A mum with terminal cancer has told how she was scammed out of £1,000 while booking a “bucket list” trip through Airbnb .
Health campaigner Sue Baker says the firm, worth £20billion, “coldly” refused to refund the cash after she fell for an elaborate hoax.
The mum had planned to visit Norway in a “final family trip” but was tricked by a fake host into paying the cash into a foreign account.
Sue, 50 – a mental health campaigner – was devastated when the rental firm insisted they were not liable for transactions once a customer leaves their site.
She said: “Airbnb need to start protecting customers. I didn’t realise I’d been taken off the site – it all looked completely legit.”
Her experience follows a flurry of cases which have led to calls for Airbnb to vet its hosts better.
Sue, from Whitstable, Kent, was found to have a terminal sarcoma in 2016.
She booked a lodge to see the Northern Lights with partner Alex Nurse, 39, their daughter Pip, one, and four friends.
Sue paid a £1,000 deposit and booked flights and car hire, but grew suspicious when told the transfer had “failed”.
She said: “We realised we’d been scammed. We looked and the lodge had gone off the site.”
Airbnb said: “We removed the host and are in touch with Sue. If you stay on airbnb.com and only send money through Airbnb you will always be protected.”