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Air BNBs in Thailand - good idea or bad idea?

Air BNBs in Thailand - good idea or bad idea?

Feb 13th, 2018, 02:18 AM
  #1  
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Air BNBs in Thailand - good idea or bad idea?

Hi all - currently in the planning stages of our trip to Thailand and am wondering if anyone has used Air BNBs - was it a good experience?

We値l be looking to stay at Kanchanaburi, Chiang Mai and Chiang Rai and Bangkok.

Any advice on what to look out for would be appreciated.
stormbird is offline  
Feb 13th, 2018, 01:53 PM
  #2  
 
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Originally Posted by stormbird View Post
Hi all - currently in the planning stages of our trip to Thailand and am wondering if anyone has used Air BNBs - was it a good experience?

We値l be looking to stay at Kanchanaburi, Chiang Mai and Chiang Rai and Bangkok.

Any advice on what to look out for would be appreciated.
I started using them, in Bangkok, back in 2014 and had great experiences.

Happy Travels!
Guenmai is offline  
Feb 13th, 2018, 03:06 PM
  #3  
 
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As anywhere, just read the reviews and pay particular attention to the star ratings. Those ratings often give a better idea of the quality of an accommodation than the reviews because people are reluctant to say anything critical of their hosts but seem willing to rate various aspects more accurately with the stars. For instance, if there are less than 5 stars for "cleanliness", even if reviews say the place is clean, I don't book it. Using the Super Host designation can also be helpful as it says a lot about the overall experience people have had with the host over time. I've used Airbnb all over and wouldn't hesitate to use it in Thailand too. Just watch those stars carefully!
MmePerdu is offline  
Feb 13th, 2018, 11:47 PM
  #4  
 
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Some Airbnb guests give below 5 stars for cleanliness based on that there were ants.... ignoring the fact that they left food crumbs everywhere and Thailand is a tropical country. The star rating system on Airbnb is a nightmare for hosts. Also it is really not fair to ignore a property if it has not been reviewed otherwise it will never get booked or get any reviews. If you arrive and have serious issues Airbnb will find you somewhere else and/or refund anyway, hosts do not get paid until a day after check in.
Cyansiam is offline  
Feb 14th, 2018, 03:11 AM
  #5  
 
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Originally Posted by stormbird View Post
Hi all - currently in the planning stages of our trip to Thailand and am wondering if anyone has used Air BNBs - was it a good experience?

We値l be looking to stay at Kanchanaburi, Chiang Mai and Chiang Rai and Bangkok.

Any advice on what to look out for would be appreciated.
-

With a hotel, hostel or guest house you usually have a track record over several years. You have reviews too. You have several booking sources for price comparison along with a hotel website for booking. (Some cheaper hotels or guest houses may not have fancy websites.) Many hotels are in popular locations where you can walk to restaurants, malls, supermarkets, etc.

Although you can use Airbnb there is some questions still around if it is legal in Thailand. Google this up if important to you.
https://freshbangkok.com/legal-airbnb-condos-thailand/

If you think you need a place where you have a kitchen there are serviced apartments that rent rooms on a day to day basis.

For me, I would first choose the area I want the hotel or apartment located then find a place to stay. In Bangkok, for example, low season a room in a private basic hotel, or room in a guest house begins around 600 - 800 baht. This is a room with A/C, private bathroom, TV and hot water. For some other tourists this is what they spend on a meal. Of course there are luxury hotels available too if this is your preferred style.

(Bangkok is a huge city with lots of hotels and other accommodation! Most tourists do not drive themselves in Bangkok.)

For Bangkok I prefer to have a hotel where I can use the Skytrain. (Skytrain connects with the subway and with the Airport Rail Link.) From Bangkok there are numerous day tours to Kachanaburi, River Kwai, from Chiang Mai there are day tours to Chiang Rai too. Lots of choices.

When you show up in Thailand will determine the weather available and the cost of your accommodation. High season for hotel room costs and availability is late November to early February. Highest prices around Christmas - New Years holidays.

Up to you. (Phrase often heard in Thai beer bars.)
SirHalberd is offline  
Feb 14th, 2018, 08:55 AM
  #6  
 
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Originally Posted by Cyansiam View Post
The star rating system on Airbnb is a nightmare for hosts. Also it is really not fair to ignore a property if it has not been reviewed...
Cyansiam, I'm an Airbnb host and disagree with you entirely that the star system is a nightmare. I think it's a very good reflection of the reality of an accommodation, sometimes an incentive for the host to improve and sometimes a just acknowledgement of something we can't do anything about, like "location" and we have to accept it. But I agree with you on your second point and I have booked places without reviews when everything pointed to an excellent property. However, the last thing we want is to deal with is a bad place on arrival, wasting precious vacation time while the company finds us another one, especially in an unfamiliar country.

