Bad Airbnb Hosts: The Aftermath

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I picked up the phone and called my best friend

New Year’s Eve…

No Place to stay…

Cold, frustrated, and nearly 5:30pm…

 

Enough was Enough—I took a few steps back, inhaled deeply and swiftly kicked down the door! I scrambled around the apartment until finding a permanent marker, and then left my Airbnb hosts a personal note on the fridge that read:

YOU SUCK…BAD!

Yes, I wrote in ALL CAPS,  and in doing so the huge weight of disappointment was instantly lifted and I felt at peace.

Okay, okay. Maybe I’m exaggerating a bit. Maybe, just maybe, I simply left the apartment and sent one final email that actually said:

 

“I’ll be reporting you to Airbnb, requesting a refund, and will warn others of this dreadful day!”

 

I know—I know, not as dramatic, but I kept my cool and followed that email by promptly requesting the refund. Sure enough, as soon as I used the magic word—refund—a poorly-written response came within minutes:

 

EG, I just receive a request for refund. You will not be staying at the apartment?

“No, but you should definitely get there and resolve the issue asap before your next guest arrives.”

 

Fast forward, two days later, and an additional email regarding the refund mentioned above popped up in my inbox:

Your Airbnb hosts DECLINED to pay!

 

6:00pm And Homeless On New Year’s Eve

Determined not to let the outcome of the Airbnb nightmare alter my mood too much, I asked my buddy Jaime if his hostel had any availability—Nope. I then checked another nearby hotel within walking distance—fully booked!

Manneken Pis statue

Even this little guy had a place to take a leak on New Year’s Eve!

 

Not Your Average New Year’s “Resolution”

Finally, feeling somewhat desperate, I went to a Wi-Fi hotspot and checked out rooms on Agoda.com. BOOM!  They still had a few rooms available at the Brussels Marriott Hotel Grand Place.

Unbeknownst to me at the time of booking, the hotel ended up being right smack dab in the middle of the New Year’s Eve festivities. At last, after the whirlwind day I had experienced, things finally took a turn for the better. When it came time to check-in, I decided to go ahead and push my sudden stroke of luck to the furthest limit:

 

“Excuse me ma’am, do you have any free room upgrades available?”

“Yes, we actually have one suite remaining…overlooking the square.”

Three seconds left and EG III has the ball…

He shoots…

Bad airbnb hosts wouldn't ruin my fun

New Year’s Eve view of the square from my hotel room


SCORE!!!

#2017 #Brussels

A photo posted by EG Green (@eg_iii) on

P.S. In case you were wondering…I got Airbnb directly involved and they issued a full refund less than a week later!

 

 

In the comments below, tell me what you did to ring in the new year.

38 Comments

  1. Lavina says:

    Look at you…fancy pictures of yourself for the post! Looks like it turned around for the good …fancy bits and all! AirBnb can sometimes turn out to be quite a pain, I know the feeling!

  2. It was really admirable how you handled the situation, EG! I am so impressed and you finally deserved the luxury stay at the place after all the escapades!

    Cheers to Belgian beer, though – the best in the world! 🙂

  3. Nya says:

    I don’t know how I would react in your situation. Even though it’s “bad luck” as you say, it still shouldn’t have happened. I’ve never tried Airbnb yet, and to be honest I never felt attracted to it. I feel it’s a bit of a mix between good and bad experiences. I’m using booking.com for a long time now and I never had any issues so far. Finding yourself out in the streets while everything was planned must be a horrible feeling. I’m glad you found yourself an alternative but because of this host, finding a place in the last minute for new year’s eve is ridiculous. A refund is the minimum you should get for the trouble. I wish you’d have kicked that damn door and left the note with the permanent marker!

  4. Good thing that this ended well. After your bad experience, at least you were able to snatch a room with a good view of the festivities. I just wonder how your Airbnb’s place looks like.

  5. The downside of some AirBNB listing is that they make a hype of it. It’s not always “What you see is what you get”. Glad you managed to get a refund. I guess this is a helluva experience for you.

  6. Berlin says:

    Pretty much the same.experiencd we had last New Year’s celebration. We booked for a hotel only to be told that the hotel cant accommodate us because the platform I used sucks. Expedia is.not paying them thus any transaction with Expedia arent accepted. With four kids in tow and a senior citizen plus an able.husband, we looked for a new place to stay and celebrate new year. Good thing we were able to.find a real.decent one.

