We’ve sung the praises of AirBnB before and we’re about to do it again, but this time, with some real insider tips. 

It’s not a lie that AirBnB has opened up tons of options that are way better for people looking for lodging options in exotic locales. With the advent of the awesome power of AirBnB, you can now stay in castles in Ireland, tents on the cliffs of Bali and a bunch of other charming locations, including a potato somewhere in Idaho. 

In the begining, the main attraction of AirBnB wasn’t just the weird experiences it offered, it was also that the prices were super cheap. That’s not really the case anymore though, as you’ll find if you try to shop through almost any North American city, including areas like Marshfield, Wisconsin. As inconceivable as this is, there are still ways to get inexpensive, desirable lodging. And that’s what we’re here to show you. Because it’s not like you want to spend all the money you’ve set aside for your trip on airfare and lodging. You want to be able to and go experience the destination you’re going to without having to pause and wonder if it’s a good idea to spend that money. It’s always a good idea to spend money on an experience. So learn how to save here, so you can splurge on the things that count. 

AirBnB is Just The Trail Head

Most of the places you see on AirBnB are run by people who actually view this as running a business. They aren’t going to rely solely on AirBnB to feed them good guests to stay in their rooms. They’re going to post that listing as many places as possible. Sometimes there’s price differences between those two listings too. If you have the chance to book through an actual website for the location, choose that instead, as that often has the cheaper price available for you. Most of the time, rooms are more expensive because the host is accounting for the fact that AirBnB, Booking.com and others like them take a little off the top. You won’t find this all the time though, because most of the AirBnB hosts are actually still just hosts. But that leads us to our next money saving tip that’s probably our favorite.

Think of AirBnB Like a Fancy Flea Market

Because AirBnB’s hosts are still just regular everyday people, you can haggle with a property owner over the price of the room. The best way to do this is when you find a listing you’re interested in, avoid clicking “Request to Book” at first and instead click “Contact this Host.” Contacting the host has two major benefits, you could get pre-approved on the listing and you could get a much better rate than what the listed price suggests. Obviously, you don’t really know the exact value of a really nice house in the area you’re trying to travel to, so you can’t haggle with much knowledge. So be sure to approach this option with caution and respect. After all, with great guest-power comes great guest-responsibility. There’s a few specific instances when haggling with your AirBnB host is a good idea, and there should always be some hesitation as most people’s AirBnB account is hooked to their Facebook, so it’s not exactly anonymous. 

You Can Feel Free to Haggle When: 

  • You’re taking the time to get to know the host. If you’ve messaged them and talked to them already, feel free to inquire how steadfast they are on their current price point. Most AirBnB hosts are just people who are as passionate about traveling as you are, and they’ll probably be putting those extra funds toward the next adventure of their own. Chances are, they will understand that you won’t always have the money to pay super high prices. 
  • You’re planning a long-term vacation. If you’re hoping to stay at least 4 nights in a location, you can probably feel free to reach out separately and see if they’re willing to give you a better deal. You might even be able to extend your stay for awhile longer with a discounted price. 
  • You’ve procrastinated and you’re panicking. Don’t fret, it happens to all of us. And, sometimes it happens without it being our fault. Plenty of folks have had the misfortune of showing up somewhere and having an issue with their lodging. If you’re in a pickle and can’t make the listed price work, it’s always worth a try to reach out and see if they’re willing to lower the price for you. Like any good business person, they’ll choose a no-vacancy over a vacancy and they’ll likely drop the price to accommodate that need. If it’s tourist season, you might not get so lucky, as this tactic totally depends on the host’s confidence of being able to fill the room. 

This strategy is definitely legal and it isn’t against the Terms of Service or anything. It’s merely protected under the AirBnB special offer caveat that allows them to send you discount codes when you come to an agreement. 

Long-Term Stays Can Be Cheaper 

If you’re traveling long term, it could be smart to book extra days. This sounds weird, but if you’re staying over a week or over a month in one area, booking one extra day could drop down the whole price. Obviously if you aren’t planning on doing this anyway, adding more than three extra days on wouldn’t make any sense, but if it’s just one day onto a long stay if could save you hundreds of dollars. This tip can alter from city-to-city depending on their occupancy laws. It’s certainly worth researching when you’re planning your trip as arming yourself with knowledge is never a bad idea. 

Visit Ontario For a Better Travel Experience

Like every city that’s popping up on AirBnB, Ontario offers some amazing spaces to rent. One of the best reasons to rent through AirBnB isn’t just the better pricing model, it’s also the best way to experience a city. With lodging inside the city that’s more like a home than a hotel room, and a retinue of educated tour guides with plenty of gear and comfortable equipment at their backs, you’ll be able to experience Toronto in the best way possible. Reach out to Ontario VIP Tours to get a taste of our awesome experiences and how we can help you make the most of your travel time out here. 

Want to learn more about AirBnB? We’ve got you covered. We’re always excited to refer folks to the weirder parts of Ontario. You can check out our opinions on how to shop for AirBnB experiences to experience more off the beaten track portions of Toronto in a more DIY fashion. Then, finish the day off with a ride around Niagara Falls in a comfortable van and a tour guide that can give you recommendations on where to eat and find more cool things to do in our beloved city. Find out more here.