How to Respond to a Bad Airbnb Guest Review?

Airbnb guests are quick to leave a review, good or bad. Learn how to respond to a bad Airbnb guest review. Whether you’re a host or a guest, we can all agree that an Airbnb review is the ultimate test of your hospitality skills. What happens when things go awry and your guests leave a negative review? Do you ignore it, or acknowledge it and try to do better next time?

Thankfully, unlike other sites like Yelp or TripAdvisor where user-generated reviews are the norm, most users on Airbnb stick to a 4- or 5-star rating system. That means that for the most part, guests see the site as a place where they can stay in other people’s homes and expect a certain level of service. This also means that there are some steps you can take to avoid negative reviews in the first place (and how to react if they happen anyway). Here are some tips for staying positive when things go wrong.

What to Do Right After Receiving a Bad Review?

Right after receiving a bad review, the best thing you can do is to ask yourself: “What could I have done differently?” If you can’t find anything that you could have done better, don’t get defensive and just move on with your life. If you do identify a problem, it’s best to acknowledge it immediately, apologize and promise to do better next time. This is the best way to turn a negative experience into a positive one.

Acknowledge the review, but don’t apologize for it. If you feel as if you were unfairly reviewed, the best course of action is to simply acknowledge it without apologizing for it. This is usually the best course of action if the review is unfair, uninformed, or if the guest is being unreasonable. Apologize for the problems, but not for the bad review. This is the best course of action if you feel as if you did mess up, and you just want to make it right. You can apologize for the problems and still be confident that you gave the guest a fair review.

Airbnb Bad Guest Review Example

Some guests have complained of having issues with their reservation or things not being up to par with what was advertised. If you see something like this in a review, you can reach out to them to resolve it. When there’s an issue that can be fixed, make sure to do so as soon as possible. If they have any issues with the stay, make sure to resolve that as well. These issues can sometimes cause a decline in reviews, but they can also be resolved by talking to the guest and making things right.

  • Bad example: This is a terrible place. It smells like smoke and dog urine. There are stains on the sheets. The hosts are rude. They insisted that the stains were soap, but they were definitely blood. We’re never coming back.
  • Good example: We really enjoyed staying here. The house is beautiful and we were very comfortable. The only problem was that we were woken up by the rooster crows just outside the window and didn’t get much sleep. Next time, we’ll be sure to bring earplugs.

Bad reviews are often long, filled with unverifiable claims, and written in a way that makes it very difficult to respond to them. A good review is short and well-worded, and it focuses on specific problems. It’s much easier to deal with and respond to.

The Most Common Complaints in Airbnb Reviews

There are a few common complaints that show up in a lot of bad reviews. If you keep an eye out for these, you’ll be able to avoid them and respond to them if they occur.

Bad WiFi – If your WiFi is terrible, there’s not a lot you can do about it, but you can apologize for it and promise to fix it as soon as possible.

Bad cleanliness – If your place isn’t clean enough, you can try to find out why and resolve the problem.

Bad communication – If you’re not responding quickly enough or not replying at all, it’s important to fix that as soon as possible.

Bad amenities – If your amenities aren’t up to standard, you’ll want to fix that as soon as possible.

Inconvenient check-in/out times – If you have strict check-in or out times that aren’t written on your listing, you might receive a bad review. Ideally, you should stick to the stricter timeframes on your listing, but if you have extenuating circumstances, you should let your guests know as soon as possible.

how to respond to a bad airbnb guest review

How to Respond to a Guest Review on Airbnb?

If you feel the guest is being reasonable, the best way to respond to a bad review is to apologize for the problems and promise to do better next time. It’s important to focus on the problems that happened and not the ones in the review.

If you think the review is unfair, it’s best to acknowledge it without apologizing for it. When you feel as if your reputation is being unfairly tarnished, you can also reach out to Airbnb customer service and request that they intervene. If you feel as if the guest’s review is accurate, but you want to avoid a confrontation, you can simply thank the guest for the review and promise to do better next time.

How to Respond to a Bad Airbnb Guest Review?

The best way to respond to a bad review is to acknowledge it and apologize for the mistake. Sometimes, there’s nothing you can do to resolve a bad review, but there’s always something you can do to be polite and respectful. If there is something you can do to make things right, you should do it as soon as possible. Letting a bad review slide can only do harm to your reputation as a host. It’s important to remember that hosts and guests are both humans. We’re all bound to make mistakes in life, and it’s best to respond to them as soon as possible.

7 Steps for Responding to a Bad Airbnb Guest Review

There are a few things you can do to make sure your response is effective. First, make sure your tone is polite and courteous. Remember that you’re dealing with real people who have something to say about your hosting. Next, make sure your response is timely. If you wait too long to respond, your apology is much less effective. Next, make sure you respond to the entire review. Don’t just pick out one or two things and ignore the rest. Make sure you address every issue raised by your guest. Finally, make sure your response is genuine.

1. Acknowledge the Review

2. Apologize for the Problem

3. Promise to do better next time

4. Focus on the Problems

5. Thank the Guest

6. Keep Notes on Bad Reviews

7. Revisit Bad Reviews Later

These 7 steps should help you craft a response to a bad review that will leave your guests feeling positive about the experience.

