YouTuber tricks Airbnb customers into listing rental dollhouse
With overseas travel being out of place for a while, it’s all about a vacation, and some vacationers were so eager to find a property to rent that they didn’t notice they were booking a dollhouse on Airbnb.
Known the Youtube for their creative pranks, Josh Pieters and Archie Manners from London, decided to create a list with photos of a miniature house to test how carefully Airbnb checks their lists, which thousands of customers around the world trust.
The duo demonstrated how they were able to use their photography skills to capture images that made a dollhouse look like a luxurious 18th century townhouse, available to hire for £ 87 per night in Clapham.
Josh and Archie included a bank card in the bathroom, a full-size water bottle in the hallway, and made sure their reflections were captured in a mirror to show the scale of the property, but Airbnb still has it. accepted the ad and customers were also duped.
Impressed viewers urged Josh and Archie to film a follow-up video showing how Airbnb responded to the prank, which generated more than £ 3,000 in bookings – before the duo refunded the money.
Josh explained that their prank was aimed at testing the controls Airbnb claims to use to verify properties and prevent customers from getting ripped off. Pictured: The dollhouse lobby with a water bottle to show the ladder – but it passed the Airbnb verification process all the same
Josh and Archie took photos of the interior of a dollhouse designed by Emma Waddell, complete with working lights, real paintings and a miniature chandelier
Josh and Archie, who have over a million YouTube subscribers, sprang from the miniature world created by Emma (pictured)
One person wrote: “My God you are so creative and so resourceful (if not terribly elaborate) to make a serious point… love it!”
“It would be interesting to do a follow-up video on how Airbnb will react when you tell them and call them,” said another.
In the video that racked up more than 300,000 views, Josh explained that they wanted to know if Airbnb would run any checks to verify their property before making it available to customers.
Josh said, “Back in the days when we were allowed into other people’s homes, Archie and I visited a house within a house with every room smaller than an iPad screen.
“This is the creation of interior designer Emma Waddell who painstakingly created a whole miniature world.”
The couple listed the ‘Luxurious 18th Century London Townhouse’ on Airbnb and were surprised when the photos passed the site verification process.
Josh Pieters (pictured) and Archie Manners, who live in London, went viral on YouTube after using a dollhouse to prank Airbnb customers
Josh (pictured) said they chose to include a bottle of water and a bank card in the photographs to see if Airbnb spotted the property’s odd size
Josh and Archie also captured their reflection in one of the photos. Pictured: Pranksters admiring a book from the dollhouse
Josh and Archie (pictured) have listed the dollhouse as an 18th century townhouse available to rent for £ 87 per night
The YouTube star documented the dollhouse’s impressive interior, including real lights, paintings and readable books.
Archie joked that customers were walking up the stairs to be greeted by another dollhouse inside.
Taking photos, he and Josh included a bank card in the bathroom, a full-size water bottle in the hallway, and made sure their reflections were captured in a mirror to show the scale of the property.
Josh used a photo of his mother Diana as a profile picture to create the illusion that the dollhouse was a luxury property with a “big” host.
He then listed the address using his actual location in Clapham and posted it as available for booking for an average of £ 87 per night.
“Despite all of their checks, Airbnb approved the listing,” Josh said.
Josh explained that he chose to list the property using his mother’s name. In the photo: the bank card placed in the bathroom
Josh and Archie used a separate Airbnb account in an attempt to reserve the fake property for themselves as a test
Josh said days after the announcement was made thousands of members of the public made reservations at the “townhouse”
Josh was amused that he could book the property using a separate account and waited to see if the public would take a closer look at the rental.
He said: “In just a few days, Airbnb had taken thousands of pounds from members of the public for a completely bogus ad.
“Of course, we gave them their money back. But just to prove how vulnerable he is to crooks, we made one of our reservations.
Josh and Archie surprised two workers who were looking for last minute accommodation.
Explaining that the Airbnb listing does not exist, Archie said, “It’s not all bad news because in this envelope we have the money you paid and in the other envelope we have a 5 * hotel. on Park Lane.
– So you’re going to stay there, dinner is settled and breakfast tomorrow.
Josh and Archie have racked up over £ 3,000 in bookings – but returned the sums to all but one guest
Josh explained that they chose not to cancel a last minute booking to prove it’s possible to get ripped off on Airbnb. Pictured: the dollhouse
Josh and Archie (pictured left) booked a 5 * hotel to compensate workers (pictured right) who booked their fake ad
“You both have your own suites, so you’ll be going to Grosvenor House tonight,” Archie said.
“With free parking and everything. Paid for. You can taste wine, beer, everything. I’m afraid you accidentally booked a dollhouse.
The workers in the video were left speechless and said they had never been scammed into a bogus booking on Airbnb before.
Further responses to the video sprang that they also reportedly considered reserving the dollhouse based on the listing.
One person wrote: “This is crazy. I almost booked this for my birthday. In fact, I almost booked no kidding. I would have been heartbroken when I saw what it really was. Thank god i didn’t really book
Another joked: “I would have booked a stay there just to see the giant water bottle sculpture”
A response stream to the video admitted they were also allegedly tricked into booking the dollhouse