During our travels we tend to stay in a lot of AirBnB rentals. This is not the only way we have booked stays, hostels, hotels, sleeper trains and more are all options for choosing a place to sleep at night. But with AirBnb and another home rentals we have found some gems making our trip even more memorable, even staying on a boat in Paris! The ease of having all of our places booked through the same site makes communication easier and we have always had an enjoyable experience. While searching where to stay we always have had some things we consider each time.
Depending on what type of traveling we are doing we may be be arriving at a new destination differently each time. Sometimes we may be in a rental car, our own car, using trains, buses or any other type of city transportation.
Thinking about this will help narrow down a good location to stay. If arriving in:
A rental car/personal car: If arriving in car make sure that the location has parking available. If there is no on site parking try to find out if there are parking garages nearby, street parking or any other safe place to park your car over night. Also think about how much luggage you have and how far of a walk you are willing to take on with said luggage.
Train/public transit: Always check the location of the rental in comparison of what type for transportation you plan on using. Look if you are able to reach the public transit within walking distance, or a short Uber drive (discount code). Especially if needing to catch an early train or bus to your next destination, or coming in late at night. The last thing you want to do is be wandering unknown streets in the middle of the night, or in bad weather.
No matter the number of people staying at a location make sure you know how many beds and what the sleeping arrangements are. We always scan the pictures counting the number of beds in the rental. Often places list their maximum number of occupants, but they do not add up equally with sleeping spots. One time I found a place that seemed to have labeled a few sleeping spots as the Lazy-Boy recliners. Not my ideal sleeping arrangement after a long day of traveling.
Think about what type of trip you plan on going on. If this one you plan on making your own breakfast, lunch or dinners? Always check and see if there will be a cooking area available. Especially if you are renting a shared space. In Ireland we looked for places that had a breakfast available in the mornings, we knew some of the small towns may not have many options open during the off tourist season or early in the morning before day trips. If planning to eat out a lot check Google maps that there are restaurants within walking distance.
This is something not on our priority list every trip. But when planning a multiple week trip you often want some time to be able to wash a load of clothes to wear again. We occasionally pick out a rental that has a washer and dryer when we have trips that either last multiple weeks and or that we plan on hiking and sweating a lot. No fun putting sweaty clothes in your suitcase next to your clothes you still need to wear. We don’t look for this in every rental but just certain locations and times. And having a washer and dryer in your apartment makes it better than wasting a day of your vacation finding and waiting at a laundry mat all day.
Read the reviews before booking! Sometimes you may come across hosts that have cancelled on their guest a lot, stay away from those. Reviews will also give you more insight on the city, rental and host. Do keep in mind that some people are nit picky when it comes to writing a review behind a screen, but go with your gut on this one!
Remember rental living areas are not always the best and cheapest options. We have stayed at many hotels, bed & breakfasts and coming up soon even a campervan! We still had an enjoyable experience in all of them. Find what fits your trip and vibe the best.