To Accept or Not to Accept?

Level 1
Bloomsburg, PA

To Accept or Not to Accept?

As an Airbnb host,

I've often found myself facing a dilemma when a potential guest with a low rating requests a stay. It's a situation that many hosts grapple with: Should I give them a chance, or is it too risky?

On one hand, Airbnb is built on principles of trust and inclusivity. Every guest deserves a fair opportunity to experience the platform, regardless of their rating. After all, everyone starts somewhere, and a low rating doesn't necessarily mean a bad guest. It could simply be the result of a misunderstanding or a single negative experience.


However, on the other hand, hosting comes with its own set of responsibilities and risks. Accepting a guest with a low rating might mean risking my property's safety, cleanliness, and overall reputation. A bad experience could lead to negative reviews, which could impact future bookings and my standing as a host.

So, how do I navigate this dilemma?

1 Best Answer

I would probably look at their most recent review(s) and place a higher weighting on those.

View Best Answer in original post

7 Replies 7

Hi @Marco3529,


I completely understand the dilemma you’re facing—it’s something many of us Airbnb hosts grapple with regularly. Here’s how I approach this situation:


My strategy is to give the guests a chance, but with caution. If a potential guest has a low rating, I usually reach out to them directly before accepting the booking. This allows me to ask about their previous Airbnb experiences and address any concerns upfront. It’s a good way to gauge their sincerity and willingness to respect my property.


Here is what i avoid, I steer clear of outright rejecting someone based on a low rating without this initial conversation. However, if their response raises red flags or if they’re unresponsive to my queries, I tend to trust my instincts and may decide against accepting the booking to protect my property and maintain a positive hosting experience.

It’s about finding a balance between being open and protecting your interests. Ensuring clear communication of house rules and expectations from the start can also help set the stage for a successful stay.

Remember, each host's approach might vary, but this method has helped me manage the risks while being fair and inclusive.


Best of luck,

I would probably look at their most recent review(s) and place a higher weighting on those.

Thank you so much !  @Zheng49 

Community Manager
Community Manager
Port Moody, Canada

Hello @Marco3529, I hope everything is well with you.


Have you had the chance to read our Host suggestions? I am tagging a few more experienced Hosts here in case they would like to share their insights with you: @Lorina14@Nash-Cottages-LLC0@Zheng49 and @Shelley159 





Please follow the Community Guidelines // Por favor consulta las Normas de la comunidad

Thank you so much @Paula ! 

Level 10
Bellevue, WA

@Marco3529 @Paula 

Yes, it is quite a dilemma - I’d say trust your gut feeling after giving the guest a chance to explain what happened. I like Lodge102’s answer, reach out, ask what happened in the reviews in question, hear their side of the story and then decide. I had a guest who had a few bad reviews and several good ones. I have instant book on so I was not able to screen them that way but I have a number of questions that are sent upon booking that greets the guest and asks them if they could share why they are visiting, where they are from, if it’s a special occasion, please add all guests to the reservation, and if they want a self check in or a brief tour. Most all guests answer and we are able to build a rapport.


I feel misunderstandings show up when there is a lack of communication in regards to house rules, or the guest finds an issue and doesn’t reach out to the host until after the stay and then rates them

poorly. Checking in with guests will allow you the opportunity to address any potential concerns prior or during their stay to ensure a good experience. I recommend using scheduled messages for this.

Great replies from hosts below @Marco3529 


I have learnt after 8 years, that basically I regret it when I take a booking with a guest low rating, or no rating. I know its unfair to those just starting out on Airbnb.


Thats why I do reach out and ask them their intent. I have instant booking on, so it does weed out most.  I am basically looking for reason for me to accept them, because I'm in the mindset of no to start with. Even if they convince me and all signs are positive, invariably low rating guests may not even be aware they don't impress hosts and seem all nice and friendly and guarantee they will look after the place!!!


Having said that, I've rarely ever out right rejected a booking, I manage to convince them that maybe the property isn't what they were seeking and get them to cancel or just not book if its a query. 


Here's something to not do as well. Guest says, oh, I don't have a booking profile but really really want to book, so I'll get my friend to book instead. Maybe this works out for hosts, but in my case, the friend booked, reviews were average (should have listened to my gut) and I had issues from the booking from the get go. Because the friend had no idea what they were booking, didn't understand the house rules, weren't coached by the friend that it wasn't luxury (as an example) and so the reviews, and how they left the house were not good.


So ultimately up to you. Want to take the risk? We are in the hospitality business after all, you will have some duds and need lots of flexible "let things go to the keeper" attitude, but the worst thing is not how they leave the property but if they leave a bad review 1 star review as a result. That's serious damage control if it hits your super host status. I've had to fight 2 of those in 8 years, both caused by "not normal" bookings where the guest review rating wasn't great. Not bad odds but it took time and perservance.

Good luck!

Kind regs