  7. Damn! One thing great about this is that what you experienced is worth remembering as part of your NY in Brussels. LOL. I mean, it was not cool at all while it was happening, but today, it makes for a great coffee table or bar conversation. All is well that ends well.

  8. Great to know the ending of this story! Seems like this guy has been doing this for many times because people sometime don’t take the time to go through refund processes. Anyways good news you got upgraded though!

  9. Not pleasant but .. thats life, new experiences… i had bad experiences with couch surfing too but they were a good lesson ?

  10. Ami Bhat says:

    Gosh, I am so sorry that you had to go through so much just to get your refund back. I hope the AirBNB guys manage to take some action and weed out this. Glad though that things ended up well in the end.

  11. Travel tips says:

    I never took an airnb host , your story looked interesting to me, something to learn from. It’s hard to keep your calm in this situations I guess.

  12. Miriam Ernst says:

    I’ve never had a bad experience with Airbnb, sorry you’ve had one! But glad to read that you could finally fix the situation.

  13. Oh you’re NYE in Brussels ended up well in a nice hotel and a room upgrade too!
    Good to hear you had your money refunded.

  14. travelerettenyc says:

    I’m glad you got a refund! Did your hosts ever explain what the problem was? It seems like it worked out better for you in the end because you got such a good room! This is why I won’t do Air Bnb. I don’t want to run the risk of this happening.

    • EG III says:

      No they never did give me an explanation. Just a vague, “these things happen…but we have good reviews…we won’t refund because you didn’t give us enough time…excuses, excuses”
      Ultimately everything worked out though, and that’s what matters most!

  15. Oh no, I’m sorry to hear that you had such a bad experience with Airbnb. I’ve only tried it a couple of times, but it’s always been positive (fingers crossed it will stay that way). Sounds like you really managed to turn it around.

  16. Joanna says:

    I have only used AirBnB twice, but just cause I was traveling with friends. I usually travel alone and I find it expensive. Both my stays were ok. What happened, why did you decide to leave the flat? Was it very dirty? It’s nice that you got a room upgrade at the hotel afterwards, it made your night better.

    • EG III says:

      Well, I left because I couldn’t get inside. And after hours of waiting “hoping” for help to come…I just decided to look elsewhere. It was still a great night though 🙂

  17. Mel says:

    A lowkey dinner with out-of-town friends in Chicago. I was polishing off creme brûlée when the clock stuck midnight. (But, I mean, a view of raucous revelers in a Square below my hotel suite would have been nice, I’m sure.)

    • EG III says:

      Hey, ringing in the year in Chicago isn’t bad either…would you believe that’s something I’ve actually never done!

  18. Tottori Tim says:

    Eddie, I care about you like my own son. So, with my own son we had pizza and brownies for New Years. The Lord is looking after you – always keep that in the forefront of your emotions. In other words, don’t get too pissed off too quickly. 🙂

    • EG III says:

      Thanks Tim. You know I usually remain mild-mannered and maintain my low-profile…unless I need to save the world or rescue a damsal in distress 🙂

  19. Wow happy ending after all! Good you didn’t guve up! I had one bad experience with Airbnb host and Airbnb didn’t even show my negative comment after that so I was pretty frustrated!
    Hope you had nice New Year’s celevration with that view from the room!

  20. Nice pictures. I’ve only spent one night in Brussels, but enjoyed it immensely. Been wanting to go back for the past 12 years!

  21. Still it is kind of disappointing and frustration moment that I wish won’t happen to me. I haven’t tried the Airbnb as I am afraid with these kind of related issues.

  22. Bhushavali says:

    I was awaiting this follow-up post. Its really depressing, but then finally things turned around and you got yourself in Marriott! That’s not bad at all. And finally you got the refund too! That’s very good!

  23. Andi says:

    Bristol, England. I had a glass of wine with two total strangers. In their living room. They were so nice they let me stay for two weeks to walk their dog while they flew off to the Canary Islands. (My first Trusted Housesitters gig. Really cool couple!)

  24. John Rodgers says:

    I must say you had some bad luck. I use AIR BNB all the time and I have had some experiences that were not exactly perfect but nothing like you had. I can say that when using them you have to really learn how to search the listings. Photographs can be really deceiving and some have been just like I envisioned and some not so much but, we just spent 3 weeks in Avignon, 1 month in Cannes, 1 month in Turin and every apartment was really what we expected and more. Hope it works better for you next time.

    • EG III says:

      The surprising thing was that this particular apartment actually had good reviews. I’m certain that it can only get better from here on out!

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