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Airbnb keeps screwing up - what is the deal?!


I have been hosting for six weeks. The guests are great and all is going well. But Airbnb has made three giant mistakes and it feels like I need to check and double check them in order not to have things screwed up for a guest. I would love to hear if other members are having problems like this:

1 - I have a six month window checked as my Booking Window in settings. TWO guests have been able to book anyway. I have been trying and failing to get Airbnb to respond to this for three days. The only response I have gotten is one message asking me what I would like to charge for one of the guests since I indicated in the original message that I would have raised my rates for the particular (popular) weekend they booked. Since then - crickets, despite maybe five messages from me asking for help. Meanwhile, my calendar has been wide open indefinitely. Finally went in and manually blocked it, but if I want to keep a six month window open I will have to open a new day at the end of the window every day. And the whole thing makes me uneasy…

2 - I marked ONE full bed for our yurt listing. Despite the numerous (I counted 3) locations on my listing settings where the host specifies bed showing just that one bed, the public listing showed as having an additional bed. A guest booked it, wanting that additional (non existent) bed. Airbnb fixed it, said it was a glitch, and the guest had to go find other accommodations. Didn’t feel good about inconveniencing the guest, especially since we had to wait three days while Airbnb figured it out. I couldn’t cancel him since it would have hurt my status.

3 - I use Google calendar. The lag between bookings and the sync to my calendar runs from hours to days. Meanwhile, my cleaner and I have to jump between two calendars to coordinate our individual and shared calendars for both our non-airbnb lives and our cleaning schedule. Airbnb has no remedy for this, says its a Google problem.

This seems crazy to me! Like buying an airline ticket and the airline says, oops, we don’t actually have a ticket for you. A week later. Why is their platform so glitchy? Any suggestions about how to smooth things out, or other rants?

What are the mistakes?

There are three and they’re listed…

Yes, I agree with this. I have 3 listings and I check my calendars daily and the “preview” of my listings daily. At least a few times a week I go through all the settings for each listing and run ‘incognito’ searches to see where I’m landing in search rank (I do this more often if a big event is starting to book or if I have some dates I’m anxious to book so I can change prices if needed).

I think it’s important to spend some time everyday on your calendars and listings. I just treat it as ‘office time’. It has the added benefit of being an ‘active host’ which has positive effects on your search ranking, catching updates because they don’t usually announce them and catching glitches because they are not uncommon. Also, I keep up very well with events and high demand days but still find some that I never know what the demand was about but get to raise my prices in time because I notice there’s a lot of activity on dates and the price tips are super-high (for a price tip ,) or something. I have dates blocked off every month for a regular that I book direct and at least once a week, some of her days have become unblocked so I fix those too .

All of this is way easier than contacting ABB to get something fixed, IMO.

There are a lot of unannounced changes and updates and glitches so it just really seems to require active attention. On the plus side, we don’t (as hosts) really pay that much for the system. I guess it just is what it is, sorry :woman_facepalming:

Your Yurt is only showing one bed now!

For my calendar, I like to have 6 months open too. However, I’ve found it easier to just make the setting for 3 months and then do the next 3 months manually. That way, as the days are rolling open, I’m more than prepared. I don’t have to remember that they are opening and I can do a week or two at a time which makes more sense to me than just one day at a time - e.g. I don’t see the point of Friday being available if Saturday and Sunday aren’t. It takes a little time to set it up the first time but then is maintained easily after that. FWIW.

I’ve never tried to sync calendars but have come across numerous posts about the issues with syncing the Google calendar, particularly in the community center. I have noticed that Chrome doesn’t play as well with the website as some other browsers, so I believe it is possible that it may be on the Google side of things.

I guess I just got used to it.

Thanks JJD. Your feedback is actually quite helpful, because it’s a reality check and a concrete way to deal with this, I.e., just build in time to monitor more closely rather than assuming on auto pilot. Thank you!

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One more suggestion: I get far more responsive customer service from Airbnb when I call them. After sending a message or two early in my Airbnb hosting days and waiting days for an answer, I now always call Airbnb.

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Thanks RebeccaF. I thought only Superhosts could call… we are almost there but not yet.

Well, other than the first two or three times I messaged, I’ve always called, since well before we made SH.

Call – don’t write. ANYONE can call. Superhosts get a special SH phone number to use. And sometimes other perks…

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Geez, we’ve been SH since the first quarter. I don’t think I know about a special SH phone number.

I don’t know of a special number, but when you call from your phone number they recognize you as such.

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Airbnb screwed up?

No way. Cant believe it !

It’s always the hosts fault (according to the Airbnb’s so-called “service” team)

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@kathyvermont it’s a common glitch that Airbnb book dates that are blocked out in your calendar.

Call them and say dates were blocked. They will investigate then cancel.

Anyone can call Airbnb. It’s just Superhosts get a quicker response.

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@RebeccaF
I had this happen to me as well and was able to cancel, although I decided to keep the booking anyway. After ABB realized it was their fault they were helpful, but they were a bit difficult until they figured out the computer problem. I messaged you the number I call. Hope it helps! Good luck!

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Thanks so much, @Caelleai.

Like others, I also can’t rely on the calendar opening in the way I’d like. It’s worked well for me to have it blocked by default and open a “season” at a time. Like I’ll open April-August in early winter and announce it on my FB page.

Also, Airbnb recently announced they’re going to change the feed that goes to Google calendar, so you may need to change your routine anyway. (The feed currently has guest info like full name and phone number. Air is closing this because too many hosts have openly published their g-calendars)

If you need to share info with your cleaner, you might try the “teams” function. It gives your cleaner read-access to your Air reservations/calendar in the app.
https://www.airbnb.com/hosting/team

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Thanks everyone, your answers are really helpful.

It’s been four days since my first message to them, and it still isn’t fixed. I am manually blocking dates. At least I know I’m not alone, and based on the feedback I’ve gotten here, that I should just stay on top of monitoring my listing.

I’m just so surprised that the platform has so many glitches, especially since most of them have big potential to hurt guest’s experience.

And they are correct.
iCal is a “pull” system, AirBnB is not pushing data to google. Google has to pull data from AirBnB, and Google has to schedule this.

I would look for another calendar app that will pull the data more frequently.

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