Misleading rates

I noticed that some hosts offer low rates, but when I check their calendar I realize that they just have one day with that rate because as a matter of fact their rent is much higher. This is confusing if you want to search an accommodation not by date but by location. I wonder why some hosts are acting like this?

I am having trouble understanding your post. Maybe you are not adding cleaning fees? Or Airbnb fees?
Or, if they have smart pricing on, Airbnb shows the base rate but then adjusts it up according to demand. The host has no control if smart pricing is turned on.

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Wow, I never saw this, must be a strategy to get guests to look at the listing but I can’t believe it’s very effective. Btw, your English is just fine. We are bi-lingual at home and some of our conversations are lost in translation :joy:


That is to fool newbie guests that do not put in a date.
So you look at their listing and score extra clicks, and maybe even an extra booking.

Always put in a date, even when searching by location.
This will also filter out the unavailable listings.

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I agree, and AirBnB penalizes the host for it in the search ranking. (based on the conversion rate)

But it is a good strategy in when a hosts does it by a small margin. If you have a nightly rate of 110 you can set a rate at $99. Maybe if a potential guest likes your place, they are willing to spend the extra.

Also not only blame the host, AirBnB has also got a part in it with the automatic pricing.

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Nearly everyone does that in Budapest!

It’s just another way for hosts to bend the results in their favour unfortunately. If no filters are applied, the “cheapest” places come up first. We have loads of places here at apparently 10 Euro a night, but if you put in a date to book it miraculously changes to 50+!

It’s easily done, just put your base price at 10 Euro and then go through the calendar and manually change the price to whatever you want.

Just another rubbish feature of Airbnb!

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It’s not always nefarious hosts trying to put one over on unsuspecting guests!

My area has a big seasonal swing in prices from low season to high. Spring dates may go for as low as $135 while I’ve booked summer weekend nights as high as $280. Someone searching without a specified date will see my base price of $185; this likely turns away guests looking for spring and gives sticker shock to those searching for prime summer weekends. How else could I possibly do it? If I set the base at $250, I’d really not have any spring or winter bookings and if I set it at $135, there’d be even more sticker shock for summer guests.

I’m not trying to “fool” anyone, just working with the tools Airbnb provides. If someone has a better approach, please let me know!


You are probably seeing the “base price”, and not seeing seasonal or holiday rate. We aren’t trying to fool or cheat anyone. Our base rate is $82 per night, but in high season it is $95 per night and in low season it is $65 per night.

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Book the cheap date?

I have also seen a number of hosts who do this and it’s irritating.

At least one listing I looked at had one day available in a nearly 6 week span that had a day priced at way below his rate for the other days I could see available. I can’t recall exactly but $50 when the other nights were $200 seems close. He also had a two or three day minimum so it was literally impossible to book the cheap day. So it wasn’t seasonal or anything else, it’s a purposeful strategy whose purpose I don’t understand. As a guest I only find it infuriating. I wouldn’t give two cents of my money to a host like that.


It’s one of those scenarios where they can get away with it for a short period of time but it’s not a viable long-lasting money-maker!

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That is a nice one, always looking for ways of working the system, not suitable for me now, but maybe one day.

Most guests of course would be unaware, the Airlines etc do it all the time.

I never noticed that, 3 years hosting. I must check my local houses are their prices are ridiculous low.

I’ve seen two variations of this…

  1. Host makes base price incredibly low then changes all but one day a month or quarter to a much higher rate. Technically they are offering the low rate but only for 1 day.
    2, Host makes base price very low then charges an outrageous cleaning fee. I believe with the cleaning fee they are trying to avoid taxes paid on rental revenue.

Either way it feels like the host is a “game player” and it makes me uncomfortable.

BTW. I have seasonal pricing and special event pricing. In my area June-Sept 7th are peak demand seasons so higher pricing. Also for May graduation weekends and local film festivals, I have event pricing which is higher. 70% of the dates my base price is the real price.

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I always thought that was due to ‘the lowest price used once in all of your listings history’ …so if you started at $ 20 some 3 years ago …

hi, what do you mean by Airbnb penalizes the host in the search ranking based on the conversion rate?
Btw- I mentioned this same issue months ago about a listing with a rate of about $60 per night even though the their competitors with comparable number of bedrooms, etc. were priced much higher.
This low ball rate was deceptive because when you go to book, the actual rate that they charge is actually 3x higher!
This property stays fully booked, so obviously folks don’t feel cheated.
Someone responded to my inquiry and said that if one night’s rate is super low, that’s the rate that gets put on the listing.
This property comes up towards the top when you do a search, so clearly the host is not penalized. They’ve been on Airbnb a long time, too.

I know that you weren’t talking to me but I’m chipping in anyway. Hope that’s okay. :slight_smile:

Imagine that you are Airbnb. You see that one property has 5000 views per week but only ten people a week book. Then there’s another property that only gets 50 views per week but gets 25 bookings a week. You’d put the second one at the top of the list.

The good thing is that we don’t actually know that because dates that are blocked will show as booked.

@jaquo Hi, of course, I welcome all input! Thank you for your explanation of conversion rates. I get alot of views (well, 340 seems alot to me!), but not a correspinding number of bookings. Clearly, something is wrong with my listing. I’ve experimented with ( and currently use) a dynamic pricing tool; I research my competitors & had professional pictures taken.
In my area thete are some ridiculously low prices for comp. homes. I’m even the only truly accessible home in the entire 200 mile radius! Been on Airbnb since Dec 2017. Will I ever really make a go of this? I work 7 days a week on this & if I can’t make it profitable then I’m going back to horrible yearly rental. :-(.
Yes, they may not be booked, but they keep getting reviews…

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What do you mean?

My last 30 days I have 875 views and only a 1.6% booking rate yet the last 30 days I was booked 23 nights and had 1 night blocked. I could be much more booked than I am.

Making a go of it is based on how much you need to make over a year compared to how much you can make with a traditional lease. I don’t really consider the work I do on my Airbnb to be much work but if it’s a lot of work for you then factor that in as well.

I just received the notice from Airbnb similar to: “Your listing has been viewed 286 times in the past week for bookings in July & August. 3 of those guests booked at other locations priced $12 a night less than yours…”. During peak season, many people take quick peeks at listings the viewing numbers go up, so not worrisome.

My July is fully booked. I only have 13 open nights in from 8/1-11/30. Like K9KarmaCasa, I don’t have much booking time left. I stopped paying attention to those messages.

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