The Jakarta Post
Airbnb and other peer-to-peer rental websites have for years been credited with enabling lovers of travel and culture to find new ways to explore foreign lands. (Shutterstock/BigTunaOnline)
Where to stay is a crucial aspect of your next trip. Airbnb is all the rage as of late, but finding accommodation through the online portal can be a hit-and-miss, either because of the place's location and state or because of the host. Any experienced user knows it is not as simple as sorting the options by price and picking the top one, or just choosing the one with the nicest picture.
Here are some things to keep in mind when looking for a place to stay on airbnb.com, as compiled by Gizmodo:
1. Be cautious
While Airbnb tries to filter its listings and rule out unruly hosts, there are still dubious places here and there. If you are having doubts, contact the host through Airbnb for more details. Pictures can be deceiving or downright misleading.
2. Know the surrounding area
Make sure your Airbnb home is located near the places in your itinerary and has easy transportation access. Take time to google the neighborhood to make sure you're not staying in a shady part of town.
3. Scour the reviews
Remember that reviews are there for a reason and that other people's experiences might flesh out more details about the place than the host would care to share. Read thoroughly for any possible deal breaker that might ruin your travel experience.
4. Search by type
A family trip and a business trip surely require different types of lodging. Airbnb lets you filter the listings by your trip type. On a work trip, you probably will not need a kitchen or TV, so why bother?
5. Check local regulations
Despite the rise of the sharing economy, some areas are still opposed to Airbnb’s service for various reasons.
6. Look for the pictures that are not there
As a rule of thumb, the more the pictures, the better, because you have more visual details about the place. Make a list of everything you need from a place, then look at the pictures and ask the host for further details.
7. Actually contact the host
The feature is there for a reason. When looking for Airbnb accommodation, do not make assumptions you might regret later. Just ask the host to clarify your questions. Who knows, after actual human contact, your host may through in some perks.
8. Make a list
It takes several attempts to find a suitable, if not perfect, Airbnb place. Compile a list of the potential places to make it easier for you to narrow down your options from there.
9. Input your trip period
Prices constantly rise and fall in the tourist industry, according to peak and low season. Input the dates of your journey so you have a better estimate on how much you need to spend, not to mention the actual availability of the places too.
10. Read the small print
The devil is in the details. All hosts have their own rules you need to abide by. Make sure to read the rules and other policies before booking. Again, if you're not sure, just ask. (dev/kes)