We are now a family of four and while we still rack up the hotel points, we are finding that we prefer having vacation destinations with all the amenities. A small hotel room just doesn’t cut it for us any more. Amenities such as a kitchen with dishwasher and multiple bedrooms are very desired by the Weekly Flyer family when Toddler and Baby Weekly Flyer make the trip with us.
To AirBNB Or Not To AirBNB?
So, what do we do?
If we can confirm a suite either with status, or with upgrade certs, then a hotel might be the way to go for us. But, more often than not we are having to look to other options like AirBNB and Homeaway to book larger spaces when we travel with the little ones.
Over the last several months, we have booked both ways, here are our experiences:
AirBNB: we recently booked a week long stay at the beach. AirBNB’s site is really great and easy to use. The host had to approve us, which was kinda nice; it made you feel more confident in your reservation. AirBNB is flexible in that they offer different room types, as an example, entire home, a room or even shared rooms. Once we were approved for the reservation, it was super easy to pay for our stay. There was a cleaning fee but, that is pretty standard. There was not a deposit and no mailing of checks involved, just a simple plug in your credit card number here. Overall, the process of booking was incredibly seamless. If you haven’t tried AirBNB, you can get $20 off first reservation to use for travel.
The house we rented was exactly as pictured with all the amenities that you would expect. The host had a property manager who was available for help 24 hours. It was fantastic and we will definitely keep using AirBNB.
HomeAway: we also recently did a quick weekend to the mountains and booked using HomeAway. It worked out very well but, I had to talk to the owner on the phone to pay for the trip vs being able to pay online. I think that this may have been specific to the homeowner because it looks like Homeaway does have an online payment option. The house we rented was also really nice and there was a property manager here as well. We did have to pay a security deposit and then after we checked out wait to receive the money back via check. A little annoying but, not too bad.
For us, having a family means needing more space to feel comfortable while on vacation. We will continue to use AirBNB and HomeAway depending on which has a better house, with better availability for the best rate. I am very comfortable with both options but, with our most recent 2 stays, the AirBNB booking was a little more seamless because of ease with payment.