Airbnb – Eureka, CA: Terri Dropped The Ball And Airbnb Fumbled For A Safety

Serene Views (Terri)
Eureka, CA, United States
As a frequent traveler and regular Airbnb customer, I made an “Instant Book” reservation for the very first time at Terri’s “Serene Views”, a private room in Eureka, California with this description:

“My place is close to close to beaches, Old Town, Henderson Center, Hiking, Parks, great views, restaurants and dining. You’ll love my place because it is in a beautiful, private, quiet neighborhood overlooking the golf course, tucked into a green belt forest with a comfy bed, private bathroom, use of the kitchen and big private backyard”

It’s “close to close beaches”, must be pretty damn close, anyway … Instant Book is a feature that allows you to enter your dates of travel and if a listing’s calendar has no occupancy during that time, you can get an instant “confirmed” reservation instead of waiting for the owner to get back to you. Sometimes it takes days to get a confirmed reservation from some of these ding-a-lings, so when I saw what looked like a nice place at a good price, I cancelled a reservation I had made on another site and booked with Eureka Terri … BIG MISTAKE!

Here is my confirmed Instant Book reservation:

An hour-and-a-half later, I got a message from Terri:

“Looking forward to meeting you!”

BUT … nearly four hours later, as I was prepping for my trip, I received this surprising and inadequate message from Terri:

“My family requests a visit during this time. Hope you find a suitable replacement. Thank you.”


UNSAT … FUBAR … My week in Eureka is now Tango-Uniform  and I am scrambling to find a place to stay for a week in my price range … thanks, for nothing Terri and Airbnb!

Now I’m going to have to pay hundreds of dollars more because some Airbnb Airhead, an unprofessional newbie, could not keep her calendar up-to-date. It makes Airbnb look bad because they condone this behavior and should not have been allowed. What is the purpose of Instant Book if your confirmed reservation can simply be cancelled on a whim by the host? Useless … both Instant Book and Airbnb’s response to the situation because when I sent them a message communicating my dismay, all I got was an automated response telling me, to paraphrase: “we’re too busy and important to respond to every customer … sorry, you are on your own bub!”

CombatCritic Gives Eureka Terri And Airbnb 1 Bomb Out Of 10 And A Spot On MY WALL OF SHAME … More Bombs Are Better!

One Bomb Equates To:

Read Reviews By CombatCritic:

Yelp – Elite ’14/’15/’16

Tabelog – Official Judge (Bronze)

Zomato – #1 Ranked Foodie

View my food journey on Zomato!

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Tabelog Reviewer CombatCriticView my food journey on Zomato!

Title: Airbnb – Eureka, CA: Terri Dropped The Ball And Airbnb Fumbled For A Safety

Key Words: Airbnb,, Terri, Eureka, California, room, private, serene, view, accommodation, hotel, reservation, confirmed, cancellation, CombatCritic, TravelValue, travel, value, review, Yelp

Translation for Civilians: FUBAR = “Fucked Up Beyond All Repair”

Airbnb – Brooklyn, NY: Jose’s Bedroom In Front Of Prospect Park

Jose’s Bedroom In Front Of Prospect Park
Website: Airbnb
Jose was a wonderful host. The apartment is centrally located next to Prospect Park and a 5-minute walk to the F Train Station (Fort Hamilton), so getting around Brooklyn and NYC was a breeze.
Jose sold us a weekly transit pass ($31) upon arrival, providing us with unlimited subway and bus access throughout NYC and its burroughs for a full seven days, quite a bargain in a city where one subway ride costs $2.75.

The apartment is on the second floor of a six-story brick building and there is an elevator for those with heavy bags. Being a fashion designer, the flat is simply and tastefully furnished. Access to the kitchen and bathroom were never a problem and Jose provides filtered and bottled water, coffee and tea, clean linens and towels, and privacy. 
The private room is large, although there was little closet space to hang our things. The bed is large and comfy, there is a large flatscreen TV with cable, and a large desk is provided along with fast, free wi-fi. We did not spend much time in the room, but while we were there we were quite comfortable. There is also a window air conditioner in the room which came in handy as the temperatures were unseasonably warm in Brooklyn during the end of May.

There is a small market next to the subway station, but you must walk 10-15 minutes to find a selection of supermarkets, restaurants, and other shops. Parking can be a challenge because of the street sweeping schedules, but we were very lucky to park right in front of the building during our entire 8-night stay. The area is very safe.
Jose was not around a lot, but when he was, we enjoyed his company very much. He even made my wife two lovely bags with some leftover material he had in his work room as well as giving us souvenir bag tags to remember our visit … Muchas gracias Jose!

The apartment was clean, comfortable, convenient, and cost-effective at just $68 per night plus fees (less than $80 per night, including a $20 cleaning fee and a $68 Airbnb service fee), an excellent value in one of the most expensive cities in the world!

CombatCritic Gives Jose’s Bedroom In Front Of Prospect Park 9 Bombs Out Of 10 … More Bombs Are Better!

Nine Bombs Equates To:

Read Reviews By CombatCritic:

Yelp – Elite ’14/’15/’16

Tabelog – Official Judge (Bronze)

Zomato – #1 Ranked Foodie

View my food journey on Zomato!

