How to Get the Best Deal on Airbnb?

Out of all the trip planning I do, I put the most time into finding great accomodations. Everything else is pretty flexible, even flights – if I lose $100 on a fight it’s no big if I save $100-150 a night on accomodations for the month. So today’s focus is on Airbnb. Airbnb is a vacation rental platform that shares home rentals, room rentals or even shared spaces – you can rent anything from Igloos to Castles.

One of the main reasons I love Airbnb is the flexibility of the hosts in the community. I’ve often been able to get incredible deals by sending messages and communicating what I was looking for. Sometimes a host will give a deal on a two bedroom condo if you’re only a party of two, other times a host will give a discount just because you’re an experienced Airbnber with a great profile and positive reviews, also – often times you can get special long term rates that aren’t listed on the site.

Here are ways to score better rates on Airbnb:

1. Build a profile: Create a “complete” profile. Upload more than one picture, fill in a short bio, connect your Facebook account, get verified, and get some reference posts from friends and family. 

2. Get reviews: When you are just starting out, get some friends and family to leave references for you on your profile. After your first stay, kindly request that your host leave you a review. 

3. Communicate: Reach out to hosts, politely, and give them a breakdown of why you are traveling, who you are traveling with, and why you wish to stay there.  Be responsive and easy to work with; hosts don’t like to wait and if someone else comes along that is ready to book, they will take them. Hosts also prefer to work with easy going guests – try to be easy to deal with, make sure you review the listing’s profile to answer questions you may have (if there is wifi, AC, TV etc).

4. Negotiate: When you are negotiating a rate for a high season stay, be prepared to be refused in most cases, but if you offer to take a longer-term stay such as a full week or a two week stay – the host may offer you a discount. Most hosts make their biggest bank on the weekends, but typically lose the week if they give a weekend away, so often they will be open to discounting the full week if someone is interested. The best chance of getting a deal would be on a stay from a weekday to a weekday   (ie. monday to monday vs saturday to saturday)you will be much more likely to get a great deal since the host will be able to rent out the following or prior weekend at their normal rate (if you rent saturday to saturday, they lost two potential full price friday/saturday stay combos if you get a discounted rate for your full week stay). For a host, getting two weekend bookings at the high rate is often better than renting out the whole week for a discount – there is less risk as well. Also it’s good to know the off peak seasons and locations that are off peak even in high season – this way you don’t have to worry and can often negotiate crazy discounted rates. Either way, give it a shot.  Be respectful, kind, professional, and it never hurts to ask; or even give them a budget and see what they can offer you!

5. Use a Coupon: Here’s $35 towards your next stay using Airbnb: Get $35 Airbnb Travel Credit That could be used for a night free in many parts of the world (all over europe actually!)

*Photo: This photo was taken at an Airbnb in Marina Del Ray CA. Here is a link to  book it yourself –

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