Best Airbnb Alternatives
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Book Your Next Trip Using These Mobile App Alternatives to Airbnb
In case you don’t know, Airbnb is an online marketplace primarily built around short-term homestays – and since its inception in 2008, it’s radically disrupted the hospitality industry. But it’s not the only place where you can find lodging for a vacation or short-term stay. Optimum Mobile is here to share some of lodging options.
People have different reasons for wanting to go beyond Airbnb when trying to book accommodations for their next trip. Hosts often find value on other platforms, and looking beyond what Airbnb offers might help you find your dream place to stay.
Vrbo might be the most well-recognized of Airbnb’s competitors, featuring around two million listings worldwide. Specializing in stand-alone vacation homes, Vrbo offers some features that Airbnb does not. For example, you can filter based on a different set of criteria, including guest endorsements or even properties that offer free cancellation – which, for some audiences, are essential considerations. Some hosts say that they can offer lower pricing on Vrbo because the company may take a smaller cut. Others report that Vrbo offers a better customer service experience for hosts and guests alike.
This metasearch engine helps you quickly access multiple vacation rental listing platforms at once, so you can easily search and filter results to find your desired short-term rental. Hosts also benefit from increased visibility since listing on HomeToGo gets them on 16 different rental platforms.
If you’re looking for a vacation rental, going straight to an app belonging to a major property management group like Vacasa may help ensure the quality of your rental. You can access features not available on apps like Airbnb, including 3D walkthroughs that give you a real feel for the property layout and views it offers. Vacasa is widely known for its 24/7 customer support, as well as for the smooth integration of its app into rentals, providing everything from directions and parking details through a home guide and Wi-Fi password access.
Sonder is similar to Vacasa, with its app connecting you to managed properties around the world. Where it differs is its heavy focus on combining award-winning contemporary design with a mobile-first service experience. Sonder proudly states that “Everything you need is just a tap away,” with full service features all accessible from your smartphone – from in-app customer service and special checkout requests to Wi-Fi access and neighborhood guides.
Through the Agoda app, you can book either hotels or rental properties. Some users report finding a wider range of properties in Asia on this app than on other platforms, and so depending on your destination this might be a better fit – although it’s worth noting that they do have over two million properties listed in over 200 countries.
Unlike Airbnb, Booking.com lists both hotels and rental properties; in fact, it got its start with hotels, resorts, and lodges, only recently incorporating vacation rental homes. Some users prefer to try and find hotels, only opting for rental homes or rooms in a pinch – and so Booking.com is a perfect experience for them. One well-known caveat for users to keep in mind is that lodging providers can pay to have their listing promoted higher on Booking.com pages, so listings toward the top do not always reflect popularity the way they may on other apps.
The Hopper app can become a one-stop shop of sorts for most of your major travel needs, since you can book flights, hotels, homes, and car rentals – all from one handy app. While it has a whole range of filters in place like location, amenities, and price, Hopper’s claim to fame is its price prediction functionality – using big data to help you try to save money by suggesting when to “Book Now” versus holding off. Users may also “Cancel for Any Reason,” with no fees – a core differentiator from other platforms.
As its name suggests, Ecobnb is a premier marketplace for finding eco-friendly lodging. With strict eco-friendly criteria, any accommodation seeking to join the Ecobnb network must meet at least five out of 10 environmental requirements around organic materials, renewable energy, accessibility, and low ecological footprint. This app helps you indulge your desire to explore the world, helping you do so sustainably and responsibly.
A stay in the great outdoors need not be anything short of fabulous. Hipcamp is an app that helps you get outside, connecting you with the self-proclaimed “most comprehensive listing of” cabins, tent camping, treehouses, and even glamping opportunities in the U.S., UK, Australia, Canada, and France. Hipcamp helps set expectations around safety and clean-up to protect hosts, guests, and nature. Many users celebrate the family-friendliness of this app, since users can readily filter sites based on amenities and are heavily encouraged to communicate with hosts ahead of time. Compared to other apps, guests and hosts should speak ahead of time to help mutually manage expectations around each stay and ensure a good fit, since camping can look very different from person to person.
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