Girls Trip To Rome & Our Airbnb Disaster Experience!

Earlier this year, I went on a trip with two of my girlfriends over the Easter period. The plan was to initially visit Lisbon with my friend Naidene (a fellow globe-trotter!), but I decided to add a few more days of annual leave and another country! I mean why not?! After a few days of deal hunting, Naidene and I decided to also head to Rome. Fast forward a few weeks, I found out that another friend of ours (Toni) decided to join us on the first leg of the trip.

Since Toni booked her tickets separately from us, she ended up leaving London on a different flight (which actually worked in her favour in the end). Our flight had delays which meant that she arrived before us. After meeting up, we hopped into a cab that we shared with another British guy (he was visiting his italian girlfriend) to our Airbnb apartment that we rented for our stay. We met up with the couple our Airbnb host sent to give us the keys to the apartment. The place was quite old but spacious – nothing fancy.

When we arrived, it was quite late at night and unfortunately we had not realised that there was no heating until after the couple had already left. We left the heating on with hope that it was actually on a timer and that it would miraculously work overnight. We were so wrong.

To our dismay, we woke up to an extremely cold apartment! We later found out that there was in fact an issue with the heating system (which meant no heating or hot water, I repeat NO HEATING OR HOT WATER which should be essential amenities). She was apologetic and offered to give us two nights for free since it was Sunday morning and they wouldn’t get someone to fix until Monday! We obviously needed to shower (at this point, we were seriously considering leaving and finding a hotel nearby) but the host sent her mother to pick us up and she took us to her apartment to freshen up. They were lovely hosts and we were given lunch and a tour of the city.

It was unfortunate that after our stay, our Airbnb host felt like this was sufficient enough compensation (lunch and a drive around the city. I think I will take heat and hot water, thanks) and did not want to refund us the two nights we were left without heat and hot water. The next day, we had to take it old school and we boiled hot water to have a shower! After our stay, we contacted Airbnb directly as our host refused to pay and was very rude about it. In the end, we ended up receiving some money back from Airbnb but it doesn’t change the fact that the whole experience was such an inconvience.

Later that afternoon, after our bellies were full, we were dropped off and we wandered around the city centre.

We were able to visit the Trevi Fountain. This stunning fountain is extremely busy and the tradition here is to throw a coin over your shoulder.

We then headed to the one of Trip advisors most recommended Gelato spots in the area. It surely did not disappoint…

With our gelato in hand, we headed to the famous Spanish Steps but to our disappointment we found that it was actually closed (it actually looked very underwhelming so it wasn’t really much of a disappointment to be fair). We still enjoyed the walk nevertheless and wandering around a new city is never a bad thing!

The next morning we headed out for breakfast at another place with found on Trip advisor and I decided to take a few photos of the girls along the way.

Following breakfast, we headed to the vatican city to explore one of the most famous places on Earth. There was a little bit of a queue to get in as the security was a little tight but other than that it was a breeze! I thoroughly enjoyed St Peter’s Basilica – the level of detail in the walls and ceiling was absolutely impeccable.

The next day was bright and sunny. It was a perfect day for exploring the Colosseum. We had pre-booked our tickets online a few hours before (FYI, there is a reduced ticket price for Europeans under 25) and once we arrived, we signed up for a tour that allowed us to jump the queues and also visit the Palentino and the Roman Forums.

To end the day, we visited, Comme il Latte where I had the best gelato I had ever tasted (No exaggeration!). We travelled far to visit this place but it was so worth it. If you ever visit Rome, I would recommend you to check it out. You will not be disappointed!

Address: ia Silvio Spaventa, 24 (Repubblica/Barberini)


So that was the first half of our trip! At this point we said our goodbyes to Toni who headed back to London and we continued on to the next destination. Lisbon.

Until the next post…

In the meantime, have any of you had negative Airbnb experiences? I would love to hear all about it!


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  • Reply Kanndiss December 5, 2016 at 11:26 pm

    So inspiring – I really need to try getting my travel blogging mojo back. I like the running of your writing when you read it out loud it’s like your speaking to me about your adventures.

    • Reply The African Abroad December 6, 2016 at 10:02 pm

      Thank you! Aww you should definitely start again, i’d definitely read it! :).

  • Reply Victoria Oyenuga December 6, 2016 at 8:21 am

    This is so insightful. Pictures are so beautiful. Its a shame about the Air B and B experience :/.

    • Reply The African Abroad December 6, 2016 at 10:05 pm

      Thank you Victoria! I know it was a shame, thankfully I’ve had more positive airbnb experiences so it didn’t put me off!

  • Reply Mariam December 6, 2016 at 6:10 pm

    Rome looks really beautiful and I would love to visit. I have been really lucky with Airbnb so far but I’ve heard some horror stories though. Hosts popping in and out as they please, bathrooms with no doors : /

    • Reply The African Abroad December 6, 2016 at 10:07 pm

      Rome was amazing! I will definitely be going back.
      That is crazy! lol :/. Thankfully, aside from that experience, i’ve had more positive airbnb experiences.

  • Reply Demilade December 10, 2016 at 10:49 am

    Wow, your host was so rude. Not giving you a refund and all. These pictures are lovely, I’ve always wanted to visit Italy.Maybe one day, can’t wait to see your pictures from Lisbon! xx

    • Reply The African Abroad December 11, 2016 at 1:46 pm

      I know right! Very rude! Aww thank you Demilade. I will get Lisbon up soon! 🙂 x

  • Reply Suzanne (PhilaTravelGirl) December 17, 2016 at 6:05 pm

    I ended up in the ER with fractured foot and my BF had unknown bug bites all over his body that the stumped the doctor. Our house was dirty (we also arrived late night with delayed flights), my hairdryer, the host was unresponsive, the house unsafe (I fell on loose step). We fled after three days to a five star hotel – Airbnb was receptive throughout the stay even when the host posted slander/libelous statements about me.
    Lesson learned – don’t arrive at night and utilize the 24hr Airbnb clause (I didn’t know about this)

    The whole story with gross photos on my blog PhilaTravelGirl – I’ve had fabulous Airbnb stays and mixed in London, Venice and Milan – the Malta one quite memorable trip

    • Reply The African Abroad December 27, 2016 at 10:56 pm

      That is insane! I will be checking out your blog post about it!

  • Reply Ella December 18, 2016 at 7:00 pm

    I’m really sorry to hear about your bad AirBnB experience! I’m glad that you ended up getting compensated by AirBnB though and it sounds like you had a great getaway regardless. It sucks (and potentially scary) to know that there are hosts who don’t have a good character. I guess it can be a bit of a hit and miss. I’m staying in my first AirBnB in March though so hopefully more hits tgan missess haha 🙂

    • Reply The African Abroad December 27, 2016 at 10:58 pm

      I look forward to reading about your trip Ella 🙂

  • Reply Meg December 23, 2016 at 7:56 pm

    ughhh that AirBNB mishap is super annoying. I’m sorry that happened to you – but I’m glad you were able to make the best of the trip.

    • Reply The African Abroad December 27, 2016 at 10:58 pm

      It was super annoying but the trip was really fun despite it! 🙂

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