While an overwhelming number of Airbnb reviews are positive and lead to hosts easily becoming "super hosts", there are some that slide under the radar and account for that 4.5-star rating rather than a full 5-star rating. Airbnb is quick to respond to any issues you may be having with your hosts but the downfall is that hosts are independent... They follow their own rules and their own schedule. That means they can talk up a place all they want, post whichever photos they want (unless otherwise verified), and can come up with their own payment and fees. That doesn't always make for the friendliest stay and can even potentially ruin vacations.
We sought out the most cringe-worthy reviews that people left on real Airbnb listings, and let us tell you -- we wouldn't want to be in these hosts' shoes. These renters left nothing to the imagination and held nothing back when giving their criticism and their reviews alone are enough to make us take a pass on scouring the site for a place to sleep. Some are worse than others but none of them are good and though these hosts had plenty of other kind-hearted reviews, we're still questioning what went wrong for these guests. This should in no way affect your view of Airbnb as an overwhelming number of people have been satisfied more than not, but you should always be wary so you don't end up like these folks!
20 Oh Yeah, The Cockroaches
Are you cringing yet? Each review seems to be worse than the last! In Miami, of all places, you'd hope that your rental is flawless. Most of these vacation rentals are on or near the beach and while picturesque views are usually part of the deal, cockroaches are not. Before we get to the disgusting bug part, let's first take a look at what went wrong prior to that.
According to this guest, things would have been much better if they'd had AC considering the 88-degree weather outside, but it gets worse... They didn't have power, period. In a cruel twist of fate, Miami was also seeing red tide at that time so not only was it inconvenient to open the windows, it was downright dangerous.
To add fuel to the fire, this guest left a note at the end that there were cockroaches in the bathroom.
19 Locking Up Your AC Is A Great Way To Get Good Reviews
If a place isn't dirty or the complete opposite of the photos, it might just not be in a great area. Everyone always looks for the best deal but if your Airbnb rental looks too good to be true and comes at a seriously low price, consider its location. Since you won't get the address before you actually book the rental, you never really know where it is that you're staying. This was the case with one guest who described a strange stay in a sketchy part of L.A.
The entrance of this rental is found by entering first through an unfriendly restaurant with zero security measures, and that alone is enough to make us wary. This guest reported that the hot water in the shower didn't work and alternately, the AC was locked up -- landing them in a lose-lose situation.
They also warned against bringing pets as they were "afraid" to walk them at night... Sketchy McSketcherson is what this rental should be renamed.
18 If You Fall Into A Hole In The Couch, It's No Good
This review Marina del Rey condo was well-balanced but had a lengthy list of cons.
Overall, guests agreed that it was in a stunning location and was true to the photos, and the host was helpful and attentive. The main problem was that the rental needed a good, solid cleaning from top to bottom -- slimy sink drains aren't something we're fans of -- and the furniture needed serious replacing.
One beach-style chair was ripped so badly that guests simply fell into it rather than sitting in it, and from the sounds of it, the rest of the furniture wasn't much higher quality than that.
17 You Shouldn't Need To Clean A Rental Before Sleeping In It
In Denver, you expect everything to be gorgeous and breathtaking, but this can be easily ruined by a rental that's not up to par with the scenery surrounding you.
This was the case for one family who ended up starting their trip with a full house-cleaning. Some of the worst attributes of this rental included a couch that smelled of serious body odor, a shower curtain that was not clean, and food splatter in the refrigerator, just to name a few.
It turned into a catch-22 for these guests as they prepared to go to town cleaning before realizing there was nothing in the house to clean with... Whoops.
16 If You Can't Find Your Rental In The Dark, Chances Are It's A No-Go
France is a beautiful place to vacation, but apparently staying in a yurt there is somewhat of an experience.
Europe has far more wilderness than what we're used to in the US, making it somewhat of a challenge for tourists to get used to. However, not only did this couple resort to sleeping in their car after not being able to find their rental, but the rental itself didn't meet expectations, either.
