4.24.2012

Travel Tip Tuesday: Air bnb

Two things that have been on my travel radar a lot lately are credit card airline miles and Air bnb. Next week I will give some tips on the best credit cards to open to get those coveted air miles, but today i'll give you a few tips about using Air bnb.
 If you haven't heard of Air bnb, it is a peer-to-peer rental site and is much like staying in a friends apartment. You can put your own place up for short-term stays and find amazing apartments and houses all over the world to stay at as well. This is one of my favorite sites because the places are usually cheaper than hotels and give you a more authentic experience.
 Because there are so many places and you are staying in someone's home, it is important to do a little pre-scanning beforehand. While browsing apartment therapy I found a great article giving three tips to try before you rent.  

(The first two points on my list are inspired by apartment therapy's article, the third is my own).

1.  Have multiple conversations with your hosts (or potential guests). Conversations can go a long way, and despite potential language barriers, you can really get a sense of who the people behind the home are. Are they seriously laid back? Are they really particular about how you use things? These little soundbites will give you some great insight and weed-out potentially creepy rentals (and home-owners).

*an actual rental in Ostuni, Italy

2.  Analyze the photos. When you are looking for an apartment in Paris or a house in Uruguay make sure the pictures are up to snuff. This could make the difference between a cleaned bathroom or a college frat house. If dirty clothes are out of the pictures or their bed is made, that usually means someone cares enough about their pictures that it probably translates into a great (clean) space.


3. Don't be afraid to just rent a room in a house. This sounds like a strange option, to rent a room and have the homeowner still there, but it could lend to some great experiences and a real taste of the local culture. Most of the times hosts who rent out rooms are travelers themselves and love to take you around to their favorite spots and introduce you to their friends.  Where else would you drink yerba mate with a gang of Argentinians or discuss who's been to more countries with a group of new friends in Australia?

 *this whole villa rents for pocket change: just $1140 a night (don't worry there are many really great inexpensive options on Air bnb)


6 comments :

  1. I TOTALLY agree with both of your tips! We used Air BnB in Manhattan last summer and it was such a good idea! We rented a room in a guy's house right by central park and it was perfect...couldn't have been better. And earning airmiles with credit cards is so smart...you can get bonus miles or triple or double miles, and earn free tickets...it also keeps your mileage accounts active if you dont fly within the 18 month period. I'm a part of both the American Airlines mileage club and the United club too...each linked with their mileage credit cards...I've flown home 2-3 times with airmiles!! And once I got bumped to first class becuase I was a mileage holder traveling alone :). It was AMAZING!

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  2. A great post! Great tips that I will definitely use in future. Enjoyed it.
    Debbie

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  3. Airbnb is so cool! Though I enjoy traveling, Airbnb sort of fills me with this itch to settle down someplace and decorate it, just so then I can put it up on Airbnb and be a host too!

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  4. Rachel i'm pretty sure you need to do a post about airmiles! You have it down/ i'm might have to email you soon to quiz you down for your tricks!

    And Chloe, I get the same Airbnb nesting itch! I would love to host travelers in my own spot (i'm trying to work out details, but if I could be home a month and travel two, that would be ideal!)

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