Feeling guilty for giving a bad review

I just had my worst guest leave. Family of three. He asked for an hour extension on his checkout time. I reluctantly said yes, expressing that one hour was all because we had guests coming in that night. Meaning he would leave at 1 and guests check in at 3.
I can see through the trees if a guest’s car is still there and I looked and couldn’t see much activity.
I waited til about ten after one and greeted him from far away and said, “we need for you to please hurry, because we have to get ready for our next guests.” He was sitting outside at his computer with a bunch of food. Absolutely no indication that he was leaving. Anyway after I went back to my house and come back two more times he called my cell and said ok you can come. By this time it was 1:40.
He then said he loved our space and would just be hanging around outside while we cleaned. I told him I’m sorry you need to leave now because we have to clean everything inside and out for our next guests. He finally left.
We got it done in time because the next guests messaged to say they were running late.
The place also stunk of curry and it was a mess.
So I left a bad review. An honest one. I also said he was friendly and a good communicator. (So I could say something positive)
Well, I just read his review of me and it was wonderful.
So this message is all to say, I am feeling guilty and need for you guys to tell me I was right in leaving an honest review. First time I marked I would not host again.


You were right. Behavior matters.


The guest is not your friend.
The guest is not your family member.
The guest is not someone you need to maintain an ongoing business relationship with.

You warned other hosts about the guest’s disrespect of your rules and generosity.

You did good.

The guest may have internalized Airbnb’s marketing hype and expected they now had a personal relationships with the host. The guest may have been a very informal person with a relaxed sense of time who would have been happy to hang out with the incoming guest as another personal friend. The guest may have . . .

Doesn’t matter. Not your responsibility to accommodate whatever was motivating the guest and getting in the way of you running your business.


Inconsiderate, entitled, selfish guest! I don’t care how nice the review was… he put you under pressure! If the incoming guest was on time, what was the potential review there?
Thank you for the honesty and may he learn some manners!


On behalf of every host ever, thank you for your honest review…


Bravo!! As a host who has recently hosted an extremely high maintenance guest with neutral/fine reviews… THANK YOU for leaving an honest one!!


I had a similar issue but the guest didn’t leave me a review. Don’t feel guilty. You were expecting incoming guests and needed to get the place cleaned and he overstayed his welcome.


100% you were PERFECT. A suggestion for you - consider changing your check-out time.
Our Check-out is set to 10 am. If a guest asks for a late checkout (or is running late), we are not in a bind. We can easily turnover in 90 min (have spares for all linens, pillows, comforters, throws, etc).
So, we can be “generous”, understanding and hospitable - and not pressed for time.


You are right to leave an honest review. LOL.

Now for the unsolicited advice:

It’s hard to believe that during covid people are still having back to back bookings with mere hours between guests. I suggest you change to the setting to allow a day between bookings for safety reasons and to make it less stressful to run your business. I understand I have the privilege to not be desperate to book out as much as possible and realize not everyone can do that. But that’s my advice.
If you can’t do that then make check out time 11 am and check in 4 pm and then make exceptions to that on a case by case basis.

Something else I would have done is turn off the wi-fi at 1pm.

You went above and beyond and deserved the glowing review. The review you left him was also deserved. It’s not a niceness contest. They have a function. Remove the emotion from it.


There is nothing to feel guilty about. Reviews aren’t meant to be tit for tat, they are meant to be honest.

You received a good review because you deserved it, he received a less favorable one because he deserved it. It’s business, not a popularity contest.
This is exactly why reviews are blind before being published.

And if guests never get called out for poor behavior, how will they ever know that behavior isn’t okay?


I just had a guest who’s dog pee’d on my rug. In the review I said I appreciated her letting me know her dog had an accident in the cabin so I could get the rug cleaned. She was LIVID! she messaged me that I was publicly shaming her and on and on. Had a host put that in the review I would not have hosted her. She knows this, that’s why she is mad. Sorry but not sorry.



It’s incredible how guests can’t seem to be able to handle any review statements which aren’t fully glowing. Yet they have no qualms about pointing out every little thing that wasn’t perfect for them in their reviews of the host.

Can you imagine if every host completely ignored and were defensive and aggressive about guests mentioning legitimate flaws? Most hosts would want to know, for instance, if every guest found the mattress uncomfortable because it had a big dip in the middle and needed to be replaced, or if the cleaner was never cleaning crumbs out of the kitchen drawers.


Ya, it is hard to read the truth in a public way. The review system sucks all the way around but it is the system we have to work within to use AirBnb so we deal with it.

She left me a very nice 5 star review which I earned . She got the review that she earned. It will be harder for her to travel with her dogs going forward, but she should not travel with them because they pee in the house.



As long as the review was factual and non-emotional, you did the right thing. All hosts thank you.

I’m curious of these items:

  1. Did the guest have prior reviews and how were they?
  2. Where did you remove stars from his rating.
  3. Did you say you would not host the guest again?

You did the right thing. Both of your reviews of each other were accurate. As other hosts have said, thank you!

I always leave honest reviews. I had one guest stink up my condo from marijuana use. Of course my listing is no smoking and there are signs inside the condo stating this also. My review said something like “I’m not sure if NAME smoked inside my condo or if she smoked right outside the door and the smell wafted in, but it stunk in there badly.” I figured she’d bless me out. She actually messaged me to apologize and told me her boyfriend was smoking outside the door. Pleasantly surprised by her response.


Your guest was an idiot. You gave an honest review. He should feel guilty, not you


As everyone has said, of course, you were right to leave the review.

Imagine that the guest had been moving on to another Airbnb rental operated by your sister, your best friend, your mother. You’d have called to warn them, wouldn’t you?

So, we fellow hosts might not be related to you but we need your input just as much.


Thank you! That makes me feel better.

He had I think five reviews. One review said “I wish he would have kept the house rules.”
The other four reviews were simple but good.
I have instant book and have had across the board good experiences. One guest didn’t inform me of her dog. But that was a weird situation.
Our next guests have already left and left all five stars— so the stink was gone and we were able to get it clean on time.
And yes I marked would NOT host again.


Our next guests actually messaged that they were coming late so we were able to clean very efficiently. No problem there😊 not to extend. And the following guests were friends of my daughter traveling across country so we made adjustments. I do like to have a breather in between guests.
We do not have wifi. So he must have had his own hotspot.