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AIRBNB. A way to beat single supplements?

Avoiding single supplements, is this finally a way to get around them?

Despite the increasing number of single travellers and business travellers we all know that finding a hotel that a) has single rooms or b)  doesn’t charge you a single supplement is pretty much, rarer than hens teeth.

Providing many hoteliers with the opportunity to cash in on the supply and demand for single rooms, developers rarely take account of changing demographics and travel preferences of independent travellers So we’re stuck! Or are we?

Airbnb runs on a marketplace platform where it connects hosts and travellers. Hosts post their apartments on the Airbnb’s website to rent to travellers for short periods and in little more than a few years has accumulated more than 500,000 listings in 33,000 cities.

With unique places to stay from local hosts in more than 190 countries, just how good an option is AIRBNB for independent or single travellers?

From a practical point of view, although the Airbnb website automatically invites you to search for unique places to stay for 2 guests, the search facility does provide an option for independent travellers to do a ‘1 guest’ search.  Solo travellers then have the option to search for an entire place, a shared room, or yes, yes, yes – a private room with NO obvious penalties in the guise of the dreaded Single Supplement.

A quick search for a private room for one guest in London brings up 1,000+ rentals starting from around £20. A similar search in Barcelona for example also brings up 1,000+ rentals starting from as little as £13 depending on facilities and distance from the centre of the city. Many rentals also offer two or more private rental rooms, ideal if you’re planning a weekend away with friends.

So if you don’t want to pay a single supplement, you’re not that clued up an area or want standard English facilities like a kettle and that much needed cup of tea or coffee when you arrive, whether a business trip or fun, Airbnb could be a great option for independent travellers. But like any travel plans you make – do your research and follow recommended safety guidelines to help get the best from your Airbnb booking.


PS If you live in a popular holiday or business location, renting out your spare room if you have one, may also be  good way to bring in some cash to help with your bills as well.  With all the regulations eased, it seems that there is legislation on the way in London at least,  that will overturn the need for planning permission to let out flats or rooms.