Having just spent a wonderful, memorable month abroad, travelling to over 5 countries pretty much stress free, I got to thinking about the value of thorough planning.
We spent quite a bit of time planning our travels and I am pleased to say, I really think it paid off. As I think I have mentioned before, the best way to travel is to have that component of planning but also mixed with spontaneity.
Once we had nutted out our itinerary, the next obvious goal was to decide on accommodation. This was left to me and I opted for the Air BNB experience through out much of Europe.
First up, I joined the Air BNB family. Second, I researched each City we would stay in and decided upon our desired area to call home for a few days and then researched what kind of accommodation we were looking for.
Some golden rules with Air BNB; do take the time to do your research, be clear about what you want, do ask your host questions and most importantly do read through the reviews of the listing you are considering booking. You can ask as many questions as you want and usually the hosts are forth coming and happy to help.
What we loved about Air BNB; it’s like a home away from home. You usually have more space than a hotel room. You get a feel for the lifestyle of the city you are visiting. (In Copenhagen we stayed in an apartment with white washed floors and some stunning Danish furniture). It is private and intimate and you can do your own meal prep for as many or few meals you want to do each day. There is usually a laundry or washing machine/dryer so you can do your own laundry for free. Most listings have maps, information, advice for your stay. When we arrived at our London `home’ after a very long flight, our host, Jac, had organised coffee, tea, bread, milk and some basics, which was so wonderful.
What you need to consider before booking Air BNB
If you want to be pampered and order room service, this is obviously not the way to go.
Air BNB listings usually don’t do less than a three night booking.
Air BNB is on a par with hotels throughout Europe or it was for us anyway, (cost wise).
Some hosts don’t offer much cupboard or wardrobe space, which can be a pain.
On our last night in London we stayed at the gorgeous Russell Hotel, Russell Square, near Kings Cross. We stayed in a new room and it was stunning. The room cost was actually less than our Air BNB stay and it was perfect for one night.
If you are going away for numerous weeks and the budget permits, I would consider doing a mix of Air BNB and hotel accommodation. This is what ended up happening for us rather organically and we both felt this was the perfect mix.