Valid Cancellations Don’t Mean Instant Refunds

Yesterday I booked a condo in South Padre Island and got a message from Airbnb to call a number. I called the number and it was the property management guy. He told me that Airbnb did not charge me for the cleaning fee and that I needed to pay him for that. Well then, I see that they charged me $100 per night and the host told me he would charge $90 a night. Then I realized Airbnb had overcharged me by about $150. The property management guy told me to cancel my reservation through Airbnb and then rebook through him. Well it was within thirty minutes that I cancelled my reservation and then had to contact Airbnb to get my full refund back. They authorized the refund but now it can take up to 15 days before I get it. This is such BS since the cancellation policy stated I had 24 hours and I cancelled within thirty minutes. Does anyone know who I can contact to get my refund ASAP?

Posted in Airbnb Guest Stories and tagged , , , , , .


  1. I’ve had this problem too, and I have to say, I find it all very sketchy. Why can they take in payment instantly when it takes them 15(+) days to process refunds? How can they process payments to hosts instantly? What is so different about these transactions? They claim the bank is the one who takes up to 15 days, but given that they’re able to process other bank transactions instantly, this is totally implausible. There are also, on this site and others, a litany of complaints from people who never received their “processing” refunds—at all! Could be a way for Airbnb to steal lots of small amounts of money. They have a large bureaucracy and I’d wager the number of people who’ve inexplicably lost money to them is high. Very suspicious. Laura and I may disagree here but I don’t think we should blame the consumer when this happens to so many of them. At the very least, it could be a sketchy accounting thing Airbnb does, but again, their official explanation just does not make sense.

  2. Also, you should NEVER do any transaction outside of AirBnb. The host is telling you he would offer you a lower rate (probably true because AirBnb charge the hosts 3% commission) but if you book through AirBnb you have to pay a little extra so that you are covered by their cancellation policies, insurance etc. I think this host is breaking the rules and you should cancel your resevation completely (whether it is through airbnb or direct with the guest) and inform AirBnb about what he has done and providing his messages as evidence.

  3. It is your bank that takes up to 15 days to refund – not Airbnb! Jeez, you will get your money back but you have to wait for the bank to process the charge like everyone else does. AirBnb will probably action the refund on the same day. I think you’re confusing the “cancellation policy” with the refund time. Think you are being a little oversensitive and calling it BS is just silly.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *