Now, a homeowner who got a big surprise; someone showed up at his front door saying he had reserved the house on Airbnb. The problem? The house wasn’t actually for rent.
There is Georgia the country and Georgia Avenue in Crystal, Minnesota. They are 6,000 miles away from each other. So, how did Airbnb in Georgia (the country) wind up steering a man to Georgia (the street)?
Here is the exchange between the visitor and homeowner from the owner’s doorbell cam:
Visitor: Hi. Are you Tom?
Belmonte: No. You’ve got the wrong address.
The trouble started on Wednesday when Jim Belmonte’s doorbell rang.
Visitor: “I ah reserve a room through Air and B.”
The only problem?
Belmonte: “That’s not us man. We absolutely are not an Airbnb company.”
Visitor: “They already charged my credit card. How’s that?”
Belmonte: “You’re going to have to call Airbnb. I promise man, that’s not us.”
But, to Belmonte’s surprise, the stranger at the door actually had the right address. He says he “looked it up and, lo and behold, we were on Airbnb.”
The listing showed their address, but a very different house. Belmonte tells us, “the Airbnb ad had a house with tower in it… There was mountains. And one thing I can say about crystal Minnesota is there really are no mountains at all.”
According to Airbnb, their site autocorrected the address for the original listing in the country of Georgia to that Minnesota address of Georgia Avenue. The company took the listing down after Belmonte brought the issue to its attention and says they are investigating, but Belmonte worries it’s not doing enough to prevent something like this from happening again. “If there really isn’t actually a vehicle for them to be able to guarantee that the person who is renting the house is actually able to rent the house, in my opinion, it’s not enough,”
To be clear, the visitor did not think he was going to Georgia the country.