If you’re an Instagram influencer who likes to freeload to promote a hotel, then your days are over especially if you were planning to reach out to White Banana Beach Club. According to a recent post on Facebook, the beach club called out Instagram influencers who swamped up the club’s inbox with requests to stay for free at its rooms while also getting free meals and drinks in exchange for posting pictures for the ‘gram.

In the Facebook post, Gianluca Casaccia, the owner and manager of the beach club wrote, “We kindly would like to announce that White Banana is not interested to “collaborate” with self-proclaimed “influencers”. And we would like to suggest to try another way to eat, drink, or sleep for free. Or try to actually work.”

The beach club located at Siargao, a tear-drop-shaped island overlooking the turquoise Philippine Sea has long been popular with surfers. The cocktail bar has recently attracted huge swarms of travellers looking for that Instagram-esque vibe the place has and with so did Instagram influencers who’ve been flooding Gianluca Casaccia’s inbox with the “I am an influencer” messages who want to spend time at the beach club for free as long as they post pictures and stories for the giant photo sharing platform.

“I’m coming from the 23rd to the 25th. We need three beds and food and accommodation.”

What annoyed Gianluca and his wife the most is that the Instagram influencers who reached out to him just had less than 2000 followers. “How can you help me if you are no one?” he asked while in an interview with the New York Times.

The Facebook post went viral gaining 13,000 reactions with more than 3200 shares and with more than 1700 comments who agreed while others disagreed with his take.

To clarify his post, Gianluca added that his club isn’t against real influencers but only if you have half a million followers, calling the rest who flooded his inbox “wannabe freeloaders.”

This isn’t the first time Instagram influencers have faced backlash including the Dublin hotel owner fight with a YouTuber who wanted a five-night free stay and broke down in tears when she was bluntly refused. Some hotels in the Maldives get swamped with these emails from instagram influencers and so overwhlmed they even fail to reply. Jashita Hotel has gone tyo the extent of not working with any Instagram influencers since they post just one pic which consequently brings to attention more influencers.

Some influncers even pay the deposit and bargain to pay the rest with a couple of Instagram posts. According to the Huffington Post, “This type of self-absorbed, narcissistic view is the dark side of social media MEfluencers.”

The reactions from this post wasn’t in vain at all. The beach club came with a new “The Influencer” cocktail and even reached to one of the Facebook commentors for a collab. “I can see you have good content,” he replied. “But I suggest you do not introduce yourself as an influencer.”

Looking through the rates to stay at the hotel, it only costs $40 a bed which is surprisingly cheap and affordable if you want to do it for the ‘Gram.

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George Kamau
I brunch on consumer tech | first.last at techweez dot com