I learned a lot on this forum about how to deal with refunds and potential scammers. Here is a positive story.
I had a booking from someone who didn’t show up. The next day he messaged saying he needs to postpone the trip due to an “emergency”. I told him to “please cancel so that I can get another booking and ask Airbnb for the refund”. He canceled and then contacted Airbnb support for a refund. Airbnb support asked me if I would like to refund and I told them to evaluate if his case qualifies for EC and refund as per the cancellation policy. It did not qualify for EC, so he got no refund. I thought if I have to take a loss and give him a refund, I might as well make him go through the process of submitting documentation for EC.
I got a written commitment from Airbnb that if he leaves a review it will be removed. The guest did not leave me a review.
Somehow guests have figured out a way to throw the word emergency to extract a refund from a host. I feel happy that I did not fall for this lie and got the payout.
Earlier I had offered a refund to some guests using the “issue refund” method. But that was a mistake. I’m not sure how easy Airbnb is to deal with as a guest, but given their reputation for lack of CS, I can’t imagine it would be fun for scammers to deal with them.