Airbnb has transformed the way people find accommodations while traveling, with millions of travelers flocking to the site to find strangers whose homes are available for short-term rental. It’s also empowered homeowners to make extra income by renting out their abodes for the weekend or over holidays. But it’s not the only site of its kind. There are a number of competitors emerging on the scene, and others that have been quietly providing vacation rentals in Airbnb’s shadow for a while now. Here are five alternatives to Airbnb you may not have heard of.
This “vacation rental marketplace” rivals Airbnb for the sheer variety of options you have to choose from. They’ve now got over 300,000 different properties, ranging from entire villas for rent to single rooms in apartments. FlipKey is owned by TripAdvisor, and posting on FlipKey gives you the option of having your property featured there and on 10+ other sites. For guests, you can sort potential rentals by a wide range of criteria, including nearby terrain and family-friendliness.
A relative newcomer, HouseTrip has quickly earned a reputation as the best site for people traveling in Europe. Airbnb’s dominance in America isn’t as firmly established in the UK, Germany, Italy, and other travel destinations on the Continent, but HouseTrip more than makes up for what Airbnb lacks in this area, and without the annoying 3% commission that Airbnb takes. If you’re planning a Eurotrip, this is a great place to find spots to crash.
This company’s partnership with AARP tells you a bit about its business model. Tripping.com is targeted more at older people looking for long-term vacation homes than young, overnight guests. But it’s not exclusively for retirees—if you’re a younger person looking for a place to stay for a few weeks or a month, it’s your best option. Tripping.com is putatively focused on vacation homes more than quick stops, but it doesn’t limit its selection to those rentals – there are over 8 million properties on the site to choose from, of all kinds.
Probably the most similar to Airbnb, this site lists properties from people looking to rent out their space for short periods. The property listings are accompanied by reviews, pictures of the property and surrounding areas, details about amenities, and the days available, allowing you to make sure the property suits you before you book. Cancellation policies vary from property to property but are generally pretty forgiving. Look into VRBO if you’re a fan of Airbnb but would like to expand your options.
Formerly tightly focused on hotels, this site has expanded to renting homes and apartments, both for short and long-term stays. Their website is extremely intuitive and can guide you to a place that suits your needs in just a few clicks, and they typically have a very renter-friendly cancellation policy.
Sure, Airbnb is great. But if you’ve already checked out all the listings on their site for the place you’re visiting and you haven’t found one that feels right, look at these other sites and see if they’ve got anything that’s more up your alley.