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Are Airbnb’s legimate and safe to rent?

san francisco
Level Contributor
567 posts
24 reviews
Are Airbnb’s legimate and safe to rent?

We are trying to book a week in an Airbnb in the Shinjuku section of Tokyo. I have heard in the past that there are some phony ones out there. How do we make sure our booking is legitimately?

Thanks

12 replies to this topic
Tokyo
Level Contributor
388 posts
6 reviews
1. Re: Are Airbnb’s legimate and safe to rent?

Ask AirBnB. Air BnB has revised their registrations according to the revised new law.

They say In Shinjuku residential area, it is prohibited to stay at a AirBnB hotel from Monday to Thusday. You can't stay a week.

https://japan.cnet.com/article/35116213/

san francisco
Level Contributor
567 posts
24 reviews
2. Re: Are Airbnb’s legimate and safe to rent?

Wow, that is amazing, I don’t know where to look in Shinjuku now, we found some listings and we want to rent a week! Sounds like you could only rent for a weekend. Is that true in other areas?

We already have an Airbnb booked from January 1-8 in Kyoto by a Superhost, Shouid I be worried?

Tokyo and California
Destination Expert
for Tokyo, Kyoto, Osaka, Shinjuku, Japan
Level Contributor
28,881 posts
69 reviews
3. Re: Are Airbnb’s legimate and safe to rent?

City of Kyoto has very strict AirBnB regulations. "Super Host" and/or M number don't mean much because many host give a fake number to AirBnB.

Why don't you just stay in hotels? It seems silly to be worrying about potential problems AirBnB might cause when you go all the way to Japan.

4. Re: Are Airbnb’s legimate and safe to rent?

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Level Contributor
4,865 posts
9 reviews
5. Re: Are Airbnb’s legimate and safe to rent?

I came across a hopelessly lost Thai lady at a cafe trying to find her booked apartment the other day, who did not receive full details of the address of the apartment. Upon calling, the host with strong Chinese accent kept on directing us to a location in Arakawa ward, which was a communal housing run by the municipal government intended for people with low income under the social welfare system (it has been repeatedly reported that such housing is rent out illegally by foreign - some or perhaps mostly Chinese - hosts to apartment rentals in major cities such as Sapporo and Tokyo). The original booking was actually two rooms in Asakusa, Taito Ward, and only after several telephone calls the guy understood his error.

It really is disturbing local people, including I as a resident who had to endure stupid foreigners at my apartment building barking out loud in the night and leaving inappropriately mixed trash at wrong dates. These stupid people buy new suitcases and leave the old unwanted ones on the street and think it's completely acceptable. If this is all done on personal basis among friends I would forego, they seem to think it's a new systematic business competing with proper hotels and existing apartment rentals which have to comply to laws and standards plus pay appropriate tax.

California
Level Contributor
4,410 posts
335 reviews
6. Re: Are Airbnb’s legimate and safe to rent?

You are far better off to be staying in a hotel in Japan, especially if you are a first timer. Not only is there a standard of hospitality available (look at reviews) but there is staff available from whom to get advice and help.

Bag the Airbnb in Japan, and go with hotels,

Level Contributor
4,865 posts
9 reviews
7. Re: Are Airbnb’s legimate and safe to rent?

So to answer directly to your question without my subjective views. Q: Are Airbnbs legitimate? Are they safe to rent? A: Some might be.

san francisco
Level Contributor
567 posts
24 reviews
8. Re: Are Airbnb’s legimate and safe to rent?

Thank you for all your input. I don’t know how to find out if the Airbnb in Kyoto we rented us legit. Any ideas?

Since we are a group of 5 Americans coming for the first time, we thought an Airbnb would be economical and fun. Now looking in Tokyo we will be careful or try a moderate priced hotel,.

san francisco
Level Contributor
567 posts
24 reviews
9. Re: Are Airbnb’s legimate and safe to rent?

Also, if it is still true that in the neighborhood of Shinjuku in Tokyo forbids during the week reservations, what areas to try to find Airbnb in Tokyo.? Thanks.

Zichron Yaakov...
Level Contributor
779 posts
2 reviews
10. Re: Are Airbnb’s legimate and safe to rent?

Not sure that I really understand your problem.

The new laws have caused some confusion, but as time goes by the legitimate hosts have received their licences.

If you book through Airbnb then they will only let you book with a fully licenced Airbnb host.

I booked accommodation for my next Japan trip almost a year ahead and Airbnb cancelled two bookings as it became clear the hosts were not in possession of the licence.

Airbnb returned my money AND gave me compensation for the inconvenience. I then had the choice of rebooking a different Airbnb where the host was now licenced, or I could make alternative arrangements if I chose.

I thought this was very decent as they could have simply given me a credit note - so I would say, trust Airbnb and book through them.

p.s. this is my fourth trip to Japan, I am an elderly single woman traveller and have never had a bad experience with Airbnb, even before the new legislation kicked in.

There is no comparison with a hotel. Hotels are lovely but you will miss out on many aspects of Japan. I cook, shop in the local markets and stores, stay in residential areas, wander the backstreets, and explore the nooks and crannies ... so seeing the Japan that most tourists don't.

(and of course I do visit the famous places too!)

Hope this helps!

Pamela

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