If you are anything like me, you prefer living like a local while traveling. It can be cheap, is a cultural experience and allows you to explore a place from a local’s perspective.
Hotels can be quite anonymous or lonely, whereas hostels and backpackers are often a bit of a party place for the younger crowds.
AirBNB offers unique places and experiences all over the globe, from tree houses, to small guest houses and real authentic homestays.
Different Ways to Rent an AirBNB
01 Rent a room and live with locals
This one is actually my favourite, since you get to know and live with your host. You rent a bedroom, but share a kitchen and bathroom with the owners. I’ve only had incredible welcoming hosts
that went above and beyond and even made friendships this way.
02 Rent the whole place
I’ve done this in Manila, The Philippines. The rent for the whole apartment was super cheap and I wanted to stay in a safe area close to the casino. I couldn’t afford a hotel though, so this was a great solution. Especially if you are a digital nomad and want to live like a local in one location for several weeks or months. This is a great way to find an uncomplicated rental agreement.
03 Rent unique places (tree houses, light houses, glamping tents, etc.)
There are awesome and unique experiences available on AirBNB as well: tree houses, boats and luxury villas.
My last employer rented a 10 bedroom villa with a pool and ocean access for our Christmas Party via AirBNB. It was a lot of fun!
Why Use AirBNB?
My Best Experiences with AirBNB
01 Homestay in Ubud, Bali
I stayed here as there was no guesthouse in walking distance to Villa Kitty,
where I volunteered for a week.
The kitchen was open, no windows or walls, with a beautiful view of the rice paddies.
The room was comfortable and the ground was guarded by a lovely dog (that sometimes seemed to forget that I live there).
02 Book store HCMC, Vietnam
This place was absolutely awesome and a bit crazy, but incredibly comfortable and unique.
If you like books, this is paradise!
Your room and bathroom is located within a bookstore.
When you open your bedroom door, you stand in the middle of a Vietnamese book store. They even offer coffee and snacks.
You can book this Air BNB stay HERE.
03 Chinatown in Singapore
Did you ever live in a house with 1000 apartments? I did!
My room in Chinatown felt a bit like a shoe box, and I wasn’t sure if I should trust the rusty elevator or walk the 18 staircases.
However, I really felt like I was living like a local and the location was excellent to explore the city. Mind you, this room was still relatively expensive;
Singapore is not a cheap place to live.
You can book this Air BNB HERE.
04 Karin’s place in Singapore
Karin was a fabulous host – as she really introduced me to be part of her life for a few days. She took me for dinner with friends, local restaurants and to a classic Asian foot massages Spa.
Her apartment was the most luxurious one I’ve slept in for a long time. Beautiful shower and bath tub, a seperate yoga room, outdoor pool and an awesome new
kitchen, I loved this place so much that I wanted to live in Singapore.
(Be careful what you wish for - Karin made sure I had a job interview on my third day in the city as well!)
You can book your Air BNB with Karin HERE.
05 Homestay with Filipino family in Macau
Macau was a place where I really appreciated the chance to live locally. It’s the Las Vegas of Asia, with luxury hotels and casinos, tourist spots and attractions and a Portuguese history.
I I was struggling to navigate through supermarkets and at the bus stop, because everything was in Chinese or Portuguese and barely anyone spoke English.
My Filipino Host Family was incredible welcoming and shared their dinner as well a travel and safety tip about the Philippines with me.
You can book this Air BNB HERE.
It is funny how nervous I was about the whole concept at first, and now it is my favourite way to travel.
Have you tried out AirBNB yet? What was your most amazing experience with AirBNB and where did you stay? Did you feel like you were living locally? Please leave your stories below in the comments section. I would love to hear from you!
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about the author
Susi is the founder of Dreamlife Deluxe and works as a Life and Transformational Coach. She left Germany in 2014 and has been travelling and living overseas ever since, embarking on her second round the world trip in 2017. Susi helps others with her 1:1 coaching and courses to create a freedom lifestyle on their own terms, so they can travel long term, start an online business and overcome their fears.