I find Airbnb to be a cost-effective and user-friendly travel site. After my initial apprehension, (what if I arrive and the home doesn’t exist?) I have had enjoyed many fabulous trips and would not go back to staying in hotels.
First off, you need to decide where you want to go…the world is your oyster! As of this publishing, the company has over 3 million listings in 191 countries! I like to create lists in areas I would like to travel to. For example, Provence Fall 2017, was the title of my list when planning a trip to the south of France last year. Use the filter to narrow down the options with the price, room type and amenities you want. Then you can save appealing homes to your list by clicking the heart in the upper right-hand corner of the photo.
You can either rent a room in someone’s home or rent an entire home. I have done both and while it may seem unappealing to rent a room in someone’s home when you are on vacation, I have had good luck with this option. If you are traveling to a foreign country solo, your hosts will be able to give you tips on local shopping and dining options. Also, you if you are traveling to many cities, this can be a very cost effecive option. For example, a private room in an apartment in the Marais, Paris, for $46 per night.
Lastly, I do read the reviews. A listing with many good reviews raises will increase your comfort level and also gives you more insight into where you are staying. Be sure to leave a review when you check out and your host will do the same. This helps future travelers!