Guest Cancellation Host Penalisation

in
Dublin, Ireland
Level 2
890 Views

Hi, This is my first time posting here.

 

A guest checked out yesterday (Sunday) and during cleaning for my next guest due to arrive today (Monday), I discovered my water tank was refilling very slowly and I couldn't run the washing machine or dishwasher. I called my plumber friend to come out but the soonest he could come have a look was after work, late Monday afternoon.

 

As I was unable to complete the cleaning of the plates and cutlery I messaged my guest that I would be happy to partially refund the cleaning fee. I added that since there is a water issue, they would have to let a plumber into the apartment the afternoon of their arrival at which point they would have the water restored. I also let them know that I would understand if they decided to cancel and that I would make sure they received a complete refund.

 

The guest replied asking if they would be able to shower. As they were arriving in the morning I thought maybe the tank would refill over night and allow for a shower but I wasn't sure so I told the guest that I wouldn't be able to guarantee that the shower would work. I got no further responses from the guest and so I figured they would decide to cancel their booking so I thought it might be nice if I called Airbnb.

 

I explained the situation; that I was happy for the guests to stay, and maybe Airbnb wanted to reach out to them and help them find other properties should that be their desire to stay somewhere with working water facilities upon arrival. I thought I was being a helpful superhost to the guest and to Airbnb trying to ensure they found alternate digs at the last minute and also remained on platform. The customer service rep said he would contact the guest and minutes later the booking was cancelled with no message to me from either the guest or customer service.

 

I woke up this morning to a message from Airbnb saying that my guest has decided to cancel her booking with me and that if I could provide proof that the water is being fixed my penalties would be waived. My penalties!? I was happy for this guest to stay!!! I was provided a link to what happens when a host cancels a booking... uh, I didn't cancel the booking... the start of this customer service guys message even says she decided to cancel. I now have a message displayed on my profile saying that I decided to cancel her booking a day before her arrival and my superhost status is now moot. 

 

I've responded to this message on the Airbnb messenger, called Airbnb 3 times now aswell and I'm just told a different department is dealing with my case. Can I be put in contact with that department? No, but someone will update me... Meanwhile the message that I've cancelled sits on my profile deterring future guests. Terrible service.

 

What kind of sick joke is that? I lose my income, my potential future income now that when guests see that I'm wont to cancel bookings at the last minute, my superhost status, and also I'm wasting my time and phone credit contacting Airbnb all because the guest cancelled a booking and I'm getting kicked for it.

 

No good deed goes unpunished.

5 Replies

Re: Guest Cancellation Host Penalisation

in
La Quinta, CA
Level 10

I think all you really need to do is provide proof that due to the water heater issue the listing was not ready to receive the guest.  From what you share, it appears that the rep interpreted your call as a host cancellation which I gather was not your intention.  Once you provide the proof all host penalties will be removed and your calendar will be opened.

Re: Guest Cancellation Host Penalisation

in
Dublin, Ireland
Level 2

The listing was ready to receive the guest aside from a full dishwasher of dirty plates and a plumber would have come to the apartment.

I floated the option to them of a partial refund or they could cancel and get a full refund.

The rep understood me  as evidenced in his message saying the guest cancelled not that he cancelled it for me because I was happy to host them.

Re: Guest Cancellation Host Penalisation

in
Placencia, Belize
Level 10

@Peter0, as @Linda0 suggested, provide proof there was a 'technical glitch' and the 'penalty' imposition by Airbnb will, in all likelihood,  be reversed. 

    Your post begs the question, what was the rate how fast it was actually re-filling, considering there was a full day in between guests? The fact you couldn't do dishes or laundry, that suggests there was practically no water at all coming in, meaning yes, booking had to be cancelled.

Re: Guest Cancellation Host Penalisation

in
Dublin, Ireland
Level 2

Hi Fred, appreciate that. There was water coming in, fast enough for taps and toilet but not the machines. I said I couldn't guarantee the showers would work because I didn't want to make promises.

 

The issue would have been resolved hours into their stay, absolutely no reason at all they couldn't have stayed at my apartment the reservation did not need to be cancelled at all.

 

I had offered them a partial refund, contacted airbnb myself as a good superhost does and am now being penalised.

 

I would agree with you had I cancelled the reservation, then of course I would be obliged to provide proof of the reason for cancellation. I didn't cancel the reservation. The reservation wasn't cancelled because it "had" to be. As was stated to me in the messaging from Airbnb the guests themselves cancelled it, for which I would have fully refunded them, as I stated in my messages to them.

 

I contacted Airbnb to let them know that these guests may decide cancel and, in my stupidity, thought it might be good to forewarn Airbnb so as to keep the money on platform.

Explain to me please why I have to be penalised for this again?

Re: Guest Cancellation Host Penalisation

in
Toronto, CA
Level 4

Hello to everyone in this thread.

Something similar happened to me as well. I was doing some renovations in my apartment

(heated floors) and updated bathroom

 

I received a call from a guest abroad requesting to book. After explaining the situation and checking with my contractor I told them everything would be clean and in order but the new beveled mirror in the bathroom wouldn not be installed (it hadn't arrived yet). They booked with this knowldge and then phoned me back to say that they changed their mind.

 

That was fine with me and they agreed to cancel the booking. I even gave them some advice on the proximity of several other Airbnb's to their relatives. 

 

The guests emailed back and said they could not determine how to cancel the booking. So I called Airbnb and explained the entire situation. I said would cancel it but I would be penalized!

Who ever took the call reassured me she would cancel on behalf of the guest.

 

Of course this didnt happen and I lost my supehost since last April, 2018.

 

Without our properties there is no Airbnb, yet this kind of thing happens quite regularily.

I've had 7 people turn up for a one bedroom apartment: third part rentals and more and now I stick to my laurels and push for an Airbnb supervisor to sort it out properly.

 

Most of the guest are lovely and it is a nice way to gain extra income and meet people from around the world. But my advice..go to the source, to the supervisor and get you answer in writing by opening a "resolution".

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