When you are booking a vacation and looking for accommodations, you have a multitude of options to choose from these days. Typically you would check out hotels in the area you plan to visit, and select the option you like best. And this is where I am going to stop you. If you have not heard of Airbnb or you are not familiar allow me to introduce you!
Airbnb is “a trusted community marketplace for people to list, discover, and book unique accommodations around the world — online or from a mobile phone or tablet. Whether an apartment for a night, a castle for a week, or a villa for a month, Airbnb connects people to unique travel experiences, at any price point, in more than 34,000 cities and 191 countries. And with world-class customer service and a growing community of users, Airbnb is the easiest way for people to monetize their extra space and showcase it to an audience of millions.” The hubs and I have used Airbnb for three of our international vacations and a few trips here in the U.S. and have yet to be disappointed. Now, I have heard the horror stories about how previous tenants trashed the place and new renters were welcomed to a mess but that is a rarity. I have yet to have a bad experience and that is why I am going to convince you to jump on the Airbnb bandwagon. Here is my list of why you should choose Airbnb for your next vacation.
Pricing – Rates for Airbnb accommodations range from $10 – $1,000+. You literally have thousands of options in pricing whether you are trying to keep it cheap or if you want to stay on the more luxurious side of things. Airbnb fits everyone’s budget, which makes it an ideal tool for vacation accommodation planning.
Awesome locations – Airbnb represents 191 countries and over 30,000 cities for you to choose from. Chances are if you want to go there, there is a space for you to stay! Unlike with hotels where they typically only are located where they believe an area to be high volume/traffic for their brand so ultimately less likely to have accommodation availability off the beaten path.
Numerous accommodation types w/ kitchen options – Airbnb has over 50,000 accommodation options from apartment stays to renting a castle. If that’s not range I don’t know what is! In addition, if your place comes with a kitchen you are golden. On vacation, food can get expensive quickly and if you have the opportunity to save a buck on a meal here and there, that is always a bonus. When my husband and I travel whether we use Airbnb or not we always stop at a local grocery store and buy breakfast foods (unless breakfast is included), which allows us to wake up late and have breakfast in. Always a plus and huge money saver!
Live like a local – A huge advantage of Airbnb is that you can have the “local” experience. I love staying in a hotel like the next person and getting pampered etc. but sometimes you want to experience a raw version of the area that you are staying in and have more of a day – to – day life experience than that of the somewhat manufactured hotel experience. In addition, if you are staying in a place where the host actually lives you are much more likely to get invaluable information about the area, which brings me to my next point.
Your Airbnb host is your on-site travel expert for the area – Having a host who knows the area and can give you tips on where to eat, and places to visit are priceless. I know when we used Airbnb for our stay in Johannesburg and Cape Town, our hosts expertise and advice on the area proved to be invaluable. Especially because we were traveling with our little one and safety, was a primary concern just being in a foreign country and not being familiar with the culture of customs of that area.
If you are still not convinced check out the two Airbnb’s we stayed at for our trip to South Africa. The hosts for both locations were top notch and I would stay at either of their places in a heartbeat if I returned to South Africa. Also make sure to check them out on Airbnb, they just might be your next host!