Best Request Ever!

I got this booking request for one of my micro-units. It’s a tiny unit, just a room and a bathroom with a shower. Not even a kitchenette.

My theory is this: there are some hosts who automatically accept every booking request they get. You can set this to happen through some software services for managing Airbnb. I think this guy was trying to create a situation where he could get a full refund, or perhaps even more.

I would greatly appreciate it if you would have the following available and completed upon guest arrival.

1-case of veuve
12-Dozen assorted chocolate covered strawberries
5-charcuterie boards

Early check in and late check out
Through white glove service cleaning
Daily home refreshing service
Private Dining service every evening with a Chef
Top Entertainment and Activities suggestions to be booked
Top 3 salon service recommendations for men
Daily Yoga instructor referrals for home

Please quote me a price for a quick approval otherwise do not approve this booking.

Yummy

Guest writes: Wow Matthew, you are a SuperHost; AMAZING!
Matthew, I have a few questions and request.
1.) Does the Unit have Comcast or XFinity TV.
2.) May I check in by 1300 hrs. and exit at 1300 hrs.
If yes to the Xfinity and you acquiesce to enter
and exit, I’d LOVE to Book your place; your place
rocks. If this place is unable to accommodate my
request, please let me know which other options
you believe would fit with my request; cool much
thx.

I respond: I’m sorry, the answer is no to all of your questions.

Guest writes back: Ohhh OK! What about one of your other products? You do the AMAZING job on your products Matthew; outstanding! Thumbs-up. They are delicious; edible! Yummy. Let me know in which one you can accommodate my REQUEST! Cool.

I respond: I can’t accommodate any of your requests at any of my properties.

Guest writes back: Ohhh OK! No issue! Still props to you for the quality products; they are outstanding! Wow! EnJOY Romania for me; I’ll be there later this year. I LOVE that place. Ohhh yeah. Thanks for taking time to respond.
Happy New Year. All is well.

You’re a Stud

I send the guest the check-in instructions for a gay-themed apartment.

He responds: Ok stud.

I respond: FYI, I’m not a stud, I’m a nail gun.

The next day my automated message goes out asking if everything is okay with the unit. He responds: Everything is okay, but I may need that nail gun.

You’re Unprofessional. What Event?

Guest books and writes this message:

It’s my birthday and will be planning a vision board/game night and your place is a very spacious and lovely place to have this event. I’m also a photographer and need space to shoot during this event. Have a great rest of the night.

So I call Airbnb and have them cancel. She immediately rebooks and writes this:

Hello why did you cancel

So I write back:

Events are not allowed. It says that right in the listing. I’m just going to call Airbnb and cancel again. If you book any of my other units, I will cancel that reservation. If you book under someone else’s name and hold the event, I will call the police.

And she responds:

What events are you talking about you are very unprofessional

Picture of the Top of the Cabinets

I just had a guest who complained of lack of proper cleaning. He sent pictures to prove it. Here is his picture of the top of the cabinets. I believe they are 7′ (2.13m) above floor level.

I told the cleaners that this was proof that they were doing a great job. If a guest had to go to that extreme to find something to complain about, then clearly they were doing a great job on everything that matters.

He also sent a picture of under the bed, under the kitchen sink, and white residue on a glass from the dishwasher.

Cherries

Sometimes I’m really surprised by the casual language guests use. While Airbnb isn’t the most formal of business environments, it’s still one stranger talking to another. So normally the language is pretty mainstream. But there are exceptions. Here’s a case where the guest had trouble using the Smart TV in a new apartment.

Me: I’m sorry to hear that. You are the first guest ever, so clearly we have some glitches to work out. I will ask the property manager to send over our electronics guy.

Guest: Ok thanks awesome! Also I didn’t see where to rate my stay, this was my first time doing Airbnb and your first time as well I see we popped each other’s cherry! Thanks !

Dodged a Bullet!

I feel like I dodged a bullet. A guest made a booking at around 5pm for same-day check-in. I use SmartBNB to automate messaging, and it sent all the check-in instructions and the lockbox code the minute the booking came in.

I wasn’t so quick. I was cooking dinner, and I didn’t check my emails immediately. So about forty minutes passed. When I saw the booking, I quickly checked the reviews, as I always did. This is what I found:

In fact, at the beginning and throughout the stay I had very good communication with Jeff, he even extended his statistics in a few days. However, the apartment was left in a state of disorder and destruction that I had never seen. They delivered the apartment an hour and a half later than agreed. Clothes hooks were taken and pieces of the refrigerator were broken, also curtains, pots and everything was thrown on the floor. We are not used to this type of tenants. I am sorry for the bad evaluation, but such an episode had never occurred to us. I had to suspend the idea of hosting anyone for a few days until cleaning and leaving everything in order. A shame .

Instantly I called my property manager and told him to go right over and get the keys out of the lockbox. He jumped in his truck and was there in six minutes.

I jumped on the phone to call Airbnb. “I want to cancel with no penalty to me because I feel very uncomfortable with this guest.” It didn’t take long to get the reservation cancelled. Airbnb said that since this was a same-day booking, they would call the guest and help him to find other accommodations.

Meanwhile, just was walking back to the truck, a beat up old car pulled into the parking lot and three strung-out guys piled out. He asked if they were going to #3, which they confirmed. “Don’t bother, I took the keys out of the lockbox,” he told them. He hopped in his truck and drove off.

But he just drove around the block, and he parked in a neighbor’s driveway a couple of doors down to watch what happened. The guys hung out for a bit, one of them peed in a bush, one of them got a phone call, and eventually they left.

I dodged that bullet!

A Major Health Issue!

This just received from a guest:

I have a major issue & due to that is there anyway I can get at least half of the money back because it’s not healthy for my girlfriend. We were and she woke up screaming because a lizard was in her arm & she’s very allergic to all those types of mosquitoes and insects. Therefore, I can not risk myself because then I will have to end up taking her to the hospital & I don’t want to go through this long process.

I will really appreciate it if you find me a solution ASAP! If you want a picture of the lizard I can send it to you. Not only that I have killed other insects in the room already & my girlfriend is having a bit hard time to breathe.

I’m Going to Shoot a Music Video in Your Home!

This just in from a guest:

Hello Matthew! I would like to speak with you about your rules and regulations! I am planning on shooting a music video in your home! I am very excited and cannot wait to speak with you!

Uhhhh … no you’re not. This is when I call Airbnb and tell them I am “uncomfortable” with a booking and ask them to cancel it penalty-free.

How I Ended Requests for Very Early Check-In

It used to be that the #1 most common question I got was along the lines of

My flight arrives at 5am. I know I’m going to be very tired and will want to sleep. Can I check in early?

Basically they are asking for a free night. And of course this often comes with a request for very late check-out. And of course it’s often a single-night booking that is also discounted because it’s a single-night gap on my calendar. So they want three nights for the price of one very discounted night.

Total waste of time. And then I added this to my automatic response to inquiries, and … poof! … these idiotic, time-wasting, never-going-to-book requests disappeared.

BAG STORAGE: if you need to store your bags before or after arrival, there is a retiree nearby who provides this service. He charges $20 (cash only) and will store a reasonable number of bags for an early arrival or late departure. Call Jesse at (561) 584-3558. He doesn’t email or text. Voice phone calls only.