… And Don’t Forget To Subscribe To TravelValue TV on YouTube

Tabelog Reviewer CombatCriticView my food journey on Zomato!

Title: Airbnb – Brooklyn, NY: Jose’s Bedroom In Front Of Prospect Park

Key Words: Airbnb, Jose, Prospect Park, Brooklyn. New York, Prospect, park, room, apartment, accomodation, private, bath, CombatCritic, TravelValue, travel, value, restaurant, review, Yelp

Translation for Civilians: OOH-RAH = “U.S. Marine Response To A Verbal Greeting Or As An Expression Of Enthusiasm”

Washington DC: Airbnb – Private Suite Near The Capitol

Private Suite Near The Capitol!
1644 Gales Street NE #B
Washington, DC 20002
Host: Kelley And Summer

$75 x 6 nights             $450
Cleaning Fees        $10
Airbnb Service Fee    $55
Occupancy Taxes*     $74
Total                       $589

Not sure why we paid $75 per night when the room is advertised at $65, but the room was clean and the price very reasonable for a central location in DC just a 10-15 bus ride from the National Mall. 


1) Easy walk to two buses, the X2 which takes you down H Street to the White House and the X8 which goes down Maryland toward the Capitol, terminating at Union Station (for transfers/Metro).

2) There are Safeway and Aldi supermarkets within a 10-minute walk of the house.

3) The room/bath are private and have nearly everything needed for a short stay (microwave/small fridge/Keurig coffee maker).

4) The neighborhood was relatively clean and people in the area were extremely nice, courteous, and helpful.

5) There are numerous diverse and reasonably priced bars and restaurants along Benning/H Street and within a short walk from the location.

6) There is a washer and dryer in the home (see cons) as well as a laundromat just a block away.

7) The wi-fi was fast, free and reliable. Never had a problem connecting, loading pages, or watching video/movies.

8) We were alone in the home the majority of the time, except for Lola (their sweet chihuahua) who kept us company occasionally, and it was relatively quiet (for a big city).

9) Ample parking on the street near the house and we were provided a city parking pass for our entire stay, never moving the car.

10) No TV


1) No Metro in the area and the X8 bus only runs until a little before 10pm, so plan returns wisely.

2) The room/bath are small and there is no place to put clothes. We had to keep everything in our suitcases, storing one under the bed and one on the sofa, leaving only one space on the sofa and the bed on which to sit. If you have a lot of luggage (more than one or two bags), this may not be a good option for you. 

3) The neighborhood is a bit on the rough side. The homes in the area are somewhat run-down compared to areas near the Mall and we observed some rather “sketchy” characters (I won’t elaborate on what they were probably doing) around the laundromat two blocks away on Benning. A man we met at a bus stop told us that someone was robbed at gunpoint one evening just two blocks from the house. However, we felt relatively safe and welcome in the area, and were not concerned about our safety, even after dark.

4) We were “discouraged” from doing laundry in the home due to complaints of “high water usage” by Airbnb travelers.

5) We were alone the majority of the time, but it would have been nice to meet both of our hosts (we met Summer on day one for a few minutes), get to know them a little (one of the perks of Airbnb), and get some “local flavor” and tidbits about the area and city. 

6) No TV

CombatCritic Gives Kelley And Summer’s Private Suite 7 Bombs Out Of 10

Seven Bombs Equates To:

Read Reviews By CombatCritic:

Yelp – Elite ’14/’15/’16

TripAdvisor – Top Contributor

Tabelog – Official Judge (Bronze)

Zomato – #1 Ranked Foodie

View my food journey on Zomato!

… And Don’t Forget To Subscribe To TravelValue TV on YouTube

Tabelog Reviewer CombatCriticView my food journey on Zomato!

Title: Washington DC: Airbnb – Private Suite Near The Capitol

Key Words: Airbnb, Washington DC, Washington, DC, Kelley, Summer, private, suite, Capitol, US, CombatCritic, TravelValue, travel, value, hotel, accommodation, review, Yelp, TripAdvisor

Translation for Civilians: S&G = “Shits & Grins”

Get Netflix and Access To Other US-Only Sites From Anywhere In The World

Did you know that Netflix is not available in many countries overseas, even if you have a US account? Netflix and other services (gmail, etc) automatically detect that you are in another country and block their site or, in gmail’s case, lock your account until you authenticate by logging-in and entering security information.

Well folks, after many years of traveling and numerous headaches caused by Google, Netflix, and others, I found out about VPNs (virtual private network) where you set up a proxy on your computer and use a FREE server in your home country to make it look as though you never left home while adding additional security to your browsing!

Here is one of many excellent tutorials on YouTube (this one is for Mac) that takes you step-by-step through the process:

You can find several FREE VPN websites by searching PPTP VPN free” on your favorite browser, but here is one I am trying: I will let you know how it works after I watch a movie on Netflix from India!

Follow CombatCritic On Yelp (An Elite ’14/’15 Member) And  TripAdvisor (“Top Contributor”) Where You Can Read His Latest Reviews, Try His Favorite Recipes, And More!

Key Words: VPN, PPTP, protocol, virtual, private, network, Netflix, Google, YouTube, gmail, free, proxy, Mac, PC, US, worldwide, secure, travel, value, TravelValue