3 Tips to Remember When Booking with Airbnb

Planning your stay with Airbnb

Planning your stay with Airbnb

I recently booked my second stay with an Airbnb host. The first experience — a two night stay in guest room inside a Denver home — was truly wonderful. Our next adventure will be a one week booking in the Catskills area of New York. We’ve booked a house for our stay and have been very happy so far with the communication with our host. I’ll be sharing the “end results” of the visit later, but for now I wanted to share a few thoughts for folks who may not have used Airbnb in the past.

  1. Consider why you are using Airbnb. In this instance, I researched area hotels and was unhappy with the results I was finding. Because we are visiting to attend a music festival and we were late registrants, our options were limited. I turned to Airbnb because along with wanting someplace that is close to the event venue, we will have a kitchen to cook for ourselves. In this instance, we are not “touring” the area (although I will likely take day trips) and for me this will be a working stay. So the comfort of a home with a kitchen and barbecue is an added benefit for our stay. I expect that we will save money on meals since we’ll be able to use our host’s kitchen.
  2. Do your research. Airbnb listings do not give a full street address until you book your reservation. The coordinates they give you will get you close enough to explore the nearby surroundings. Before reserving my stays, I took the following steps:
    1. Read the reviews on my host
    2. Researched the area thoroughly on Google maps using both street and satellite views
    3. Check the vicinity for Catholic Churches and Mass times
    4. Viewed all of the photos of the home we selected.
  3. Communicate with your host in advance. Staying at an Airbnb listing is different than going to a hotel. You will need to arrange complete directions, obtain contact information for your host, and arrange a meeting time to access the property. I discovered with this most recent booking that while the listing stated that the home included wifi, there was indeed a limit for usage. I have been in communication over the past few days with our host and have come up with a good compromise situation. I’ve also been able to forward the listing to family so that they have his information in the event we encounter any sort of emergency situation on our trip. We’ll also definitely be carrying Airbnb’s contact information in the event of a problem.

Your turn: Have you ever used Airbnb for travel? What recommendations can you offer?

About Lisa M. Hendey

As a Catholic who loves her faith and a frequent adventurer who’s always up for a new journey, Lisa is a wife and mom, a writer, a speaker and an impassioned traveler. Visit her at LisaHendey.com to keep up with her comings and goings.

  • Tim Prince

    I made my first Airbnb reservation earlier this year for a business meeting in July. I, too, was not happy with the hotel or regular B&B selections available in terms of cost and proximity to the venue. In fact, I always look for a B&B when I go to a meeting as the hotels just seem impersonal. I have communicated a little with the hosts, and they have received stellar reviews. There is even a Catholic church within a block of the meeting center. Glad to see Catholic Tourist back up and running!

    • lisahendey

      Hi Tim! Thanks for sharing your experience — I hope you’ll share how the trip goes when you get back! And hey, you are on the docket soon for me to share your Faith on the Move interview! Those are going to be running on Mondays. So much great content, so little time! If you ever want to share a guest article, I’d love to have it!