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Avoiding first time airbnb travelers

How I detest first time airbnb guests. I just had one check out who complained that it did not feel like she was staying in a hotel. Well that’s because it isn’t, as is clearly explained in my listing.

I wish there was a way to just avoid first timers in general. Their expectations are ridiculous. When the minimum amount you can spend in my area for a hotel is $63, honeybun, you’re about $20 short for what you want. Go cheapskate elsewhere.


YOU control who you accept or not. You can decline first timers as “not a good fit” if you choose. We like first timers because we enjoy showing them what AirBnb is all about – a quality homestay experience.

We’ve never found any of our first time guests to have ridiculous expectations about our place.

If you care to share your listing, perhaps we can help figure out why what you feel is “clearly explained in my listing” is not being seen that way by guests.


We have mostly first time users and they are just fine. If you don’t want them though, don’t accept them!

What did you say to the guest who complained that it wasn’t a hotel?

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I agree with KenH… my listing clearly states that I offer a room in my home, I had many first time airbnb guests and only got good reports … they love the idea of sharing a real home :slight_smile:
But I must add that I have a little chat beforehand to make clear that the guest is aware that others are living here too… and a dog and a cat :slight_smile: :slight_smile:

  1. My listing is crystal clear. I’m not sure how much clearer I could be than this: You will be staying in my guest room. You will have access to the guest bathroom, living room, kitchen and patio. This is a family home - that means that my daughter and I live here and these are shared spaces.

  2. I too have had 1st timers that were great. It is only recently that I’m getting first timers that im.having problems with.

  3. I have instant book turned on. I may turn it off.


I said that I didn’t find that surprising, because it is not a hotel. I reminded her that in her check in, I explained that this is a home stay, which is different from a hotel stay in many ways. I explained how it is different.

Her tone sounded like she felt led on, that someone had promised her a hotel-like stay, possibly from an ad.

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Since you have instant book on - I thought there was a way to turn on a setting for only recommended guests to be able to book

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95% of my 35 guests have been first timers. As you can see, if I screened out newbies, I wouldn’t be very busy at all.

So far, pretty much all of the small issues I’ve experienced have been courtesy of the 5% who’ve done Airbnb before. They are the ones who can be a little too loud, or make themselves just a little too comfortable in my house.

With regard to your last guest, did she share what aspects of a hotel experience she was looking for that she didn’t get? If she is like most of your first timers, is it possible to change your hosting style a bit to accommodate them?

I think hosting on Airbnb is a very unique experience depending on so many factors, but by far the most important one is where, geographically, your listing is located. This, for the most part, dictates the type of traveler that’s going to be attracted to your listing. Once you know who your guests are, you can somewhat tweak your listing and your hosting style to their needs and expectations.



Just had a family of 5 first-time users leave. They were beautiful people - very appreciative, kind, funny. They even invited me to share their meal. I’ve had reviewed guests show up and be the worst.

and so on.

Like @Chris if I only accepted experienced guests I’d not need to be on this forum because I wouldn’t be hosting at all.

I have a lot of first timers, over 160 stays and 97% 5 star reviews. If you don’t need the business, don’t take them.

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Another positive vote for ‘First Timers’, I am pleasantly surprised how cool they have turned out to be.


I’ve had this happen a couple of times to me. People expect a hotel experience for a very small fraction of the price.

All you can do is expect this will happen every once in a while, and then put that in your review to the guest.

You also may want to increase your price so it’s near the “average” mark in pricing for what you offer. Especially since you have Instant Book turned on. Instant Book is a luxury for the guest, so you should charge more if you have it on.


I think you should take yourself off IB. You need to vet guests more thoroughly if this keeps happening.

I too, LOVE, hosting first timers. They almost all come out glowing… Usually because they have no one to compare me to and think I am the cat’s meow. Sometimes however, they are not first timers by the time they get here though and have stayed a few other places.

I never have trouble with first timers.

Sorry you’ve been having trouble lately. You seem exasperated. Can you take a small break from hosting?


I have a first timer here now. When he noticed the first day that I take my shoes off when I come in, he asked if it was a house rule. I told him, no, my rules are to clean up after yourself and don’t drink my last beer.

He is a 32 YO and is here for several weeks. On the night of the presidential debate another airbnb guest was here and we had an impromptu debate party. A few days later a friend of mine came from out of town and the three of us had snacks and drinks on the deck, talking for hours. He first asked if he could join us and at the end of the evening said how much fun he had. Other times he is in his room for hours.

I had another that was a nightmare, requiring law enforcement to encourage him to leave. His airbnb account was closed.


I’ve had a couple of these. One was the artist in town for a 2 day show. I had a friend over and she asked if she could join us for “just one drink.” She had so much fun she drank her whole bottle of wine and ended up having to take an Uber to meet her friend later.

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I don’t mind first timers except when there are boundary issues, which I found tend to be first timers. Sometimes am too polite to say, get up off my couch evening though guests have their own sitting room, must be the company !!!

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Yes, and they are so relieved that ‘this airbnb thing’ has worked out well they are especially happy! They didn’t know what to expect.

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I’ve also had overall great experiences with first-time guests. Indeed they don’t know what to expect, and what I offer must be better than they imagined or worried. I don’t use IB, so I do decline first-time guests who can’t figure out how to use AirBnB. “How do I book?” “How much does it cost?” If they can’t figure out the website (yet somehow figure out how to message me) I assume they will need a lot of hand-holding during their stay, and I prefer minimal interaction with guests.

However, my worst guests ever were first time guests. But, they were also MY first guests, so I didn’t know to screen them or charge more or reject long-term stays. My second-to-worst guests were experienced AirBnB users. It was weird because usually the experienced travelers ALSO seem to know that I offer unique and nice accommodations!


I sympathize, Happy. I have hosted close to 100 first-timers, mostly great experiences. However, there is one here at the moment who will be receiving an amended reservation and refund tomorrow morning. He has been a bad fit for our household, and I will not prolong the agony!!

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I have a couple of freshmen here tonight. They seem super happy :slight_smile: AND NORMAL

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