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Guest wants to use my address for a ticket order

Hi everyone, this is my first post here, but I’ve read a lot of your posts, so I feel I know you a little and now I really want to go to Hawaii :slight_smile:

I just had a guest book from abroad. He has no reviews, only has two small fuzzy photos with two people in each one.
Here’s our convo:
Him: “Your living situation seems perfect for me since I intend on being out and about most of my time in the city. The main purpose of my trip is to see a football match, but I will be sight-seeing as well. I’ve been searching for tickets online to a football match and a lot of them ask for an address for a last minute delivery. If I were to stay the weekend, would you be ok with this? I understand if you aren’t.”

(I knew it’s a bad idea to allow the use of my address, but thought it seemed legit so I allowed it. Yes, that was weak of me.)

Him: “Now that I’ve booked with you I’m more excited than ever! I’ve been wanting to visit England for years! The phone number on my account is not mine, it’s my father’s. Due to my current location I deactivated my phone for use and can only receive text messages through iMessage. So I had to verify my account through his number. If you happen to have an iPhone and need to contact me you can have it relayed through that number or can imessage me to +1 774272xxxx. In a worst case scenario messaging me here will work just as well. With your permission can I use your phone number for delivery purposes for the ticket?”

Is this a scam of some sort? I contacted Air via chat and they said he seemed legit, but offered to cancel the reservation without penalty on safety grounds. What would you do? Have I read too many Air horror stories? Am i going to have drugs and all sorts delivered to my place?

OK… I’ve been in this circumstance myself… Where a guest who seems legit asked to have a delivery made here. My policy is no , but these folks were soooo nice I just didn’t know how to tell them, so I lied. Said I can’t receive mail at a rural address (true, but the boxes are at the top of our hill)… I wanted to trust him… but just couldn’t bring myself to! When he got here, and I met him, I realized his story WAS legit!! Ooops. But better safe than sorry, since he was coming from a South American country.

Now… on to your thing with the tickets. Since when are tickets delivered to an address? When you buy online, don’t you get a PDF to print out? Or some such? Could you call the football place and ask if that’s how they do things? do they mail tickets out? Why can’t he pick them up at the box office or have them sent general delivery to a local PO?

I don’t like them asking for a local phone. then they have your name, address, phone and more. You may want to take Air up on their offer to cancel without penalty. This doesn’t pass the smell test to me.

Hi Kona, thanks for your reply!
A guest gets my address and phone number from Air anyway by booking with me, so it’s not like I’ve given out any extra info. Here in the UK some ticketed events post physical tickets by post or courier. I will ask the guy for more info, and I have some football mad friends I can ask too about the ticket process.

Yeah, I think I’ll follow your example and make up a story next time… It’s hard to be firm about these things, and I don’t want this sudden worry to hit me again!

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Hi eyeborg,

I do allow guests to receive mail and packages here and I’ve never had a problem. My only caveat is to have them agree on the Airbnb email system that if their mail or package gets lost or stolen they won’t hold me responsible. I live in Los Angeles and we did have guests need to have soccer tickets mailed here.

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Hi Ellen,

Thank you, that’s great advice about not being responsible, and I’m glad to hear there are legit ticket situations with guests.

Eyeborg, you are VERY correct to feel concerned about receiving mail sent by guests. The very least case is that you could be receiving junk mail sent to you for years to come. The very worst case scenario is that a guest will use you and your address to have drugs sent… and book your place for a few days to “receive” it. If for some reason the contraband is discovered before the guest gets there… then the person on the address, YOU can be held responsible. “I didn’t know” won’t be an acceptable excuse under the law, as you know. What a great trick in fact… a cheap, easy and troublefree way for the smugglers to get their goods to the country… without involving themselves! Anyone who thinks it’s OK to receive guest packages of unknown origin and content from complete strangers at their home address needs to watch every season of “Locked Up Abroad.” Ask yourself… Is it worth it??

Thanks Kona,
I think you are right it’s not worth the risk despite this probably being a legit case. I’ll ask Air to cancel.

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Sounds a bit tricky to me as well. Personally I would not accept them or give out my phone number or my address. I have a post office box number which I could use in such a circumstance. For your particular situation it just doesn’t seem to Sound right. A bit like those oil rig workers that want to buy or sell something on eBay

Clyde, having a PO box doesn’t indemnify you from the consequences of receiving anonymous contraband. The PO knows who you are. At my PO we have to provide ID and a bona fide address for all receiving mail. If contraband is discovered on its way to your (fake name) guest (c/o YOU), guess who will get in trouble?

Simplest rule of thumb: Don’t accept delivery of unknown packages with unknown content from unknown individuals. You are an Airbnb room or flat for rent… not a delivery service.

Air let me cancel without penalty, so it’s all good and I’m a happy bunny again. Lesson learned, and thanks to everyone who replied. I’ve now added a ‘no mail/parcels’ line to my house rules.

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Thanks konacoconutz for the clarification. Yes. I agree best not to accept anything.

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