Hotel Vs Airbnb: A Guide to Help You Decide

hotel vs airbnb
With the emergence of Airbnb and other home-sharing services, travelers have more options than ever before. However, when it comes to booking a place to stay for your next trip, which is the better choice?

I’ve stayed in both hotels and Airbnbs before. In fact, I actually set aside a market-research budget every year to stay at hotels. This allows me to experience at some of the hottest hotels to figure out what makes them stand out amongst their competition.

Every city is different and we’re always looking for something new in each place we visit, so where we stay plays a huge role in our overall experience.

Although I am very biased towards Airbnb because I teach other entrepreneurs how to start a profitable Airbnb business without owning a single home, but there are instances where a hotel is just unbeatable. If I had to map out the ratio for hotel vs. Airbnbs; I’d say it’s 75% at Airbnbs and 25% at hotels.  

Hotel vs Airbnb: Where Hotel Wins

hotel vs airbnb

Luxury

There’s no question about it. If you can fork out $500+ a night, you’re paying for more than just space. The 24/7 front-desk, maid services, room services, and amazing amenities that come with it.

Although, Airbnb recently launched a new program called “Airbnb Plus.” Airbnb Plus is like the luxury version of regular Airbnbs. The process to become a “Plus” Airbnb can take quite long, so they have limited inventory, at least for now.

Loyalty Program

This is unbeatable. You know why? Because Airbnb doesn’t have one. Regardless of how many times/nights you’ve stayed at an Airbnb, you won’t be able accumulate points to redeem for free nights…

I am an SPG credit card holder, so when I stay at a designated SPG hotel, I can earn points. Just this year alone, I’ve accumulated 4 nights of free stay. That’s almost $900 in FREE accommodation.

Standards and Safety

When Airbnb first started more than 10 years ago; it was regular folks like you and me who had a spare room to rent out on its platform. So, you never really knew what you were going into. Are you getting bath towels? What about toiletries?

On the other hand, hotels have standardized the what-ifs. They provide consistency and quality service.

You know exactly what to expect when you stay in one. Plus, if safety is one of your concerns, you can always count on their trained staff to assist you in case of an emergency.

Instant Confirmation

Whatever your booking method is, you can count on it being instantaneous (maybe a few seconds more if your internet speed is slow). This gives you reassurance that you’ll have a roof over your head wherever you go.

On the other hand, Airbnb is trying to standardize this by incentivizing Airbnb hosts to turn on “Instant Book.”  However, there are still some hosts that do not have this feature turned on, which means you’ll have to ask to book.

As you can see, this process can turn people off.

One last thing about hotels, I usually book it with a company called HotelTonight. I use it to book last minute hotels, usually paying a fraction of its normal costs. For example, I paid $93 dollars for a room in a 4-star hotel that would have charged $260 for a night.

If you use the promo code: szuo1, you’ll get $25 off of your first booking.

Check out Hoteltonight when you get a chance. It’s also a great tool to do some competitive analysis for your Airbnb.

Hotel vs Airbnb: Where Airbnb Wins

hotel vs airbnb

A unique Airbnb looking out to the Adriatic sea in Greece.

Pricing

As I’ve previously stated, some people like the convenience a hotel offers, and are willing to pay the price for it. Moreover, if you pick the right hotel, it could be a super convenient location. Most hotels tend to be clustered in the popular touristic neighborhoods.

By contrast, Airbnbs are offered by normal folks like you and me, not huge corporations with an overhead cost of advertising, staffing, and all the other random expenses. Airbnb is a lot cheaper in most places.

Check out this infographic on prices that I thought was pretty neat.

hotel vs airbnb

This is where a hotel app like HotelTonight is helpful for booking accommodations.

If you use the promo code: szuo1, you’ll get $25 off of your first booking on already heavily discounted prices.

Check out Hoteltonight when you get a chance. It’s also a great tool to do some competitive analysis for your Airbnb.

More Value for your Money

Airbnb usually comes with its own kitchen. If you’re traveling with a small family or a bigger group, you can for sure save some money on dining costs.

And you get more space for what the price you pay. Instead of paying for 2 hotel rooms or an ensuite for a small family of 4, you can get an entire 2-bedroom home for the same price. It also works out if you have a bigger group.

For example, every year, I get a cabin in Yosemite National Park. The cabin usually fits 8 to 10 people, so my friends and I always take this time to recharge in nature. Airbnb in most cases can definitely provide more bang for your buck.

hotel vs airbnb

3 acres of land + 4 bedrooms for $250 a night. I don’t think you can find a hotel like this one 😉

A Unique Experience

One of the most important parts of taking a vacation is enjoying the local sights and whatever is unique about the place. While a hotel concierge is helpful for pointing you towards popular attractions, those spots may be overcrowded, overpriced, and not as adventurous, or even engaging.

But for those guests and travelers looking to get off the beaten path or avoid the tourist traps, Airbnb hosts can provide tips about the local scene, giving their guests a more authentic exposure to the place they’re visiting on vacation.

Recently, I had just come back from an Airbnb cabin in Lake Tahoe. If it wasn’t for our local hosts, I would have never discovered a local sunbathing spot hidden deep inside the park (thank you, John & Connie!).

What do you think? If you have never tried Airbnb before, here is $40 off.

Do you prefer a hotel or an Airbnb? Whatever it is you are looking for you are likely to find the perfect place to make your next destination exactly what you want it to be.

Bonus: here’s another neat infographic for your enjoyment.

hotel vs airbnb

One last thing. Airbnb is doing a huge push to decrease guest cancellations. Airbnb Hosts now will have to pay for a cancellation.

No Comments

Post A Comment