Recently we stayed in our first AirBNB. We have heard of others who save money and have great experiences renting a home or condo with Airbnb and decided it was time to try it for ourselves. Now that we’ve done it once, I want to share some things to know before you book your first airbnb so you will know what to expect and understand how the process works.
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10 Things to Know before you book an AirBNB
Search for your destination
You search by city, add your dates and the number of people in your party. On the next screen, you have the option to filter by property type. If you are only interested in entire homes or condos, select the first option.
The next screen will give you a listing of all the places that fit your filters. You can screen further by price as well as add in bedrooms and bathrooms.
Search for Airbnb Plus or Super Hosts
Airbnb recognizes its hosts that have superior rankings and verified quality and design. On the “more filters” button you can filter properties that have the titles of Super Hosts and rankings of Airbnb Plus. **I recommend that you start with this filter ON and start your search from there.
Sign up for a free account
When you are ready to get serious about your search, sign in for a free account. This will give you the option to contact the hosts or save your searches.
Complete your Full Profile
Before you can complete your reservation, you will need to upload your drivers license to the Airbnb system and give some profile information. The individual hosts will not see your personal documents but Airbnb requires this in order to keep their site secure.
Requesting a Reservation is only the First Step
When you find the property you want, you start the reservation process. You submit your information and then the hosts has approximately 48 hours to accept your reservation request.
When I first made our reservation, the host messaged me multiple times asking our purpose of the trip, how many were in our group and other questions. At first this was a bit unnerving but then I talked to another Airbnb Super Host who is also a friend who helped me understand that this is part of what makes Airbnb such a successful program because the hosts and the guests get to make sure they are a fit from the very beginning.
Contact your Host through Airbnb
All messages and contacts are done through the Airbnb program. You will get texts and emails from your hosts. Do not contact them outside the platform. Remember that you are building a relationship with the host throughout the experience.
Follow the House Rules
Remember that your accommodations are someone’s 2nd home. Take care of the property and follow the rules. The host will have a notebook on the counter or table when you arrive. Take the time to read them and make sure you understand what the expectations are. The house rules will tell you what to do with the trash, whether you should strip the beds and where you should leave used towels.
Be Aware of Neighbors
If you are in a condo or apartment, remember to be aware of neighbors. Don’t stomp or slam the doors when you leave. Be respectful of others.
Check in on Time
Most Airbnb reservations will tell you what time to check in. If you find that you are going to be later than expected, send the host a message and let them know. When we arrived at our first Airbnb we ran into traffic and realized we would be about 2 hours later than anticipated. There was no problem since we alerted the hosts and gave them a heads up.
Enjoy the Snacks/Leave a Tip
Most Airbnb hosts will have snacks waiting for you when you arrive. Some may even have fresh baked cookies or bread. Enjoy the snacks as a welcome gift from your hosts.
There is a cleaning fee added in when you make your reservation but you should still leave a small tip on the counter as a way of saying thanks for the snacks and drinks the hosts may have provided.
Leave a Review
As soon as you get home from your stay, remember to fill out the review form on the Airbnb website. You will have the option to leave a private message for the host as well a public review. After you post your review, you will be able to what the host has left for your feedback as well.
Want to learn more tips for getting a 5 Star Rating? Check out these great tips from my friend, Leslie who is a Super Host and owner of 2 Airbnb properties!Create Style Inspire
Bonus Tip: Take Pictures
The first thing I do anytime I enter an Airbnb or condo is take pictures of everything! I take pictures of the beds so I know how the pillows are arranged as well as pictures of the coffee table and counters. That way when we leave I can make sure everything is put back in it’s place.
**This is also a good way to record if anything is broken or missing when we arrive. I have a time stamp of the way everything looks when we arrive in case there are any questions.
Have you ever stayed in an AirBnB? What was your experience? Got any tips to share?
Looking for other ways to budget for travel? Here are some tips to help you save money on road trips!