Losing Superhost status thru guest ruining kettle

Hi there everyone.
I have just unlisted my rooms after having a back & forth issue with Airbnb.
I have had fantastic reviews over the 8 years I have been a host. A guest recently completed destroyed my electric jug (kettle) after boiling milk in it, he refused to pay up (I only asked for $30 (Australian)!
In the end I had to claim thru Aircover.
He then gave me 1 star which put my overall rating at .4 yes .4 below that was required to retain my Superhost status (which I’ve had for years).
You could say this is not important but the $100 that I get is useful & acts as an acknowledgment of our excellent Airbnb.
I argued with them that by not restoring my status they were rewarding this guest who destiny property.
I know they have their ‘rules on guests reviews’ but this has highlighted to me that Airbnb care more about guests than they do hosts!
I want to use an alternative platform now!


You are right it never makes good business sense to rely on just one business platform. @TeriGeri

Personally I don’t think SH status makes a difference to most guests however riled up hosts seem to get about it.

It is a failure of the Airbnb system that when hosts challenge a guest around poor behaviour or damage they can leave revenge reviews.

For Aus 30$ I wouldn’t have bothered making the claim you probably spent far more than that in terms of your time to make the claim and the attendant hassle :slight_smile:


If I understand correctly it does affect how high up you appear when a guest does a search.

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Agreed – both for the reason above and for “is it worth creating ill-will just for $30?”


[quote=“Spark, post:3, topic:55007”] If
I understand correctly it does affect how high up you appear when a guest does a search.

Not necessarily, and none of Airbnb’s messaging states that.

Search algorithms factor in so many things that it is impossible to know if SH is helping you in search. What I know is that I have seen listings which rank far above Superhosts because they use IB, even if they have quite poor ratings. And that was my own personal observation with my own listing. This is a physically small town, but super touristy, and I am familiar with many of the listings here. There are scores or hundreds with higher ranking than mine, which I know to be not nearly as nice as mine, in horribly noisy areas, etc, with low ratings and no Superhost status.

I think the search algorithms are set to more highly rank listings which bring in the most money fastest in service fees for Airbnb. So IB, no declines, high booking rate, etc, weigh far more than SH.

The only real, dependable perk for maintaining SH is the $100 voucher. And some guests may look for Superhosts to book with, either knowing that cancelling can lead to loss of SH, or thinking it assures that the place will be fine, which is certainly not always the case.


Your guests must be much more savvy than mine! :smiley:

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It used to, but now not so much. In my city with over 3000 listing there are lots of hosts with ratings of 4 or 4.30 who come way above hosts with SH status because they use IB> @Spark

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surely this is an obvious revenge review.
CS will be able to see when the guest wrote the review, even if they won’t admit that, of course they will have tracking data on everything. I don’t understand, if you have a photo, sumbit to CS, they will clearly see the damage.

This is why people don’t want to make claims, because of Revenge Reviews. I hope you also gave them 1* after they refused to take responsibility.

btw, when my daughter was about 10 she boiled milk in our kettle, I flushed it out, scrubbed it, and it was fine, but it depends where the element is I guess. It was expensive enough that I made the effort to save it!

Hi Gillian
There was no review except the words ‘I did nothing’!!
Only found out about the burnt kettle after next guests who commented on burnt water taste! By then, I had already reviewed guests!
Issue isn’t really the item ruined but more so Airbnb’s attitude. Stood by them & defended them vs so much criticism to have them not really care about me as a host.
Any, thanks for your input.

I don’t know if my comment here helps at all but until I read your post I didn’t know that you don’t boil milk in a kettle. I’ve never wanted to boil milk, so this hasn’t come up in my life. I just Googled ‘boiling milk in a kettle’ and learned why this is a bad idea.

There are so many things like this – people (like me) not knowing you shouldn’t boil milk in a kettle, others on why you shouldn’t put wooden utensils or carbon steel cutting knives in the dishwasher. How many instructions does the host need to write? And, of course, would a guest really read them? Or would it really be such a long list?

Do we Hosts live and learn and just roll with the losses and put a label on kettle ‘Only for Boiling Water’?

What we really need is a ‘School for Guests: Things You Never Learned about Living in a Home but Now You WIll.’

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Americans don’t know, but in Australia everyone grows up with a kettle in the house. Do I need to tell you not to put peanut butter in the toaster? That’s how weird it is to us to do this. (Although some asians put ramen noodles in a kettle apparently, which is stupid too)


Thank you. I now have ‘cover’ for my ignorance.

We recently had a guest who had never seen a trash compactor or knew how to open it. I now have a label on the footstep saying to gently press on it to open, and I have a label on it ‘trash compactor.’

Another guest did not know how to start the dishwasher. I am in the process of editing our House manual with a picture of the controls and circling ‘Start.’

There’s a leaning curve to being a Host!

