Hi fellow Airbnb hosts!
Here's something I'm sure a lot of you can relate to. As Airbnb hosts, it's our job to be nice, friendly, and accommodating. I love hosting 99% of the time. But one out of one hundred guests can definitely be frustruating. My most recent Airbnb frustruation just happened around an hour ago.
I have a listing that can accommodate 3 people. I didn't apply any extra person charges. This listing is on instant book. I received a booking from one guest, so I did my normal Airbnb introduction. I greeted them, gave them directions to our listing, asked if they were celebrating a special occasion, etc. I also asked for the names of the people in her group so that I could personally address each of them.
To my surprise, she gave SIX names.
I informed her that the maximum occupancy is only 3 people. She rebutted by explaining that "It says that there is no charge for extra people so it means that it can accommodate more than 3. I wouldn't book if theres a limit".
I had to explain to her that there is a maximum occupancy of 3 people, so there is no charge for extra guests for up to 3 people.
I'm gonna quote her response:
"Normally the max number tells how much people can fit on the mattress. Besides I dont see no charge UP TO 3 PEOPLE. i have read that page many times and see if theres a conflict on the policy"
I had to copy+paste the official definition of "Maximum Occupancy". So I told her that she can take it up with Airbnb, but we will uphold the Maximum Occupancy Rule. But of course - as hosts, we have to take the high road. So I changed the cancelation policy from "Strict" to "Flexible" just for her and informed her that she could cancel the reservation with a 100% refund.
Then I explained that I'd be happy to answer any other questions if she would need any clarifications.
I'm just going to wait for her response. If for some reason, she'd refuse to cancel - I'll contact Airbnb. Unfortunately, I just contacted them about a guest who smoked in my listing, and I wouldn't want to bombard them (...It's been a tough week here on Airbnb).
Regardless, I still love being an Airbnb host. I find Airbnb to be a nice and friendly way to accommodate guests. It's just the 1% of guests that we have to worry about.
Does anyone have any comments on how I could have better handled the situation? I'd love to hear your stories as well!
That one is easy to avoid in future, @Alejandro-Hector0, but it is not intuitive. The listing says "extra guests no charge" when you set it up as you have. So what you do is go into the system and set a high price - $100 is good - for extra guests after three. Nothing will show up on your listing to prospective guests, but the "extra guests no charge" will disappear, and you won't have to deal with misunderstandings. And that is all it was. The guest just didn't understand, and it makes sense that she wouldn't. It is easy to see where she thought she could pay for three, and then bring extra guests at no charge. The fault lies with the system, but, fortunately, we can override it. Let us know if that works for you. It used to work, but sometimes things change.
I'm not sure that the fault lies within the system. Guests are guests and they often know how to interpret the rules to their benefit and on purpose too!
That's just SOL - -how can you avoid that, by better reviewing the guests profile. I'm sure they must be newer too.
Call Airbnb and complain complain - - they need the complaints to know when hosts are not happy, otherwise the Airbnb attitude shifts from pleasing the hosts to the guests. They definitely have their cycles too!
If it's an entire house booking--let them stay, they can figure it out and might be ok with it.
And unfortunately I wouldn't say Airbnb is 99% of the time fun. I have to take away 3% due to Airbnb staff (some of them are really dumb--no logic, only emotion) and 5% due to guests (2% of guests horrible, 3% just break or steal stuff) because now I'm counting when guests decide to take home my keys, the provided iphone wires, leave cigarettes all over the lawn, etc. So Airbnb is fun 92% of the time! 🙂