Airbnb, the well-known online marketplace for renting private and commercial space, has issued a warning to all fans traveling to Miami, FL to attend Super Bowl LIV to be aware of scams while looking for places to stay. Read on to learn more about Airbnb scams and how to avoid them.
Are Airbnb Scams Real?
Although Airbnb announced that vacation rental scams are rare, they still exist. There are plenty of people looking to take advantage of Super Bowl weekend by coaxing consumers to pay for rental space away from the Airbnb platform in exchange for much lower rates.
Airbnb warns its customers not to book a room or pay for any services outside of its application. They ask that all users refrain from doing business through email or a third-party booker. In fact, the company confirmed that it would never ask for its guests to pay for a room outside of their website or app.
The company also stated that although Hotels in South Florida are all booked solid for the next two weeks, it still has approximately 35 percent of its listings in the Miami-Dade County and Broward County areas available the week of January 27.
How to Avoid Super Bowl Scams
Airbnb provided the following tips to help you avoid losing your money on a fake listing rendering you homeless and broke during Super Bowl weekend.
- Investigate the host’s profile thoroughly – look for grammatical errors and misspelled words. A host that doesn’t care about first impressions is more than likely going to scam you. Always look for professional profiles.
- Look at the cancellation policy. Take caution if there is no offer of a refund option or a cancellation policy.
- Read ratings and reviews – filter through the reviews to see if you can pick out a common pattern. Look at specific reviews in which the tenant attended similar large events. Don’t ignore ratings because the rental property “looked really good.”
- Ask the host questions. A host that you’ll want to do business with will respond to inquiries as soon as possible. Ask questions and make sure you are satisfied with the answers.