10 Tips To Choose The Perfect Airbnb
Airbnb offers a good alternative to hotels and hostels. The prices are often quite appealing and the service allows you to tailor your accommodation to your needs. Do you want to share a flat with a host and live like a local? Do you want a whole flat for yourself and have some privacy? Airbnb got you covered.
One of the most appealing things about Airbnb is the possibility to talk with a local and get tips from someone who lives in the city that you wish to visit. You can quickly learn about secret places that other tourists might not know and you might even spend the night in a completely different place – fancy a boat house or a whole paradisiac island? Sure, why not!?
Spending the night in a horrible place can really destroy your dream trip so you need to be careful whilst looking for places to stay. Here are a few tips for you to choose your perfect accommodation in Airbnb and have a wonderful trip that you will remember forever.
Know what are you looking for and be specific
What do you expect from an accommodation? Are you looking for just a place to crash for a few hours before going out and explore the town some more? Or do you want to try and live like a local, spend some time with the host and get to know new people?
Think about what sort of place are you looking for? Do you want a room or a whole flat? How about a boat house or a castle? Being specific will help you tailor your trip and make the whole experience more pleasant.
Pay close attention to the photos
How good are the photos on the site? They will give you a good idea of what to expect of the place. It will also show you how serious the host is about Airbnb. Also, check if there is any part of the house that’s not shown in the pictures. If it’s not there, maybe the host doesn’t want to show the less pretty parts of the house.
Read all the reviews, specially the bad ones
Reading the reviews will give you a good idea of what to expect from a listing in Airbnb. If the guests complain about the same things, you can expect that maybe the issue is recurrent and you won’t be caught off guard.
Always pay through Airbnb
Always book rooms through Airbnb booking system and don’t give cash to the hosts directly because they can always cancel the reservation and keep the money. If you pay by Airbnb you are protected against that. They also have representatives all over the world and they can help you with any issues that you might have with your booking and hosts.
Ask a lot of questions
Don’t worry about asking too many questions. Both you and the host want to have a good experience and most of the hosts are more than happy to help you with any issues or questions. By asking plenty of questions you can be more prepared and make your experience go smoother.
How to get to your room/flat?
You just landed. You are tired, maybe a bit stressed and unfamiliar with the language and the areas around town. You have no idea about buses, trains and other forms of transports and you have no clue how to go from the airport to the room you have just booked in Airbnb. This might be one of the most stressful moments in your trip.
Do your homework and ask for specific details on how to find the room. Which transports you need to take, how much you need to walk and the easiest way to go from the airport to the room and from the room to the town centre. Google maps might come in handy if you can find a WiFi connection.
What are the house rules?
You can read the house rules when inspecting a listing on Airbnb, but some hosts forget to write them or they might even write them in their own language, which can be hard to get a proper translation.
If that is the case, ask them about the house rules. Not only will that make the host more comfortable with you, but they will also see that you respect them and don’t want to cause any issues with them or the neighbours.
What’s close to the flat?
When renting a room/flat from Airbnb you might have full access to the kitchen, making it easier for you to save money on food while visiting a country. When looking for places to rent, make sure you ask about the local shops around the flat. Not only will you know where to shop, but it might also be useful to know that the flat you want to rent is on top of a pub or a club.
What sort of things are provided?
Do you need to take towels with you? How about shower gel and shampoo? Even if most hosts provide you with towels, it’s always a good question to ask. The last thing you want to do after a long flight is to try to find a place that sells towels.
While you are at it, ask if you have full access to the kitchen and everything within it and if there is anything that you should take with you.
How good is the internet?
We rented a whole flat for one of our trips and didn’t even remember to ask about the internet details. Our previous hosts have been kind enough to leave the WiFi password in our room so we could use it.
Well, this particular host didn’t leave anything. After hunting for a few minutes for the modem, we tried to connect to the WiFi. This was a real mission impossible and after trying all sort of network names and passwords, we decided to contact our host and ask about the internet.
The host gave us the name of the network and two passwords. Both were wrong. We tried all caps, no caps, some caps. Nothing worked. Three days without internet wasn’t really a problem, but it sure would help when we were planning what to do the next day.
Lesson learned. Always Ask about the internet!