Since all of the instructions were translated from French (the ever-so-called-for "duh" is more than appropriate here), that in combination with the lack of lighting made it impossible for them to find their way back. According to the couple, the yurt was in need of updating, but hey, at least their host was pleasant!
15 Gecko "Poo"... Need We Say More?
If you're going to stay in Thailand, you should probably be ready to anticipate that you'll come into contact with some wildlife.
Geckos are common in Phuket but this guest did not expect to find unwelcome evidence of their activity indoors. This guest and her group quickly found out that geckos were living in the home, as they'd run into unexpected "surprises" in nearly every room of the house.
Other than that, they described the home as being beautiful -- But if you have a problem with some extra house guests, this one probably isn't for you. When in Thailand, right?
14 A Not-So-Eco-Friendly Stay
This review started off with, "huge disappointment" which is never a good thing. What was advertised as a tropical, eco-friendly delight, turned out to be anti-environmental and rather touristy, according to the review left by the birthday girl.
Vacationing in Bali should be an authentic experience but this couple reported a lack of that. Instead, they reported parades of ants throughout the space, the sad image of a frog jumping around in soapy, used shower water, and possibly the worst part: a nest of wasps just above the bed.
To be fair, this was a "glamping" type of rental... But still.
13 A Damaged Car And A Creeky Rental, A True Two For One Deal
The overall description of this rental is "painted walls and floor, not a renovated basement". A guest took it personally when they wrote this review, claiming that space was essentially a glorified basement space.
The pipes from the upper floor ran straight down into this glorified basement, so renters could hear everything throughout their stay. If that isn't annoying enough, this guest also claimed that the rental is in a bizarre area and that their car was actually hit while parked out on the street.
The hosts responded with a mature yet sassy reply, calling this particular guest out on the fact that they had family who also lives in the same area... Whoops.
12 Even One Night Was Too Much
Any review that starts with "where do we start?" is never a good sign. This couple left after only one night in their rental, claiming it was purely "false advertising" on the part of the host. Granted this rental was a glorified RV, what was stated in the description was certainly not what this poor couple had received.
On the list of cited wrongs for this rental are a bed that smells horrible of some bodily fluid and covered in stains which resulted in sleeping on the floor (which we can't imagine was much better), "swarms" of bugs in the refrigerator, and a dirty hot tub.
At the end of it, they stated that this experience scarred them so much that they'll likely never use Airbnb again... We don't really blame them.
11 A Literal "Crash Pad"
This rental seemed more creepy than it did dirty and disgusting but either way, it's not a place that makes our most-desired destinations list.
According to the guest, the rental was filled with religious objects and smelled strong of incense, a scent that's tremendously overwhelming if you're not used to it. They described the sleeping arrangements as essentially a futon with a glorified pillow on top, neither comfortable nor appropriate for a long stay.
By the end of the review, this rental was classified as a "crash pad" -- Someplace to crash for a night and then leave ASAP.
10 Don't Count On Sleeping Here
This Seattle rental looked inviting and warm but according to one review, it was quite the opposite. For a reasonable price, you'll get a place to pay your head at night... But you'll also get berated via signs that adorn this apartment.
The home was described as belonging to an artist but was evidently filled with threatening signs addressed to renters, along with the rule of "no shoes" although this guest claimed the floor was dirty as it is.
Additionally, certain seating areas were not size-friendly, making for an even more uncomfortable and unpleasant stay.
9 Misrepresentation Is Half The Battle
One of the worst issues you can run into with Airbnb is a misrepresentation. It's well-known that hosts can post photos that have been as doctored as they want and you won't realize it until you're in the thick of the rental you thought y0u were getting.
That's one thing that this guest found out rather quickly and even wrote a warning to other guests, saying, "if what you want are a surly hostess and a very noisy, very tiny bathroom, then this is the place for you. Otherwise, make another choice, ' cuz you won't like this one..."
We can only imagine what they meant by "noisy bathroom"... *shiver*.
8 Just Avoid The Boat At This Point
Staying on a houseboat is a risky business in the first place since you have no idea what you're in for and it's not something that falls under normal rental policies.
