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I wholeheartedly agree that commissions on Genius bookings should be lower! We are already offering rooms at a discount, to get hit with the commission at the same or higher rate is egregious!
I've also experienced bookings of 2 showing up with 3. EX:We had one couple bringing their daughter to college - the mother, a physician (I know this because she called 3-4 times previous to their arrival to ask multiple questions, and tell me about them), father and college age daughter arrived close to midnight and stated that they thought the daughter would be in the dorm that night, but! oh well, do we have a cot for her? Our policy is clearly stated: 2 per room, no child under 14. And here, at midnight, they wanted special accommodation! We have no cots, but gave them extra sheets and blanket and dad slept on the floor. I hope he was uncomfortable! I know that they were perfectly aware of the policy as mom is a planner ,she was just being sneaky.
We had another couple, clearly also aware of the policy, who arrived after we were asleep, snuck in their 9 year old son, and were feeding him wet cereal in bed (!) so that we didn't catch on.
I have learnt to always ask HOW MANY, but, on line reservations are harder to make sure people are telling the truth. We are a small B&B with only 4 rooms, so people who arrive with more then 2 often just have to suffer as we often don't have other rooms to move them to. On the other hand, I had a woman reserve two rooms for her and her adult son. Turns out, he didn't want his own room, he slept in the same bed a mom (!), and they were upset when I charged them for two rooms! Ah, people.
The only recourse to the bad review is to state clearly in the response, how they disobeyed the rules, and no wonder they were uncomfortable!
We have run into the extra person issue several times, most recently a couple arrived at 10:30PM (2 hours late), and on their way to our place from the train, they called to say " oh, by the way, our college age daughter is with us for this night, do you have a cot or sofa for her?" Our policies clearly state 2 persons per room, and our rooms are set up for only two, no room for sofa or cot! These people were grateful, apparently dad slept on the floor, but, really? who does this? If we had had any extra rooms I would have asked them to use that and charged them, but I was totally booked.
This is different, but, I am still shocked - mother and son arrive for college orientation, again, mom was surprised that college was not putting son up for the night, so, he is sleeping in her bed. But, she wanted to know if she could cook for him as he has multiple food allergies and apparently can't eat anywhere except for one restaurant. No mention of any of this in her booking. We don't allow people to do their own cooking, nor do we supply cots, do laundry or any other request that is not listed on our website! Just ranting.
I run a small 4-room bnb. We are often much less expensive then chain hotels, and we offer free wifi, parking and breakfast. When we receive lower marks for Value, and high marks for everything else ( comfort, cleanliness, friendliness, location, etc.,) what is the guest criteria for their lower mark? It is a totally useless and subjective value that really doesn't help anyone.
I so agree that having an ability to review guests would make the whole system work better! If guests leave crappy to mediocre reviews and meanwhile, have been difficult, demanding and unreasonable, why should our voice not be available for others to see?
I also have to add that Booking.com's guests seem to be THE most negative. We get really great reviews on other sites, often 10/10, and on this site not so much! ( Someone actually dinged us because we were watching our own TV in the common area. We do only have one TV for guests, but wifi everywhere, often we do watch TV in the common area, and when guests come in, we invite them to join us. Why would our watching TV be an issue?
Not sure why Booking.com attracts visitors who seem to relish being nitpicking and negative.
I am a small B&B listed on booking, expedia, airbnb, trip advisor and our own website. I totally agree that all sites should have named, not anonymous reviews, and that guests should be reviewed as well as hosts. I really like airbnb's system. It actually keeps both sides honest. I also like that someone monitors the off-line comments, so that the truth can be told.
We usually have lovely, interesting, polite and conscientious guests who we delight in hosting. But, several times a season we get people who are rude, ignorant or have unreal expectations:
1.one guest DEMANDED donuts for breakfast - (we try to serve organic, healthy-as-possible choices), so my husband ran out and bought him a box of donuts, he still gave us bad review.
2. another complained that it was too humid in our area (Aug. in New England it is humid!), and the AC in their room did not remove the humidity!
3. another did not like the fact that the comfy robes we supply were not supplied in xtra large to fit her xtra large hubby! (this may have been donut-man's wife).
While I politely replied to all these reviews, if there was an honest and transparent system like airbnb has, I would have said something closer to the truth so that other hosts could be aware: put these folks on the no-fly list!
We are a small B&B with a check in time from 3-9PM. Our initial email to all guests states the rules and that they must contact us. An amazing number of guests do not read rules and info posted on booking.com, our website and our reservation letter that goes to everyone immediately upon receipt of reservation.
We often have guests arriving outside of our check in time, but, if they don't contact us in advance, they literally cannot get in. I do stress that. We have installed a coded lock on the front door, and, IF they let us know in advance that they will be late, we send them the code and directions to their room. Lights in hallways are always on.
As Ros above says, non-English speaking guests, in particular Chinese speaking guests, do not seem to understand the difference between hotels and B&Bs and often do not get in touch, and often arrive from Asia on very late flights. It is often more of an issue dealing with these guests who clearly have cultural differences that we don't understand, and visa versa.
Also in response to a post about fraudulent reservations: we take the first night on a cc. I have had multiple cards that would not process this winter. I call/email the guest and if no response (sometimes it is just honest mistake) I cancel immediately.