Updated: June 22, 2019
If you are an Airbnb guest, also check out my article discussing the best strategies to find the deals on Airbnb.
For some reason, Airbnb hosts and guests really stress about how to write a proper Airbnb review when things don’t go perfectly.
(To completely avoid these situations in the first place, learn how to identify problem Airbnb guests before they book.)
This guide will give you a template to use for all of your future Airbnb experiences, both positive and negative as either a host or guest.
As a refresh, the Airbnb review system is double blinded. The host/guest do not see the review until either both have written a review or one has written a review and 14 days have passed (the time Airbnb allows you to write the review).
You have 48 hours to edit your review unless the other party has already reviewed you or the 14-day time limit passed. Keep in mind if you travel in a group, you will get the review published on your profile even if you didn’t make the reservation, as long as the reserving guest registers your Airbnb profile as an additional guest.
Did you know you have up to 48 hours to edit your Airbnb review? Click To Tweet
How to write a negative Airbnb review for your guest (as an Airbnb host)
It’s important to know that your host review holds quite a bit of weight. Even one negative review to a guest can preclude them from seeing Instant Bookable listings which have selected the following setting:
Regardless, I encourage you to be truthful (and concise!). A lot of hosts avoid putting anything negative in a guest review. If you fall into this category of Airbnb host, then a short review is the same as a negative review.
If I see a guest with a review like ‘good guest’ or ‘checked out timely’ then I assume this is really a negative review from a host who does not want to leave an honest review.
Here’s what that looks like:
A short Airbnb guest review is the same as a negative review. Click To Tweet
How to write an Airbnb review for your host (as an Airbnb guest)
This template works for both positive and negative reviews.
First, put your overall star score because Airbnb does not show this for some reason. Then, the length of your stay. Then, list the pros. Then, list the cons. Done. It is as simple as that. This format can also be used by an Airbnb host to review their guest.
Here’s what it looks like in the wild:
How to write a positive Airbnb review for your guest (as an Airbnb host)
This should be pretty obvious, right? There’s a lot of systems out there (ie Smartbnb) that will automatically write your guest a generic positive review. This is satisfactory. Just remember to cancel the automation if the guest does not deserve a positive review.
Airbnb has stated that leaving reviews does not affect your search rank. Still, I recommend leaving reviews, but length and variation make no difference. As a future host, you want to know the guest treated prior hosts’ space with respect, didn’t piss off any neighbors, and didn’t trash their space.
Update: Include your Airbnb’s title in the review for added branding and to get your name out there more (ie. Daniel was a fantastic guest at Super Duper Airbnb House)
Systems, like Smartbnb, automate the Airbnb review process. Click To Tweet
An Airbnb gripe and review advice
One thing that really gets on my nerves is Airbnb’s willingness to remove a negative guest review. If you’re an experienced Airbnb host, you’ve probably encountered this. Your review got removed due to a technicality in the terms of service or review guidelines.
They do this because they want as many guests on the site as possible. They know that a guest with a negative review is less likely to get another reservation. They also know that some hosts are overly critical and guests make mistakes (or their friends do) occasionally. Still, very frustrating when you left a negative review that gets removed.
I checked-in a verbally rude guest who made numerous requests upon entering the listing (I met him in person to walk him inside) and never seem satisfied with my solutions. At the end of his stay, I left him a negative review. In exchange for a late check-out request he made, I asked for a positive review. I felt I was going to get a positive review anyway as I met all of his demands. But, this way I felt I assured myself a positive review and was able to give him a negative review. Well, he complained and Airbnb decided to remove both reviews as they said I had solicited a positive review. If you get in one of these situations, be careful with what you say in the message thread or via text with the guest as it can be used as evidence against you.
Who’s with me on leaving your Airbnb guest (or host) an honest review? Let me know in the comments.
Also published on Medium.