one room did not cool properly and the toilet in one bathroom had no flush. To be fair it is mentioned in the property description that the flush was broken and would be fixed after January 2nd (we arrived at the property on the 3rd and we had booked this place two months in advance).

After we arrived, we called the host to inform him out of courtesy that we had arrived and we were facing some issues regarding the AC and also mentioned that the flush was broken (yes, it is mentioned in the property listing but it also says that it would be resolved on the 2nd). There was no confrontation from our part and we casually happened to speak with the host about the issue. Immediately the host got furious and asked us to cancel the reservation.

The property is in the middle of nowhere and we had girls in the group. Obviously we couldn’t cancel and find alternative accommodations when it was already dusk. Within ten minutes or so, the host turned up with his mother at the place and started shouting and abusing the girls. We were unable to comprehend why would a normal person behave this way, unless the person is not really sane.

Apparently the host was quite upset because he has “sentiments attached with his home” and that we dared to complain about. However what remains inexplicable is the reason the host would shout at us, abuse us, and ask us to cancel the reservation when it was quite apparent that the location is remote, there are several girls in the group, and it was almost dark.

The host used insulting statements like “Why [would] Airbnb send such characters?”, “Get out of my house”, and “Who are you?” When we said we were not going to leave without talking to Airbnb, he shouted “Airbnb is nobody. This is my property – Airbnb cannot stop me” again and again.

This entire experience made us feel utterly unsafe and stressed. The most unfortunate thing is the fact that our female friends had to suffer such abuse. In a civilized society, no gentlemen would ever assault women, but this vile creature of poor manners is not man enough for civility.

One of our members had a nervous breakdown because of this episode. We are not used to abuse and altercations and we have unfortunately not taken any lessons on how to handle an adult who would bully and shout at you for no apparent reason.

Furthermore, the host said that he only wants “local people” to stay at his place. Apparently we are neither Tamil nor South Indians; he was implying that he does not want people from other parts of India. This was most insulting, humiliating and the highest form of discriminatory abuse. We were so stressed and traumatized that we could not sleep that night.

Apart from such an awful host, there was a group of boisterous local guys in the next house in the same property (probably belonging to the same owner). They were making catcalls, hooting and flashing lights at the girls of our group. It was an isolated place and naturally we were terrified for safety reasons.

To sum up, our New Year party trip was ruined by an unmannerly and unstable host who abused us and we had to endure these insults since we were trapped because of the location. I was constantly reminded of this quote by Gandhi throughout the frightening encounter: “I will not let anyone walk through my mind with their dirty feet.” But alas, since I am no Gandhi I cannot forgive or forget this horrible episode.

Though we had booked this miserably grotesque place for two nights we left the next day in the morning as apparently we had an appalling stay and felt extremely unsafe and violated. This property is in the filthiest of places with an evil-mouthed, pathologically-egocentric and abusive host.

Airbnb has been requested multiple times to delist this property for the safety of guests. I am waiting for Airbnb to take appropriate actions. We managed to take a small video of the episode. Since we were not smart enough to take the video initially we missed the most insulting parts. But still, this video will give you an idea on how unsafe Airbnb is, especially for women.

Friday the 13th Airbnb Spider Nightmare

It was Friday the 13th and my husband, our two friends, and I took a weekend trip up to Maine for a relaxing, fun getaway. After driving for three hours we reached our destination way out in the wilderness. We arrived after dark to the cabin style house and started getting settled. We hung out for a while and made dinner using the outside grill.

One of our friends was exploring the property around the house when he called for us to come over to look at a massive spider web he found on a tree next to the house. We looked in the tree and located what looked like a large brown recluse spider. We knew since we were out in the wilderness that it was probably common to run across this kind of arachnid outside.

We continued to hang out and we were watching Friday the 13th since it happened to be on TV that night. Hours passed and we decided it was time to call it a night, so we all started getting ready for bed. After using the bathroom I went over to the sink to wash my hands when all of a sudden I was interrupted by a huge brown recluse spider sitting in the middle of the sink.

