When Hotels Win
When Airbnbs hit the market, it was such a great phonomem. The concept certainly peaked my interest. I’ve stayed at a few but it Airbnbs never became my go-to for travel accommodations. I mostly stay hotels and resorts.
Even when I went to Hawaii last summer for a girls’ trip, we scoured the web for affordable, yet convenient accommodations. We came across a few Air BNBs but they were either too pricey, outdated (hey, aesthetics matters), or not centrally located. In the end, we settled on a hotel in Waikiki that was a few blocks from the beach.
Most of my trips are relatively short. They often do not exceed 4-5 days because of a myriad of reasons including competing work schedules, school schedules, caretaker’s schedules. With such short trips, I put a serious focus on convenience. I do not want to have drive 30 plus minutes one-way for main attractions. I want to be in the center of the action. It major cities, most Airbnbs, at least the more affordable ones, are located outside of the city center and I find that many are in residential areas.
Granted, there are certain situations that being culturally immersed is the purpose of the trip but most of my trips don’t fall into this category. Therefore, I gravitate to booking hotels.
While this has not happened to me personally, I have heard of horror stories of last minute cancellations by owners for many reasons and the only recourse is a refund and limited assistance from Airbnb A refund is certainly great but have you ever tried to book a last-minute anything- prices are usually more expensive.
When Airbnbs Win
I do find that when one wants to be under one roof and that amenities trumps convenience, Airbnb will win.
Many people like to have kitchens and laundry access when traveling. I’ll be honest, there are very few times when I want a kitchen when traveling. I clean and cook enough and do not have any desire to do the same on vacation. However, I do recognize the value in that for many travelers.
Or if you are traveling for a week or longer and a longer drive is okay with you, Airbnbs may be worth looking into.
As mentioned earlier, if you are visiting a foreign country and want to live more like a native and not. tourist, an Airbnb rental in a residential area may be perfect because you will come in contact with more natives than tourists.