The worst experience an a lesson learned

The worst experience an a lesson learned.

We are pretty new at AirBnB, nevertheless we are in this business since 3 years. We have a “Bed & Breakfast” in Santa Lucia, near Cayo Jutias in Cuba.
We got a reservation for a room for 4 people for 8 days. While chatting with our client we discourage to book for so a long period
because they had plans for moving to different places from here. Although this is possible, transportation is difficult and it would be better to book different
places instead of always at our place. They decided to book the 8 days and asked for a discount. We gave one night for free and an extra discount. Total discount was 15% from the regular price. Moreover we made for them an extra discount for breakfast, instead of 5$ as regular we offered breakfast for 3$.

They wanted yet another room for yet another 4 people for 8 days. We didnt have any free room more but we organised another room at a neighbor place next door.
They told us that they will arrive at noon and asked if we can prepare for them lunch.
They ordered chicken, fish, some vegetarian food and lobster. All for 8 people.

When they arrived they decided to remain 4 days instead 8 days and asked to split the money they already paid to AirBnB half to us half to the neighbor. Although this was
not what we have arranged we accepted the deal.

They decided neither to have breakfast nor lunch nor dinner.

They stayed only 3 nights. At the third night we brought the bill for the lunch.
We didn’t charge neither salads nor fruit plates we gave. Instead of 11 can of beer we charge only 10 cans.

We charged each lobster plate 10 dollar, chicken 6 dollar and fish plates 8 dollar.
The bill, including service, for 8 people was 91 dollar.
Then a discussion started about the prices. They claim that our prices were too expensive.
In fact we know what are charging other places here in Santa Lucia and we know that we are a little bit under the average. They claim that our prices were more expensive as at local restaurants, which is not true.
After a discussion they payed. The only “open issue” was the other room with our neighbour (he is not at AirBnB). The deal was that the client already paid 8 nights
and we will split the money into 2.
Well, the client cancelled the rest of the nights at AirBnB and now we have no money to split with him.

I know, I am guilty. I never ever should agree in such a deal and our neighbor should ask them to pay directly to him and not through us. In t3 years this was our worst experience at all.

It was a lesson learned. An expensive one.

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ughh… sorry. Yes… You learned that when guests ask for special deals you will often get burned. Just stick to your guns and don’t let people push you around.

Still not totally following the deal with the neighbors. If they did cancel I would imagine you only owe what was actually paid out.

Would love to come to Cuba one day. Could you share your listing? Send a PM if you don’t want to post it publicly.

You are welcome :slight_smile:
OUr listing

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Your story is proof that the more you offer, the more they will try and take advantage :pensive:

I hope you will leave them the terrible review they deserve!

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OH MY GOSH!!! You look fantastic. How can ANYONE complain about anything… you have great prices and a super location. If I didn’t already live in the tropics I would book a trip to Cuba before it gets ruined!!!

Is there a way you can make this into a fixed price menu? Be sure to account for all the time it takes for you to shop, prepare, serve and clean up as well. It’s very cool that you serve Cuban meals to guests. They should appreciate that and not be jerks and tightwads!!

That is the effect of the US embargo. There are shortages of everything.


It looks beautiful. We toured Cuba 3 years ago and hope to get back. Have saved your lisying!

Thank you for sharing your experience. I have learned so much from this forum, having read it before we began and continuing now that we are hosting. It has already saved me a lot of problems!
I, too, will save your listing for a hopeful future trip to Cuba. Best wishes!

Too late…if you mean ruined by thousands of tourists then you are way too late, it’s overrun and for once you can’t blame the Americans…there are thousands of other people in the world with the same way of thinking - let’s visit Cuba before “it’s too late”.

I have visited over 70 countries (including 6 of the 7 Wonders of the World) and I was in Cuba in October '16 and it has more tourists than any other place I have ever visited.


I am curious to know how Luix feels about his country being overrun with tourists. What do most Cubans think of the world desecending?

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Thanks, You are welcomed at our place

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Although in Cuba everything, and I mean it literally everything is possible the story for me it is a little bit hard to believe, at least at our place. Look, we are at the coast, this is a fisher’s village. Fish, lobster and seafood in general is stated owned but you can always get some for you and your tourists. We have own mango trees and banana’s trees, therefore fresh fruit has been never ever a problem. Eggs? well, you can get from the local market, nevertheless we have also own chickens and porks, therefore it is not that difficult. Other stuff can be difficult. For example Cuba has almost no cows and we use powder milk which is not always available as well as beef. Cheese is from a bad quality, expensive and rare. At the beginning of the season we buy somehow 10 Kg butter and froze it. Butter is imported, normally comes from Lithuania. Rice and beans are not a problem as well as tomatoes. Other stuff is really hard to get. For example some passenger broke an electric shower and this is a problem. Construction materials are in general very difficult to obtain. Something like for you wouldn’t be a problem (like nails, screws, paint, etc) might take a very long time to arrive (BTW, I am needing some half inch T-connection, do you have some :slight_smile: ) Beer is almost always available and for sure you will have no shortage at all of Rhum :slight_smile:


Ah, another thing which is difficult in Cuba is Internnet access. We have to pay 0.75 the hour. There is no DSL. Normally cities have access points at different “squares”. You go there, switch on your WiFi adapter and get connected to a login page from Etecsa (the only provider). The speed is… well is cuban speed :-). Sometimes it is sooo slow that you cannot get connected at all at the hot spot.

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PM with your address and I can mail you some nails and screws! Is that allowed??

Its irrelevant what local restaurant charge. This is very silly of them to even mention it. It shows me that they very little travelled people. However, do you have a menu? I personally think that when a restaurant doesnt have a menu they allow themself an option to charge everyone different prices based on restaurant personal opinion of each individual client.

When i was in Zanzibar not only an owner of a small restaurant charged me more than other even white people but he was increasing prices every time i went there. His patrons mostly were backpackers who had very small budget, i was older and he decided i can afford to pay him more than anyone else.

I would not even know thati paid more if he did not start increasing prices on me. One day i bought coconut only and instead of usual 50 cent he charged me 1$. May be it doesnt sound like a lot but for local prices its a ridiculuos price to pay. I confronted him, and ask him how much he charges for cocnuts. Instead giving me the regular price ,his answer was “BUT YOU ALWAYS PAID 1$”.

It was so naive of him to admit it that i started laughing. I asekd him directly: do you charge different people different prices?". And suddenly he stopped comprehending English:joy::joy:

It sounds like they did not know prices before they ordered. “Local” restaurants can have a very wide range of prices. In Kenya i went to many local places, where food was ranging from 75 cents per dinner up to 5$. And they were not touristy places where prices can match what we pay here in US

Oh, Thanks! But no, please. It is allowed. Some stuff has to go through custom authorities and depending the regulations one have to pay some import fees. Anyway, Don’t worry. We have a very good imagination when we have to solve problems :slight_smile:

Thanks again


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