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Anyone ever heard of Airbnb.com?

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Aug 3rd, 2013, 01:30 PM
  #1
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Anyone ever heard of Airbnb.com?

Has anyone ever used this site to stay somewhere? Is it safe? I think I would rent the entire apartment/flat/etc. vs. staying in a private room. Thoughts? Suggestions?
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Aug 3rd, 2013, 01:35 PM
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If you search here and on the US board you will find a ton of posts on Air BnB - with some very strong pros and cons. I would not consider using it without reading those posts and understanding the process necessary to a successful rental.
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Aug 3rd, 2013, 01:41 PM
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We used it successfully for London, UK lodgings.
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Aug 3rd, 2013, 01:54 PM
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I've used it (for the entire place) in the US and it was a great experience both times. AirBnB acts as a middleman throughout the whole process (financially, scheduling etc.) And both the owners and renters provide feedback, similar to eBay, which gives you good feedback. My daughter used it in Manhattan and saved a bundle over hotels by staying in a nice condo on the upper west side!
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Aug 3rd, 2013, 02:01 PM
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Yes, of course. It's been around for quite awhile now. We used it last fall. It's just fine as long as you vet the properties carefully and be sure to follow Airbnb's instructions.
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Aug 3rd, 2013, 02:39 PM
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Read this one:
http://www.fodors.com/community/europe/airbnb-scam.cfm
I personally would never use the site after a renter asked for too much personal information and AirBnB said it was ok to supply that.
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Aug 3rd, 2013, 03:36 PM
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If you read that thread carefully, it was not the fault of airbnb. It was a scam and the renter did not follow the airbnb instructions. Never send money or wire money. Airbnb uses paypal or credit card.
We have a family member who has used it for short term and long term stays in aris, Croatia, Venice, London, New York, Vienna and Mykonos. He has never had a bad experience. These have all been wonderful, well-priced rentals.
Read the rules on airbnb regarding payment. Check the reviews carefully.
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Aug 3rd, 2013, 03:41 PM
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Goldenseal - as long as your relative understands the New York rental was almost certainly illegal. . .

There has been huge controversy in NYC because aurbnb continues to list properties there even though they have been put on notice that they need to stop.
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Aug 3rd, 2013, 06:40 PM
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Since the OP is not considering rental in NYC - but presumably a place where it is legal - that isn't an issue.

but doing the due diligence to understand fully what you are getting - and a full list of references - if vital.
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Aug 3rd, 2013, 07:41 PM
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I was just responding to Goldens. She's the one who mentioned airbnb in NYC. Nothing to do w/ the OP . . .
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Aug 3rd, 2013, 07:55 PM
  #11
 
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My son has used Airbnb quite often all over Europe. I just used it to book our Christmas holiday in Madeira and like the fact that I could put the whole transaction on my credit card without doing the international deposit and cheque thing through a foreign bank like I have had to do with other letting online sites.
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Aug 3rd, 2013, 09:35 PM
  #12
 
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Janisj, thanks for the free incorrect legal advice. Is it also for the other poster whose relative rented in Manhattan?
Why do you care what "my relative understands"?
It was not illegal. It was over thirty days and the home owner lived in the home also.
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Aug 4th, 2013, 02:32 AM
  #13
 
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Successfully used Airbnb for Barcelona. Very satisfied with the experience.
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Aug 13th, 2013, 04:57 PM
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I just had a really bad experience with airbnb.com. I don't usually do this kind of thing, in fact, I am the one to sing praises, so this is unusual for me. All I can say, is stay away from them. We didn't (don't) need accommodations until the end of October and neither they or the host will refund our money. I could see keeping 10% for the inconvenience, but 50%? They require full payment beforehand yet keep the actual address hidden until after they receive full payment. I took a chance, my fault. I didn't do my homework, my fault. I know better, but got careless and trusted them and the host even though I had some red flags. Now I am out over $300 for renting a place we don't need for TWO MONTHS!! Greedy, greedy... so stay away from airbnb.com (oh...one flag, after I typed that addy in, it changed to a hotmail account!!) I am SO stupid. Arghhhh.......!
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Aug 13th, 2013, 05:37 PM
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<
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Aug 13th, 2013, 05:40 PM
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Um, how interesting that DibbyDab is a brand new registrant and this is his/her first post, which is internally inconsistent (e.g., is there no refund, or a 50% refund?) and short on specifics to allow objective evaluation. Hmmmm...
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Aug 13th, 2013, 07:09 PM
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Really don't understand this, DibbyDab. We are Airbnb hosts, so I am familiar with the cancellation policies. There are three levels of policy, "Flexible", "Moderate", and "Strict". Even with the strict policy you can cancel seven days before arrival and get 50% of your rental back; minus fees, of course. If your host were using the Moderate policy you could cancel five days before and get a full refund.

Could you give more details, because your tale does not compute. If you did not read the cancellation policy for the property, you did not do the due diligence you should have done.
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Aug 14th, 2013, 01:52 PM
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I have been using AirBnB a lot and liked the service very much UNTIL something went horribly wrong on one of the booking. My boyfriend's parent booked a place for 3 weeks. During the 1st week of their stay, the host got an eviction letter and they have to be out of the place within 3 days. It's very stressful dealing with AirBnB help center. Their live chat is slower than US postal service. Our case manager is very slow in responding to us. At the moment I've been on hold for 1 hour and 36 minutes....It seems that if you're an AirBnB guest you're on your own. Bottom line, USE IT AS YOUR OWN RISK. I don't think I will anymore.
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Aug 14th, 2013, 02:28 PM
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Although I have been an advocate of Airbnb, being an Airbnb host for our private guest room, I will be the first to admit that things can go wrong. In fact, my wife recently had a bummer in Portland, Oregon. I posted a report of the incident on this Forum a bit ago: http://www.fodors.com/community/unit...bnb-bummer.cfm If you read it, you will see that the Airbnb help line can actually help.

Anytime you travel things can go wrong, whether it is Airbnb, VRBO, a rental agency, or a hotel booking site. Use any of them with caution. All I can say is even with the occasional wart, it works for us.
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Aug 22nd, 2013, 07:03 PM
  #20
 
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my experience with airbnb We arrived to a dirty and mildew/musty smelling townhome that was unsafe and unclean. We did not stay because we were concerned about breathing the mold especially because my youngest has allergies/asthma. The company is telling us they are working to resolve the issue but we are not entitled to a full refund. We did not stay at the townhome. We walked in and saw that it was not safe to stay. We tried to call the owner of the townhome, but his number was not working. We emailed him. We called and emailed airbnb, and the property manager contacted us as well. She informed us that the a/c was leaking and causing the mildew/musty smell. She asked if we still wanted to rent the townhome, and we said no. Even if the a/c was fixed, the mildew/mold would still be in the walls. This has cost us a considerable amount of time and money. We had to scramble that night to find a hotel. We have to stay in the hotel until we locate another townhome. All of my refrigerated items needed to be discarded because the hotel did not have a full size refrigerator. We feel we are entitled to a full refund because the residence was not safe for our family.
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