2 GREAT TRAVEL WEBSITES TO BOOK YOUR NEXT VACATION: AIRBNB AND TRIPADVISOR
Traveling frugally is easier than you might think. There are lots of websites out there offering accommodations. It is a good practice to plan ahead as accommodations with the best prices go quicker.
The first thing I consider once I decide where I’m going to travel is a place to stay. There are so many websites out there touting themselves as the go-to spot to make the best deals. Personally, I use either Airbnb or TripAdvisor websites time after time to book my hotel or vacation rental for traveling.
My favorite website, Airbnb, listing over 2,000,000 rentals for both short and long-term stays. There are rentals in 34,000 cities and over 190 countries. Since its inception in 2008, this company has really grown globally in a short amount of time.
Airbnb is a fun, user-friendly website that offers accommodations ranging from a glass tree house to a castle in Ireland. They even list over 1,400 castles! You will find one-star to five-star accommodations at competitive prices. Prices are really great. Whatever your budget is, you can find a reservation to meet it. I’ve seen reservations in a fancy penthouse for $10,000 a night in New York City and I’ve seen prices as cheap as $8 per night in a one-bedroom apartment in a French seaside city. If you are traveling on a shoestring you are sure to find something you like to meet your budget needs.
You can choose to rent an entire home (have a place to yourself), a private room (have your own room and share some common spaces) or a shared room (stay in a shared space, like a common room). You can even find pet-friendly rentals so that your fur baby can go along when you travel. The rentals offered on Airbnb are all vacation rental type accommodations. Most of the listing that is listed as “entire homes” are homes or apartments. Some are timeshares that are being rented out by the timeshare owners.
Airbnb’s slogan, Live There, is the perfect slogan for the company. This company opens up the doors that let you live like a local in any city across the world. Some people prefer the shared common space option especially because it lets you live among the locals in an even more intimate setting. Some hosts offer meals with their price which is really an awesome perk. What a fabulous way to try the cultural food and have a truly authentic experience!
Airbnb charges guests a service fee (which ranges from 6%-12% depending on location and length of stay) and allows owners to charge a cleaning fee. The cleaning fee is completely up to the owner of the rental, and may not even be charged.
A portion of Airbnb’s service fees goes toward providing customer support 24/7. With that in mind, You can access the Airbnb support center through their app, or you can contact the support team by phone at 1-855-424-7262. The app is user-friendly and their customer support is excellent.
Don’t have an Airbnb Account? Sign Up Here and Get a $40 Travel Credit!
TripAdvisor is another of my favorite places to get great prices on accommodations. Unlike Airbnb, TripAdvisor only rents homes, apartments, or hotels. They do not rent out shared spaces or rooms in a home or apartment. In the “Vacation Rental” section, you will find owners renting out their homes, apartments, or timeshares. The website encompasses the whole gamut of the travel world. You can research your travel destination extensively. You will find reviews on restaurants, accommodations, and attractions. You won’t find dirt cheap prices on a place to stay here, but you can find great prices none the less.
A great feature of this website is that you can find things to do with reviews and rankings of the attractions so that you can see at a glance which is the most favored among travelers. Once you put together an itinerary for your trip, you can book the things you want to do on that one website. It is a very nice site that saves you a lot of time searching around on the web. It’s all there for you in that one place.
TripAdvisor has vacation rentals in 190 countries. It lists more than 630,000 different rentals to choose from, whether you’re looking for a beach house in California or a log cabin in the Swiss Alps. TripAdvisor is your one-stop website for booking hotels, flights, attraction, and vacation rentals. It started as a review site for hotels and restaurants and has grown into the vacation mega giant that it is today.
Guests on TripAdvisor are charged a tax and an owner fee for each booking made. Owners are also allowed to charge extra fees for things like hosting a large group, allowing pets, and providing items for guests. These prices are up to the owner of the rental and can vary in range.
TripAdvisor is known for having a great support for its customers. TripAdvisor’s website has an entire section dedicated to being a help center. If you don’t find what you need there, you can always call the customer service number at 1-781-800-5000. They also have an app where you can search accommodations and book. The app also let you search for things to do and places to eat and lets you book all of your vacation needs right there on the app.
So get your map out, find a place to wander and make those reservations!