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I grew up in the US, and can’t recall whether we had a kettle or not- I imagine so, because I don’t recall any coffee machine, but my dad drank instant coffee, so we must have had a kettle. In any case, it would have never occurred to me to boil anything in a kettle but water, because how in the world would you clean it afterwards?

I have never had a dishwasher, so have to ask how to work them when staying with family or friends. It isn’t a matter of the start button not being obvious- there are lots of buttons and I just don’t know if I have to press any of them before pressing Start.

And are trash compactors something common where you live? I have never seen nor used one, and have lived and stayed many places in both the US and Canada, none of which had such a thing.

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What is this voucher? Do they have it in the UK?

Of course, it is given to all hosts who are eligible, has nothing to do with where you live.

It is given when you maintain Superhost for 4 consecutive quarters, i.e. a year. You get an email about it and have to click on it to transfer it to your account under coupons and credits.

It is only good for one year, you can’t bank them. And if you use an Airbnb voucher or credit to book something, and then have to cancel, you don’t get that credit back, you lose it.

Many hosts this past year used their Superhost voucher to “fake book” (book but have no intention of actually showing up) a listing in Ukraine, as a way of getting money to established Ukranian hosts who had suddenly lost their livelihood.

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On the dishwasher there ARE many buttons, of which the rightmost one is START. It seems obvious enough to me but I’m the guy who didn’t know about boiling only water in a kettle.

On the trash compactor I’ve often had one over the last 20 or so years. It is especially useful in this area because the City charges for trash collection by the bag. So fewer bags, less cost. Anyway, I marked it now.

But I think all this goes to show that what is ‘obvious’ and ‘common knowledge’ to the Host might well not be to the guest, and reasonably so. That’s why we as Hosts keep learning, and why I keep finding it useful to put labels on things and keep editing the House manual.

If you had dishwasher instructions that said all the guest has to do is press Start, and not touch the other settings, then I agree it’s rather brain dead to have to explain more than that.

But if you assumed everyone knows how to use a dishwasher, and not to mess with the other settings, yes, that is a false assumption.

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As hosts, I think it’s easy to overestimate what guests know. I know about only boiling water in an electric kettle, how to operate dishwashers, etc.

But, savvy homeowner and AirBnB host that I am, I’ve spent too much time here in Ireland in a state of befuddlement.

  1. The heating systems are totally different to what I’ve ever had in the States (and I’ve had different kinds in the States—gas forced air, hot water baseboard heat, electric built in wall heaters, even vintage gas open flame radiators) and I’ve struggled to figure out how to operate the heat in all three of the AirBnBs I’ve stayed in.

  2. Every place has had a different type of coffeemaker. It’s taken me far too long to figure them out!

  3. I guess electrical codes don’t allow for wiring in the bathrooms. The switches that control the bathroom lights are ALWAYS outside the bathroom, and there are NEVER electrical outlets in the bathroom.

  4. Each electrical receptacle as a switch that turns it off and on.

Hosts assume we would know these things—and I did know some of them thanks to previous travels in England. But stuff we take for granted guests should know it often a complete mystery to them because it’s not what they are used to.


Yep, things don’t work the same in Mexico as what folks from other places are accustomed to, either. For instance,I had never seen door locks like what is standard here before I moved here. That’s one important reason why there’s no way I could never offer self-check -in.

And most Americans and Canadians are not accustomed to gas cooking stoves, which are standard here.

You might find both first-world style locks and electric stoves in some modern homes, but not in the average Mexican house.

And when people do build first-world type homes in 3rd world infrastructure, it is problematic when things go awry. For instance, we sometimes lose electric, especially in summer storms. My neighbors, who have a pressure pump from their well into their house, then have no water coming out of their taps. They have to bucket water out of their pool for everything. (Some people have generators in this case, they just don’t happen to, and even if they did, it would require going out, sometimes in the middle of a thunderstorm, to fire up the generator)

I have a traditional Mexican system, where water goes into my cistern, then pumps up to a tank on my roof and is gravity fed into my house. So if the electric goes out for even a day, I still have water coming out of my faucets from the 2500 liter tank on my roof.

microwave is how people boil water. I just watched a youtube vid about an American here in Australia doing one of those “10 things I don’t do anymore” and microwaving water was one of them. I remember in the 80s when we got our first microwave we also boiled water that way, because that was a “feature”, but it didn’t last long, as boiling the kettle is just as quick.

A kettle is as common as a toaster. Everyone has a kettle in Australia. Kettle & toaster, that’s the standard, they sell them everywhere in matching sets. My 10yo daughter put milk in the kettle once, because she was a kid and an idiot. A grown adult doing the same gets the same judgement from me. the review from the guest “I did nothing!” also highlights how utterly juvenile some “adults” are. We have a pandemic of kidults, who think they are wonderful and can do no wrong, and their reactions to be corrected are on par with a toddler.