Airbnb: A Viable Alternative to Hotels?

airbnbIf you’re travelling for business or leisure, hotels may seem like a logical accommodation choice. But they certainly aren’t your only option! Airbnb connects hosts that have a spare room, or even a whole apartment or house, with potential guests. In doing so, it provides guests with the opportunity to stay in a variety of different types of accommodation, often at much lower prices than hotels.

Numerous members have used Airbnb, and the vast majority have reported entirely positive experiences. One member finds Airbnb properties much more interesting than hotels, as options include unique historic buildings and even entire apartments located right in city centre.

There are several advantages of renting an apartment, rather than a hotel room. Firstly, it will usually be much more spacious. Another benefit is access to a kitchen and washing facilities.

Some members have reported various issues when staying at Airbnb properties. However, the problems were resolved to our members’ satisfaction every time. For example, one member had a booking cancelled on them several months in advance but was offered a replacement, as well as a credit.

We’re currently using it in Italy and it’s been great. Gives you the opportunity to live like a local. We had one cancel a few months out but Airbnb found us an alternative (which turned out to be better), along with a credit for a future booking. All have been spotless, hosts have been great.

Another member turned up to an Airbnb property to find that it had not been cleaned properly. The issue was promptly resolved, and Airbnb once again provided a credit.

Another Airbnb when we got there in the evening was not cleaned. We contacted the host and they apologized as it was missed by the cleaners and while we went to dinner it was all sorted. I them emailed Airbnb with pictures and asked for the cleaning charge and one nights rate to be refunded. They agreed and issues me a credit to be used next time ( I was ok with it). Airbnb like uber are very accommodating and do try to go above and beyond if there are genuine issues. Just take pics of everything.

Our members have a range of valuable tips for making the most of Airbnb. One tip is to always choose a property with a large number of positive reviews. Properties with either too few, or negative reviews, are a higher risk than those with a proven track record. Our members also recommend booking early to avoid disappointment, as well as checking the cancellation conditions. Some hosts may not provide a refund in the event of a cancellation.

It is also suggested to contact the host directly before booking. This way, you can be sure that the property will be available on the dates you want to stay. This also gives the host an opportunity to make you aware of anything pertinent, for example if towels are not provided.

While Airbnb stays do require some research, our members are happy to recommend the service. They may not come with certain conveniences of hotels, such as room service or luggage storage, but the advantages far outweigh the disadvantages.

You can read all of our members’ Airbnb tips, and share your own experiences HERE.

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Matt Graham
The editor of Australian Frequent Flyer, Matt's passion for travel has taken him to over 60 countries… with the help of frequent flyer points, of course!
Matt's favourite destinations (so far) are Germany, Brazil, New Zealand & Kazakhstan. His interests include economics, aviation & foreign languages, and he has a soft spot for good food and red wine.

You can contact Matt at [email protected]