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neilcvx

The dangers of Airbnb.

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As I posted in another thread my parents sailed out with us on the 31st of August , they had a wonderful 2 weeks in a Clevances Gite in Lesconil and then drove to their perfectly reviewed on Airbnb Gite in the Loire. 

When they got their the Gite turned out to be what can only be described as a dirty hovel, a mould filled fridge with rotten food in it and dirt everywhere, including a soiled materess , needles to say they didn’t stay and booked into a lovely nearby hotel.

My father contacted Airbnb and received absolutely no interest in  his complaint, I will help sort things out when he gets home which will be today as they cut their losses and are sailing home on Normandie as I type this. 

I’m sure there are good places to stay on Airbnb but take this as a warning don’t always trust glowing reviews on their site.

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I would stick to trusted hotels, especially myself as a woman on my own as well.  Trouble is with Airbnb is that you know a lot less about these places and “well reviewed” are possibly reviews done by friends.  There has been a practice of late of people offering refunds for good reviews.  I have read so many scare stories of these places, a girl who I knew who worked in Subway went to stay at a place in Wales when she went for an interview for a job nearby.  She said the place was completely different to what she expected and the place that was on offer was a completely different place altogether.  And the owner was a Middle Eastern man who turned up and tried it on with her, she had to flee leaving her belongings in her room and the police were called because the man wouldn’t give her her bags back.  And she was stuck for somewhere to stay that night as a result.  She is only a tiny little girl, very slightly built and not much over 4ft 10,so she would have stood no chance if she hadn’t fled the building quickly.  

These places are a real Russian roulette.

Edited by Khaines

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It’s actually tonight they are sailing back , which could be interesting I told them to stay another night.

@Khaines I certainly have and would never use Airbnb and my parents won’t be using it ever again now.

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Only used Airbnb once, in Manchester. It was a self contained  1 bed flat (the owners had a flat 'nearby'). First impressions were not good, and late evening we were disturbed by the very noisy arrival of the bailiffs beating on the front door. Back to Premier Inn sharpish !

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Thanks for the heads up, never used this crew but I have heard similar stories from all over the place..will stick to the established providers and BF's own company also gives you 20% discount on ferry crossing

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I've only had good experiences, I'd guess most people have, else I doubt they would have grown so big! That's not to say there aren't problems, but it's important to keep a sense of proportion too.

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I think it’s more to do with their couldn’t give a damn attitude when something goes wrong.

Gites de France and Holiday France properties are inspected every year and there are more quality control checks in place Airbnb is just a soulless American platform.

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1 hour ago, penguin said:

I've only had good experiences, I'd guess most people have, else I doubt they would have grown so big! That's not to say there aren't problems, but it's important to keep a sense of proportion too.

We've used Airbnb 5 times in the last year. 3 times In France and twice here in Ireland. We've always been very happy with the quality of the accommodation and have no complaints.

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4 minutes ago, ccs147 said:

We've used Airbnb 5 times in the last year. 3 times In France and twice here in Ireland. We've always been very happy with the quality of the accommodation and have no complaints.

As I’ve said it’s fine until something goes wrong , apparently it’s just as bad for owners if their property are damaged by renters.

I’m sure there are plenty forum members who have good experiences , I was merely highlighting the pitfalls if it goes wrong.

https://www.asherfergusson.com/airbnb/

 

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1 hour ago, neilcvx said:

I think it’s more to do with their couldn’t give a damn attitude when something goes wrong.

Gites de France and Holiday France properties are inspected every year and there are more quality control checks in place Airbnb is just a soulless American platform.

You're totally right there. I think almost all tech startups appear to work on this model of having a very minimal workforce and accepting the resultant quality of service.

 

Twitter and facebook are prefect examples of this - they do absolutely no checking of the adverts they serve, which is why the platforms have been so popular for advertising various different financial scams. Traditional media forms would never blindly run ads, although that does come at the cost of having staff check the content first. Airbnb is exactly the same, as a property you might be paying 5% rather than 30%, but it isn't magically cheaper, you get what you pay for. So it's very much luck of the draw, but when it works, Airbnb is just another median for the same properties.

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I have been a frequent user of Airbnb, in France, Spain, the UK and in the US. I have also been an Airbnb host for a flat in London for a while. 

I think there is a problem of perception of exactly what Airbnb is, and I think Airbnb are at fault for allowing this perception to go uncorrected. When everything works well - or even reasonably well, which has been my experience as a guest - then all is good.

However, it is when there are problems and guests expect Airbnb to do something about it that this comes to light. The reality is that expecting Airbnb to resolve an issue with a trip is nor really any different from asking AutoTrader to resolve an issue about a car bought through its website.

It is really the responsibility of the host to ensure that the space is fit to be used as described - and as a host, I have experienced guests who make legitimate complaints when the toilet seat breaks, or the internet router fails, or they cannot work out how to use the TV remote, or the cleaners have not prepared the place in the way that I had instructed, such as discarding any unused food which previous guests had left.

Not all complaints are legitimate, of course - I had one guest who complained that Elephant & Castle was not as salubrious as Mayfair, and was horrified that I should point out that there was reason why my space at the Elephant cost a quarter of what a similar sized space would cost in Mayfair...!  

Airbnb is of course quick to take credit for all the successful trips - which are actually down to responsible hosts taking their responsibility to their guests seriously. But the reality of poor experiences is that it is not Airbnb's.

As with everything in life there needs to be as much caveat as there is emptor...

 

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On 19/09/2018 at 11:45, neilcvx said:

As I’ve said it’s fine until something goes wrong , apparently it’s just as bad for owners if their property are damaged by renters.

I’m sure there are plenty forum members who have good experiences , I was merely highlighting the pitfalls if it goes wrong.

https://www.asherfergusson.com/airbnb/

 

Some good tips on that website on how to minimise the chances of a bad airbnb experience. I've been using a lot of them already but have picked up another few.

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All I can say is that at least with things like airbnb it is a lot easier to a) find somewhere to stay and b) find out other people's experience of places than it was even, say, twenty years ago. Back then you were relying on sparse accommodation lists sent out by TICs or the good old AA book. The worst stay I have ever had in an hotel was in an AA *** in 1979 (yes I can still remember the year) and had tripadvisor been around in 2002 we would not have booked the accommodation we did in Scotland - which is being reported there as being as dire as it was then -  now! airbnb are no different to any letting agent and their webpage is really only a version of the old country cottages catalogues that we used to depend on.

Edited by Millsy

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It’s worth noting my parents rental had only positive reviews not even a single bad comment, so personally I would take the reviews on there with a pinch of salt.

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