We received this instant booking, with a ‘strict’ cancellation setting, at 8:02 Friday evening. Saturday morning we got up at 6:00 AM to drive to Maine to personally prepare the cottage. At 8:30AM we sent our standard welcoming message, reiterating that our cottage was a seasonal home with electrical baseboard heaters in all rooms. As we do for all of our Fall and leaf-peeping guests. Shortly thereafter, we received a positive reply message that didn’t raise any concerns about an elderly or asthmatic family member, so we continued to prepare our home.
Saturday our guests had arrived at 5:30 they said: “….We have left the cottage and driven into town, so we won’t be back for a while….” Followed by: “……I’m not sure we will be able to go back.”; meaning they hadn’t been back to check on the heat? One would think they turned on the heat, went out for dinner, returned to a warm cozy cottage, and were ready to enjoy their weekend. As travelers in all kinds of different accommodations, we adjust the heat or coolness to our liking.
Sunday 8:00AM we checked in with our guests and they had abandoned their reservation. They demanded a refund to which we responded: “We have not had the opportunity to go back and check on the cottage after you have entered it I will have to get back to you later.” Within hours this impulsive and demanding guest was questioning if and when we would be inspecting our home. We were not going to let a disgruntle individual know when or if we would in Ogunquit. Those of us with empathy were relieved to know that vacancy was found and that no one had to sleep in their car.
This abandoned reservation contacted AirB&B customer service on Monday requesting a full refund. After sharing the facts and text messages with AirB&B customer service, they determined that this guest was NOT entitled to a refund.
After being told multiple times that this guest was a world traveler form Australia and had used AirB&B many times across the globe, the question arose why didn’t this guest read the description of our rustic seasonal cottage, and after being an AirB&B member for many years read the cancellation policy before instant booking, or voice their concerns about an “elderly mother in-law and asthmatic brother in-law” when we notified them on Saturday morning? So what type of individual continues to book a seasonal cottage for an “elderly mother in-law and asthmatic brother in-law? We certainly felt that if we had known the conditions of their family members we would strongly advised against their reservation
In closing, the following weekend we inspected our home and everything was in good standing. We do have empathy, even for people that make impulsive / irresponsible decisions that impact and affect other people‘s schedules and lives; so we have pushed a refund to our world travelers and wish them no harm and many grand adventures.