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Ditch the Hotel: Lodging Alternatives

Ditch the hotel: Lodging Alternatives

Question on Instagram: “Any tips for cheap [lodging] accommodations? That’s where most of my money goes.” 

You’re probably recovering from the holiday weekend, so I’ll keep this post short and sweet.

Lodging can get pretty pricey, especially if you don’t know where to look. Hotels and resorts are the most common lodging options for travelers, but there are other housing choices you may want to consider before booking a place to stay.

Vacation Rentals

Travelers can rent furnished houses, apartments, condos, villas, castles, private rooms and even tree houses as an alternative to a hotel. Vacation Rentals provide an authentic travel experience for guest, and help to cultivate a cultural exchange.

Website(s)

  • Airbnb
  • Homeaway
  • Homestay
  • One Fine Day
  • Global Freeloaders
  • VRBO

Couchsurfing

If you’re feeling more adventurous, try couchsurfing. Meet and stay with locals all over the world and immerse yourself into a new culture. Travelers are welcomed to stay in a person’s home for free. Yes, you read that correctly. I wrote FREE! Guests are occasionally asked to handle small household chores or assist with cooking a meal, but that’s certainly not a bad deal…especially if the room is $0.

Quick Tip: Be kind to your host, and remember to take advantage of the opportunity. Think of your host as a free tour guide. They can provide directions to main attractions, teach you about the local customs and languages, offer restaurant recommendations and, if you’re nice, will cook you a traditional dish.

Website(s):

 

Farmstays

 A farm stay (or farmstay) is any type of accommodation on a working farm. Guest will have the unique opportunity to learn about ways of living a more sustainable life by working a few hours a day. Farm stays are prevalent in parts of Europe, Australia, and New Zealand, but are slowly gaining popularity in the United States. Farm stays like World Wide Opportunities on Organic Farms (WWOOF) allow visitors to assist with daily task in exchange for free housing.

Website(s):

  • FarmStayUS.com
  • AgritourismWorld.com
  • WWOOF.pl (World Wide Opportunities on Organic Farms)

 

Hostels

Don’t be alarmed. I haven’t lost my mind. Please hear me out.

I love hostels! This is the most sensible option if you want to save some coins.  Hostels range from $10-$50 per day depending on the location and the type of room a traveler selects. As a rule of thumb, the more people to a room, the less expensive the room will be. If you feel uncomfortable sharing a room with a random group of men and women (some rooms are co-ed), you can request to stay in a private room for an additional cost.

Some hostels are equipped with a full bar, pool, and complimentary breakfast. You can even book excursions through your hostel and schedule an airport shuttle. It’s like staying at a hotel…except it’s much cheaper!

Quick Tip: DO NOT SKIP THE REVIEWS! Please read comments before booking. Reviewers are usually transparent about their experiences and will share details about the cleanliness of the hostel, staff’s attitude, and personal insight about the atmosphere.

Website(s):

  • Hostelworld
  • Hostelbookers
  • Booking.com

Final Thoughts

Always compare prices before booking. Take time to search around for the best bargain; do not settle for the first deal you see. To add, don’t feel obligated to stay at an Airbnb because you read this post. This article is to simply explain that you have alternative lodging options available to you. If you feel twitchy about staying at a stranger’s house, make hotel reservations. This is your vacation (not mine) and you should feel 100 percent comfortable.

As always, feel free to contact me on Instagram (@callme_ambam) or shoot me an email. I’m always happy to assist with your traveling needs!

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