Being Harassed by Banned User who Airbnb has Unbanned

I’d go full force on that one - after speaking to an attorney of course but I forgot to specify that the attorney is also supposed to make sure that your account should remain in good standing with Airbnb at the same time.

It shouldn’t ‘just’ be solved by Airbnb finally kicking that guest off the platform but also rehabilitating your reputation.

For her to start pulling sh*t our of her a$$ one after another should clearly indicate that there is a problem (with the guest itself). Providing proof of the allegations you’ve made should put this fire out ‘real fast’.

Hope this gets sorted efficiently and as swiftly as possible.

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Such stories are insane, it can sometimes make you wonder if this whole business is worth it to deal with such a$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$ people (sorry for the expression but i think they deserve this)
Im wondering in general if a Direct booking site would have helped you avoid such scenario, or these horrible people use Airbnb etc. on purpose, because they know that here they can make trouble with no consequences, i think in general people who book from DBS are more humanly and kind, let me know if im wrong.

Sadly, it is not the ‘booking site’ that attracts ‘bad’ guests - they go wherever THEY want to go for booking their stays.

It is not Airbnb’s ‘fault’ when a guest is psycho…

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Correct, but i do believe that psychos tend generally to go to the big names, because they know they can do trouble there, i might be wrong.

Well, a direct booking site can at least charge a refundable security deposit, doesn’t have some platform deciding to refund a guest for no good reason, and doesn’t have to deal with retaliatory revenge reviews that tank their ratings.

Nor do they have to get permission to boot a horrible guest out, get penalized for cancelling a booking, or get their listing suspended when a guest makes a complaint or throws a party. And the host has the guest’s money when they book, it isn’t held by the platform.

I would venture a guess that savvy, horrible guests with nefarious intent are aware of this and would stay away from direct booking sites.

No, but it is their fault when they refuse to acknowledge that a guest is psycho when it is obvious to anyone with half a brain that they are.

Even in a case where it’s just a matter of some guest posting a lying revenge review, rather than an extreme case like the OP’s, that Airbnb’s stance that the 1* review is a legitimate “reflection of the guest’s experience”, when the host has 300 5* reviews, is an insane business practice. And when Airbnb refuses to remove said review and the host’s rating tanks and it affects their bookings, it is very much Airbnb’s fault.

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How is Booking dot com? I wanted to set up my listing on it but heard there is no guest screen in place that everyone even scam bags can book our places on booking dot com?

This is horrible! How come a guest can accuse the hosts successfully with zero approval of something they didn’t do? Would this guest be punished for a false accusation?This is an absolute nightmare!

The only guest screening comes from hosts/owners reporting guests. Their support is marginally worse than Airbnb’s as they ignore you more regularly, but they’re otherwise just as atrocious.

The thing that REALLY lets booking dot com down is if a guest causes any damage or overstays.

Regarding damage, you HAVE to have a security deposit or their support will tell you to do one. I’ve had a guest cause £500 worth of damage for an £80 one night stay and support told me that it was my fault for not charging a £500+ security deposit. They’re supposed to have damage liability in place, but their agents never do anything about it and any attempt to escalate or complain is completely ignored.

Likewise, if a guest overstays, you are told to collect money from the guest. If they refuse to pay, which they ALWAYS do, support tells you tough luck.

As a result, you have little choice but to take a copy of every guest’s ID, including their name and address so that you have the option to take legal action to pursue any money owed.

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It sounds like a lot of headaches. I have thought about putting my place on booking dot come a few times and am scared by everything that you listed here. We can only hope Vrbo and Airbnb can train their customer service to be a little bit better. Most of the customer service in banks are so well trained they have to follow all the regulations to avoid legal accusations. How come there are no consequences for Airbnb customer service taking wrong actions?

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We have now listed both of our on-site studios on BDC. We live on the same property and personally welcome every guest.

We started with Airbnb and added BDC shortly after. Whenever Airbnb’s bookings went down, BDC reservations took over so we’re happy we listed with them.

Our experience with BDC has been positive. The risk of having an off-the-chart guest can happen on any platform as demonstrated by the OP of this thread. We did have one guest who got uncontrollably drunk and caused some damage but nothing major.

I believe that the experiences that members of this forum shared vary greatly by the location and type of accommodation and the way reservations are being approved.

