Can I stop by for a tour?

in
Las Vegas, NV
Level 10
1,408 Views

I list my place on Airbnb and other platforms and once in a while will get the odd question: Can I stop by and take a look around the place before I book? I completely understand where they are coming from, but don't really get what exactly they would be looking for? A reason to not book? Its a room with a bed, TV and closet. The 300+ people who stayed before them had NO problem booking the room sight unseen and the reviews state as much. Not to mention they are only paying $600/month for the space  and have  numerous questions. Most people who see a deal will book it and ask questions later. This person dragged on the booking process and said the reviews aren't enough for them to make a decision, they had no definite move in date stating either July 15th through July 30th and move out date it was either Oct. Nov. or Dec? Well which dates can I expect you to move in and move out?!?

 

I don't allow ANYONE into my house or even reveal my address without a signed lease and security deposit taken. Heck I don't even provide arrival details until 3-5 days before arrival. No amount of money is good enough to open my personal home to non-paying complete strangers when plenty of pictures and reviews are available to make an informed decision. The person is a complete stranger off the street! Who knows who they are and what their intentions may be. If a potential guest wishes to see someones house in advance they may be better off suited to booking a long term stay motel or a hotel which is at least DOUBLE what I'm charging.  

 

I did my best to be accommodating and said it'd be up to them if they wished to move forward. In the end they have to realize they need a place to stay not me. 

 

 

26 Replies

Re: Can I stop by for a tour?

in
Florence, OR
Level 10

I once had someone want to 'take a tour' AFTER already booking - The booking was through another platform. My listing is very detailed with lots of photos. I asked what were her concerns or questions? She couldn't come up with anything. I told her it is my policy not to give tours (I was already giving her an off-season discount). She then went ballistic on me, yelling at me in a belligerent manner over the phone. Of course, after that,  I felt very happy that I had not given her a tour. I then promptly cancelled her reservation. Without penalty. Because, as I mentioned earlier, the listing was not through Airbnb, but through another platform. Where 'hosts' are treated like grown-ups who have a right to protect their own home, versus being treated like wayward children who must be controlled with various kinds of negative consequences for not acting like they are a commercial hotel.

Re: Can I stop by for a tour?

in
Kendal, United Kingdom
Level 10

@Rebecca181 

Where 'hosts' are treated like grown-ups who have a right to protect their own home, versus being treated like wayward children who must be controlled with various kinds of negative consequences for not acting like they are a commercial hotel.

 

Wow Rebecca, say it as it is ! #Like

Re: Can I stop by for a tour?

Level 7

Well... with all its flaws - Airbnb is the leading platform worldwide. And outperform the competition big time. On a different note, It would be nice if you would explain why You are still here... 

Re: Can I stop by for a tour?

in
Mamaroneck, NY
Level 10

You made a business decision, if you felt uncomfortable with it then don't do it.  If the revenue and good will is not worth the effort then I agree, otherwise think of ways that would have made your more comfortable for you and your guest.... 

 

For instance, if the person sent you a copy of their drivers license and you had their cell phone, that may help.  If you met them at public place like a coffee shop or gas station near by first then took them to the location so you didn't have to give the address, would that work since you could have said "sorry I don't think this works" and then just left?

 

I try to look at problems as opportunities, had it all worked out and you appeared to have bent over backwards for your guest, you may end up with a repeat customer.  This whole business (and it is a business not a hobby) is about hospitality.

Re: Can I stop by for a tour?

in
Wollongong, Australia
Level 10

@Zacharias0  It sounds like this guest could be more trouble than they're worth. They seem to want a lot of flexibility on your part..... unsure about dates etc. The more flexible you are now, the more they will expect during their stay! 

Re: Can I stop by for a tour?

in
SF, CA
Level 4

I deal with the same thing from time to time. I actually showed my place a couple times and it never worked out well. It's disruptive to my time and to other guests.

 

Now when it happens, I tell them I don't offer showings to prospective guests and if they have any questions after reviewing my crystal clear descriptions, photos, and reviews, then they can ask me. I actually find this kind of question to be a red flag for a high maintenance / troublesome guest and am likely to disqualify them. Sounds harsh but after hosting hundreds of guests you start to pick up on things like that. 

Re: Can I stop by for a tour?

in
Mount Barker, Australia
Level 10

@Zacharias0 

 

I  had this same request last year….to come and see if the property would be suitable before booking, and I did think about it for a while, but then responded.

 

"Unfortunately no, I have been very thorough with my listing description and a personal prior visit won’t reveal anything about the property I haven’t already  shown or mentioned, and I don’t want to compromise current guests privacy. I am sure you can understand that!"

 

I didn’t hear back from the enquirer again after that so  I think I did the right thing!

 

@Michelle-And-Michael0  @Rebecca181  @Pete27 

 

Cheers......Rob

Re: Can I stop by for a tour?

in
Wollongong, Australia
Level 10

Great reply @Robin4 .... I'm certain some guests don't give any consideration to what's going on in the lives of a host, while we're not hosting them! 

Re: Can I stop by for a tour?

in
Mountain View, CA
Level 10

@Zacharias0  I have had such inquiries a few times. I accepted them for the visits. But 3 of them did come. Two of them booked. Normally those ones inquiring to come normally wanted to book 2 weeks plus.

 

For short stays like 2-3 days or less, I refused.

 

@Robin4  I liked your writing. I will use it if I get more inquiries like that.

Re: Can I stop by for a tour?

in
Mount Barker, Australia
Level 10

@Mike1034 

That's interesting Mike, my feeling is, if I did accept someone with a request like that,  I would be the other way round to you. Because of my experience with guests with a few requests, I would be a bit hesitant about getting a 'rotten apple' and I would rather have them in my life for 3 days than 3 weeks!

 

Enjoy the nice weather you have at the moment Mike. A nice stretch around 80 looks pretty appealing to us at the moment!

 

Cheers.....Rob

Re: Can I stop by for a tour?

in
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Level 10

You should create an Experience - "Zacharias Place Tour".

 

When someone wants to "take a tour"... you just say, yes its possible as long as you book my Experience!

Re: Can I stop by for a tour?

Level 10

@J-Renato0    Fantastic idea.

Re: Can I stop by for a tour?

Level 10

@J-Renato0    Fantastic idea.

Re: Can I stop by for a tour?

in
Marbella, Spain
Level 10

Ha ha!!  I almost had similar I should have seen this post first.

 

A guy from another platform not Airbnb contacted me for a tour.

 

I said OK my property manager can let you in but it's 30 euros for his trip out there with the keys to open the door for you.

 

The renter did not agree, did not want to pay for the Susan Experience Tour and thought I should pay myself to open the door for him to decide if he wanted to book my place;

 

I politely refused wished him the best and blocked him.  Some weeks later his wife contacted me by phone pretending not to be related to him, as they decided after all my place was the best for them despite not wanting to pay 30 euros for the visit when they were out there scoping out their holiday rentals.  So I got the booking and did not do the tour.

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