Responding to inaccurate review

Any suggestions on how to respond to this review … ? There are at least 15 pillows of various thickness and varieties and the kitchen has a “complete” set of pots/pans :smirk:.

Guest’s comments:

“ I would suggest bringing your own pots/pans if you plan to do any kind if cooking. Also, definitely bring your own pillows. There were several available, but none with pillow cases and they were all very flat and uncomfortable. Other than that, we very much enjoyed our stay and would stay again, with preparing a little better.”

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Do you provide pillowcases on the pillows? FYI their comment about them being uncomfortable seems valid. Same with their comment on pots and pans - having a “complete” set (your quotes) apparently was not enough, or the right quality, for this one guest.


I wonder whether you might message them and ask what was missing from your set of pots and pans.

I would suggest that not only you have pillow cases but also pillow protectors for dust mites, etc. Something like this.

Use this review – which sounds honest and authentic even though you disagree – as a free opportunity for market research.

After that you can decide how or if you want to respond.


There are 16-17 pillows for the 3 bedrooms. All pillows on the beds have pillowcases. The extra pillows in the closets don’t have pillowcases. The variety of pillows means there are some that are thinner, some medium, and some thicker.
There are at least 3 frying pans, 3 - 4 different sizes of pots (from small to large), an air fryer, cookie sheets, casserole baking plates, etc. The quality is “medium” … not super heavy duty or expensive. It might have been that (the quality).

In that case, if you feel you need to clarify for future guests, you might respond something like:
Yes, XXX is correct. All the extra pillows – of various thicknesses to suit all preferences – are in the closet, and you will indeed need to slip on the supplied pillowcases yourself. We have a full set of pots and pans, but if you prefer your own, you are most welcome to bring them!


December 4

In that case, if you feel you need to clarify for future guests, you might
respond something like:
Yes, XXX is correct. All the extra pillows – of various thicknesses to
suit all preferences – are in the closet, and you will indeed need to slip
on the supplied pillowcases yourself. We have a full set of pots and pans,
but if you prefer your own, you are most welcome to bring them!

Visit Topic That’s
a good response!

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How many people were on this booking? If all 3 bedrooms were being used, maybe some of their group grabbed all the thicker pillows and the reviewer was left with only the flatter ones?

Are the pillowcases evident and near the pillows in the closet or would they have to go looking for pillowcases? (And possible they didn’t realize there were extra pillows in the closet?)

As for the cookware, you say it is of medium quality, which shouldn’t be a problem unless your rental is high end. But what is the cookware like? If it’s scratched up non-stick, I could see guests complaining about that.

Or they are just the types to have to find things to complain about. But the review also was complimentary, so I would be tempted to message them and ask about the complaints, as there might be a reasonable explanation. And leave a short review response as Lawre suggested.

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I wouldn’t leave this response, which strikes me as a little snarky. After all, they said they’d come back!

I would hope that there would be pillow protectors (see above) and pillow cases on four pillows per bedroom.

If you felt that you needed to respond before hearing what their issue was with the pots and pans, I might say something like:

“I’m so glad that you enjoyed your stay and would come again. We’d love to host you! I’m exploring with you offline on your specific thoughts on our pots and pans, and our pillows!”

There are at least 2 pillows for each bed (with pillowcases), and in addition there are pillows in the shams of each bed. Additionally there are 3-4 pillows in each closet, but without pillowcases since to have guests deciding to use all of the 16-18 pillows/pillowcases would be unnecessary laundery (in my opinion).

I think regarding the pots/pans they might have been referring to the quality. There was a new 11-12 piece set purchased less than a year ago, so still in good shape. I wouldn’t call my house a “high end” rental, but mid-priced for the area ($225-300/night for a 3 bedroom/2 bath).

What’s the benefit of having additional pillows in the closet without pillowcases?


2 pillows on a bed for 2 people? I would suggest there be 2 for each person, one thicker and one thinner.
Also I don’t understand the idea of shams. Are you thinking that guests would remove the sham cases and put regular pillowcases on them if they wanted to use them?
Personally, I think Airbnbs should be furnished practically, not with purely decorative items like shams.


