This Airbnb host had a guest endure a bad experience at their property, but it resulted in them understanding the guests and their own duties better.
The world of Airbnb hosting is a dynamic one, often rife with both moments of incredible hospitality and episodes of unexpected frustration. Reddit user u/Comprehensive_Link67, a seasoned Airbnb host and frequent guest, recently took to the r/airbnb_hosts subreddit to air their thoughts on the sometimes unrealistic expectations of fellow hosts towards their paying guests. Their impassioned post shed light on a host's perspective and ignited a spirited discussion.
In a candid and unapologetic manner, the host implored fellow hosts to rethink their approach toward guests. They observed that many hosts view their guests with suspicion or as individuals who must earn the privilege of staying in their accommodations. The host stressed the importance of recognizing that Airbnb guests are not friends crashing in a spare room but paying customers seeking a hospitable experience. Reflecting on their extensive hosting experience, they recounted their first-ever bad review—a situation where a guest had a genuinely unpleasant experience.
In response, they provided a refund and alternative accommodation to the guest. The guest, however, left a negative review, highlighting a clash between Airbnb policies that permit both refunds and unfavorable reviews. They said, "After four years of hosting, I recently got my first bad review for an issue that really was a bad guest experience. The guest got a refund and new accommodation and left a bad review. I didn't like the Airbnb policy that allowed both a refund and a bad review."
Despite the initial discomfort, they expressed satisfaction that the guest eventually had a satisfactory experience, hoping this would encourage them to use Airbnb again. Hosts were reminded that if guests treated their properties as they would a hotel, it should be considered entirely appropriate. While acknowledging that hosts should address egregious issues like filth or damage, the post cautioned against expecting guests to handle the property with excessive care.
Charging guests for stained towels was a point of contention, with the host suggesting a practical approach of using bleach and considering such expenses as part of the cost of doing business. "My point is that hosts should either treat this as a business or get out. The more you demand from guests, the more people will go back to hotels. That hurts everyone who is trying to make a go of this hospitality business," they stated.
One significant issue they pointed out was the growing dissatisfaction among Airbnb guests regarding the extensive list of checkout chores, especially when hosts also charge a cleaning fee. The post noted that this perception of additional tasks coupled with the cleaning fee contributes to negative sentiments toward Airbnb in travel forums. What they meant was that hosts should approach Airbnb hosting as a business.
The more demands placed on guests, the greater the likelihood that guests will opt for hotels, potentially affecting everyone involved in the hospitality business. The post concluded with a reminder that when Airbnb loses its paying clientele, the hosts will bear the responsibility.
The post prompted a flurry of responses from fellow Reddit users, highlighting a range of experiences and perspectives. u/Appropriate-Disk-371 shared a personal anecdote about a host's 'trash service' and a misunderstanding regarding its purpose. The guest had paid $10 for the service, expecting it to be a legitimate offering, only to be scolded for not taking their trash. Despite this, the guest still left a positive review. Ultimately, the post serves as a reminder that understanding the expectations and needs of both hosts and guests is key to fostering positive Airbnb experiences for all.