Last minute booking and a no show!

I have had mu listing on Airbnb for less than a year now… I have had superb guests for most of my bookings and a few not so good… However Friday morning (02-02-2018) I received a last minute booking from a verified guest with 1 rating and only 2 stars, i was at first hesitant to accept but did anyway. i work full days, but i luckily work for my family so i go to leave early and dashed off to go sort out the cottage. the guest said he would arrive after 3pm… i saw that he had no yet made a payment and decided to leave and get the cottage ready anyway just in case. so fast forward to 10pm, the guest still hasnt arrived, got in contact with me or made payment…
is there anyway to request some sort of compensation for this situation… i could not leave my house for the evening for worries that he may decide to show up… has this happened to anyone and how did you deal with it?
TL;DR guest made a booking, I prepared the cottage, spent the evening waiting and he didn’t show up… advice?

I don’t understand: guest made a booking and never paid? Is it through Airbnb or other site? Because how is it he booked but never paid? If he never paid Airbnb doesn’t consider it booking.
I’m on instant book and I had a guest once who was not recommended by 2 hosts and he turned out to be a major problem. This one had 2* rating.

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I agree with @Yana if this is with Airbnb the guest wouldn’t have been able to book without making a payment.

Can you clarify this point?

I am not sure in the circumstances why you didn’t call Airbnb straight away rather than preparing the property/waiting in for the guest all evening.

The guest booked with Airbnb, but he had not yet made payment, which left me in a predicament of not preparing the cottage, due to it being a last minute booking for the same day. I’m in South Africa so there is no direct line to call them unfortunately… I know this is the sort of thing people do, but I’m just so infuriated at the audacity.

you cant book without paying though,


Hi @Candice_Kallmann

In which case you could have just asked Airbnb to cancel the booking, because of non payment. Unfortunately with last minute bookings sometimes there is a problem with payment going through and it shows as pending (one reason why I never take them).

This useful post in their Community Forum shows you all the ways to contact Airbnb. I appreciate there isn’t customer services in SA but I am sure there must be another call centre you could contact using Skype or similar.

Much better than putting all that work in for nothing and waiting around.

No compensation. No paidbooking. Thelearning here is that you even considered accepting a booking from a guest with one 2 star rating.

I accept late bookings, well they need to contact me first if they book same day. I pre approved one last night which never accepted, no response who knows what happened.

No everything was good to go but I guess I should have withdrawn the pre approval when I went to bed, but that was pretty late.

Agree with the others, no payment no booking, would have said that to prospective guest and that I need x amount of time after the booking to get the place ready.

Sounds like the “guest” made an Inquiry, nor a Request to Book. If you accepted the Request to Book, either the guest credit card was charged, or you got a messages saying it didn’t. There simply is no Booking without paying…

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This was a fairly painless way to learn a valuable lesson about how Airbnb works. In your situation where you have to stop what you’re doing to get the cottage ready and wait for people to arrive it might be best not to take same day bookings at all or cut off the time early in the day. As others have said if they didn’t pay you don’t have a booking, you have something else. If calling is difficult at least you can email them so they can explain what happened. I wouldn’t accept someone with a 2 star rating either. You probably dodged a bullet here.

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Given rating-inflation that is the AirBNB way, how horrible must someone be to get a 2-star average rating? I shudder to think.


You may recall my situation in the last month of someone’s ID verification holding up the reservation on a same day booking. I was able to secure the reservation via other means but when I called Airbnb twice during the day trying to fix the situation they were no help at all. Also recently they called and asked me to hold the room for two nights while someone got their ID submitted. Air really doesn’t care if you miss out, IMHO.

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Good evening from South Africa again. I really appreciate all your responses!
After I made the post and reported the guest, Airbnb cancelled his booking request and opened my calendar. It may not have been a paid-for-booking but it did block my calendar preventing potential guests which made me the most livid.
I have decided to leave it as a learnt lesson and pursue no further… the only reason I accepted such a low rating guest is because we need the financial help…

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This has happened to me and it is infuriating. And even though you may need the money it’s probably best to skip anyone with 2 stars. Better to take chances with someone with no reviews than with someone who has definitely caused a problem for another host.

Welcome to the forum. I hope you have time to look around and read up. We can be very helpful at times.

Thanks for posting back with an update.


Thank you K9karmaCasa… I’ve been on the forums for a while now but have luckily Not needed to post until now… I learn a lot from reading anyhow. So far this year has been quite terrible in terms of our guests, but we were lucky enough to earn superhost! I hope everyone has a great day/evening further.
PS, if I was interested in seeking one nights compensation how would I have gone about doing it? Since he didn’t complete his booking the option for requesting money was not available.

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Hi cabinhost… the email came about 15 minutes after I reported the guest, which was 24 hours after I had accepted his request… I couldn’t cancel the booking which was quite a pain in the butt.
Regarding everyone telling me I should have gotten in contact with Airbnb, being from South Africa we have a pretty terrible reputation for not being reliable, be it at replying to emails or phone calls which is why I never got in contact with them… are they good at following up?

Hmmm. Okay I will try. Could I post my reply before I email off to get an okay? This experience has left me feeling sorry for myself and wanting compensation…

To whom it may concern.
Please note that due to the odd and last minute booking circumstances regarding booking XYZ123, i would like to know if i could receive compensation for one evening, seeing as that my calendar was blocked off, preventing potential guests from booking my listing. I’m aware that the booking was not 100% confirmed but due to the last minute booking I couldn’t leave it to chance and not get the listing prepared.

I look forward to your response

Thank you for being so helpful. I really appreciate it.
I will respond as soon as I have an answer all though I hold out no hope… fingers crossed I get a scorned employee looking to give out money! Haha

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Yeah…no hope. But maybe an employee who wants to be generous. At least a response as to why they think it’s fair for you to block dates for someone “thinking” about staying.

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