I had a guest stay last weekend, and they really annoyed me a lot. Most of the problems stemmed from lack of reading: they didn't read the listing, or my check in instructions. I've hosted over 300 guests, and I've never had a guest who's managed to cause so many petty annoyances or had so much trouble with my basic instructions. They had three previous glowing reviews from other hosts.
I host an apartment that's part of my home. The guests started their stay by showing up an hour early. Not a huge deal, because I'm leaving gaps between stays at the moment due to the pandemic. However, they then parked in the wrong spot, then tried to enter my private residence. I always lock my door, thank goodness, because my three dogs were inside (they are friendly, but they're all rescues and if they got loose it would be a disaster). Not only does my welcome message provide detailed instructions on how to check in, but my listing check-in guide provides a detailed instruction with pictures. The only other person to ever make this mistake was brand new to Airbnb and there was a significant language barrier. They got checked in, then left their dog alone immediately. It proceeded to scream the entire time they were gone. I don't expect dogs to be silent, and again, I host a lot of people with dogs: this wasn't normal. The guests also shouted and screamed throughout their stay, including late at night. Come checkout time, they checked out an hour late, again without asking for permission. The flat was left clean and tidy, just really late.
I'm kind of at a loss of what to say. I'm annoyed by their behaviour, but wondering as a potential host how much you'd want to know. I don't want to write a review based on my annoyance level. At a stand-alone property, some of these issues would have been less problematic.
This is what I have so far:
X and her partner, along with their dog, stayed with us, and left our space tidy. Unfortunately, they didn't review my communication or my listing's information so there were some missteps throughout their stay: early check in and late check out without asking, parking in the wrong spot and trying to enter my private home were the big issues.
Too detailed? Not detailed enough?
@Alexandra316 my review would say:
"XX left our space in good shape. However, it appears they did not read listing information or check-in instructions; they arrived one hour before check-in time, parked in the wrong spot, tried to enter our private residence, left their dog unattended and howling, disturbed the household with late-night noise, and left one hour after check-out time. We would not host them again."
Perfect @Lisa723 ! - Describes the guests in a concise, objective, non-defamatory manner; facts, not value-judgments. And starts with the positive, showing the writer does not want to be nasty.
I suppose if @Alexandra316 wanted to soften the blow, she could say "tried to enter our private residence in error, having not read the check in instructions"??
@Alexandra316, I would definitely want to know about the noise issues, so I think you definitely need to mention that. It just isn't normal to shout and scream at any time of the day, especially late at night and especially when you are staying on someone else's property. I think @Lisa723's review is perfect.
@Alexandra316 I like @Lisa723's version as well. Had it just been one thing they failed to note, I would have considered it annoying, but taken as a whole, with the late night yelling and screaming, and the dog left alone and howling, I'd call these people quite bad guests, despite them leaving it tidy (gee, they did one positive thing). And as a host, I would want to know all of it.
As a dog owner myself, if I were a guest and wanted to go out without the dog, in a host on-site listing like yours, I would message you to say I'm going out where I can't bring the dog, and although she normally is quiet, if she should start to bark or whine, to please call me and I'll come right back.
@Alexandra316 Agree with everyone else that @Lisa723 's review is perfect. And I would have been completely annoyed by that behavior. As @Sarah977 said, if it was only one of the things you mentioned I could maybe overlook, but all those annoyances together definitely warrant a bad review.
I've also noticed some hosts (me included) seem to focus on damages/messy/dirty = bad guest. But rudeness, loudness, and even disregard for instructions (whether just clueless or willfully ignoring) also = bad guest. Just because they didn't trash my place doesn't mean I'd want to host them again.
@Suzanne302 @Sarah977 Thanks very much. I agree: it was the cumulative, careless and thoughtless behavior that was the issue. And they never said anything like "sorry, guess we should have read the instructions!". The scream in the middle of the night also scared some bodily secretions out of me. In terms of annoyance level, these people really managed to hit a high note. Maybe an honest review will help them change their behavior for next time.
Re: nighttime screams. I would have pounded on their door & asked if I should call the police. If no, I would say that I will call 911 if I hear more noise like that. My 2 cents.
@Alexandra316 I read the advice and really wonder if it requires any kind of negative response.
Hosts do not get to read these before they book, and it makes a host look petty if it is in your comments.
I suggest a really short comment (vague), and tick the "NO" button when AirBnb asks if you would host them again.
Ticking the "NO" button means that the guests cannot instant book, and they have to start communicating earlier.
Good luck, Charles
WHAAAT? @Charles224 ???? - Not all hosts use Instant Book... So hosts who use 'Request to book', and who wish to be discerning about who they host, & only take decent, respectful guests, - these hosts can use the review posted above to make an informed decision, and decline to host, if they want, based on the bad review. It's not 'petty', it's being objective & helping other hosts to make an informed decision.
Even with IB switched on, a host MAY cancel an IB booking, based on reading the bad review.- Or, if the host decides to honour the booking, at least they can set out ground rules & expectations with these noisy guests - especially in a home share. A host may check with the guest, that they intend to be quiet at night, and never leave the dog unattended....
Airbnbs are not hotels, guests are expected to behave respectfully in someone else's house, especially in homeshares. Charles, you are doing NO favours to other hosts, if you fail to warn them of disrespectful behavior in potential guests. Would you want screaming & yelling humans & howling dogs in YOUR private residence?
I understand wanting to be vague, @Charles224 , as it's the easy way out, but it really is of little help. @Alexandra316 's howl-y guest will have no trouble booking a stand-alone place like mine (where no one hears you scream...), but a shared-space host will ask her something like, "You will have to be quiet here. Are you okay with that?"
It seems the best possible outcome. The vaguely-reviewed bad guest has no idea they have room to improve.
@Lawrene0Agreed... not a fan of the vague review, or the good written review with low stars.
Please add that description to your marketing material! 😂 "The River Treehouse on the Sydenham... where no one can hear you scream!"
Since the guests were tidy and there was no damage, as you have mentioned @Alexandra316 , much of their behavior problems were magnified by the listing being adjacent to you. Your detail level allows a host that has the remote self contained listing a choice to decide if their listing would be negatively impacted as well.