Hello all, suggestions please. Had a guest new to AirBNB stay recently for a couple of days. Very little communication from him other than a terse message that a car was parked in the driveway as he was arriving, within seconds of his text I called the other guest to my other unit was also arriving that afternoon (who did not have parking privileges) and he moved his car right away—he was just unloading. Called the first guest a minute later by phone and he reported the car already moved, so he was only inconvenienced for a few minutes and matter resolved in no time. Never heard from him after check in (although I ask people to text me once in to confirm all is ok and to let me know if they need anything) nor did he respond to my check out message (light and polite instructions of check out procedures) in which I ask them to let me know when they have checked out. He never let me know. Day after his check out I have notification he left a review. I have not left any review yet. I went by the unit and the place was quite messy. Not too bad but furniture moved around, used tissues strewn everywhere, half ripped-opened food items with a couple of bites and left on the counter and in the basket of chips and granola bars I leave out for guests, just an untidy and inconsiderate sloppy situation. Again, not a terrible mess but used nose-blown tissues tossed anywhere on the floor and carpet when the studio has three waste baskets is not pretty. Anyway, clearly a new AirBNB user who thinks its a hotel I guess. Hotels in the area cost at least 2-3x what my place would be. Lastly, I’m a Superhost with over 160 reviews and 4.8 stars. What kind of review would you leave for this guy? I’m predicting his will be critical as a first-time AirBNB user. I’m thinking just “Thank you.” and 3 stars for Communication and Cleanliness. Oh and his wife left a new still-tagged clothing item from a fairly expensive store in a shopping bag and I contacted him and offered to send it to him (didn’t mention shipping cost but I’m always willing to drop $5 to return people’s items) and his response was “Thank you” and just gave me his address not seeming to care who would pay for the item to be shipped. Suggestions?
I suggest you ask for shipping payment for sending back the item. Some people here go so far as to ask for money for their time on top of that. I don’t because I have boxes and know how to do shipping with USPS online and have the package picked up. BTW, unless it’s a very small light item there’s nothing you can ship for $5.
Then see how he reacts to this offer to do him a favor. That will be telling. If he can’t be bothered to respond, or if he acts put out to pay for the shipping then I’d take that into account with the review.
As for anticipating that he will leave a critical review: I wouldn’t based on what you have said so far. That’s why I wan’t to see how he deals with getting his item back.
Yeah, I thought mentioning the item would solicit a reply that would give me some indication.’his curt reply makes me think he’s feeling funny about the favor in light of a possible substandard review he may have left. I was hoping for a bit more a friendly reply.
When guests leave items they want returned, we ship them back in a flat rate USPS box (I think the cheapest one is about $8) and send a request for payment through AirBnB. Of course, I make sure the guest has agreed to pay for shipping the item on the AirBnB platform before I ship the item.
Thanks for that. Good system. For now I’ve just offered to send it as a nice gesture. It’s only happened twice before. More hopeful of suggestions about a review. I’ve never had a need to leave a possible bad/neutral one before…
So far we have only had to return a pair of prescription eyeglasses. The guest offered to pay shipping and I refused. I had made a lot of money from them, I expect them to return and send their friends based on their rave review and guest book comments, it was worth more to spread goodwill and give the guest one less thing to stress about. If it were expensive to ship, like a laptop, I would have asked for reimbursement.
Good point. With my one night bookings I can’t afford to refund 20% of their fee in shipping them items.
Please don’t. Other hosts can’t tell if your reason for giving him three stars is something they would object to unless you specifically mention what the issues were in your review.
I would not base your review on what review you think you are going to get. I had a guest who was a little high-maintenance and complained about a few minor things during the stay. I was bracing for a negative review, however, she ended up leaving a great review and not mentioning any of the items she complained about. (that we were also able to remedy during her stay).
I’ve had exactly this, a couple of times and it’s been good for business for the reasons you stated.
Be factual and unemotional.
“First time Air Guest XXXXX did not communicate well (hardly at all). Left the place a mess of used tissues, re-arranged furniture and partially eaten food laying items laying around on the counter. Probably better as an hotel guest.”
You’re probably right. It would be harshest one I’ve ever left and would feel bad if he left me a good one. That said while it wasn’t like I was cleaning up after an unapproved party with carpet stains and ashtrays everywhere it wasn’t very pretty. Think I should say No to the Recommend This Guest question?
Speaking of possible bad reviews anyone ever worry about retaliation? Like even mild vandalism or escalating things with a reply to the review which sticks out in my list of reviews given. I certainly don’t want that going on. This guest lives about 90 minutes away so I imagine comes down here from time to time. Maybe I’m just being paranoid. Again, never had a need to leave a poor review before now. Guess I’ve been lucky.
3 star for communication and cleanliness and this review, taken from your message:
“Upon check out the unit was left with the furniture moved around, used tissues strewn everywhere, half ripped-opened food items with a couple of bites and left on the counter and in the basket of chips and granola bars I leave out for guests. Used nose-blown tissues tossed anywhere on the floor and carpet when the studio has three waste baskets. Do not recommend. Will not host again.”
I wouldn’t worry about retaliation. He can’t enter the premises, right? You don’t plan on hosting him again, right? Block him to be sure. If he IB you you can always cancel him, if you don’t block him.
Nobody likes the review system. Everyone thinks they always deserve 5 stars, hosts and guests alike. But it’s the only thing we’ve got. No other platform allows you to review guests. So make use of it. It doesn’t have to be mean or personal, just state the facts.
I would not mention the communication in your review, not all guests as you have probably found by now are big communicators. I would simple say… The guest left the home a bit messier than I would have preferred with left over food and tissues left on the counters and floor. I can not say I can give a positive review and will not host the guest in the future.
What do YOU think? If it was your best friend’s most valuable asset in the Caribbean, would you recommend this guest to stay there? If it was your cousin’s country house on the lake that was built at the turn of the last century and he inherited it from a common ancestor? Would you recommend this guest to stay there?
A very honest one, please.
I got a 5-star from the guest I blacklisted with glowing commentary. Our team earned that review. And the guest got the review they earned, as well. I didn’t feel bad one bit. If you’re the feeling bad type, then you should feel worse for lying to your fellow hosts. Lying by omission is still a sin.