Airbnb for Staycation

So you’ve decided to go on a staycation.  Maybe you’ll book a hotel in Makati or just go to nearby Tagaytay or Subic for a weekend or a few days.  But where can you get the best staycation deals?

There are numerous hotel booking sites that offer you great staycation deals, such as Agoda and TripAdvisor.  But the choices are limited and rates may be expensive depending on the season.  These sites may also be strict and absolute about any cancellations and refunds.  And it is tedious to keep researching one site after another just to spot the right staycation deals.

On the other hand, Airbnb has a vast listing of over 600,000 rentals in 34,000 cities and 192 countries.  Types of accommodations are not limited to rooms.  You can even rent castles, high-end condos, mansions, or a cabin by the lake. You wouldn’t have known about these places in any other booking site, because some are very exclusive.  For instance, some apartments or condotels may be located in subdivisions like Valle Verde or Ayala Alabang.  And where every other hotel has been fully booked especially at peak seasons, you may still be able to catch a great one at Airbnb.

In some cases, you get to meet the host and be able to acquire helpful information about your itinerary, as well as about the best places to shop, eat, and have fun.  There may also be hosts who would rather just meet you at the accommodation, give you the keys, and then leave you alone for the rest of your stay.

How Airbnb Works

Airbnb is engaged in the activity of matching a host with a guest, and charging a modest fee for successful bookings.  Whether you want an Airbnb staycation or long trip accommodation, you can easily find one in the site.

Airbnb presents myriads of possible rentals per location. These are presented in attractive full-color and detailed photos, with full descriptions of the place and the landlord / owner’s profile.

Sometimes it might feel like you’re searching for a needle in a haystack.  But to make your search more efficient, Airbnb has the filter feature which enables you to narrow down your possible choices by specifying the dates of your stay, preferred location, number of people in your travel group, room or building type, price, size, neighborhood, amenities,  and host language.  You can even state whether you want an instant booking, since some rentals may put you on a waiting list, especially the more popular ones.

Accommodations that fit your specifications will then load and you can get to read and review the features and amenities of each one before choosing.  Landlords will normally specify any house rules (ex. No smoking policy).

Once you’ve made your choice, you will now arrange for booking.  Some hosts allow instant booking, but others want to get more information about you first before approving your request.   You will also need to submit a valid ID and photo of yourself and your travel companions. Finally, you have to state that you are amenable to the house rules.

For accommodations that allow Instant Book, simply enter your arrival and departure dates and number of people in your party, then click Instant Book.  You enter your payment details and then click Book Now.  You’ll receive an email confirming your reservation.

Some hosts prefer that you make a Request to Book first.  Click on this button and submit your payment details.  You can also write an optional message to the host.  Then you click Book Now.  The host must get back to you within 24 hours, and you’ll be charged for the reservation only upon his written approval.  If he doesn’t respond, there is no reservation.

Airbnb Tips

Not all Airbnb staycation or long travel accommodations go well as planned.  Owners and renters may not get on well with each other. Owners may not have disclosed complete or true information.

Here are a few helpful tips to prevent any untoward experiences:

  • Get as much information about the location by using Airbnb’s neighborhood guides and maps. This will give you information about local points of interest, so it facilitates itinerary planning.
  • Check out reviews from other tenants about the accommodation to get a balanced perspective.
  • Carefully go over the House Rules and amenities.
  • Remember that every accommodation and landlord is different, and that there are no set standards as far as service or amenity quality are concerned.
  • Get to know the host or landlord better by contacting him before your trip.  This is also your chance to ask about local attractions and safety conditions in the area.
  • Don’t expect total service or complete amenities, unless they are specified.  These are mostly apartments, condos, or single homes, not five-star hotels.
  • Know what you are paying for.  Be aware of any local taxes that are charged by some local governments, and clear this up with your host.
  • Make sure that your rental arrangement is legal.

Looking for Airbnb Rentals to Book a Staycation?

Check the Airbnb properties we had featured so far.