When Carrie Martin and her family arrive to their latest VRBO rental they are initially put off by the lack of cleanliness of the unit. That concern is quickly replaced when they hear a disturbance outside their bedroom window. Through the darkness they see someone on a ladder trying to get in. The police take care of that problem, but will VRBO take care of Martin’s refund?
You’ve found the perfect vacation rental. The owner asks you to pay via wire transfer. Should you do it? Meir Hurwitz, of Brooklyn, N.Y., did, and now he’s out nearly $17,000.
He’s not the first to be taken in by a vacation rental fraud and likely won’t be the last. Over the years this site has carried many stories warning about vacation rental scams. Many of those involved wire transfers.
When Jason Burns and his family arrive at their Parisienne VRBO houseboat rental, they are shocked to find that it is missing one important element: electricity. Surely this qualifies the clan for a refund. Or does it?
Robert Hamilton was looking forward to his six-night stay in Colorado that he booked through VRBO and Turnkey Colorado. But he also knew that with his mother-in-law hospitalized, he probably should buy travel insurance just in case the unthinkable happened. It also led us to wonder if travel insurance always covers a pre-existing condition and the death of a loved one.
After John Duncan pays for his vacation rental, the owner goes into radio silence. He doesn’t think he’ll have anywhere to stay. Can he get a refund before his vacation is ruined?
When a consumer has problems getting satisfaction from a travel provider, we suggest a credit card chargeback as a last resort. It’s shocking when the provider is the one to suggest it, and as the first option.
Before you rent another vacation home, listen to Tim Kerin’s story.
When Kerin, a small-business owner from Damascus, Md., recently rented a home through a no-name rental agency in Costa Rica, he noticed something peculiar: The generous floor-to-ceiling glass window in the master bathroom offered a commanding, but somewhat compromising, view of the Pacific Ocean from the toilet seat.
Repeat: Please stop wiring money to strangers!
Too bad that Heidi Barker of Watertown, Conn. didn’t see this warning before she wired money for a vacation rental. She was planning a Caribbean vacation in St. Maarten. Using VRBO, she found a beachfront, ground floor, two-bedroom condo. The listing was legitimate. But the person she communicated with via email was not the owner.
When Judith Hartlieb rents a condo through VRBO, the owner tells her that he’s not allowed to rent it to her and cancels her stay the day before her arrival. Then he offers her an alternative date. When she declines, he promises her a refund but doesn’t issue it to her. Can our advocates help?
Marianne Aksamit thought she would save a few bucks in credit card transaction fees by using a check to pay for her vacation rental through Globe Homes and Condos. As it turns out, that decision cost her $1,500.
After Tropical Storm Hermine blew through the Northeast late this summer, Esther and Jason Mezey’s Jersey Shore vacation was rained out. Unfortunately, so was their property rental fee. And guess what? They didn’t have insurance.
Like many travelers looking for bargains, Alan and Julie Mitchell were looking for a cheap, convenient place to stay when they made a reservation for their trip. But they ended up with some very inconvenient accommodations that concluded with a credit card dispute.
Jovanka Syedy is the owner of a short-term rental newly listed on VRBO.com, and her first experience is a nightmare — a stolen credit card, a thief, and a 30-day hold on her payment.
When Joel Miller rents an uninhabitable beach house, can he get his money back?
Nancy Friedman paid a $1,500 damage deposit when she rented a condo in Santa Barbara, Calif. through HomeAway. There’s no damage. Why is her refund delayed?
For the last several days, I’ve been on the receiving end of emails from readers like Paul McWilliams about a new fee being charged by HomeAway, which runs VRBO and VacationRentals.com.f
Barry Shiller’s vacation rental owner got a better offer just before he checked in. And suddenly, his family had no place to stay for their theme park vacation this spring.
When I read Grace Lou’s email, I couldn’t believe it. I thought this problem had already been fixed. I believed
I’m a longtime admirer — and critic — of VRBO, the dominant vacation rental site. I like the way it
What makes Sylvia Guarino’s case interesting isn’t that she had a disappointing stay at a vacation rental she booked through
Diana Younts’ problem isn’t her vacation rental from hell. That one, she fixed on her own.
Pat Morin’s vacation rental in Aruba is a disaster — and she hasn’t even left yet. She’s trying to get her money back, but the owner refuses. Is there any hope?
Just when I thought it was safe to rent another VRBO vacation home, I received a complaint from Brit Railston
The rental cabin in Williams, Ariz., she found through VRBO.com had three bedrooms — the perfect size for her family. So last year, Trudi Wood sent the owner a $839 check for a deposit.
The rental villa on the French Riviera that Sonia Guillaume found online looked picture-perfect. It featured an impeccably manicured garden, spacious living areas, a pool and stunning views of the medieval village of St. Paul de Vence.
Tania Rieben thought she’d scored a bargain on a one-bedroom condominium in Maui for spring break. She’d found the vacation rental through a popular Web site called VRBO.com and then negotiated directly with the owner.