One of the many decisions to make when traveling is: Airbnb or hotel? While you’ll probably consider the obvious, like location, availability, and cost, there are plenty of other factors that could influence your experience.
Of course, if the final bill is the only thing that matters to you, you can simply choose the cheapest accommodation per night, but you should always consider related expenses like eating all meals out or paying to park in a hotel compared to extras like Airbnb. cleaning fees and taxes.
Ultimately, the choice comes down to what you enjoy when traveling, so here are some things to consider when weighing your options.
When should you stay in a hotel rather than an Airbnb?
When you lay it all out, there are actually a lot of benefits to staying in a hotel rather than an Airbnb or other roommate, from quality to flexibility. Here’s when a hotel might be the best option for you.
You are staying for a short time or just need a place to sleep
Hotels can be cheaper (and less effort) than Airbnbs for one or two nights. In addition, travelers often choose a Airbnb for the vibe of the place and the desire to hang out during downtime. If you only need a bed and you don’t plan to spend time there otherwise, a hotel may be preferable to a rental.
You don’t want any additional responsibility
When you stay at a hotel, all you have to do is show up, stay, and go. With an Airbnb or other rental, there are usually minor cleaning tasks, like running the dishwasher and taking out the trash, to be done before departure. There are complaints of longer chore lists required by hosts despite cleaning fee – and not following a host’s strict rules can result in a bad review.
You appreciate hotel services and quality control
If you like having access to a pool, fitness center, on-site restaurants, and concierge services, as well as daily housekeeping, a hotel may be the best option. Plus, you’ll likely have a more consistent and predictable experience with a familiar hotel chain.
While many Airbnb hosts are very responsive to guest needs, you’re less likely to encounter maintenance issues that can’t be fixed at a hotel.
You have hotel loyalty points
Hotel loyalty programs and travel rewards credit cards offer perks like free nights, room upgrades, and free meals, which could save you money and add value to your stay.
You need a flexible cancellation policy
Hotels often charge for late cancellations (within 24 hours of check-in, for example), but many Airbnb hosts have much more restrictive policies. The strictest require cancellation within 48 hours of booking, regardless of the intended length of your stay, otherwise you’ll have to pay between 50% and 100% of the cost.
Also, hotels will not cancel the you at the last minute.
When should you stay at an Airbnb instead of a hotel
Airbnb’s main arguments, on the other hand, come down to convenience and value.
You are traveling with a large group
Considering both cost and convenience, Airbnb is often a better bet for larger groups. For example, paying for a handful of hotel rooms may be more expensive than renting a house that can accommodate a dozen people. Plus, you’re more likely to have an open, shared space for hanging out, cooking, and spending time together.
Note that Airbnb and individual hosts have rules regarding parties and number of guests, so this is not free entertainment for everyone.
You stay longer
Not only is a home likely to be more comfortable if you’re staying for days or weeks, Airbnb hosts sometimes offer lower rates for longer-term guests. Airbnbs often have washers and dryers for doing laundry during long stays. In fact, stays of a week or more do about half of all Airbnb nights booked.
You prefer a the environment and amenities of the house, including access to the kitchen
Again, Airbnb will likely feel more like home, especially if you’re renting the whole space rather than a private room. If you want to cook, have a separate living space, or enjoy outdoor access, an Airbnb is probably a better bet.