Happy Friday! My 6-month trip is coming to a close. I have just one week left here in Dublin. Hooray!
For the majority of this trip, I’ve used Airbnb to rent private rooms and entire flats. I highly recommend it for long-term stays and short holidays alike. If you’re interested in using Airbnb to book a room or flat for your next holiday, sign up here because we both get discounts! (You get $31 off your first booking. Pretty sweet!)
If you aren’t familiar with Airbnb, the site is just like any other hotel booking site, eexcept it’s cheaper. You rent out flats or rooms in homes. I prefer it over hotels because I like having a real space to live in.
Some tips for you:
- Always book your accommodations well in advance, especially if you are staying in a tourist hotspot like Paris, Dublin, etc.
- Search for an entire flat, private room, or shared room. TAKE NOTE that sometimes people mark their listing as ‘entire flat’ because you have ACCESS to the entire flat, not because you are able to rent the entire flat to yourself. You might still be renting a room with other people living there. Just beware of it when you search.
- Pay attention to long-term discounts. Some listings offer big discounts if you stay long-term. This means staying over a week or over a month. Unfortunately, you can’t search for this outright, but if you click on each individual listing, you can see how much of a discount they offer.
- The ‘instant booking’ option means you can book the place without checking with the host first. Otherwise, you have to message the host to double-check that the place is free. This is convenient but usually more expensive.
- Read every single review for each listing!
- Read the listing description carefully and ask questions before you book: Is smoking allowed inside? Who lives in the space? Are other rooms rented out to other people?
- Different flats/rooms have different requirements for cancelling or changing a reservation. Usually, it’s best to have the host cancel it. That way you aren’t penalised. Refunds are quick, though.
- Take a screen shot of the description when you book it, just in case they change anything and you need to cancel.
- Even after you book the place, keep an eye on the reviews coming in. If anything makes you want to cancel your reservation, do it before you arrive. Even if you lose some money, it’s much better to cancel your reservation before you arrive. I made this mistake in Split! 😦
- Vegans: bring your own cutting board and check the sponge!
- Research the neighbourhood beforehand. Sometimes reviews can be helpful, but I always check Google Maps to see what’s nearby: food shops, transportation, etc.
Airbnb is my favourite accommodation booking site because I prefer to live in actual homes as opposed to hotel rooms. Rooms and flats are much cheaper on Airbnb than living in a hotel long-term, and I can always find a space with a kitchen. I plan on using Airbnb for the rest of my travels as well!
Have you used Airbnb before?
How did you like it?