Do I have to respond to an inquiry or can I just decline?

I got an inquiry from someone only asking how far I am from a location. My listing states how far it is from lots of popular locations and it isn’t that hard to see where it is on a map. The guest didn’t even bother to introduce herself and spelled her own name wrong. Given the odd communication, it sounds like either a scam or a problem guest, and not someone I really want in my house for 3 weeks. Can I just click decline or do I need to write something to keep my response rate up?

Answer, don’t decline. Declines count against you.


Well I a might be in trouble. I declined the same individual 2x’s today. This ladies story was really shady and in my gut I know it was a troublesome guest just under a different listing. I finally blocked my room for the 2 nights they wanted. Her quote “the place we were staying out ran out of sleepers” which is what they call cots at the local shelter. She states she doesn’t live local but gives a local address… I do not want people from the shelter here…the shelter isn’t the bed best as much as they try it is full of lice and bugs… sorry not here.

“Dear Guest, Can we start over here where you tell me who you are, what brings you to my town and whether or not you are smart enough to come in out of the rain.”

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This is only an inquiry. I know this is discussed all the time and I thought declines for inquiries don’t count against you, and that only declines for booking requests count.

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I respond to inquiries and that meets the response requirement. Out of the fear of getting dinged for too many declines,I try to use decline only when absolutely necessary

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Perhaps instead of a decline a special offer? $5000 per night plus $2500 cleaning fee…


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This situation has always worried me. It seems strange that if a potential guest asks a question you have to either accept or decline. It happens to me a lot.

I simply answer their questions about the guest, why they will be in the area, what they will be doing, etc. I will ask if they read everything in the house rules and specify areas they might not like, no smoking, and other factors.

In one instance, where the guest wanted to have friends visit and it sounded like a party, I said our bedroom is next to the apartment, that we always went to bed early and had to get up early to go to work, so required quiet, including turning off the TV in the apartment at 9 p.m.

I highlight areas in their initial query, and any area that might be questionable.

In most cases they do not respond and the inquiry automatically disappears within 24 hours.

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LOL…now there is a thought!

As it says in the Help Centre, @GardenFairy you just need to respond you don’t need to decline.

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Thanks, that’s what I thought.

Go into your calendar and block the days then reply to her inquiry with something generic but polite, this way you don’t have to decline it.

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I just had a fellow inquire about a 4 night stay over Memorial day weekend. This was his question:

Hello My name is xxxx, I had a question about this guest room, is it attached to where you live as well? Or is it completely private?
Today at 5:23 PM

This is the first line of that paragraph that is right under the title:

A private entrance off the front porch leads into a new, small room attached to my house but separated from me.

Pictures also show that the guest room is attached to my house. So I cut and pasted that into my answer and added "So it’s like a guest room but you can’t come into my part of the house. It’s a small room with no kitchen or lounge space. It has it’s own entry door in the front of the house. "

And I’ll be darned if a request* for that Saturday didn’t come through right after I answered him.
He has one verification, one prior good review but didn’t leave a review for the host, so gosh, my loss. He wrote to say he was trying to book it and the app kicked him off. I said another request came in and it sucks due to that just being a one night stay in the middle of the holiday weekend. Just my luck that guest will probably cancel later.

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Huh, I just got a request for a 14 night stay that I accepted and I wouldn’t have been able to take it if I had booked this guy in. It’s better to be lucky than good at times.


THANK YOU I was just looking for that link!