“Since the site is called Airbnb and I have come to England, I was expecting a full English breakfast with fried meat.”
…Yes, folks - really! These were the words that came out of the mouth of a first-time user, on the second-day of stay after she cornered me in my living room. Err, I’m sure my non-meat eating guests would really appreciate the aroma of fried sausage / black-pudding / various saturated-fats wafting up to their rooms in the morning, I thought! I didn’t say that, however. Instead, I calmly explained that although breakfast is not actually included in the list of amenities within my listings, I do provide a selection of cereals / porridge / jams / freshly baked bread (that’s right, I even baked her some nice bread!), tea and coffee as a complimentary touch which guests are welcome to help themselves to at their own convenience / leisure.
“Ah, that makes sense.”
I explained all this to you on your arrival, I thought, whilst making you tea in my kitchen… but I guess some folks just don’t listen… so anyways, whatevs ;-)!
After her 5/6 day stay is over she leaves on what appear to be good terms but I am left with a very negative feeling about her in general. I’ve done my best to meet all her needs, been at her beckon call, giving her everything she asks for - extra towels, tea-making things, transport advice, specific dining-out tips, even arranging her transport from the airport. But something wasn’t right - I could tell she simply could not get her head around the Airbnb ‘home-share’ concept (probably thought she was coming to a hotel).
So then her review came in and I make the decision not to leave her one because I know whatever she’s said is going to be, well, odd (at best). Also, because I want the reviews of subsequent (and normal) guests to build up before hers becomes public after 20 days. So then 20 days pass and I have 3 excellent reviews from the 3 lovely guests since she left. Today it became pubic. I was shocked to see just how damning it was! Slamming me for not serving her breakfast, not cleaning her room for her after each day, for being out some evenings so she could not ask me certain questions (I am always available by text or whatsapp and reply straight away, as she well knew as she bombarded me with messages constantly!). She also complained that it was too far from the city centre and took her 1 hour to walk. I’m not sure what route she took but it must have been very scenic (again, I explained the best route to take, only to fall on deaf ears) … it takes a normal person 20-25 minutes to walk to the city centre (or a 10 minute bus ride, if you’re feeling lazy).
I was checking my emails when I noticed it - I was out having a coffee and taking a break from some last minute Christmas errands … the funny thing is, even though she was obviously a nutter, I was utterly heart-broken and almost had a breakdown in the coffee shop !
Now, I’m a firm believer in how it’s often necessary to make a mockery out of such ludicrous individuals. When done in the right way you can destroy them in a handful of words, without even seeming like you’re rising to them. So I starts to plan my public response … but in the end I decided it was too draining and the best thing to do would be to first try and get it removed altogether. I took the plunge and called air when I got home. To be honest I just expected them to say they couldn’t do anything or advise me to leave a response … but the rep was very good and agreed it was a classic-case of a first-time user misinterpreting thier ethos … moments after the phone-call, an email comes through saying that the review is based on ‘unrealistic expectations’ and has been removed. Yay!