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    • MSE Sarah
    • By MSE Sarah 28th Sep 17, 3:55 PM
    • 105Posts
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    MSE Sarah
    0 WOW
    Money Moral Dilemma: Should we split the bedbug refund?
    • #1
    • 28th Sep 17, 3:55 PM
    0 WOW
    Money Moral Dilemma: Should we split the bedbug refund? 28th Sep 17 at 3:55 PM
    This week's MoneySaver who wants advice asks...

    I recently stayed with five friends in an Airbnb in America for three days. The total per person was roughly $200. One couple stayed in a room that had bedbugs, and were severely bitten, while the rest of us were spared. The owner was extremely apologetic and gave a full refund (minus a cleaning fee). Knowing that four of us had a normal stay, and only two were bitten by bedbugs, should the refund be shared between all of us, or just the two who were bitten?

    Unfortunately the MSE team can't always answer money moral dilemma questions as contributions are often emailed in or suggested in person. They are intended to be enjoyed as a point of debate and discussed at face value.

    If you havenít already, join the forum to reply!

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    Last edited by MSE Luke; 03-10-2017 at 10:26 AM.
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Page 1
    • cupboardie
    • By cupboardie 4th Oct 17, 1:23 AM
    • 102 Posts
    • 89 Thanks
    cupboardie
    • #2
    • 4th Oct 17, 1:23 AM
    • #2
    • 4th Oct 17, 1:23 AM
    Personally I think they should get the whole refund as it's only due to their misfortune that you got it, but as you stayed as a group you should take a vote.

    I hope everyone would agree the poor guys who got bitten and from the sound of it had their enjoyment impacted sound be compensated.
    • AnneMary
    • By AnneMary 4th Oct 17, 7:03 AM
    • 52 Posts
    • 117 Thanks
    AnneMary
    • #3
    • 4th Oct 17, 7:03 AM
    • #3
    • 4th Oct 17, 7:03 AM
    From your information the couple who were bitten would've paid $400 for the accommodation. If they get all the refund they will be paid $600 compensation and free accommodation. The other three people will have paid as expected for the holiday.

    Is this fair? I don't know how much being "severely bitten by bedbugs" would affect their enjoyment of the holiday overall. I have had mosquito bites on holiday and although they were a pain, I can't say they ruined the holiday for me.

    How about a compromise? $100 for the three not bitten so they get half price holiday accommodation. And the rest to the couple so they didn't pay for the accommodation and get $300 compensation.

    What is most important is that everyone is happy with the deal. You don't want to lose friendships over this and if someone thinks it is "not fair" it will always be remembered and sour the friendship.
    Last edited by AnneMary; 04-10-2017 at 7:10 AM.
    • wendy.rennie
    • By wendy.rennie 4th Oct 17, 8:11 AM
    • 2 Posts
    • 4 Thanks
    wendy.rennie
    • #4
    • 4th Oct 17, 8:11 AM
    • #4
    • 4th Oct 17, 8:11 AM
    I personally don't feel that it should be split as the refund was for the room that had the bed bugs and your friends were obviously the ones that suffered. I have stayed in accommodation were I was bitten by carpet mites and it ruined my stay as I couldn't stop itching ,and would have been quite upset if my friends expected to share the refund considering it was only myself that it impacted on.
    • minicooper272
    • By minicooper272 4th Oct 17, 8:17 AM
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    minicooper272
    • #5
    • 4th Oct 17, 8:17 AM
    • #5
    • 4th Oct 17, 8:17 AM
    I would give them their full refund ($400), you guys shoulder the cleaning fee and maybe pay for them to have a nice night away somewhere else, or take them to dinner?
    • doctorblunkett
    • By doctorblunkett 4th Oct 17, 8:18 AM
    • 27 Posts
    • 31 Thanks
    doctorblunkett
    • #6
    • 4th Oct 17, 8:18 AM
    • #6
    • 4th Oct 17, 8:18 AM
    the four that had the normal stay should not, under any circumstances, get any of the money.

    the money was paid because of the two that were bitten. they get all of the money. no question at all
    • bizywizy
    • By bizywizy 4th Oct 17, 8:25 AM
    • 863 Posts
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    bizywizy
    • #7
    • 4th Oct 17, 8:25 AM
    • #7
    • 4th Oct 17, 8:25 AM
    they should get the full refund.

    the others should have rest of money shared as they had their holiday disrupted by the hassle of their friends room.

