Help! How would you respond to this guest?

My automated three-days-prior-to-arrival message was sent this morning, and I received the following replies from the guest who is scheduled to arrive on Friday:

I have never received a response other than, “Thanks! Will do!“ This has all the earmarks of a high maintenance, four star review leaving guest. How would you reply? I really want to call and say that I am uncomfortable with this guest and have her canceled.

Talk me off the ledge, please…

I would not reply at all.

She kicked a little but then agreed, so I would just ignore it and continue to be cheerful towards her. I would not cancel.


Come off the ledge!! I know quite a few people who still have flip phones or don’t have data plans on their smart phones. Some don’t know how to download an App on their smart phone.

Personally, I hate downloading any company’s App and won’t do it unless absolutely necessary. I find that it generally benefits them, not me.

I wouldn’t hold it against the guest. Can you email the instructions to the guest via the Airbnb platform ?


I would just have an adult conversation with them. I send the instructions via the message thread anyway. My recent guest with no cell service took screenshots of the reservation info but my check in info (well, the code) isn’t there.

So ask them how they would like to get information. If they are new to Airbnb they may need some help. Someone has to do it and if you are the first to host them, then tag, you’re it. If they have other prior less than 5 star reviews I might have some concerns.


Are they first-time Airbnb users? If not, install Airreview to see the reviews they give hosts to determine if they woill be picky or high maintanence.


My biggest concern is that I am going to be out of town during her stay, so if she tries to call or text me, rather than using the app, it’s going to significantly delay a response to her. If she has the damn app on her phone, my co-host will know instantly if she messages.

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I suppose I could just tell her that. ::::sheepish look::::

  1. I would want check in instructions at least the day before arrival. Many people are in flight morning of arrival and it just makes it more stressful. 2) Not sure why they need the app. Everything gets sent to email and text. You could suggest it as another form of access.

As I said, if they want to communicate with me, having the app on their phone makes it convenient, and also reduces the likelihood of them trying to text or call me outside the platform.

And I don’t allow early check in without prior approval, so providing check in codes a day ahead of check-in would be a no go for me.

Consider a wifi keypad, can program the codes day of arrival, but send them before.

But basically, I just didn’t like this lady giving me attitude – the last thing my cohost needs to deal with is a whiny, entitled guest who sounds like they are just looking for things to complain about.

I send the codes on the day of arrival, prior to check in, once the unit is ready for the guest. Typically, this is by 1 or 2 PM at the latest (I have a 4pm check in time).


Can you can use the “hidden” email assigned by Airbnb and send as an attachment? I know I sent someone a Metro map that way when they had a pre-arrival question. I am a bit empathetic with the guest; we are all becoming more and more aware of how much personal data various apps collect about us.

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Just curious why calling/texting will have a delay but the app will not.

Yes, missed that, co-host getting messages via the app is the main reason to use the Airbnb messaging system

But the message to the guest is not clear enough on the reason to use the app. The guest doesn’t need the app to get check-in instructions from you. Airbnb sends the full content of messages in an e-mail to the address that the guest provided, so a guest that checks e-mail will see your messages.

Additionally, the guest can also use a mobile browser instead of the app to login to Airbnb and see and respond to messsages.

You need to make it clear that if the guest needs to contact you, they need to do it through Airbnb (either the app or a browser).


Is it possible that there’s just a lot of miscommunication here? I hate the app and prefer to access everything on my laptop. It’s still through the message stream so shouldn’t be a problem. People are funny about apps and a lot of people don’t use it but use their laptop instead.

If she’s used airbnb a lot and no one else has insisted on her having the app, I can imagine she just responded quickly and with true-surprise. I’m not a high-maintenance guest but could easily see having this same conversation with you. Your message implies that you require the app specifically and that does seem highly unusual to me.

Could you just tell her the concern of the immediacy of the communication with you, her and the co-host and clarify that the communication should go through the message stream but not necessarily the phone app? I think if you approach with kindness and sincerity, you can turn it around. However, it is still possible she’s a PITA but you approaching gracefully will force her to show her true colours and then you will know.


Fair enough. I think in my mind I conflate having the app with being able to communicate via the platform. I’ll tweak my automated messaging to make it clearer.

I ended up sending her this:

“Oh, of course you can get the check in instructions from the website! I just wanted to make sure you have the best, quickest way to reach my co-host Philippe, as I’m going to be out of town during your stay. I would feel terrible if you texted or tried to call me about an issue and didn’t get a prompt response.”

Mind you, I sent this message two hours after I received hers, but…:smiling_imp:

Did I mention I really need this vacation I’m leaving for tomorrow? :rofl:


I have been an easy-going, uncritical, consistently 5-star rating AirBnB guest . . . and I dislike apps. Like JDD, I prefer using the website (and texting). You’re right, you were conflating a bit. Your revised message is fine.

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