Guest requesting refund

I had a strange experience with a guest recently. She stayed for six weeks. she arrived a week late because she had decided to come later than planned, Fairly last minute and at the time did not request a refund. She then said she was leaving a day early, because it was her birthday. I asked if she would want a refund. She said no.

A few of days before she left I found her soaking wet swimming costume in the washing machine. I needed to do a wash so took it out and placed it in a plastic bucket next to the washing machine, intending to ask her what she wanted to do with it, but assumed she’s see it and deal with it - it’s not in the agreement I do the guests washing.

Then ten minutes before she was due to leave she said ‘my bikini is ruined and I want you to pay for a replacement’. She said she also wanted a refund for the first week and for final night as she was leaving early.

I said ‘can I see the bikini? I need to see it if you want me to replace it’. She said it was packed away so I insisted I had to see it to do anything about it. It had a few pink streaks in it. I asked if she could leave it with me and I would try to sort and post it to her. She refused. She said she would send me a link on amazon for cost of new bikini but it would be about 30 euros.

I said I would have a think. I then offered to meet her half way…this was before I had time to think about it but said I would refund the one night. I then tried to do it on airbnb and said it was charging her more for doing that. She said she wanted me to pay her directly as airbnb would charge her. She also said she had enjoyed her stay and been very happy at mine, as she left.

Since then I have reflected and wondered how the pink streak got into her bikin and discovered a skirt of mine, that I put in after her wash, had some pink on it. I soaked it and it went really easily. When I was clearing up her room (shich she left a bit messy) I found a pink post it note on the floor and wondered if this was the cause of the pink streak - that she had put this in the washing machine.

It’s all very odd. I know we are not supposed to do anything outside of the airbnb website and perhaps I need to contact airbnb to ask for advice.

I messaged her today and asked her waht she think may have caused the streaks as I have never had this problem and also asked her to send her a photo of her bikini for my records (I have started to wonder if she did this as a ploy to get a refund but perhaps that is paranoid…would people really stoop that low and be that devious?! Surely not).

Any advice appreciated.
Thank you!

Do you indicate in your house rules that guests are not allowed to use the washing machine? If so, then you’re not liable. What’s your cancellation policy? I would contact Airbnb before she does.

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Here are some non-coherent thoughts :slightly_smiling_face:

Assuming the bucket was clean, I don’t understand what could’ve happened to the bikini in the bucket that wouldn’t have happened to it in the machine, unless the machine actually had water in it along with something to help the dye set.

She should give you the old bikini if she expects you to pay her for it. Otherwise, she might be intending to continue using it or send it back for a refund from her place of purchase, etc.

What I’m reading is that you got paid for about 8 days that she didn’t stay. I don’t know your rate, but 30 Euros seems petty of the guest in comparison to paying for 8 extra days. It’s strange.

If you pay, do it through Airbnb. Not too many valid reasons I can think of for a guest not wanting to be refunded through Airbnb except the payment method not belonging to the guest.

I don’t allow guests to use the washing machine, mostly to protect the machine, but also to avoid the liability of accidentally putting color clothing in after I do a bleach cycle.

I’d say replace the bikini since you had your hands on it, but I wouldn’t refund any nights from her stay except for the last one. You should only submit refunds through Airbnb.


I didn’t mind her using the washing machine and I’m certain it wasn’t the washing machine…she must have put something in it. I also have a message from her saying it was no ones fault. My cancellation policy is moderate

Yes ok I will contact Airbnb

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Ok, this makes a lot of sense …will do. Thank you

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Ps she asked for 30 euros to replace bikini AND 8 days …not sure why she left it until ten minutes before leaving. Also when I offered her refund for the one night before she had refused it.

Never offer or give a refund. If the guest demands a refund tell them to take it up with Airbnb – all money matters are handled by Air…


Unfortunately I took the advice of the other forum member who told me to give her a refund for one night and for the tankini. I paid via airbnb but will not do this again…it encourages opportunistic behaviour from guests.

I have since found out that tankinis similar to hers have an issue with the colour running. I think her leaving it soaking wet for days caused the issue, not my washing machine and also poor design and I got the blame. I also charge well under the going rate for my area so I have put up my prices…it obviously does not pay to be reasonable!

Thank you!

ps. I’ve put my rates up and already got a booking request just now!