    The owner has chosen to refund them all (minus the cleaning cost) so recognises this.

    The money could then be put towards another joint holiday where they will hopefully enjoy themselves properly without the negative impact.
    Eleventh Heaven no 710 - we can all dream
    • John Gray
    • By John Gray 4th Oct 17, 9:23 AM
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    John Gray
    • #8
    • 4th Oct 17, 9:23 AM
    • #8
    • 4th Oct 17, 9:23 AM
    Why did your party get changed a 'cleaning fee'?
    Did they make a mess of the place?

    Surely you didn't get charged for the removal of the bed bugs!
    (Or did the owner think that the affected couple had actually brought along the bed bugs with them?)
    • l jane
    • By l jane 4th Oct 17, 9:42 AM
    • 4 Posts
    • 6 Thanks
    l jane
    • #9
    • 4th Oct 17, 9:42 AM
    • #9
    • 4th Oct 17, 9:42 AM
    We ended up getting bedbugs after a stay in Venice of all places - without getting bitten at the actual place.

    Once they were in, I still didn't get bitten - my boyfriend did - so don't assume you haven't got them. If you can see them, they're there.

    If you've managed to deal with it without bringing them home, then, yes absolutely they should keep the money.

    If you've had to take steps to deal with them though (upwards of £250 to fumigate) then, I'd suggest they split it.

    I hope this helps and good luck.
    • gloriouslyhappy
    • By gloriouslyhappy 4th Oct 17, 10:09 AM
    • 352 Posts
    • 700 Thanks
    gloriouslyhappy
    Severely bitten? How horrible! The itch of the odd mozzie bite drives me nuts, I scratch until I bleed even though I know I shouldn't, I always travel with Savlon, so this dilemma fills me with horror. Poor people who got the bad room!! How awful!! Refund all their money immediately and any expenses for chemist or medical supplies, then use the rest to take the whole group of six out for a nice meal. Do not use the refund to compensate the non-sufferers as this would surely infuriate the unfortunate pair, but use the remainder after they've been reimbursed on a group outing to end the holiday on a good note.
    • gloriouslyhappy
    • By gloriouslyhappy 4th Oct 17, 10:21 AM
    • 352 Posts
    • 700 Thanks
    gloriouslyhappy
    Why did your party get changed a 'cleaning fee'?
    Did they make a mess of the place?

    Surely you didn't get charged for the removal of the bed bugs!
    (Or did the owner think that the affected couple had actually brought along the bed bugs with them?)
    Originally posted by John Gray
    A cleaning fee seems to be becoming standard with rental properties, I find it frustrating to find a suitable place at a decent price only to get all the way through the booking process then discover all sorts of add-on fees. Wish it was made clear upfront, or the owners do like the place we've stayed in Margate - Dreamland Lets - which only charges a cleaning fee if you leave it dirty. We always leave our rentals clean and tidy and resent a cleaning fee coz we think it should be part of the rental cost, after all hotels don't charge. We've never been charged by Dreamland Lets so keep going back there! Maybe if we all boycott the places with cleaning charges, they'll get the message!
    • pollypenny
    • By pollypenny 4th Oct 17, 10:24 AM
    • 23,104 Posts
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    pollypenny
    If you're friends there's no dilemma. The poor person who suffered the bed bugs gets the compensation.
    Member #14 of SKI-ers club

    Words, words, they're all we have to go by!.