Is everything at eye level and within easy reach? I’m wondering if your guests simply didn’t see everything. In my house book I have a section titled “Where’s everything?” In that section I tell them what items are in the kitchen island, pantry, floor cabinet, etc.


Photos in the house manual are useful, too, maybe even more useful than text, which people may ignore reading.


I don’t think it’s snarky to point out misrepresentations in a review for the benefit of future guests. The response is not addressed to the guest who wrote the review, it is simply general information.


What was the misrepresentation in the guest review?

Certainly not their comment on the pillowcases, though the statement that guests should bring their own pots and pans seems a stretch [I’d still like to know the guest’s objections to the pots and pans.]

The draft review for the Host’s consideration: 1) that the guest use the supplied pillowcases on other pillows doesn’t address the issue that it appears there are just two pillows and two pillowcases on the bed, and 2) the suggestion to future guests that they are welcome to bring their own pots and pans is, if not snarky, disagreeable (let’s not wordsmith).

This guest review is from a guest who enjoyed the stay and would come back. Is it really of benefit to future guests (and while, literally, the draft review is a response to that guest review it shows a ‘take it or leave it’ attitude) to leave a review saying that they are welcome to bring their own pots and pans?

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I agree that the “welcome to bring your own” is a bit unnecessarily sarcastic. The host could just say there is a full set of cookware so they are confused by the comment.

The pillow thing, the host won’t understand unless they message the guest asking for some clarification. Regardless of the pillowcase, and how many pillows are left on the bed aspects, it sounds like there are plenty of pillows and a selection of thicknesses but the guests just didn’t find them.

I don’t know what’s wrong with people these days, but a lot seem unable to figure anything out for themselves and need every little thing pointed out to them. I’ve read of guests saying in the review that there weren’t enough blankets and they were cold, when the host had a closet full of spare blankets and if the guest couldn’t be bothered to look, all they had to do was ask. But they didn’t even bother to do that, opting to just be cold instead and leave a misleading review.

If I were a guest and saw a review saying the pillows and cookware were insufficient and that guests should plan to bring their own, I would want to see a clarifying response from the host.

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I agree. Also, I too have never understood the sham thing. And I’m not getting the idea of leaving extra pillows with no pillowcases.

Regarding the review, guests are told (as are hosts) to be honest. It seems that they were honest within their own standards.

They would have liked better pillows and they would have liked better cookware,

They certainly weren’t saying ‘this is a dreadful place with an appalling host’.

There are many hosts here (and I’m one) who never reply to reviews. I believe (others don’t) that it’s unprofessional.

Also, it draws attention to that review. I don’t see how a response would be of any value.

I’ve said this many times here before but I once had a review that read"You’ll need a car if you’re staying here - there’s nothing nearby" Just a few stays later was a review that said, “one of the great things about this place is that you can walk to the beach, to restaurants, to shops and there’s no need for a car”.

They were both right and being honest as they saw it.

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I get what you are saying, but the need for a car in a guest’s eye is dependent on whether they like and are used to walking or are accustomed to getting in the car to go somewhere 4 blocks away. In other words, it’s just based on personal preference, Goldilocks-style. But if a review indicates that what was provided was inadequate, I don’t see anything wrong with a response clarifying what is provided.

That’s exactly what I’m saying - a review is their own perception. One couple are used to driving everywhere, the other couple is used to walking. Neither couple is right or wrong.

If a reviewer says that something was inadequate for them. they are being honest.

I’ve stayed in rentals that have had glowing reviews but were in fact woefully inadequate … for me.


But the reviewer didn’t say it was inadequate for them, they made it sound like a fact that there is insufficient cookware and pillows. Which according to the host is not the case. If the guest had said “There wasn’t sufficient cookware for us to easily prepare Thanksgiving dinner for our party of 6”, or “While there was a full set of cookware, it was in bad shape, so if we book here again, we’ll bring our own” then it would be clear that this was just a personal preference regarding something that probably wouldn’t be an issue for a normal stay.