AirBnb is a platform where homeowners around the world post their place for rent and where travelers find a place they could stay, whether a long-term or a short vacation. Here in the Philippines, AirBnb is used for layovers, surprise parties and mostly for a staycation, especially those who want to unwind but would prefer not to leave the city.
Most AirBnb places are in a condominium or in a condotel while in some provinces, you could rent a villa that is perfect for family outings especially during the summer or holiday seasons. So, if you’re planning a summer outing or opting for a staycation, AirBnb is the answer to help you find the place that fits your taste. Here’s a guide to help you sign up, book a room and contact a host.
Create an account
Once you’ve signed up, fill out the needed details to have a smooth transaction for your first booking:
- Complete your profile.
- Verify your phone number.
- Upload a photo or take a selfie.
- Confirm your email address.
- Provide a valid ID.
- A short description of yourself like hobbies or places you’ve been to.
- Add a payment method or your credit card details.
Tip #1: Find a place that’s worth Php1,600+/night to book 3 days and 2 nights trip or Php2,800+/night for an overnight stay.
Find a host
Upon completing your account profile, the fun part starts, which is checking out the listing of places for rent.
- On the search box, type the location where you want to stay and then hit Enter.
- Select the dates when you want to reserve the place.
- The number of guests (up to 16).
- You could also edit the price range that suits your budget.
Tip #2: Use the map if you want to see how near it is to a certain location or to easily check the different prices within the area.
Check the following details to make sure that you’ve chosen the right place that fits your needs and specifications:
- View the photos of the place, hosts upload a lot of photos from the bedroom up to every nook and cranny of their house to help them attract guests.
- Check the sleeping arrangement and the amenities available, also consider the availability of parking spaces for your vehicle.
- Know the check-in and check-out time, review the house rules, the minimum number of stay and the cancellation policy, just in case.
- Read the reviews to have an idea of how previous guests rate the place and their experiences.
- You may contact the host if you have other inquiries.
Booking you First AirBnb Stay
Have you chosen a place to book? Is it within your budget? Did you check the amenities available? Are you satisfied with its reviews? If all your answers are YES then hit the BOOK.
You’ll be prompted to a new page where you would read the house rules and other additional reminders from the host. The dates of your stay are also posted (just to make sure), click Agree and Continue to proceed.
The next step is informing the host who’s coming with you. Type the names of all the guests that will be staying and any additional inquiry or request.
The final page will be the Confirm and Pay, payments are via credit or debit cards. Don’t forget to apply for the Php1,600 travel credits if you’ve reached a booking worth Php3,500 or more.
See! That’s how easy booking your first reservation on AirBnb. Yey! All you have to do now is wait. While at it, here are other information regarding check-in procedures, cancellations policy, and our responsibility as a guest.
The check-in process
After the booking is confirmed, the host will provide the check-in process a day before your check-in date. These are the usual types of check-in (1) meet up or (2) self-check-in.
You will set a meetup time with the host or the caretaker on the check-in day. They will be at the lobby to hand in the key, accompany you to their unit, get you settled to make sure everything you need is accommodated.
Upon entry at the location, inform the security guard or the receptionist that you are a guest of the host’s name and they’ll confirm if you are on the AirBnb guest list. The key is usually in the mailbox or in a lockbox attached to the unit’s door where you’ll be given a passcode to open it. I prefer this type of check-in since there will be no hassle for the host to set a meetup time, especially for late check-in.
What to expect in your stay
Whether it’s for a staycation, layover or a long term stay, what we all want is to have a relaxing and hassle-free stay, right? And as a frequent AirBnb guest, here are the things that could earn the host a ★★★★★ review if I booked in a condominium type of accommodation:
- Fluffy Pillows and Think Blanket or Comforter
- Dinnerware Set and Cutleries
- Enough Number of Towels, Tissue
While these are things that would make me recommend and book their place again:
- Smart TV and Internet
- Hair Dryer
- Quiet Surroundings especially at night
For long-term stay these are plus points:
Cancellation and Refund
No matter how well we plan our trip, sometimes we will encounter instances that might need you to cancel or change your reservation such as emergency, flight changes or weather conditions.
Every host has a different cancellation policy, below are the examples of what you have to look upon completing your reservation:
- Flexible: Full refund 1 day prior to arrival, except fees.
- Moderate: Full refund 5 days prior to arrival, except fees.
- Strict: 50% refund up to 1 week prior to arrival, except fees.
- Long-Term: First month not refundable, 30-day notice for cancellation.
***I have successfully changed a reservation and asked for a refund due to water interruption. It was a three (3) night stay in Port Barton, Palawan. On our first night, it rained heavily and it affected the water system. There was no water coming out of the faucet and when there was, it was blurry and dirty. We waited until the next day but it was still the same so we decided to find a new place. AirBnb’s customer service representative helped me negotiate the cancellation and refund. It was a smooth transaction since the owner was understanding and immediately refunded us for the unused nights. Below are screenshots of the conversation with the host.
Responsibility as a Guest
We may be paying the host in exchange for letting us stay in their place. On the other hand, we as guests should respect their unit, treat it as our own especially by following the house rules. At least, do these things before checking out:
- Wash the dishes you used.
- Turn off all the appliances.
- Properly use trash bins.
And lastly, don’t forget to rate and share your experience to help future guests have an idea of how their stay will be like and if booking that place is worth it.
Safe Travels Always!