I immediately froze and screamed for someone to help kill it. I was horrified and started to feel like maybe this spider was not alone. I have never seen a spider that big. My friend came into the bathroom to kill the spider when I heard my husband yell from the bedroom. He said he had a huge spider crawling up his back when he laid down in the bed.

We ran into the bedroom to find the dead brown recluse spider that my husband had just killed laying on the bed. I was no longer tired and frankly creeped out. There was no way I was sharing my bed with a huge spider that is potentially poisonous. I told everyone that we needed to pack up and leave immediately because at the rate we were coming across these spiders, that most likely meant there would be more.

We called the few hotels that were in the area, but there were no vacancies. We were pretty much out in the middle of nowhere and it was 2:00 AM. As we were packing up to leave, we noticed that there were lots of brown recluse spiders crawling out of the wood rafters on the ceiling so we hurried out of there as fast as we could.

We decided to try to sleep in the SUV rental which was our only option at that time, but it was extremely uncomfortable and none of us could sleep because of the nightmare we had just experienced. We came to a conclusion that it made more sense for us to just drive the three hours home since we had no place to stay.

We drove through the night and finally returned home to get some well-needed rest. We could not believe what we had just experienced and how it felt almost like we were in a horror film. Also it was very eerie that it just happened to take place on Friday the 13th. Anyway we reported the issue to Airbnb and were compensated.

Airbnb is Not Safe for Neighborhoods

In April 2019 I purchased and moved into a brand new neighborhood of luxury town homes within a five-minute walk to the metro and nearby shopping and restaurants. It seemed like a nice and quiet neighborhood of families and young professionals who want to live close to the city, but want to avoid the high costs of living and crime in our nation’s capital: Washington, DC.

Once my neighbor moved in, she and her husband started listing rooms in their brand new home as Airbnb hosts. This is where my nightmare began. I started getting Airbnb guests ringing my door bell at all hours of the day and night thinking my private home was an Airbnb. I even have Airbnb guests trying to put in a code and access my keyless doorpad. My dogs bark from the disturbance. It seems like a constant flow.

Since Airbnb does not conduct background checks on guests, this has caused a huge safety concern for myself. I’ve had to install cameras and a security system on the perimeter of my home and put up a sign on my door stating, “private home, not Airbnb.”

I have contacted my neighbor and Airbnb with no resolution. Airbnb put me on hold and said they would send me a link to file a complaint. Some of her guests even seemed like they were on drugs when they were ringing my doorbell and trying to get into my private home. This has caused me huge concern about the safety of the neighborhood and the safety of the homeowners in the neighborhood; some random person could walk into our place if we were not constantly monitoring that our door is locked and our alarm systems are always active.

Complete Dump Misrepresented on Airbnb

The Airbnb house was infested with rodents. This was not a mild problem. There were multiple rodent droppings in the cupboards inside the pots and pans, strainers, tupperware, etc. I discovered new droppings in the pantry on our second morning (where we were keeping our food). The host had to provide us with large plastic bins to safely store our food and protect it from rodents. Droppings were littered under the refrigerator.

The house needs major repairs. The deck is completely rotten and unsafe to walk on with the second floor railing about to fall off. The septic system leaked sewer gas into the house when it rained or if we took a shower. We saw a pipe draining out of the side of the house with brown/soapy liquid that smelled like sewage, but can’t verify that it was. Smelled bad though.

The host does not present truthful information in the listing regarding handicapped accessibility. There are no bedrooms or bathrooms that are accessible without climbing stairs. There are also no railings on the stairs at all. I specifically asked the host about this because my elderly father was traveling with us and he needed an accessible bedroom and bathroom. The host assured me that there were accommodations for my father “on the main floor” but failed to mention that it involved climbing four stairs without a railing. I guess he just wanted to rent the house.

The dishwasher does not work. It is worn out and even after we got it to run through a cycle, it did not clean the dishes. The host sent a technician during our stay who was supposed to “order parts”. We were left with a moldy dish rack (yuck) so we could hand wash dishes. I complained and the host sent a new dish rack.

The pots and pans were so worn out and scraped up that the non-stick coating came off in our food. They were unusable. I complained and when a lady (his wife?) delivered us a new set of pans and told me “well, it’s just a rental”. People renting a $486/night “rental” have the right to expect a clean kitchen with usable appliances and cookware.

