My first Airbnb experience

10 October 2016

image from My first Airbnb experience

I guess I’m a little late to the game with Airbnb. I’ve known about it for years and have heard great things but I never got around to trying it until my trip to Cornwall a few months ago.

In case you aren’t familiar with Airbnb, it is an online marketplace which lets people rent out their properties or spare rooms to guests. With properties available in pretty much all major cities around the world, Airbnb is favoured amongst travellers as you can often find accommodation that is centrally located at a cheaper price than a hotel.

When it came to booking accommodation for our Cornwall trip, there were a few reasons why we chose to book through Airbnb:

  • With three of us travelling together, staying at a hotel would have meant either booking two separate rooms or a suite. Airbnb allowed us to rent out properties with two or more bedrooms for a fraction of the cost. We paid less than £40 per person per night with Airbnb, there’s no way we would have been able to book a decent hotel for that price.
  • We needed space for parking as we were travelling by car and motorbike. On-site parking was particularly important for the motorbike as we wanted to be sure it would be secure.

We found a charming semi detached house with 3 bedrooms in Penzance for the first two nights of our trip.

The house was located on a quiet street and it had beautiful views across the fields to the Atlantic Ocean from the back.

On this occasion we didn’t meet the host - the keys were left in a safe outside the house which we were given the combination to, and he also left plenty of helpful information in a booklet inside the house. This included everything from the WiFi details to things to do and places to eat in the local area. The host lived locally and gave us a contact number so we could reach him if there were any issues.

The house included everything we needed - the kitchen was well stocked with plates, cutlery, pots, pans, etc. We cooked our own dinner the first night and ate out the second night at a local fish and chip shop the host recommended. We were also provided with clean linen and towels and even some books and DVDs to keep us entertained. The location was fantastic with Land’s End, Minack Theatre and St Michael’s Mount all a short drive away.

For the next three nights of our trip we travelled north to Bodmin where we stayed in a beautiful barn conversion.

The property was located on a working farm and we often saw rabbits and chickens roaming around out the back. With rolling countryside views it felt like we were in the middle of nowhere but we were still located close to plenty of attractions like Restormel Castle, Lanhydrock and the Eden Project.

The hosts lived in another building on the farm so we saw them a few times and they were both lovely people! They put out scones for us on arrival as well as free range eggs from their farm.


We thoroughly enjoyed our stay at these two Airbnb properties. It definitely allowed us to feel more at home on our trip as we mostly cooked our own food and felt cozy relaxing by the fire in the evenings. In future it would be my go-to option when booking for a group as you can get plenty of space for a low cost.

A lot of the time I travel on short city breaks which means I’m usually arriving late in the evening/early morning, and then departing again in the evening. In this case I don’t think Airbnb would be suitable as you probably wouldn’t have somewhere to leave your luggage prior to check in or after checking out. I think I’ll be sticking to hotels for these types of trips but would definitely consider Airbnb for longer stays where my arrival and departure times are more flexible.

Tips for booking on Airbnb

  • Check the reviews of the property before booking. I made sure that the places we looked at had plenty of positive reviews to ensure there would be no nasty surprises!
  • As a guest you won’t have any reviews when booking for the first time, so make sure you fill in your profile. Upload a real photo of yourself and write a bit about who you are. This will give you a better chance at having your booking request accepted.
  • If you’re keen to try out Airbnb you can get £25 travel credit by signing up using my referral link.

Have you tried Airbnb? What did you think?



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