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First Time Guests and Unrealistic Expectations


My dear, I meant that remark in jest! The whole point of Airbnb is to provide an alternative to the hotel experience. People who stay in luxury hotels often expect their every whim to be catered to. I usually start a conversation with my confirmed guests far in advance to try to assess what kind of guest they’re going to be. This helps me to address problems that may occur down the line and establish a personal connection. Of course, there’s nothing you can do about extra noise but put in your description.
Happy Hosting


You’ve got a ton of responses, so I’m not sure if you’ll see mine. I’ve had 500+ bookings, 9+ countries. I have to tell you, I SHUDDER when I have to host a 1st timer. Historically (for me) they are the MOST ungrateful, critical guests I’ve had. Right behind them are AirBnB host.


High five! I’ve also had 500+ bookings and a recent Airbnb message said 14 countries (which was a surprise because it didn’t seem like that many). However, I’ve had lots of first time guests. I wish I knew what percentage, but if I had to guess I’d say 40% at least. And I’ve had no problems with them. Of the 4 or 5 guests I’ve blocked, canceled, etc, they all had prior reviews.

Airbnb hosts are more problematic but still nothing I dread.

So the bottom line is that the beauty of Airbnb is the variety of listings and hosts and one host may experience something very different than another. This forum is a great place to get a different perspective.


If you are already booked through the end of April, you might be pricing your place too low. Your place looks very, very nice.

If the guest posted these complaints on the airbnb site, I would call airbnb to see if they can remove the review. I had a nutcase once who complained about imaginary problems, and airbnb removed the review based on non-factuality.

Don’t be discouraged, I’ve been doing this for 15 months, and my second guest was a real complainer. Everyone since has given me 4 and 5 star reviews :slight_smile:

Take any suggestions that seem reasonable, and ignore the rest.


I’d love to stay at your place. It looks stunning! It seems like a “real kick in the teeth” when you get guests who want to nitpick. I had one who wanted to “offer suggestions”, some of which I was aware of and had on the “to do” list. I reviewed her with, “Disappointed that you were disappointed. Some guests can’t be pleased no matter what is done for them”.


Here’s what I say to EVERY SINGLE guest who arrives: if there are ANY issues, tell me IMMEDIATELY! It is not fair that you have a gorgeous place and after a stay of several days someone complains about things that could have been addressed right away. Persevere!


I just had my first guests, a husband-wife stayed two days. They never asked for anything and were ideal guests. The only thing messed up when I went in after they left were the sheets on the bed.

They gave me five stars for everything, BUT four stars for the location. My listing says I am on five acres with no-neighbors. The nearest house across a 10-acre pasture is almost a mile away at night you can see their lights in the distance through the trees.

Location is not something I can fix. That one four-star reduced my overall rating to 4.7.

A mother with three teenagers staying here now and they love the tranquility.


Unless something has changed very recently, location ratings have ZERO to do with your published score as a host. The only rating that goes into that number is the “overall” rating.


Maybe what I was looking at the wrong window, maybe it was not what the potential visitor sees.


Potential visitors won’t see any star ratings until you have had 3 guests who leave ratings/reviews.


In addition to written reviews, guests can submit an overall star rating and a set of category star ratings. Hosts can view their star ratings on their Stats page, under Ratings from Guests . To see a breakdown of guest ratings by category, click Show Details .

Guests can give ratings on:

  • Overall Experience. What was your guest’s overall experience?
  • Cleanliness. Did your guests feel that your space was clean and tidy?
  • Accuracy. How accurately did your listing page represent your space?
  • Value. Did your guest feel your listing provided good value for the price?
  • Communication. How well did you communicate with your guest before and during their stay?
  • Arrival. How smoothly did their check-in go?
  • Location. How did guests feel about your neighborhood?

In each category, you’ll be able to see how often you get 5 stars, how guests rated nearby hosts, and, in some cases, tips to help you improve your listing.

The number of stars displayed at the top of a listing page is an aggregate of the primary scores guests have given for that listing. At the bottom of a listing page there’s an aggregate for each category rating. A host needs to receive star ratings from at least 3 guests before their aggregate score appears.


Oh, didn’t know that either, thanks. Guess the first three are the shakedown–thanks!


They will still be included in your rating… they just aren’t shown on your page yet.

If you click on your rating number from your host dashboard (on a PC; not sure how it looks on the app), it will open your ratings page. At the top, you’ll see your “overall” rating. That’s the one that will eventually be published on your page and the number that potential guests will see. The category ratings below that will show you numbers, but those numbers won’t be shown to guests, only the actual stars. So while guests will see if you have a low number of stars in those categories (if they scroll far enough down your listing), the only number that will show on the main AirBnB page is your overall rating.


Thanks, all very confusing.


Much less so if you read all the Terms of Service.

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