Reviewing Guest After They Cancel?

I had a guest cancel a 4 day booking on the day they were due to arrive (before check-in time). They didn’t contact me at all - just cancelled.

I’m not complaining about this (2 of the nights were booked by others almost immediately, which covered my losses).

My question is in regard to the AirBnB email requesting a review for this guest.

They didn’t stay, so I can’t rate them on cleanliness or observation of rules.

So I’m not sure how to proceed or even if I need to proceed.

Any advice?

I also have been prompted to review my non arrival guest who cancelled via Air after check-in time. I assume he also got the prompt to review me…


This is probably the one time that you shouldn’t review since you can’t rate the guest on cleanliness or observance of the house rules.

Things might be different if the guest asks you for a refund or Airbnb asks you to voluntarily give a refund.

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Do review. State guest cancelled on day of arrival without ANY COMMUNICATION whatsoever.
I don’t want those guests, especially not during any high season.


They already asked me if I wanted to refund. I said no, lets see if he asks. Interestingly I called him by mistake Monday, and his texted response was that he was in class. So I guess he wasn’t sick for very long. I will not review him unless he reviews me. He may produce a Dr. visit receipt and get a refund yet.

What star rating would you give for cleanliness and house rules when they’ve not stayed? Can’t write a review without star ratings

Because it’s important to me to review even people who cancel, I give them the benefit of the doubt about cleanliness and rules and give them five stars. But then my public comment mentions the cancellation, the lack of communication (if that was an issue), etc. I also say in that text that the software required me to assign stars for cleanliness and rules and that the star ratings don’t reflect any stay.


Thanks Rebecca. That makes sense.

“Can’t recommend Guest, as they canceled, without notice, on the day of arrival.”

IMHO they would get 0 stars across the board.


So long as they aren’t asking for a refund, I just wouldn’t leave a review.

If there was some issue at arrival that caused the cancellation, that would be worth a mention. This summer I had my first guest who wanted to cancel on arrival, demanding a full refund. All of her complaints were things mentioned in the listing. She was rude AF; both she and her husband blew up my phone, threatening legal action, etc. I certainly left one for her.

I wouldn’t get my nose out of joint about them not messaging, either. Imagining myself in a situation where I’m cancelling my vacation last minute, none of the scenarios are positive. Hitting the cancel button is enough.


Ignore. I had this happen quite a few times. I ignored. they ignored. it’s a bug in the software, i think

I don’t understand why a host would care that a guest cancels without notice. In fact, the host does get a notice from Airbnb, and any reason for cancellation that the guest could provide is irrelevant. Airbnb gives hosts the option to setup their cancellation policies to protect them against loss of income. Assuming the guest abides by those policies (which we know is not always the case), the guest does not owe the host anything more.


As even a cancellation involves some sort of customer interaction, I see the value of reviewing each other. I don’t think the stars for cleanliness and rules make any sense, but the rest of it does. And other hosts might want to know if a particular guest cancels over and over and over.


This seems terribly unfair to give a guest 0 stars (or 1 which is the minimum) for Cleanliness and House Rules when they didn’t even stay. If their communication really bothered you, then so be it because at least communication is something you did witness from them.

Also, as a host, this is terribly unhelpful. I wouldn’t want to accept a guest with 1 star ratings in cleanliness and house rules because that implies a trashed house after a party or even worse but that’s not the case with this guest at all, they merely canceled, which is their right.


It isn’t a bug in the software- hosts have hounded Airbnb to eliminate these prompts to review and disallow reviews for same-day cancellations for a long time and Airbnb ignores it. The thinking is that sometimes a guest arrives and finds that the place is legitimately unacceptable (dirty, non-working appliances, etc- we all know there are some awful so-called hosts out there) and cancel right away. It makes sense for those people to be allowed to review, but if the host says the guest never even arrived and the guest said they did, it’s a he said/she said situation and Airbnb has no way of knowing if a guest actually checked in and stayed, or cancelled an hour before they even set foot on the property.
But it is absurd to be asked to rate cleanliness or adherence to house rules for a guest who never even stayed.
What Airbnb needs to do is to only allow a rating for communication and a written review for guests who never stayed.

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I took helpful advice from members of this forum, similar to Rebecca’s. I also got a “loose-lipped” rep ( or whatever we call the folks who answer the phone) who volunteered that the guest who cancelled had left me a 5-star review first😊!?


I scanned the comments and I can’t tell if you’ve decided to leave a review or not, so I’ll leave my thoughts on this, too.

We’ve had a few guests cancel last-minute, within 24 hours of check-in, or well within their booked time, for various reasons. One even showed up with a HUGE truck and trailer for which we could not possibly accommodate parking. (If they have mentioned this, we could have made other arrangements to park at a nearby parking lot, but guest didn’t communicate this clearly unusual travel accessory.)

I’ve learned to ignore the prompts to review. It’s not worth the risk of a less-than-stellar review once the guest sees that I’ve reviewed them, only imagining what I could possibly have said. We also get enough reviews to buoy our review score.

As others have mentioned, Airbnb has no way of knowing if a guest in fact arrived, found the accommodation unacceptable, and simply cancelled and left. Depending on your cancellation policy, the guest is on the hook for at least the first night or the entire booking. As a courtesy, I refund the cleaning fee, but I don’t review.

Sometimes life events happen the prevent someone from getting to their destination, and because we’re booked quite often, I use the Flexible cancellation policy to give guests the most flexibility for their travel plans. Some even admit their mistake and acknowledge the cancellation policy as it stands. At least one guest stayed with us at a later date paying full price.

As annoying as last-minute cancellations and no-shows are, that’s why we have cancellation policies. You choose what’s best for you for this exact event, and simply ignore the review period.

Common courtesy would be at least to let the host know. For them to have Airbnb do it and with no interaction at all from the cancelling guest? Not ideal guest for Airbnb, particularly hone shares and where hosts are meeting the guest at check-in.

I’m still trying to figure out why it’s important to the host to get some message from the guest. This is a serious question, BTW. The host will “know” whether the guest sends a message saying they’re cancelling or the host receives a notification from Airbnb. If the guest sent a message that simply said “I have to cancel this trip.” would that really be any different? The guest’s reasons for cancelling are quite frankly none of the host’s business. Even if the guest said “I’m sorry, I have to cancel this trip because XXX.” Would hosts believe them? I know that if they asked for a refund, many hosts would be skeptical about anything the guest claims. Why would it be different even if the guest doesn’t ask for a refund?

Which is worse?

  1. A guest that cancels the day before check-in without saying anything
  2. A guest that cancels the day before check-in and sends the host a message with a complete lie so that the host doesn’t give them a bad review.

As I said before, it’s different if either the guest guest or Airbnb asks the host for a refund outside of the host’s cancellation policy. In that case, yeah, if the guest wants something from the host that was outside of the original agreement, then the guest better explain why he/she deserves it.

Thank you everyone for your thoughts. I mulled it over and decided to post a review. I gave 5 stars to the cleanliness and house rules (with mention in the message that I only did so because it was necessary in order to review) and gave 4 for communication (giving them the benefit of the doubt that they may have had a sudden emergency and did not have time to message me).

I also sent a direct message to them saying I was sorry to see they had to cancel and I hope it wasn’t due to something too serious.

Have not heard back.