Hosting on Airbnb is a rollercoaster of emotions. From paranoia about letting a total stranger into your home to the ecstatic feeling of getting a review so good it validates your entire existence. But there are some aspects of Airbnb hosting that are somewhat specific to Malta and the Maltese. We’ve drawn up a list with our friends at Casa Rooms.
1. The deep dread of uploading photos of your house online
You’ve taken the best photos of your life and your house has never looked this good. Still, you’re filled with paranoia that you’ve accidentally captured something embarrassing that everybody else will spot and it’ll make the national news.
2. Stalking your neighbour’s apartments just to ‘compare prices’
You’re bound to have a neighbour who is also doing Airbnb and therefore is now your sworn enemy for the next few months. Once you find their listing you first make sure you price yourself a little cheaper. Then you look at their photos. And you look some more. An hour later, you’ve analysed every word and photo on their listing, copied all the good bits, screencapped all the bad bits for your friends to see and ultimately decided to up the price għax ma jafx x’inhu jgħamel.
3. Realising you actually need a permit for this
You accidentally Google Airbnb in Malta and find out that the listing you’ve just created could cost you €23,000 because you don’t have a license. Madonna, Madonna, No! Do you delete it? Do you keep it? Do you call MTA, explain the misunderstanding and hope they don’t send you to jail?
4. Realising you have literally none of the requirements
Eventually you call the Malta Tourism Authority to find out what you must do to apply and you’re faced with a never-ending list of requirements, none of which you have satisfied. Why do guests need two desklamps and blackout curtains? After a series of awkward inspections – you’re ready to rumble.
5. Getting your first booking and telling all your friends about it
“I’m doing Airbnb ta.”
“Le ma nistax niġi illejla, I have this couple from South Africa flying in.”
Your excitement is palpable and you’ve literally done everything in the world to impress your first guests, including inviting two or three of your best friends over so they know you’re not a creepy loner and you have somebody else to help break the ice.
6. Offering to pick your guests up from the airport
Guest: “Can you explain what bus I should get from the airport?”
You: “Bus? Are you serious? Have you not read anything about the bus system in Malta? You should definitely get a taxi.”
Guest: “A taxi is too expensive for us. There must be a bus from the airport.”
You: “Don’t worry, I’ll pick you up. It’s literally five minutes away.”
You: Immediate regret. I hope they’re not going to expect me to drive them everywhere.
7. Learning how to use the bus system for the first time
Your guests only ever want to use the bus and you haven’t used it since 1995, so you scramble to learn all the information you can: nearest bus stop, bus route number, pricing, schedu–who are you even kidding?
“Are you sure you don’t want me to just give you a lift?”
8. Analysing every weird af food item they put in your fridge
Where did they even find this disgusting looking sausage and cheese? This must have been smuggled into the country.
9. Offering a lift back to the airport (or at least the bus stop) when it’s time to leave
Giving your guests a lift back after they’ve spent a week dealing with buses in Malta is like a guaranteed five-star review.
10. Waiting for the review and worrying that you’ll be the laughing stock of Malta
What if they noticed that dead cockroach in the living room? What if they say I sleepwalk naked? Madonna, Madonna, No!
11. Telling every single person you know that you’re the best Airbnb host in Malta
You get your review and it’s the nicest thing anyone has ever written about you. Time to let everyone know how awesome you are.
12. Realising you’ve spent all the money you’ve earned buying fancy treats for your guests
But it’s worth it because next time you won’t have to buy them again.
13. Getting booked out all through summer
And realising you will never have enough sheets or washing machines to keep up.
14. Reducing your price to nothing when October kicks in and you don’t get any bookings for weeks
I have failed as a human being. I must get a real job now.