New trick by a guest to make more demands

I think guests have figured out that hosts get penalized for cancellation, and it is best to make demands after booking rather in the inquiry phase.

Yesterday, I got an inquiry from a guest who has been on Airbnb since 2015, a native English speaker with a degree from MIT. She sent lots of questions using short-form SMS language. I think she is computer literate but just doesn’t find it worth her time to send a properly typed message. I don’t like such people who feel they are too busy and the host should put up with their terrible communication.

My usual practice is not to encourage inquiries to book but I went against my gut feeling to send her a detailed response. She had a bunch of questions about the area, pool, and details of the listing. After a few rounds of questions, she booked.

Right after the booking confirmation, the list of demands come pouring in. Early check-in AND late check-out, plus several other things that I don’t offer. I told her that I can’t offer her any of the extra things she wants.

If she had made those demands (requests) during the inquiry, I’d have denied her inquiry. But now she has booked from my pre-approval, I’m screwed. I won’t cancel her because it’s a nice booking for five nights at around my average rate.

Based on past experience I probably won’t get a five star review from this guest since I didn’t agree to any of her demands.

I will protect myself in the future by asking them to read the house rules first before answering questions.


I would likely tell her the night before checkout that the housekeeper said she could manage a late check out and give her an hour. That way she got something she asked for and you may stave off the 4 star review.

Good luck



Clever RiverRock!

Some will disagree with any bending of rules but a message “Great news! We were able to alter the cleaning schedule to provide you a late checkout for xx:00 p.m. Happy travels” should make the guest feel like they’ve won something, and defang them.


I love this idea… this would put her in a good mood just before she gets the review request. I will do this.


I’m curious, what were her other demands?

I noticed in hotels if you don’t ask for quiet room they might give you room near elevator, if you don’t ask for high floor you will get lower floor.
You are right, when it’s too many questions it ussualy means guest is picky but I would rather have this guest ask questions before hand instead of just booking and then fuss around this and that.
I personally don’t see anything wrong with guests asking for early/late check ins and check outs.
If the house is available why not give it to them if they ask just for couple hours.
I also never understood it in hotels when they charge extra for early check ins. They do it quite often in Europe, not so much in US.
Why do you think they will for sure give you bad review? If they liked the house and all went well with their stay …if they are reasonable people they would not expect a yes answer to every request they made. The fact that they made those requests after they booked tells me it’s not crucial for them to fulfill them.


They do? I must be just lucky then as I’ve never been charged for an early check in to date. I’ve been refused one before, which I fully understand as if rooms aren’t ready they can’t be allocated. That said, the last time I remember this happening they were happy to store my luggage until the room was ready, an agreeable solution that we also offer.



Adding a portable two burner hot plate to the studio. I have a studio closer to the pool in the same apartment complex. She wants to be moved to that unit for the portion of the dates it is available.

People who ask too many questions are a big no-no for me. Someone asked if the windows are double-paned and the blinds are completely dark out. Someone who has such specific needs is better off going to the Four Seasons and paying three times what I charge.

extra wear and tear as well as utilities. If someone checks out late, the hotel may not have a room ready if a last-minute guest walks in and needs a room. I find that it is additional coordination work with cleaning crews to make sure that some units get cleaned earlier compared to letting them do it on their own schedule.

A hotel has a full-time staff to do all this coordination, and they have to pay people to do that. I don’t, and I pass on the savings to guests.

You are right. I can’t be sure whether they will give me a < 5* review. I have not offered it to many other guests and they have either not left a review or left a 5* review. In my selective memory, I remember the 4* reviews left by guests more than the 5* reviews.

I will leave her a review a couple of minutes before the deadline and warn other hosts of the tactic. I see that it’s not a problem for some so these hosts can decide whether they want to host her.

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Adding a hot plate could be a fire hazard. The guest does seem needy.


One of our potential guests went on and on about how her daughters are afraid of critters, like bugs and geckos. Our house is OPEN - no glass over the windows, and in a tropical rainforest. I told her we wouldn’t be a good fit for her, but she was interested in booking anyway. Fortunately, someone else booked those dates before she did.

She then berated me for allowing someone else to book while she was showing interest. I can’t tell whether that is entitled or “old-school”.


Why would she book a place in the tropics if her daughters are so terrified of insects and geckos (not sure how anyone could be scared of a gecko)? It would be one thing to say she is bringing them to the tropics so they can get over their fear, but to just go on and on about it and then wonder why the host said it wouldn’t be a good fit, I would call clueless, as opposed to entitled. Was she expecting you to fumigate several acres of land around your rental, or what?

My daughters were all freaked out about spiders. They certainly didn’t pick that up from me, as I’m not afraid of insects and spiders- I find them fascinating. But I never played into their fear- if they asked me to remove a spider from their room or the bathroom, I would do it, but they also knew I considered it ridiculous and would point out how huge they appeared to that spider, who likely considered them a quite scary threat.

@PitonView said she didn’t… my guess is someone from her country club had been to St. Lucia and she wanted to book a trip just to prove she can afford it as well.


I’ve had that happen—2 women separate inquiries, same wording, same days. They were shopping for a rental for a rental for their children & them to share during a ball tournament.

I answered their SAME questions.

Then a different request to book came in. I accepted it.

Both women started berating me for giving away their booking.

It was definitely entitlement. They kept trying make me feel badly because their children were disappointed.

There are over 4,000 STRs in my area.


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I realize she didn’t book with PitonView, it was more a question of why she would even want to book in the tropics if her girls are going to be having screaming meltdowns every time they spot a gecko or an ant.

You’re probably close that she wanted to book in St. Lucia because her friends had, or she saw some travel article about it. Those travel articles and travelogue films never show anyone slapping at mosquitoes :woman_facepalming:or shaking out their clothes and shoes to make sure there’s no scorpions in them :scorpion:. It’s just all drinking piña coladas on the beach watching the sunset, under the swaying palm trees. :tropical_drink: :palm_tree:


I’m not “scared” of geckos, but they creeped me out in our apartment in Bangkok. The “now you see me, now you don’t” antics, especially around/over the bed- combined with chirping. Ugh!

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But they eat so many bugs! And they have the cutest feet. And it’s fascinating to watch them stay perfectly still watching a bug and then rush in and gobble it up.


something similar happened to me as well.

While he was wasting time asking questions, another person booked. I’m glad he couldn’t book.


Hotels always offer to store luggage, true but I was often charged for early check in: Belgium, Germany and few other countries. Once I even asked if they can let me check in early and they said yes but when I arrived they told me it’s 40$ extra. I went to a different hotel next door and they let me check-in without any charge.
In US only once there was 20$ charge but I arrived at 7 am so it was worse it.

That is not an early check in, that is an extra day.


I find these requests quite common though… I got an instant booking today with that request.