MIA Host in Private Room Listing - Mention in Review?

My husband and I stayed in our first Airbnb night before last. It was a lovely room about which I had no major complaints and which would deserve a 5 star overall review. The only thing that kind of bothered me was the fact we didn’t meet our hosts. I was disappointed because I was looking forward to meeting a fellow set of hosts and chatting with them.

We stayed for only one night. I’d have understood if our hosts worked and were simply out of the house before we even got up. However, we stayed over on a Sat night into Sun morning. We told them when we’d be arriving and they claimed they’d be home to greet us. Then later in the day they sent a message telling us they’d had a change of plans and would be out. Okay, no problem. I figured we’d see them the next morning, though that wasn’t the case.

I know there are many reasons why hosts and guests might not connect with only a one night stay, but in this case I don’t think it was mere coincidence. These hosts go out of their way to not meet their guests. They only have 11 reviews. Of these, 3 mention the guests didn’t meet the hosts. Looking at the reviews the hosts left for past guests, they mention in 5 of them that they never met the guests in person.

My question here is, would you mention this as something of a negative when reviewing these hosts?

I’d say it was a disappointment but wouldn’t overly criticise. For me the main thing is the room and whether it met my expectations.


Unless the listing explicitly states that the owner enjoys interactions with guests, I am not sure that this is an expectation that is realistic. It sounds as though, you wanted to chat up another host, but knew based on the reviews that this host often did guest-avoidance maneuvers. I don’t think you can ding them for that unless they told you before booking that they would spend time with you.

Do I want to run my AirBNB this way? Absolutely not. I am in the hospitality business. Clearly this host is in the room business. Two very different approaches. In the future, you will know that this isn’t the type of room that you wish to book, or the type of business that you wish to run.

In some ways, this might have been more informative and educational than actually having the chance to talk with the host. They spoke powerfully without making an appearance.


Do you think they purposely stay elsewhere when they have guests? - Like maybe they are boyfriend/girlfriend and the other has their own place??

I wouldn’t mention it (as a negative) unless their listing advertises as them showing guests around the town, etc. I don’t see anything wrong though with mentioning that you never did get to meet them.

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I would have thought that would be a good thing - you get an entire place at private room prices.
I certainly wouldn’t knock them for it!
We are often out of our listing and guests enjoy having the whole place to themselves even when they only paid for a private room.
I would be shocked if a guest marked us down for it!!!


What do the hosts say in the “Interaction with Guests” section of their listing? I don’t think you can hold them to anything beyond that, and even so, things happen. Given guest and host schedules, a one day stay makes it even more unlikely you would meet them. I would definitely not criticize them for this.

Give a positive review and mention that in the private feedback if it bothers. To me that’s super minor.

You don’t want to be one of those hosts that are excessively nitpicking!

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I had a guest (golf outing for 4 men) mention in private feedback he was sorely disappointed that he didn’t meet me. Um,I’m downstairs, you knew that, and you rented my entire home (except for my basement). You coulda called me up to share some wine, but 90% of my experience is via VRBO, where there is no socializing. oh well…

I don’t think it would be fair to complain in the review about not meeting the hosts if all your needs were met. I read the reviews that my guests have left for former hosts. If I read a review that stated that the lodgings were fine but the guest was disappointed in not interacting with the host I would decline the guest. I spend time with my guests and I enjoy it, but it is time consuming. In the future, I think that if you want interaction with the host you should ask about it in your inquiry.


Me, too. To me it would come off as needy and nitpicky.


Well truthfully you’re paying for a room not for someone’s company. The hosts have their own lives that keep on going whether they have guests or not. I understand that you had different expectations and you were looking forward to meeting them and stuff. But personally I wouldn’t mention it in a review or even ding them for it in any way. That’s just my own opinion though.


I guess the other thing is that one really doesn’t know why they weren’t there. They could have a loved one in the hospital for all we know. Who knows why they’re not there? In my opinion ratings should be given based on the space itself only. I don’t think that hosts should be judged for their personality or how much time they spend with their guests. You know what I mean?

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I only meet maybe 50% of my guests, probably even fewer of the one-nighters.

Our set up is such that the private guest entrance is not where we would easily run into each other. Most people book my place for seclusion and privacy and that’s what I give them. Plus, with my on-call work schedule, I’m often gone at wee hours and not home until crazy late, when it would be inappropriate to try and meet them.

Like others have said above, they’re not selling you their company, they’re renting you a space. As long as you have everything you need, I see nowhere that you should rate them down or mention it in your review.

Hi @Chloe

I agree with the others - unless the host mentioned otherwise, it’s not an issue worth mentioning in your review.

If you were disappointed not to meet them, why didn’t you check out reviews in advance and stay somewhere where hosts say they are more hands on.

From what you said guest reviews and theirs would have given you a clear indication they weren’t the social type.

I do think it was a little rude of them to say they would meet you and then change their plans though.

Yes, I would mention it. You can say you were disappointed and leave it at that. People can figure it out. As a guest, I take great pains to find places that are truly hosted; that is, host in residence. I think that should be a filter option.

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I just noticed this today when editing my listing. Under “Interaction with guests”, they’re now asking us to select from two options instead of just writing text. Not sure where this shows on the listing as I don’s see it anywhere.

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Thanks for mentioning this. I just updated our listing.

I had a couple stay a few months ago who left us 3 stars because they didn’t get to hang out with us like they had with all their previous hosts. Pissed me off a LOT especially as they said the room was lovely and spotless, and I make it very clear that guest interaction is minimal but if they need anything I’m always happy to help. He didn’t approach me once during the stay.

So no, don’t mention it in the review. It will make you sound needy!!


That is just weird and wrong, especially as it is disclosed in your listing. Are these guests three years old? Not even our kindergarten students are that needy, sheeze.

I don’t understand guests. I just hosted a lovely couple who were just great to talk to and raved about the place. Left me a gushing note. But marked me DOWN for accuracy because I was BIGGER, yes, bigger than expected and because they had access to a kitchen, which is also not disclosed.

Yes you heard right. I got marked down for being BETTER than advertised!

Just when you think you’ve seen it all, guests do something else gobsmacking!


We rent rooms, not friends.

It’s nice to meet guests in passing but at the end of the day they’re here to rent my room. When Airbnb first started we had many guests who we would briefly socialise with, however things have changed a lot and 99% of guests want nothing more than to use their room and go out for the day. I have come to expect that of everyone.