Terrible Customer Service -Airbnb only wants your money

Airbnb doesn’t care about your safety or your vacation, they just want your money. I had a terrible experience with them!

First of all, we couldn’t get into the place we booked and it was late at night. The hosts told us to find a hotel and they said would pay for the cab and hotel. After searching for a hotel until 2am, we finally found one and went there. The hosts then wanted us to spend another day of our 3 day vacation trying to find another airbnb place, and if it didn’t pan out we were on our own. So we made the decision to stay at the hotel and try to enjoy the rest of our vacation since we already lost 1/2 a day because of the airbnb hosts. We asked that they pay for 2 nights of the 3, but they reneged on everything. I had to ask that the phone calls be pulled. 18 emails later, they paid for one night at the hotel and I took my $250 credit. The next thing I know, Airbnb locked me out of my account and said they will not engage with me anymore. They admitted that they didn’t provide good customer service and they are sorry for that, but this matter is closed and they will not speak further to me. I called back and got a rep who was stoned. I wanted a name of someone in corporate to discuss this matter of customer service as they protect each other. He wouldn’t give me one. I eventually found a name, but it didn’t matter. I mailed in a letter about what happened and send copies of the emails… but again, no response from anyone at Airbnb.

I would not recommend using airbnb. If something goes wrong, you’re screwed.

First and LAST time airbnb customer

I had never used airbnb before but was traveling with family to California for a wedding. My cousin was nice enough to book a place for us using airbnb. I was traveling with 2 other adults and 3 children so needless to say we were disappointed to find that she had only booked us a 2 bedroom condo but figured we’d make it work. That was until we got there and saw the condition of the place. It was cramped and filthy. The one bathroom was moldy and the sink was broken. The mattress in the master bedroom was stained with blood and urine. The kicker was there was no A/C and it was over 100 out. We had no idea what we were going to do until a man approached us and told us he was the landlord and that the place was not in fact a condo but an apartment and the tenant was in violation of his lease by renting it to us and we had to leave. We contacted the owner for a refund and he insisted that the landlord had told him we could stay but that he would refund us. So then the 6 of us basically homeless in LA attempted to book another place on airbnb. We found a place that looked great. It bragged of city views in a safe neighborhood so we booked it and headed out. On the way a friend from home said he could help us get a huge discount at a hotel starting the next night. We called the host of the place we just booked literally minutes earlier and asked if we could change our stay to just one night and offered to pay the cleaning fee as well. He said ok so we started our drive there. We started noticing that the neighborhood we were driving into was looking less and less safe the closer we got and then we drove up a street that was literally inhabited by only homeless people in tents. Of course, the house was right around the corner. We pulled up to a small 2 family home next to an open lot that had a 30 foot drop with no fence and garbage everywhere. We then received an email from our host saying that we were just too complicated for him and we should cancel our reservation. At this point, we didn’t want to stay there anyway but wanted to ensure a refund. The host came outside and we asked him to contact airbnb letting them know he was canceling not us. He said no, we had to do it first and then he would agree. Of course he never did and we ended up pleading with airbnb for a refund. This guy was completely fine with telling us we couldn’t stay but keeping $1500. It took 5 days for a refund so thank goodness we got a discount at the hotel or we wouldn’t have been able to afford to stay anywhere. We should have just booked an affordable hotel from the start. Never again!

