“Just don’t answer the door, it could be my ex-husband”
I was freaking out about traveling solo for 3 months. I had never traveled alone and during my prior trips, homesickness would typically set in around one week. I realized what really stressed me out was the physical traveling among places, the repacking and unpacking, and the stress that comes with trying to live and adapt to a new location every few days. I’m now writing this (well finishing… I started it about a month ago and got sidetracked) on day 8 of my trip to Mexico so needless to say I’ve overcome many of my traveling concerns.
To offset this, I decided to stay in each city for approximately one month. This would minimize my traveling, allow me to get some work done instead of getting major tourist FOMO, and actually let me make friends in each city. This plan stuck for Lisbon and Barcelona but after realizing I was overstaying my visa I
While great in theory, this led me getting stuck with a truly terrible Airbnb host in Barcelona. The first question I always get when telling this story is, “why didn’t you just leave?” And truthfully it was kind of out of laziness (
I reached out to Airbnb’s safety hotline a couple weeks after I left and was recently given a full refund and assurance Airbnb has “taken appropriate action to further protect the community.” Although I’m not entirely sure what that means, the listing now seems to be down. The second question I always get is “why did you wait so long to let Airbnb know?” I talked this over with the girl staying in the other Airbnb room and agreed she wanted to be checked out before we let Airbnb know (in case the host found out and got mad) and then again… I got lazy putting together the list.
What follows below is rundown of how awful this lady was:
Potential physical danger and illegal residence
- During our welcome conversation, she said not to open the door for anyone I didn’t know because it could be her ex-husband.
- Told me if anyone asked in the building say I work at the hospital (not staying through Airbnb).
The apartment was not as advertised
- The host’s office was actually right outside my bedroom so what she advertised as a living room was not actually usable (description appears to have recently changed). This essentially forced me to stay in my room whenever I was in the apartment. In addition, having to walk by her every time I came home was extremely uncomfortable.
- The picture on her website must have been from 10-15 years ago. I had the impression I was staying with someone close to my age, while she was actually 45.
- Wifi barely worked in my room
Host’s daily behavior was uncomfortable, inappropriate and significantly reduced privacy
- She worked from 7 pm to 4 am right outside my bedroom. Not only was this uncomfortable and loud, I essentially had no privacy even though I paid for a private room.
- She would frequently walk around the apartment in a t-shirt with no pants on
- Argued that we should help clean (beyond picking up after ourselves) and take out trash. Despite her making a large profit on our nightly stay as well as paying an additional cleaning fee
- Host was generally a messy and dirty person
Now to the really fun stuff… demonstrated manipulative and constantly sexual behavior
- Showed her dildo to the girl staying in the other Airbnb room
- “Accidently” showed a female friend of mine lesbian porn on her laptop
- Told me how she went on a date and how she made the 65-year-old guy have an erection at the table (not only very inappropriate but also highly unlikely)
- Was constantly saying how she liked to “play the game” when dating. Basically sounded like she tried tricking older, rich men into dating her.
- Sat on my bed at least once when I came back from the club
- Told me and the other Airbnb guest how she had sex with a 16-year-old guest but claimed she didn’t know he was that young.
- Told me privately multiple other stories about how she had sex with Airbnb guests
- Told me a story about how she had sex with an Airbnb guest (while she was married) then told the Airbnb’s guest GF who stayed there a couple days later
- Told my friend that I was flirting with the other female Airbnb guest. Not only was this untrue (she has a BF), but seemed like the only purpose it served was to try and create drama (she also spoke to her in Catalan so I couldn’t understand).
- Tried getting the other female Airbnb guest to admit she would cheat on her BF
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