Tuesday, August 20, 2013
why we chose to rent an apartment
Where to stay on vacation can really be something to lose sleep over. I can't tell you how many nights I woke up thinking I need to hop out of bed that minute and book something. Sounds crazy I know. We finally we decided for our stay in Seattle we would rent an apartment rather than stay at a hotel. There were so many options out there and so many different areas to stay so we basically started with narrowing down what area we wanted to be in. After asking a few friends who were familiar with the area we decided that either Capital Hill or Freemont was the best fit for us. Those areas are very popular for many reasons so the prices on hotels reflected that. We are travelling on a budget so airbnb was perfect for us. We could rent an apartment or just a room for half as much as a hotel and be in a better location. We found amazing deals on airbnb so from the beginning we were thinking this would be the best fit for us.
The second reason I preferred the apartment feel is the kitchen option. It is always nice to have a hotel that provides breakfast but most of the time it is not very appetizing (or healthy) and if your hotel doesn't provide it then you can easily add $10-$20 to your daily cost of travel for eating breakfast out. The apartment option means you can wake up, make a cup of coffee and have a light, healthy breakfast before heading out for the day.
Another plus to renting an apartment is you can find lots of reviews. We chose our spaces by how many positive reviews they had. It is always reassuring to see a space with 50 positive reviews. Also, lots of the owners are more than willing to give you tips on the neighborhood you are staying in. Who better to tell you how to see the city then the person who lives there?
We did find a few issues with booking though. One thing to watch out for is a cleaning fee or security deposit. If you are renting a house long term then thats one thing but a room for 2 nights should not have crazy additional fees so we quickly passed on houses with those.
The second thing we came across was that the calendar is less reliable. With a hotel there is simply vacancy or not and you know almost immediately. With renting an apartment it is up to the renter to update their calendar. We had a few apartments that appeared available but when we contacted the owner they ended up being booked already. Major disappointment.
We had lots of success with airbnb but have also found great places on Homeaway, VRBO and we were even hoping to squeeze in some Glamping while there.