Hell in Valbandon, Croatia at a bargain price

If misery truly loves company, then this spiritual home belongs in a little Croatian enclave called Valbandon, where myself and my travelling companions spent a week-long getaway lasting all of 45 minutes. Let me preface this by saying that our overall experience of Croatian hospitality was impeccable, with our hosts in Pula going to great lengths to greet us warmly, attend to our needs and give us advice and assistance throughout our trip. Having spent a couple of days in town, we prepared to decamp to the countryside for a week of poolside lounging at our private villa. Well, lah-di-dah indeed. Or indeed not The alarm bells should have rung when our host “Isabella” first popped up on Airbnb, her avatar showing a forced, mean smile and narrowed, hard eyes burning darkly – the sort of smile one imagines Isabella usually reserves for special occasions, like twisting the heads off small kittens. Her messages trilled with bouncy helpfulness, yet somehow sounded staccato and businesslike, rather like Davros running a cake-stall. At first we brushed this off as a language barrier, rather than seeing the barked orders and friendly tips for the borderline protection racket that they were. Isabella, who we later nicknamed the unladylike “Isac***” was not one to take “no” for an answer. “TAXIS FROM AIRP-ORT WILL BE DIFF-I-CULT,” boomed the Dalek Supreme, insisting that she’d do us a favour and get her friend to drive us instead. Our choice of apartment was brushed aside: “I have far better apartment,” she snapped, swiftly taking our preferred option off the table. Isabella’s “friend” was a cheerful illegal cabbie, with the loyal glassy gaze of a golden retriever. He was a nice guy, so we’ll keep his name a secret. Let’s call him Torgo. “You from Glasgow? You must have plenty of illegals there. Is work,” he explained cheerily, warning us to keep our story straight if we were stopped by the police and to pay him discreetly, trying not to look like an under-the-dashboard hand-job. He told us about the local film festival, and that he’d booked tickets for Mr Turner (“Very funny, he does not talk.”). His puppy face must have looked a picture when later discovering that Rowan Aktinson’s Mr Bean was a world away from Timothy Spall grunting his way through two hours of rough sex inflicted upon his psoriasis-riddled housekeeper. Torgo was eager to drive us wherever we liked, and as we later discovered, would usually only charge a tenner more than a taxi driver shouldering trifling overheads like a license and insurance. Torgo told us that our landlady was an “old woman”, distrustful of strangers, blithely revealing that our private villa was in fact shared with two other parties and that this wary old crone would likely seize our passports as insurance, along with pocketing a substantial security deposit. We considered this on the drive, sweating just that little more as we did, noticing how much further from town it was than Isabella’s carefree promises had suggested. Airbnb places great importance on any given property looking like its pictures. All quite laudable, undoubtedly, but it’s a barometer that makes little allowance for the magic of photography. Our hosts had not seen fit to invest in a net to remove the dead leaves from the pool, but had nonetheless managed to secure a wide-angle lens of sufficient breadth to transform a puddle-filled shoebox into a horizon-busting expanse of blue stretching as far as the eye could see. I believe it’s a syndrome otherwise known as “profile pic vs real life”. Having not swiped left, we found ourself greeted by the owner of this micro-hovel, a leather-bound, stern lady of indeterminate age, though likely less elderly than the wizened hag of Torgo’s hushed warnings. Val, for we shall call her that, greeted us with her most welcoming scowl. She wore a sleeveless dress in hot pink and walked with the bow-legged manner of someone smuggling a watermelon out of a supermarket. “You come theeess way,” she threatened, beckoning with a razor talon. Val was house proud, quite surprising really, given how little house she had to be proud of. Squeezing sideways, crab-like, into her narrow kitchen, Val showed off its splendid amenities, including water from taps, a mismatched handful of cutlery, and a coffee maker that would have been the pride and joy of any kitchen circa 1977. Val explained the coffee machine at length, painting pictures in the air with her hands, as if casting a spell. Perhaps she was. At any rate, she seemed more enamored with the coffee maker than the prospect of fellow human beings. “You read the house orders,” she glowered, pointing to a stuffed plastic sleeve of papers drawing-pinned to the kitchen doors. “And then, you give me passports.” Passports were everything to Val. She just loved them. “You give me!” she insisted, her rheumy eyes suddenly alive with fire. We were unconvinced. A 20-minute walk from the nearest whiff of civilization was one thing, but a week stuck in the countryside with no ID had the smell of a wrong-un. “You think I sell them?” declared Val, outraged, when we offered her photocopies instead. “Perhaps your passports are not in order?” she opined, eyes narrowed, with the disappointed air of a vampire denied a virgin’s blood. Perhaps inevitably, it wasn’t to be. On the long car journey back to Pula, Torgo attempted to make light of our retreat. He said that Val had once been married to the head of the local police and that a tourist’s baby had drowned in the pool. Isabella was indignant, first furious and unapologetic over email and then later, when cornered, a blubbing, wounded party: “You assault me,” she protested, like a Travelodge Lady Macbeth. The lesson learned? Trust your instincts. If your brow settles into a frown when presented with a stranger’s supposed generosity, trust that frown. We ended up in sunny Pula, back out our original apartment, and felt welcomed and wanted once again. As for Val, I can picture her by the poolside, a gin in one hand, morosely stroking an empty space on her armrest reserved for an imaginary passport. A salty tear etches its way down her mahogany face, a whisper of defeat rises from her throat. “Always. No… passport.”