Nothing takes the fun out of a vacation faster than getting fleeced by a disreputable business. Unfortunately, this can even happen when booking Airbnb accommodations. Here are a few ways you can spot suspicious listings before you lose money on a bad vacation deal.
Reviews are a great source of information. While every business will receive its share of bad reviews, the good should always outweigh the negative comments. If you have difficulty finding customers raving about this business, you may want to look at other options.
A brief review or one that seems a little too over the top may indicate that your potential host is trying to deceive. If the listing causes you concern, contact the host and ask questions about the accommodations. Speaking over the phone will give you a better feel for the host's integrity.
Airbnb allows hosts to ask questions of their potential customers as a way of vetting them to protect their property. Asking for a profile picture, requesting information about your trip, and requiring a valid phone number are examples of reasonable requests. If the questions get too personal or make you feel uncomfortable for any reason, you may be better off declining to answer. Better yet, look for a different host altogether.
Regardless of which host you end up choosing, always act as though you expect the worst scenario. This means checking your home security system to be sure your own property will be protected, as well as investing in travel insurance. Insurance can help recoup your losses, whether as a result of a disreputable business, a natural disaster, or other unforeseen circumstances.
You will always pay your host through the directory, and the company will then forward payment to the host. If the host requests additional payments/deposits through another site or in-wire transfer, you should look for another host. There's no reason you would have to double pay, especially since the host can set his own rates right in the Airbnb directory.
By thinking ahead and being cautious about the information you share, you can better protect yourself, your money, and your property. There are plenty of honest hosts out there, so you should never feel compelled to book with a host you think is acting suspiciously.
Peymans is a dedicated provider of luxury serviced accommodation available for short-term lets and rentals. We are committed to ensuring every visit is comfortable, pleasant and stress-free. Explore our accommodations today!
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