I booked 3 times with Airbnb. Twice they were cancelled by the hosts after I booked and paid 3-4 months in advance. All Airbnb took responsibility for was covering 10% more of the difference. It shows that Airbnb is too clever in doing business. It is a win-win situation for Airbnb. First we looked for places for days, booked and paid in advance by credit card. The bank charges us the selling rate currency exchange. Then we wait and pray that the host would not cancel our booking. And then the cancellation arrived, and we had to start all over again, but this time with far fewer choices of accommodation plus even higher price. If we couldn’t find one from Airbnb, we got the money back, sounds good, but we got the amount back from the bank with leas money due to currency exchange rate. My experience with Airbnb in 10 months with 3 bookings is terrible and nightmare after nightmare. It ruined our holidays. Wasted time and energy to deal with unprofessional Airbnb. I learned that I should rely on professional ones which are abundant in the market. Airbnb business is too tricky.
Nearly two months ago, my fiancee and I booked a beautiful apartment for a two-week stay in San Francisco. We spent a lot of time looking through listings, and found one that we thought was perfect. The host was well-reviewed, and there were many positive comments. We paid the full amount and thought we were on our way.
Fast forward to the night before we were to arrive. After several days of attempting to contact the host, she abruptly canceled our reservation with no warning and no explanation. We had only a few hours to find somewhere to stay.
Airbnb told us we’d be eligible for a mere $100 credit. We were able to find another apartment at the last minute, but it wasn’t nearly as nice as the one we booked originally.
I have had nothing but great experiences with AirBnB in the past. In fact, we are in a beautiful rented house for our second week here in the Bay Area, but have had to now pay the cost of moving to a second property (a second AirBnB fee and a second cleaning fee).
We also learned that you can’t leave negative feedback on AirBnB unless you stay at a property, so there is no other way for us to warn people about this on their site.
I believe that AirBnB is providing a great service, but this is an issue they need to address. They are very strict about renter cancelations, but to my knowledge, no penalty befell our host for canceling less than 24 hours in advance, besides a warning.