There was a waste can half full of moldy water underneath one of the downstairs sinks. The trap on the sink was a worn out rubber type that completely leaked. Obviously the host knew and just put a trashcan under it. It smelled bad and we poured out the moldy water. Again, $486/night.

Years ago this was probably a nice family home. Currently it needs major repairs and has health and safety issues. The host is misrepresenting it as “a truly magnificent meditation retreat” and even though Airbnb is now aware of this scam, they refuse to hold the owner accountable. They obviously make a lot of money from high end listings like this, even if guests are scammed and it’s a dump.

Airbnb Puts Lives at Risk when Everyone has the Keys

We arrived in Paris at 9:00 AM on November 22nd. We arrived at Urban Flats around noon and stored our luggage with them. They assured us they would be in a secure location. We returned at 4:00 PM and checked into our prepaid Airbnb rental. We had eight people in our group: five adults and three children under 7 years old. That night my son and daughter in law decide they would sleep on the sofa bed in the living room.

My son awoke to someone opening the front door. He spoke out and the person closed the door and left. My son got up, locked the door again and place furniture in front of the door. We thought maybe it was a mistake and went out sightseeing at 10:00 AM. We made sure the door was properly locked.

We returned at 6:00 PM. When I went to my room, I noticed my converter plugs and iPad were missing. We then realized everyone had all their electronics (three iPads, one computer, one smart watch) and chargers missing. Upon further search, we found that all the jewelry was missing. In fact, a carry-on bag was missing and I believe they used it to remove our property.

We went to the Urban Flats office and reported the break-in. The employee went to our apartment and found the spare apartment key in the lock box by the front door. He said that should not have there. He then proceeded to lie to us: first, he said he called the police, and next we had to walk to the police station. At first he said he notified his boss, then he said he could not call him. Lie after lie. In fact, he said we should not worry since travel insurance would cover it. He assumed we had insurance and could not understand why we were upset.

We did file a police report, but they said they could not help us. We called Airbnb and filed a report. The next day they acted as if we never reported anything. We personally notified the owners of the apartment. They were helpful and gave us a full refund so we could go to a hotel, which turned out to be more than we planned on spending. The first time we called, the Airbnb agent said they would give us $250/person for a hotel and then the next day we were told that was not possible.

As far as I am concerned, Airbnb put our lives at risk. This was an inside job since someone provided the robbers with the building code and key box code. I plan on posting on every social media website that Urban Flats is corrupt and dangerous. Airbnb has been no help. I plan on seeking legal counsel due to the fact that eight lives were put at risk.

Airbnb Experience just an opportunity for sexual assault?

Recently I booked several Airbnb Experiences during a long stay in Merida, Mexico. Most of these trips were magical experiences with wonderful guides and friendly tourists. One thing I learned quickly was that the guides preferred to have more than one guest on a tour. In general, this makes sense because fixed costs like transportation can be spread over several people.

I personally try to book tours early so that guides have time to rally other guests to help with costs, and since Airbnb does not enforce a minimum guest count. However, on one particular tour I was the only tourist. The Experience took me deep into the jungle with a man I didn’t know, to rural places where we were completely alone.

I felt panic as we drover deeper and deeper into the jungle. I frantically shared my GPS location with friends for some modicum of security. Unfortunately, my cell phone had absolutely no reception at all. This tour guide seemed to prefer that I was a woman alone with him. He told me he habitually does tours for single women, as if it was proof that he is trustworthy.

During the tour, he would ask me to model for photos. It appeared that he was using the Airbnb Experiences as a dating service. I deeply regret going on this Airbnb Experience with this man. I felt like I was in danger during the entire eight-hour trip. I wish I had known I would be in this situation, and I wish I could have cancelled this trip.

For the safety of everyone involved, Airbnb should allow hosts and guests to enforce a minimum guest count on trips. Please offer us the opportunity to cancel these trips if there is only one guest. Ultimately, I am safe. However, I fear for the next woman who signs up for an Airbnb Experience and finds herself alone with a stranger where no one can help.

TL:DR I hope no one else has an Airbnb Experience like I did.