“Furnished” studio apartment was not furnished!

I am English and live and work in Strasbourg, France. I sold my apartment and travelled for a few weeks, then came back to Strasbourg. I checked into a hotel and looked for an airbnb for a month while I look for somewhere more permanent. I found a place on Airbnb that advertised as a “furnished studio, city centre” and I clicked on “Reserve”. Within 24 hours my reservation was accepted and my payment taken and I arranged to meet the owner at the property so she could show me how everything worked. Fine, I thought. Then, half an hour before the appointment, while I was already on my way there, she called to say she had to cancel, because there was no bed in the apartment. I said this caused me a difficulty, because it would take a while to get the refund and I couldn’t afford to pay up for another rental right away, leaving me homeless. I met her at the property anyway, and there was no bed. She asked me if I could take delivery of a new bed on the Tuesday, the day I was to move in. I said fine. She then called me later to say that the bed would not arrive for two weeks, and she would offer me a refund of 200 euros (nearly a quarter of the total). I agreed to this, feeling I had no choice.

In the meantime I bought myself a floor mattress and some bed linen, and stayed three extra nights in the hotel while I was doing all this, which cost me much more than the 200 euros she was refunding, which in any case I had not received yet.

When I got in on the Friday, the place was empty. There was a chest of drawers and a table and chair, a fridge, hotplate and microwave, and that was it. I had to buy a plate and cup, knife and fork, saucepan and so on. I then wrote her a message to tell her all this (in addition, the paintwork was peeling off the bathroom walls, which is hardly hygienic), and her response (the latest so far) was that she had been willing to cancel, but I had refused (yes, she ought not to have accepted and had my payment taken) and that she had had no idea of the state of the place until the day she agreed to meet me there (after my payment had been taken). I took pictures as soon as I arrived there (three days after the date I had booked and paid for) but am not holding my breath for further refunds.

Is there anything I can do?

Airbnb Refused to Refund Fees Despite Obvious Mistake!


This is a warning and a true story of what happened to me when I rented a house using the Airbnb service.

I had a project in the USA and I rented a house using Airbnb. I found a nice 2 year old 2 bed room + garage house with a reasonable price of 105€/night. I made the deal with the house owner using Airbnb from August to December, 2015.  In November I found out that my project would last longer than the original move out date in December.  I agreed with the house owner that I would stay at the house until January 26th, 2016. Airbnb sent me an offer stating that I could continue renting the house until January 26, 2016 at the same price of 105€/night. I accepted the offer and everything was OK. Middle of January I found out that my project would not be finished earlier than February 8th, 2016. I ask the house owner if it was possible for me to stay at the house until February 8th, 2016.  The house owner said that it was OK and Airbnb sent me a new offer for the additional 13 days of renting. I was busy with my project and also very stupid and accepted the offer without checking the offer carefully.  Afterwards I noticed that the rental price had risen from 105€ to 137€. It was OK for me that the rental price increased for the last 13 days, but it is not OK that the rental price ALSO increased for the PAST 165 days from August 8th 2015 to January 26th 2016 considering I had already paid! I sent a message to the house owner to see if it was possible to correct that mistake. The house owner said that Airbnb refused to correct the mistake. I called Airbnb and the guy on the phone said that according the Airbnb policy, if the customer accepts the price it cannot be corrected by airbnb anymore.  The Airbnb agent asked me to contact the house owner to ask if I could get money back. Why didn’t Airbnb want to help a customer with this kind of obvious problem?  Instead they asked me to directly contact to the house owner… is it because Airbnb wanted to keep their additional fees?  I think so! I talked with the house owner and he agreed that I had paid $5,940 USD too much and he understood why I would like to get my money back. The house owner said that Airbnb had already taken their fee, so he could only return $4,339 USD!  I made the deal with house owner and received the $4,339 USD refund for the mistake, but I still had to pay $1,601 USD extra because Airbnb would not refund their fees!

