Strange Reservation- what to do?

Hi All- someone just booked my place in Vermont for a two day stay, three people. I have my listing set to only accept guests with positive feedback. Guest has no feedback but when you click through to his profile it looks like he was a guest under someone else’s booking who received a positive review. Somehow I am unable to message him through the Air BnB platform- whenI click the message button it loops me back to his profile. Although he lists a NY state address, there’s a +39 prefix on his phone number. When they come, it will be mud season in VT . His initial message is also a little odd. How do you deal with a booking that doesn’t feel quite right? And what about the messaging thing? Thanks!

He booked. That’s the problem with IB, you didn’t get a chance to “look over” the guest prior to accepting him. Since you can’t message through Air, try calling him.

You seem to be doing a lot of “backgrounding” of guests and yet you allow Instant Book, which doesn’t make a lot of sense to me. Why not just do Inquiry & Reserve?

You should be able to Decline him as “uncomfortable with this guest” but its easier if you Decline an Inquiry rather than an IB.


It does seem a little strange to use IB and then get fixated about the hometown not matching the phone number. (I’d have never thought to look at that).

As for the messaging thing, what did Airbnb say?

I wouldn’t worry about the area code of phone number not matching his state address. It’s probably his cellphone and not his landline.

My children still use the same cell # from when they were teens and now both are in their late 20s and live in different states. It’s just easier to keep the same cell #.

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+39 is Italy, and address is NY, but I’ve had a few guests with numbers from a different place in the world than their address. He maybe moved from Italy, or was travelling in Italy when he set up the account.
The messaging loop is weird, though. You might ask Airbnb about that if you have the patience. I can see why you might not want to call a European number unless you have an international phone plan.
I don’t think it is odd that you noticed the phone number. I have IB as well, and I would notice a long European number not matching a more local address.
Anyway, you will want to get that messaging problem fixed. If you are trying it through the email link, go instead to the site and try that way. See if you can pull it up through the inbox, or through details in reservations.

No worries about phone numbers not matching living location. Happens all the time. I can’t speak about the country code.

Instant Book is up to you. The host does lose some pre-reservation control

I’ve had 3 reservations that set off my uncomfortable feelings. I really wish I had cancelled 2 of the 3.

If you can’t reply to the guests booking confirmation in your messages call Airbnb and ask them why.

What is it about his booking message that makes you feel concerned ?

I try not to feel anything, heads in beds.



Can we get an update on this? It would be really helpful to readers to know what Airbnb have said about the message thing. Also, as @Helsi said, what was it about the message that felt wrong?

Sorry, I was sobusy at my day job I couldn’t get thru, even tried last pm and waited on hold then gave up. Message functionality finally worked last pm and I reminded the guest I had no wifi and the roads are muddy. He requested cancellation and I canceled on grounds of venue and guest not being a fit. There was no charge. Thanks for all the feedback.


Thank you for letting us know. So many people read this site and they are probably like me and find it a bit frustrating when we don’t get the outcome.

I’m glad it worked out well for you. :slight_smile:

You should have asked HIM to cancel, since he didn’t want to stay. He can cancel without penalty, but you only get 2 penalty free cancellations unless you get one of the competent customer disservice contractors.


I don’t know your area or situation so this is all about ME! If if if if you can offer an internet connection you may wish to consider it.

My last 4 guests for at least a month a reservation have been work from home nomads requiring an internet connection. The money has been good. The guests delightful.

Interesting my last guests are late 50’s, sold the big house, working & traveling while retirement home being built. They are my second set of almost retiree guests doing thus

Yes, thanks for the tip- WIFI is on the way. Unfortunately down my road the max speed will be 1.6MBPS on a good day. So until high speed comes to my corner of VT it looks like I’ll have to warn remote workers about the weakness of the connection…