We have one studio on BDC offering instant booking and the larger studio only using RTB. The biggest issue we have with the RTBs on BDC is that many guests just don’t read the listing information (which cannot even be entered the way a host wants it - BDC creates their version!) when it comes to providing details in their RTB like the nature of their stay, who will be staying, accepting the house rules etc. Plus, even if the guests have read and understood the rules etc., the host cannot respond to the message or communicate with the guest, even after accepting a RTB as long as the guest has not yet completed the reservation (24 hour window after host’s approval). This wouldn’t be an issue with instant booking and we probably will allow IB for the second studio sooner or later as well. I think it’s just a matter of clarifying (again) all of our rules in the first automated message once the reservation has been confirmed. At that point, some guests who were not aware of certain policies and rules (AND local laws) do cancel their reservation - which if done early enough is penalty free.

Customer service experience with BDC and Airbnb have not been problematic for us so far. We felt being taken seriously and received pretty competent and fast resolutions of the issues we had. Knocking on wood here.

I do have to add that here in France it is required by law that all hosts have to have the guest fill out a form (fiche individuelle de police) with their personal details including a copy of their government ID. This as well is something not every guest is comfortable in providing and some may have cancelled their reservation because of that. Having the guests personal information as @Viv21 stated is helping us to protect our interests if necessary, to actually have tangible information to pursue any necessary steps.

VRBO was a bit rocky when we recently started as the same as with BDC, we don’t allow instant booking. The requests we received are either weird, abandoned or ended up in a guest making a reservation but never showed up. :woozy_face: We hope to eventually get some proper traction there.

Hope this helps a bit. If you have more questions let me know.

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Yes, it’s certainly time to contact an attorney. Both concerning her harassment & false claims, & to address your lost revenue with AirBnB. Hopefully a letter to Air from an attorney will get this resolved. Ugh, so sorry you have to deal with this!

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Thank you so much for this kind and detailed information! After reading your encouraging story, I might try putting my place on BDC again. I do have a question, do you need to use a PM software like OwnerRez, Guesty, etc to manage the calendar sync, dynamic pricing, and make damage deposit, etc? Appreciate your help!

I’m pretty sure this will not get any attention from Airbnb, unfortunately.

At this point we’re not using any property manager solution. I’m completely unaware of the benefits as all we need (calendar syncing) can be handled directly on every platform by sharing the ICS calenda URL.

We don’t use any automated, dynamic pricing. We constantly check our competition and the booking situation in our area and manually adjust.

This would be also something that is dependent on your property type, minimum stay requirements and other factors. So it’s hard to answer this question in my opinion.

We don’t ask for damage deposits, also because we have no experience or heard about it how other hosts’ experiences are regarding that. I could imagine that not a lot of guests would drop a $500 damage deposit for a $50 nightly price and a 2 day minimum stay. But maybe I’m mistaken with that assumption.

I have to say that once we enforced the legal requirement (here in France) to collect the guest’s data + ID, we have gotten a lot more mindful and well behaved guests. While this requirement does make some guests nervous and wouldn’t book with us, I do prefer to have fewer reservations but higher quality guests. Also, by collecting that information (in person when we check them in), it’s an additional conversation topic which often breaks the ice and gives us an opportunity to explain why we collect the information and how it makes sense for us as hosts to know who is sleeping under our roof while the guests already know our information to begin with. In most cases the guests are very understanding and appear to be more careful with the place.

However, that is not a guarantee that every guest will react like that. We had a return guest (a doctor) who left the place in a very messy state (nothing broken, just dirty as heck), didn’t pay for our home made marmalade and he did it again (well, we’re now out of marmalade but still he left the place like a bomb exploded, again).

Your mileage may vary with the tips I mentioned as these things completely wouldn’t matter for a large vacation house that houses 20 people or so.

I’d think such a letter would be a last resort for Airbnb to move their butt and start working that case otherwise the social media will be used to publicly showcase how lunatics are allowed to roam free on their website while highly established hosts get shut down. What’s the worst that could happen to the host? Get banned??? :rofl:

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Thanks again, Hosterer, I have a different situation than yours. I don’t live on-site. It makes it hard to collect guests’ IDs as well as damage deposits that I think I need. I’d have to figure out how to connect to a PM software before putting my place on BDC.

Airbnb doesn’t care about negative social media posts- there have been thousands over the years. What they do seem to care about is viral news stories, if a host or guest who has been abysmally dealt with can find some major media journalist who is interested in the story.

Maybe VRBO might be a bit better. Another option might be creating your own website and you can accept payment using pay pal or something similar.

Wouldn’t a social media post be the the first step to be featured by media outlets?

I don’t think so. If you want a story to be featured in the news, the best way is to contact news outlets and see if they are interested in airing one’s story.