Lately I've had a few inquiries that are making specific requests before booking that make me a bit uncomfortable. Recenty, I had a couple requesting to book for a month or so, while visiting their son, who lives in the area. However, they asked specifically for our address in order to see the neighborhood and talk it over with the son to see how familiar he was with the area. We live in a small town of 4,500 in a rural area along a major interstate. What's not to know? I describe the area very well on our profile and am very honest about what's around us, including a bike trail and a restaurant within walking distance. We also have a solid 5-star review rating after a year of fairly steady bookings (as much as we can handle at the moment, actually)
So, is this an unreasonable request? Am I being paranoid in not wanting to hand over our specific address (when the entire town is easily found on Google Earth) and considering I don't know anything more about this guest than a first name and zero reviews with a new member date of 2019. If this were some unsavory character and they choose not to book, they'd have easy access to my house and I could not prove or disprove anything that happened, because this idle inquiry would be the only record. Maybe I watch too much CSI, but trust works both ways here. Thoughts on the best way to respond, other than to say we aren't available for extended bookings?
What more could they do than any other stranger walking by your home? Unless you are showing really high valubles on your listing pictures I don’t really see why not. In the other hand send them the google earth link of the « neighbourhood » and not you specific home. You can also tell them they get the address when they book and they always have the abnb 48h to cancel penalty free. Which would achieve their goal of getting the address even though you did not provide it yourself. In short people with bad intentions will find a way no matter what.
@Diane440 If you don't want to host an extended stay, then yes, say that. But that has to jive with your settings for minimum and maximum stays or the guests can report you.
And no, you are not being paranoid. You should never allow previews and never give out your exact address except to a confirmed booking and only a short time before arrival.
The guests know the general area, and like you said, what more do they need to know. their son can drive around in the genral area and check it out, they can also use Google earth street views to take a virtual tour of the area.
"Thank you for your Inquiry. Exact addresses are only given out to confirmed bookings. To do otherwise is a security risk for hosts. My listing and photos are quite descriptive and should tell you what you need to know and your son can see the general area and can check it out for you without the address."
They can get the address by booking and cancelling within minutes no charge no questions ask. They are so many ways to get the address if they really want it. I personnally dont see the point to deny the information.
@Sandra and all. I just double checked my setting and the box that withholds the exact address for the 48-hour grace period was UNCHECKED! I only checked since my last booking told me that she didn't need me to figure out how far I was from her daughter since she had the address.
If you think your box is checked, you might want to double check. Settings do seem to get cleared out when the techies push software updates.
@Susan Where do you find that setting? Not that guests would ever find my place by the address anyway without the map I send them, but I'd like to check it anyway.
I'm more suspiscious than you- I don't think those things get unchecked because the techies are playing with the software, i think it's purposeful, because I read so often here that hosts find their requirements boxes unchecked after they have set them. I tend to think Airbnb unchecks them so you'll be tricked into accepting reservations that don't meet your requirements.
@Sarah977 I am going to guess that you have never coded for a living. Preserving settings when you have sloppy [i.e. no unit testing] software is a consideration that I can imagine is ignored under the pressures of a place like AirBNB. And, I am not as angry at or as cynical as you regarding this platform. But, that aside.....
Listing Details --> Location --> Scroll to the bottom of the page --> Visibility for booked guests.
@Susan Thanks for the info. And you are quite right- not only have I never coded, I'm somewhat of a techno-idiot, altho not as bad as some :-) So I certainly bow to your take on how those things get unchecked.
I've had the ocassional person make similiar enquires from time to time, usually to establish if my place is walking distance as they don't have transport.
Maybe ask them what the purpose of their visit is & include, if you haven't already, a link in your Guidebook to available Transport options & Timetables & direct them to that from your Listing..
Meanwhile, we sometimes need to look at these things from anothers eyes & circumstances, which are generally unknown.
I've included a bit in my listing that it's courteous to msg the purpose of their visit as it is a mutual agreement & beneficial for both parties to know where we are at. It seems to have helped cut back on what can be timeconsuming enquries that go to no where land.
All the Best
Central To All Home & Location
@Diane440 I tell these types that they can give me their address and I will give them an exact measurement to their house.
Otherwise the the listing has enough detail and they can figure it out from there.
Hi@Diane440, I pretty much agree with what Sarah suggested - I would not give out my specific address. HOWEVER, given that these people appear to be new to the platfrom and also have explained why they are coming, I'd be inclined to err on the side of beign super friendly in response. I remember when I was first a guest, I really had veyr little idea of how the platform worked, and airbnb weren't really all that good at making it clear. I found it very hard to look at a map and understand how things were going to be for me practically - even with good descriptions - my mind just doesn't work that way - i have very poor spatial orientation, so I have a bit of empathy ( potentially) for this guest who sounds like she may be older?? Also most hotels give very specific information re location. I KNOW we are not hotels, that it's all completley different, but a lot of guests just aren't coming from that perspective, they're not thinking like that at all. It's exasperating as a host, but a lot of the time not really teh guests fault I dont' believe, as the plaform doesn't REALLY educate them. So I'd just point out really kindly that she is probably not aware, but unfortunately it's against airbnb rules to provide a specific address prior to booking , prompt her to look at the reviews, which you hope she finds reassuring and informative, the guidebook etc etc - what eveyrone else has said. She may be beign demandng and unreasonable OR she may just be naive and clueless - from what you've said I'm suspecting the latter. Just my opinion. Maybe I'm a soft touch.