What Happens if You Don’t Review a Guest on Airbnb?

If you don’t review your guests, Airbnb will still likely show the guests’ review of you (even if it’s 3 or 4 stars out of 5). You can still ask the guest to remove the review if you don’t agree with it. If you don’t review your guests, but you receive a bad review, you can still use the same 6 steps for responding to a bad review outlined above. If you don’t review a guest and you receive a bad review, you can ask the guest to remove the review. Be sure to ask politely, and explain why you’re asking for the review to be removed.

What Are the Consequences of Bad Airbnb Reviews?

Bad reviews can lead to a decrease in your bookings. Guests are more likely to choose hosts with a high number of positive reviews. If you have a few 1-star or 2-star reviews on your page, they can make all the other reviews less visible. Bad reviews can also lead to a decrease in your average nightly rate. Guests tend to choose hosts with a high average nightly rate unless the lower rate is offset by a high number of positive reviews. Bad reviews can also lower your Airbnb hosting score. Your Airbnb hosting score is calculated using a variety of factors, but it’s important to remember that it’s also calculated based on your ability to respond to bad reviews.

Tips for Handling Bad Guest Reviews

First, remember that not all bad reviews are created equal. Bad reviews can come in many different forms, so you should pay attention to the specific problems your guests are having. If the review mentions your communication skills, make sure that you’re always replying to messages as quickly as possible. When the review mentions cleanliness, make sure you’re always keeping your place clean. If you notice a specific problem cropping up in multiple reviews, try to find a solution to it. You can always ask your guests for advice and feedback too.

1. Stay Calm – It can be easy to get defensive when someone leaves you a bad review, but the best thing you can do is stay calm and focus on responding to the problems.

2. Focus on the Problems – Bad reviews often contain unverifiable claims, but there are usually a few things that the guest is complaining about. Focus on those problems and acknowledge that they exist while trying to stay calm.

3. Apologize if Necessary – If the problems are things that you’re responsible for, it’s important to apologize. If you don’t feel as if the review is accurate, you can still apologize, but you don’t have to admit that you’re at fault.

4. Respond Quickly – The sooner you respond to a bad review, the better. The longer you wait to respond, the more likely the review will be seen by other guests and potential guests.

how to respond to a bad guest review

Responding to a Negative Airbnb Review

The sooner you respond to a review, the better. If you don’t respond to a negative review, it might lower your overall rating, which is reflected in your listing’s search results and on your profile. There are no hard-and-fast rules for responding to a review. Learn also how to make your Airbnb listing stand out.

The main goal is to show the reviewer that you’re open to feedback, you care, and you want to do better next time. It’s also a chance to show future guests that you’re serious about hospitality and aren’t afraid to get feedback and make changes. There are a few things you should include in your response, such as an explanation of what happened, an apology, and what you plan to do to avoid similar situations in the future.

You should also consider thanking the guest for their feedback and letting them know that you appreciate their honesty. You can also offer the guest a discount on their next stay with you to show that you genuinely appreciate the feedback.

Don’t Take It Personally

When responding to a negative review, one important thing is not to take it personally. It’s easy to feel attacked, but remember that the guest is simply sharing their experience and giving you feedback. They are not attacking you as a person. Any review, whether positive or negative, is an opportunity to improve your hosting skills and make your business better in the long run. Take every review as a chance to learn and do better the next time around.

Offering Refunds with No Questions Asked

Some hosts offer refunds for any low review, no questions asked. While this might seem like a good idea, it can turn off some guests who won’t stay with you again (even if they left a 5-star review). If you have a set refund policy, stick to it, but if you want to make up for a guest’s sub-par experience in other ways, do that instead. You can offer guests things like free days on their next stay, gifts, or even a free service.

Being Responsive And Transparent (But not too transparent)

The best hosts are those who respond quickly to messages and are transparent about their policies and anything that might affect the guest’s stay (like pets, parking, or anything else). If you have any policies that you don’t list on your listing, be sure to let your guests know about them as soon as possible so there are no surprises.

If you get a negative review and the guest didn’t let you know beforehand that they were disappointed, respond to the review with a polite and helpful explanation of what happened. When responding to a negative review, make sure you aren’t being too transparent, though. You don’t want to let every guest into every aspect of your life, especially if it’s not relevant to the stay.


A negative review is an opportunity for growth and improvement, and the sooner you respond to it, the better. Make sure to respond to a review quickly and respectfully, and you can minimize the effect that the review has on your overall rating. With these tips, you should be able to avoid negative reviews and respond appropriately if they happen anyway. Remember that every review is an opportunity to learn, and you can and will do better next time.

Bad reviews happen to the best of us, but as long as you follow these tips, you should be able to turn things around. Remember, the best thing you can do for your Airbnb business is to respond to bad reviews with a positive attitude. Keep in mind that there is a difference between responding to a bad review and defending yourself against false accusations.

Simply acknowledge the problem and promise to do better next time. Don’t get defensive or start arguing with your guests.

If you want to build a successful Airbnb business, you have to learn how to deal with bad reviews. Even the best hosts in the world receive bad reviews every now and then. It can be frustrating, but it’s important to respond to them in a positive way.