AirBnB Do's and Don'ts

If you're anything like me, traveling is an essential part of your life. For the longest time, I was under the impression that you could only travel to fabulous places if you had tons of money (wrong) and lots and lots of free time (double wrong). Traveling has become something that can be done by anyone, on any budget. Shortly after Thomas and I started dating, we were introduced to AirBnB, a website with thousands of places to stay when traveling. While some places are shared with the owner, some are entire homes for rent, and theres even some treehouse and other crazy places that you couldn't even dream up. I am so glad we were introduced to AirBnB a few years ago, because it has allowed us to travel way more than we ever expected. After using AirBnB for the last four years, we have certainly learned some of the most important AirBnB do's and don'ts.
Know what you want, and what you don't want.
There are so many different things AirBnB has to offer. House, high rise, hut, and the list going on forever. While there are so many different kinds of homes you can rent, there are also different styles, entire home, private room and shared room. It's all about what you are comfortable with. I usually go with "entire home" because I like my privacy, but if you're down for kicking it with the owners of your place, try out the private room!

Understand how booking works.
It's not confusing, really. There are two different styles of booking. You have Instant Book and Request to Book. Request to book is the only way AirBnB used to operate. You had to send a request to each host individually and sort of ask permission to stay at their place. This is still an option, and it works just as great as the other option, it just takes a little more time. Instant book is exactly what it sounds like. You see all the fees immediately, and you instantly book it, no requesting, no waiting. It's all there for you!

Prioritize the amenities you desire.
We all know there are just some amenities you just can't live without when traveling. For me, those things change every time I travel. In some places, I just have to have Wi-Fi, some place I just must have a washer and dryer (longer trips, duh). It all just depends on the trip. But when traveling to different places, you need different things. You can customize your "filters' for every single trip you take, so prioritize accordingly.

Read the fine print.
Some AirBnB hosts have certain rules, some you may not like. Some like you to check out by 10am, and some could care less. But you won't know until you read. All the information you could possibly need to know is listed on the listing page.

Don't try to book too far in advance. 
I've said it before, I'm a planner, and I usually try to have travel plans done months in advance. But with AirBnB this isn't always beneficial. If you have your eye on a property for something such as Mardi Gras or The Super Bowl, but you think you can book more than 6-9 months out, think again. As expected they want to hike the prices for these events, so they can make more, but often times, hosts haven't updated their calendars this far out. I would recommend booking no more than 6 months out with each AirBnB host.

Read reviews, but don't let them be your deciding factor.
I am a firm believer in reading personal reviews. But some people are just awful, and will find a way to complain about anything. While 99% of reviews about places are fantastic, there is always someone who has to be a grouch. Don't let the one bad review overpower the 87 good reviews.

Traveling soon? Be sure to check out AirBnB and use my AirBnB Discount to get $40 off of your first stay! I'd love to hear all about your travel experiences with AirBnB!



  1. Ah, so glad you wrote this awesome post all about the ins and outs of AirBnB! I've never used it, but my dad has before. I think I would really love to use it when I travel internationally some day. It just sounds way more fun than limiting yourself to a hotel. Thanks for all the great info!


  2. These are such great tips! We love using Air BnB, HomeAway and other sites that help you rent out homes rather than rooms for trips.

  3. Good tips!! Thanks for sharing! Xo, alex

  4. Great Tips!

    Laura B. |

  5. Reviews are so crucial. I use air bnb quite often and I love it!
    Kayla || Keynotes from Kay

  6. AirBnB sounds like such an incredible experience! I've had friends who have done it and have loved it. I really want to try it someday when Ryan and I travel.

    Kayla |

  7. I've never stayed with Air BNB myself but have heard so much about it, especially through bloggers, so this post was very informative!

    xoxo A

  8. I'v always wanted to try Air BNB, so thanks for sharing these awesome tips!!!

    xo Ashley

  9. I've heard so many things about Air BnB and been so curious on trying it out! Thanks for the tips!
    Amy | Pastel N Pink

  10. I love AirBnB! When the husband and I quit our jobs to travel Europe, AirBnB was such a life-saver! We lived in a cute little AirBnB flat in Paris, with views of the Eiffel Tower, which not only added to a more authentic experience but also saved major $$$, considering that most decent hotels in Paris start around 150 Euros/night (depending on the season).

    From a bloggers' perspective, it's such a dream brand to work with! Did you approach them, or vice versa?

  11. So helpful! I have been wanting to try AirBnb! Glad I have these things to keep in mind now :)

  12. AirBnb's are such a good invention!

  13. I want to try an AirBnB. I was looking for one for my trip to New York and saw some amazing options. I spent hours reading the reviews.

  14. Good to know! I hadn't thought about the 6 month out thing, but that makes total since. Good tips.

    Sara Kate Styling

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  16. As a host, clean up after yourself as if you were staying at your grandmas, many hosts are not only on airbnb, but other sites as well, so while you are waiting for better rates , there are others watching vrbo, tripadvisor... "the rate you saw today, and waiting for tomorrow, someone saw yesterday, and booking today.

  17. If you have a problem while renting, no matter what it is, tell your host so they can make it right during your stay. Don't wait until the review to tell your host how to be better.

  18. Good tips for a n00b to airbnb! I would add that there are sometimes GREAT discounts for weekly/monthly stays, so if you enter your entire date range right from the beginning, you can quickly find the places that end up being way cheaper. We are travelling around Asia and have been staying at least 28 days (requirement for monthly discounts) and have saved 38% on our current place!

  19. Awesome article. As a host I appreciate your explaining the reviews. First bad review I got was so awful I almost stopped being a host. It was so hurtful. The gentleman stayed and I asked him repeatedly if there was anything he needed and was everything ok. He said nothing while here, but left an empty liquor bottle in the room and a bad review online. I was devastated until a friend pointed out the night before I had a five star and the night after they left a five star so really could his experience had been so horrible?