Airbnb vs. Hotels when traveling abroad: which is the best?
The decision to book an Airbnb or a hotel while traveling abroad is a decision that confuses many travelers. On the one hand, Airbnb is convenient, often affordable, and offers travelers the privacy they might seek in another country. Alternatively, hotels are convenient, offer a wide range of services, and don’t present the potential stress of being in someone else’s home. The question of whether or not to stay at an Airbnb rather than a hotel is further complicated by factors such as the size of one’s travel party, where one is traveling, and length of stay.
Why Airbnb is a great option for travel budgeting and group travel
In November 2020, it was determined that Airbnb rentals in London, specifically, were 59% cheaper than the average hotel room. Similar data for surrounding tourist destinations followed, with a study of TotallyMoney showing that Bath and Oxford were 52% cheaper than hotels in the same area, and Manchester Airbnbs was 51% cheaper. Therefore, the conclusion can be drawn that for those looking for budget vacations in the UK, Airbnbs is likely to offer the most affordable option.
This cost is even lower for those traveling in groups. While the typical hotel would mean offering multiple rooms for a large group, travelers can cut costs by visiting a rental together. It could be a house rental, a large apartment, or anything that would typically be out of most people’s budget, if they were renting out themselves. Cost sharing is a popular way to travel on a budget. Therefore, when it comes to group travel, Airbnb abroad is the best option.
Advantages of booking an Airbnb abroad
Unlike hotels, Airbnbs are rated solely on a space and a host, while hotels are rated on a variety of facets. This makes it easy to find higher-rated properties, as well as personal stories from guests who have met and interacted with the host or space. Additional benefits of booking abroad with Airbnb include:
- Rates. Sometimes hosts offer discounted rates or deals on their property depending on the circumstances of the trip. For those traveling out of season when an Airbnb is less likely to be booked, it’s worth trying to bargain a little for a lower price, given that most hosts just want the booking.
- Location. It can go either way, but many hosts rent out their property due to its proximity to tourist attractions. Finding an Airbnb in the center of a city can be worth the price if you save on transportation and can walk. Alternatively, finding an Airbnb in the countryside might be more affordable and allow travelers the privacy they seek on vacation.
- Host-traveler contact. When booking an Airbnb, travelers are dealing with one person (usually). This means that whatever issues arise, customers will know exactly who to contact and will likely be able to do so 24/7. Although this is also an option available to hotels, guests can rest assured that a property owner will not be looking after another 50 rooms in addition to their own.
Why hotels are better for first-time international travelers
Each country has its own Airbnb rules, which can be confusing for first-time travelers across the pond. While it’s not incredibly difficult for a first-time international traveler to book an Airbnb abroad, they might find it easier to book a hotel simply for the convenience it offers. One of the main reasons is the concierge service, which offers the following advantages to those who choose a hotel:
- 24/7 help. Most hotel receptions offer 24-hour help, which means that whatever the problem, there is always a member of hotel staff present.
- Transportation services. While one is pretty much alone with transportation to and from an Airbnb, hotels sometimes offer transportation in the form of cars or taxis which can help take some of the pressure off of figuring out how to get from point A at a point B.
- Room service. It may seem like a small luxury, but it’s a luxury travelers will be grateful for when they find there’s no food in their Airbnb and no restaurants or markets. open premises within walking distance.
- Travel deals. For those who are open to the combination of hotel accommodation, transport and sightseeing excursions, a hotel is undoubtedly the best option. While Airbnb will likely save them money, booking a hotel package can be economical and offers much more value.
So what is the best option? Airbnb or hotel?
Depending on the size of the travel party, an Airbnb is perfect for those looking to save money and budget their trip by reducing accommodation costs. It’s also a great option for those who have traveled abroad before and know the ropes, as transportation, food, and other necessities don’t need to be included in the overall stay.
For those traveling overseas for the first time, sticking to a hotel offers the luxury of having everything in one place. In the case of an advantageous package, this is also something to consider when choosing between an Airbnb and a hotel, since hotels often have more to offer for those who prefer to stick with an all-inclusive package. .
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