This couple found that out the hard way when they rented a boat that was talked up and sounded incredible but, in reality, was "worn in" with a string of problems longer than most grocery lists. Not only was the description inaccurate and seemingly outdated, but the electricity was wonky and went hand-in-hand with the poor condition of the boat's interior.
While this couple stated that the stay would have been fine for a few days, it was rather uncomfortable for an entire week. The best part of this review? The host's response to the page-long monologue: "Wow."
7 The Pictures Don't Match The Stay
Sometimes a short and sweet (or sour, in this case) review gets the point across.
A guest who rented a North Miami rental had not much more to say about it other than, "place looks old and cheap". Understandably, you get what you pay for -- but sometimes these rentals can be misleading and in North Miami, you'd expect a bit more than some broken cabinets and a bathroom that is apparently "smaller than a closet".
This surely guest cautioned others to find another rental in the area if they want a "decent" place to stay.
6 "BEWARE!" Because The Caps Make All The Difference
This Detroit loft looked nice enough from its photos but you can never really tell, can you?
According to this renter, the room that she was actually assigned looked nothing like the photos advertised. Instead, she called it a "nightmare" and immediately requested a refund (which she promptly received and praised the host for). Her claim that everything was dirty and the couch alone was "horrible" is definitely enough to make us pass on a trip to Detroit.
She and her guests also found animal hair covered the (unwashed) sheets on the bed -- which was really an air mattress -- implying that it hadn't been washed at all before their arrival.
5 A Lack Of Response Says It All
The guests responsible for this review of this particular home claimed minor issues, the biggest being the lack of communication from the host.
Upon their arrival, they quickly noticed missing toilet paper, dirty towels, and an air conditioning unit that froze over rather than blowing cold air. All attempts to contact the host to address these issues failed, but the lack of response from any numbers provided led to a poor experience.
Interestingly enough, the host responded after the couple had already checked out -- citing that poor reception was the reason for the unresponsive attitude.
4 A Yurt That Definitely Did Not Bring Any Zen
This reviewer left a seven-point laundry list of why guests should avoid this Airbnb rental and none of them are things we could ignore. In addition to strange fees and the overall atmosphere of the rental, this Malibu vacation home was anything but laid-back and relaxed.
According to this guest, the home had an issue with dogs who were let out and prone to biting. In the review, she stated that her stepdaughter had been nipped at four times and forced them to take cover indoors while the dogs were outside.
The cherry on what sounds like a mildly stressful vacation is the claim that one of these dogs had the runs while they were there, making their poolside experience a bit more graphic than you'd expect in Malibu. Yikes.
3 A He Said, She Said Battle Between Guest And Host
The guest said this rental is "nothing but a cheap hostel". The host responded with, "some people just seem to be unhappy and disappointed with life." Aside from the existential crisis feel that we get from this exchange, there's no denying that the review itself was very, very bad.
The guest also made mention of there being trash in the closets, a moldy bathroom (gross), and broken furniture, which makes this rental sound like nothing more than a place to lay your head down at night.
This guest also took a jab at the description of this rental, warning others of its "cleverly worded" nature.
2 "You Get What You Pay For"
Those six words are exactly how this review started out and while there are no extraordinary details on this mediocre experience, we can imagine it wasn't great.
This guest stayed for a short time and warned others that short stays at this rental are best, as nothing seemed to be clean, including the shared bathroom in the space. She claimed that her bedroom was also dirty which she attributed to many people going in and out of the rental space.
The last thing you want while on vacation is to clean up someone else's space before you spend the night in it, so we'll take a pass on this one.
1 Dirt, Grime, And Crumbs, Oh My
The group who stayed in this rental said the best part of their stay was the "selection of books". We're no experts but something tells us that if the best part of your stay is the bookshelf, your host is doing something wrong.
These guests also recounted how the curtains were "heavily stained", the AC was obnoxiously loud, and the apartment itself was "poorly equipped" with kitchen utensils and tools.
We don't expect anything crazy in Brooklyn, but the minor detail of a years' worth of dirt, crumbs, and general grime in between couch cushions has us searching for our hand sanitizer.