This is just a brief fyi about some of the posts I’ve made lately. I will be travelling over to the community posting on the Airbnb site itself.
I got some flak for going after Justshootme, but here’s my reasoning: I’ve used Airbnb extensively myself. I’ve had all sorts of experiences as a result. Because of that, I knew we were having our legs pulled. One thing about being a host, and not using Airbnb, is that you will not know what it feels like to see things from the other side. I didn’t want to do that: I wanted to know what being a guest was like and I’ve booked in at all sorts of places. I’ve stayed in shared accommodations, where I shared a bathroom, to booking entire places just for me.
For those of you who think that guests who come to this forum to complain are helpful, I would strongly suggest you just start using Airbnb yourself. You’ll see very quickly what it’s like to be a guest and any information you gather will be authentic.
The one consistent thing is this: even with one of those locations being a bit tricky–an apartment in Venice where the host was still setting up–I never had problem after problem after problem. The host in that case asked me in advance if he could continue setting up while I stayed there and, given the tremendous discount he gave me–an entire Venetian apartment for a song!–I said sure. So because I don’t smoke and tidy up after myself regularly, I had no problem, even with that potentially difficult booking.
I also spend a lot of time around young people who travel a lot and hear their stories. Seriously, apart from things like unpredictable illness or acts of god, most situations I know of have gone off without major hitches. Most hosts, from what I can see, are aware of what a bad review can do and unless they just don’t care–and yes, those hosts exist too–most of them try at least to offer a basic level of hospitality. The bad hosts aren’t hard to avoid. Their reviews usually tell us who they are.
So when someone comes here with a detailed novella about all the outlandish problems they had, I know in my gut that something else is at play. I suppose working on a samaritan’s type of hotline for many years honed my bullshit detector and I don’t tolerate a lot of nonsense in that regard. I’m a busy person and if I come here to exchange information, I’m not sure I want to be dealing with individuals who have what appear to be social problems. My teaching job brings me into contact with enough of that and my patience for people who infringe on my goodwill is limited.
So I’m heading over to the Airbnb community pages instead because everyone there is a bona fide host. I think one of the other reasons I’m getting ratty here is that there is so much in the way of advertising happening on this forum. I mean, I know it’s dressed up to look like, “hey look at this great service I have for you hosts,” but in fact most of those pitches are for subscriptions of one sort or another, or for some service I could easily provide myself, and, quite frankly, I like keeping all my profit. I know that much of what we see looks like innovation, but it also feels parasitic to me at times. I wish we weren’t such an obvious target for all that bullshit.
For example, I have a very sturdy combination lock and so do not want to be sold on a lock that is high tech and requires a blue-tooth. Almost all of my guests are from out of town, so changing the combo on my old-fashioned lock once every two or three months is enough. On my other place, I have a lock-box. Low tech and low cost works just fine for me. The one time I did respond to a management service that was promoting itself here, I was inundated with emails and phone calls by a sales team that was aggressively trying to get hosts to sign up. I was sorry I’d contacted them and had to outright tell them to stop bothering me.
So I’m moving over and hope I’ll see you there…my real name is Eileen and I’m a host from Montreal. https://community.airbnb.com/t5/Community-Center/ct-p/community-center