    (Pity they are mangled by this autocorrect!)
    • amber_cloud
    • By amber_cloud 4th Oct 17, 10:25 AM
    • 8 Posts
    • 18 Thanks
    amber_cloud
    don't know how much being "severely bitten by bedbugs" would affect their enjoyment of the holiday overall. I have had mosquito bites on holiday and although they were a pain, I can't say they ruined the holiday for me.

    How about a compromise? $100 for the three not bitten so they get half price holiday accommodation. And the rest to the couple so they didn't pay for the accommodation and get $300 compensation.
    by AnneMary;73213246I
    Having personally suffered with bedbugs it is a horrendous experience - not just the bites which are fiendishly itchy, but being unable to sleep due to stress about getting more bites and the itching of the current bites. Plus the bites swell up more than mosquito bites and look disgusting. Your compromise sounds ideal though, if I was the bedbug-bite recipient I'd be happy with that split.
    • Cimscate
    • By Cimscate 4th Oct 17, 10:27 AM
    • 122 Posts
    • 136 Thanks
    Cimscate
    DIscuss and agree
    the four that had the normal stay should not, under any circumstances, get any of the money.

    the money was paid because of the two that were bitten. they get all of the money. no question at all
    Originally posted by doctorblunkett

    But then again the refund was money they had paid, if the 2 who got bitten had been on their own I very much doubt they would have had more than the room cost. If you often go away together why not use the money next time ...


    The key is to talk and agree a solution between you.
    • ButterflyLC
    • By ButterflyLC 4th Oct 17, 10:50 AM
    • 43 Posts
    • 42 Thanks
    ButterflyLC
    Well here's the thing, who paid for the stay? If all five of you paid $200 each then the people bitten should get their full $200 each back. The other three should split the remaining money as a cleaning fee was taken off the remaining $600. Let's face it, their room was not "clean". You can't really expect to get more than you paid back as a refund. If you bought a loaf of bread at £1 and you took it back as it was mouldy, is the shop expected to give you £5 back as a refund? It is really up to the couple who were bitten to attempt to get compensation through legal action rather than accepting money that you paid out. It is a refund not compensation.
    • crmism
    • By crmism 4th Oct 17, 10:52 AM
    • 83 Posts
    • 50 Thanks
    crmism
    Bugs
    You seem to have presented your case very clearly. It was only two of you who were plagued by some infestation of bugs and the other four, including you, were unaffected and presumably were able to enjoy your stay.

    Why, then, do you think you ought to have a stake in the refund? Did you suffer to the same extent as the two who suffered? No, you didn't. You didn't suffer at all.

    I suggest you take a good look in the mirror and ask yourself whether you're trying to capitalise on others' misery. Also, ask yourself whether you would have been entitled to have a share of the refund had the four unscathed friends, you included, holidayed somewhere entirely different.
    • onesixfive
    • By onesixfive 4th Oct 17, 11:12 AM
    • 299 Posts
    • 213 Thanks
    onesixfive
    Were you inconvenienced by your friends discomfort ? ie: did it cost you time/expense to go to chemists for/with them?
    If not - they get the refund
    If yes - you get a teeny share of it
    • angel549
    • By angel549 4th Oct 17, 11:19 AM
    • 52 Posts
    • 31 Thanks
    angel549
    Just the two that were bitten! Come on!!!!
    • meknowalot-51
    • By meknowalot-51 4th Oct 17, 11:58 AM
    • 166 Posts
    • 88 Thanks
    meknowalot-51
    Maybe.
    Only those two directly affected by the bedbugs should be compensated with the whole amount as that is what the refund is for.The couple concerned may want to give you all $50 each for any emotional discomfort or inconveniance this may have caused you personally.That to me would be a fair compromise and i'm sure you would all agree as it was the two of them that recieved direct pain and grief.
    • JimmyTheWig
    • By JimmyTheWig 4th Oct 17, 12:01 PM
    • 11,512 Posts
    • 11,165 Thanks
    JimmyTheWig
    My gut reaction is full refund for the bitten pair then split the rest between the _six_ of you.
    So if $50 was taken for cleaning, that's $525 each for the two who were bitten and $125 each for the other 4.
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