Don’t be as stupid as I was and never accept any Airbnb offer before you have read it very carefully. My personal advice is to never ever use Airbnb’s services because the company policy is not to correct an obvious mistake if it means giving up any of their booking fees!  Please share this warning with all of your friends so nobody else will have the same problem I had.

Another Bad Airbnb Experience… 2 for 2

After confirming my reservation for a house in New Jersey through Airbnb, the host said she “Is not current on updating her website”, and double booked the home she rents. Airbnb took the $560.00 from my Amex after the host canceled my reservation. I had to dispute it with Amex because Airbnb takes five days to refund money they should never have received in the first place. This is my second time dealing with Airbnb and my last. The first was just as bad. They are dishonest and impossible to contact. Stay away from this company! If you have a problem, report them to the BBB, Consumer Affairs, and the FCC….I am.

Airbnb is very unfriendly to consumers!

I’ve booked once before on Airbnb and it worked out great. Second time, not so great. I use the filter and put “dogs allowed” I checked a couple of places in one area then moved about 1 mile away to another set of listings. Apparently the filters do not carry over. It did not dawn on me that I would have to re-input all my filters again! If I have an account with Airbnb and a profile, shouldn’t all my standard filters be saved?? I found a house, sent a note to the owner. This listing was not an “Instant booking” so you are required to fill out a request form and “tell the host a little about yourself” I sent a note and told the host we are an older couple who want to have a reunion with our adult children and that we travel with a 9 lbs dog who is with us at all times. My husband and I work remotely from home and the dog is used to being with us all day and night. (so I tipped the host off to our having our dog with us) The owner said “yes we can accommodate you for those dates” and sent a payment request for me to pay. I paid. This was in October for a reservation for December 26-30th–way, way in advance. About 24 hours later, the host sends a note saying “oh sorry, we do not allow pets” It was not mentioned in the house rules or anywhere else on the listing. The reservation was cancelled in 24 hours and my money was credited to my card by the host, but Airbnb took their $80 fee. I contacted Airbnb and was told if you change a reservation for any reason Airbnb does not return their fee. I had to escalate my complaint to a manager who called me and said “we are going to refund our fee this time but in the future, YOU need to be more careful to read everything before booking” I told her she need not chastise me-I am a grown ass woman- and as far as I was concerned the error was on the host’s part for not clearly stating what their rules even after I sent a note telling her I was traveling with my small dog. I’ve also checked into other listings and found the advertised rental price is not always what you get. For example I pre booked another home for the December trip that was listed as $230 per night. When I got the booking information the nightly cost jumped to $330 a night. The host said the amount listed in their posting is only “a typical nightly rate” and that the rate can jump up during the Holidays. Additionally even if I tried to cancel a reservation 24 hours later, their policy is a “strict cancellation” and even with the reservation being for months away, the host can still keep 50% of your payment regardless of the possibility the host may re-rent for the dates you cancelled!!! Very unfriendly to consumers!

Airbnb host never showed up

I had a plan to stay in Delft, the Netherlands for ten days, starting on the 25th August 2015. I flew from the UK and kept an appointment at 3pm on that day. The host Shay Hwa did not turn up. I tried to call, sms and email via airbnb. I spent five hours in Delft, the weather deteriorated and I had to find a hotel room in Amsterdam at extra cost very quickly and pay for train travel there. When the host mailed me via airbnb that evening it transpired that he was in Malaysia and he had presumed somebody would open the front door and let me in. I knew nothing of this and there was nobody to let me in. I returned to the address several times during the few hours I was in Delft and there was nobody present in the house. Having to find a hotel at very short notice on a rainy night and then finding alternative accommodation via airbnb was very stressful and I wasted a lot of my vacation this way as I needed to make several bookings. Airbnb did reply to my e mail very quickly, they offered me a full refund or credit plus a £50 credit. Shay Hwa is an incompetent person who I think failed to even understand the problems he has caused me, even wishing me a good stay in the hotel I had to book in Amsterdam, against my will. The man is an idiot and should not be trusted with anything that affects other people.