Traveling these days is all about immersing more in the local culture – we want to truly experience cities like a local, not just stare at famous buildings from afar. Whether it’s going off the beaten path to find a new restaurant, attempting to learn a new language, or using public transportation, travelers today are exploring cities in a whole new way. In this new era of traveling, and with the rise of tools like AirBnB or HomeAway, we’ve seen travelers opting to stay in local apartments and houses instead of hotels.
Staying in apartments or houses allows you to live more like a local and less like a visitor. You visit the grocery store for food, you get to explore areas less frequently traveled by tourists and you have the opportunity to meet local neighbors.
This all sounds so great, right? So where can you go to find a place to rent? There are dozens of websites out there – from Airbnb and HomeAway to Luxury Retreats. These sites serve as an online market place to connect people with available rooms, apartments or houses and those who need a place to stay. You can search by location, bedrooms, price, and even property type – the options are endless.
There are a few things to look out for, though:
1. Poor Reviews – read the reviews of the location before you go – look for comments about how well the reviewer slept, anything to watch out for, or noise levels.
2. Know The Full Cost – some cities require additional taxes, even on local rentals, or the host might add on additional cleaning or other fees. Make sure you know the full cost before you go to avoid surprises.
3. Scour The Photos – AirBnB has professional photographers that hosts can request to take photos – these will be watermarked on the site and can offer assurance of the legitimacy of the photos. While you can’t get everything from a photograph, look for hints at cleanliness or abnormal wear and tear on furniture. This can give an idea as to how the host has kept it up themselves.
The next time you start planning your vacation, think about renting an apartment – you are sure to feel like a local, and you can still use TripCase to organize the details for you!