Travelling is an amazing experience that so many wish they could do more frequently. Unfortunately all the costs rack up pretty quickly and we’re left not booking that trip because it’s going to be just too expensive. People waste so much money staying in places that are quite frankly very average and sub par. Yes, you can stay in cheap hotels or even do some couch surfing if that’s your thing. But that’s not for everyone. Cheap travel and accommodation is possible.
Luckily, there are ways that you can stay in amazing places that won’t completely break the bank.
How To Stay In A Nice Place For Cheap
Last year I started planning my trip to London. I had booked my tickets, applied for my visa and then started looking for accommodation. I was shocked at the prices. Pretty average hotels were at least £100 per night. There was no way that I was going to fork out so much money for average accommodation.
I wanted to be centrally located as its far more convenient for visiting family and friends as well as shopping and sightseeing. The only affordable hotels I was able to find were far out and the daily commute would not be worth it. All I wanted was a cute, cosy little place close to everything.
Luckily I found the ideal place. A place all to myself!
How you might ask…… AirBnb.
What is AirBnb?
AirBnb is a website where you can rent someone’s house, apartment, boat house or loft for a period of time. There are so many places to choose from in varying locations. Not to mention that this site is global! If you decide to stay in a persons place for a longer period of time, you get a discount normally. Yes win-win.
How To Use AirBnb
AirBnb is so easy to use. What I like about it is that you never pay the host directly. It is all done through AirBnb therefor ensuring that the transaction is safe and that you are not scammed.
Before looking for accommodation in London I got a little side-tracked and of course started looking for places in Paris. Worth a look I thought, although I was expecting them all to be very expensive. Incorrect! I was finding places for $55 a night!
Make A Profile
It’s a quick and simple process . This is so that potential hosts can learn a bit more about you. AirBnb is built on relationships and it helps other people to get to know you better. Not to worry though, your information will not be shared with anyone until you have confirmed your booking.
By using the filters you really are able to refine your search and find exactly what you are looking for. There are so many amazing places out there that you could quite literally be searching for hours. Hence, in order to save yourself some time and sanity, apply filters. When you first start searching, you will put in the dates that you want to travel and for how many people there are. You will then be sent to a listings page and here you can add further filters. Room type and price range. You can choose whether you want to rent the entire home, a private room or a shared room. If you like your own space then you will want to choose the “entire home” option.
Your budget is very important and thats why it is vital to choose the price range tool. Drag the circle to your maximum spend per day. This helps you to narrow the search to find places in your price range.
There are various other filters that you can add. Such as what size bed you want, to whether you want a washing/ drying machine or not.
My first time using AirBnb was for my trip to London last year and my host was so helpful. She went above and beyond giving me directions to the apartment as well as buying some basics for the apartment fridge.
Timing Is Everything When It Comes To Cheap Travel
As with any regular travel, timing is everything. When travelling in peak times – London in December- prices will be higher. If you’re not okay with this then I suggest travelling in an off-peak time. These places also get booked up pretty quickly so I would suggest that you book as far in advance as possible.
Save Even More Money
I you don’t mind staying a little out of the city centre then you will be able to save even more money. Places in the city centre will inevitably be more expensive. If you’re going to a big city then there will be amazing transport to all over the city so you will not have to worry about having to get about if you are staying out of the city centre.
Long-Term / Full-Time Travelling
If you are travelling full-time or long-term then AirBnb is an excellent option for you. Not having to be tied into a lease for 6 months will make life so much easier. In addition, if you stay in an AirBnb for a longer period the rate usually is better and hence your stay is cheaper. Your host will give you a weekly and monthly rate. The AirBnb prices are affordable. That beats staying in hotels or hostels and their exorbitant rates!