To SirHalberd's point, many Airbnb rooms have years of reviews, certainly enough to make a decision. My last visit to Bangkok I booked a well-reviewed hotel and had cigarette smoke being pumped into my room through the ventilation system, never mentioned in the good reviews. I do think, though, he's right about the availability of very good, very inexpensive guesthouses. It just depends on the sort of place one likes best. Airbnb offers (I've been looking in Bangkok lately) nice rooms in residential neighborhoods which can be a very good choice, away from the bustle a bit.
MmePerdu is offline  
Feb 14th, 2018, 11:24 PM
  #7  
 
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Originally Posted by MmePerdu View Post
Cyansiam, I'm an Airbnb host and disagree with you entirely that the star system is a nightmare. I think it's a very good reflection of the reality of an accommodation, sometimes an incentive for the host to improve and sometimes a just acknowledgement of something we can't do anything about, like "location" and we have to accept it. But I agree with you on your second point and I have booked places without reviews when everything pointed to an excellent property. However, the last thing we want is to deal with is a bad place on arrival, wasting precious vacation time while the company finds us another one, especially in an unfamiliar country.

To SirHalberd's point, many Airbnb rooms have years of reviews, certainly enough to make a decision. My last visit to Bangkok I booked a well-reviewed hotel and had cigarette smoke being pumped into my room through the ventilation system, never mentioned in the good reviews. I do think, though, he's right about the availability of very good, very inexpensive guesthouses. It just depends on the sort of place one likes best. Airbnb offers (I've been looking in Bangkok lately) nice rooms in residential neighborhoods which can be a very good choice, away from the bustle a bit.
I host as well...there are a lot of discussions on the airbnb forum as to the star rating system faults. A colleague of mine recently had one of her properties blocked for a week due to two 3* reviews out of many 5* ones. The 'ants' incident was the reason for one of these reviews, the other was just by a guest who did not like the location. I agree on wasting precious time but at least there is this option open to guests, I have had guests move to us due to building work close by, something previous reviews or photos cannot always help with. I have also had guests request refunds for a good review!
Cyansiam is offline  
Feb 15th, 2018, 01:56 AM
  #8  
 
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Originally Posted by stormbird View Post
Hi all - currently in the planning stages of our trip to Thailand and am wondering if anyone has used Air BNBs - was it a good experience?

We値l be looking to stay at Kanchanaburi, Chiang Mai and Chiang Rai and Bangkok.

Any advice on what to look out for would be appreciated.
My first priority for accommodation is location. I prefer to walk to restaurants, malls, supermarkets or Seven Eleven type stores and nightlife from my hotel location. I don't mind using city transportation to distant interests during the day or early evening but if I am going to be having a few drinks I don't want to use taxis to get back to my place.

If someone normally has private drivers or doesn't mind calling for rides all the time then I suppose it won't matter where the accommodation is located. I am a walker and prefer to walk where there is "life" around me even late at night. A nice quiet area with little to do nearby would be boring to me.

Different strokes - different folks!
SirHalberd is offline  
Feb 15th, 2018, 07:35 AM
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Cyansiam, I've been hosting for 5 years and have never had anything like the sorts of experiences you describe. We seem to be attracting different sorts of guests, rather than the review system at fault.

SirHalberd, different strokes, indeed. But I, too, walk wherever I go and hotel or Airbnb, one can find the middle ground, a quiet side street with restaurants and transport nearby, not at all mutually exclusive.
MmePerdu is offline  
Feb 16th, 2018, 03:37 AM
  #10  
 
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We have used Airbnb quite a few times, mostly in South America, but never in Thailand. We have mostly had very positive experiences and I can’t imagine it would much different. The one issue we did have with one property was in La Paz, Bolivia where the apartment was not in a particularly good or safe location. That is one thing that I don’t like about Airbnb - they don’t usually reveal te exact location until after booking.

I would be happy using Airbnb in Chiang Mai, although location is key there. You would want to be within the old city walls. In Chiang Rai there are a number Of very pleasant guesthouses which I would prefer to use. In Kanchanaburi you really do need to be careful of location, especially at weekends. A lot of students visit for parties on boats on the river and it can get very noisy. If staying for more than a few days in Bangkok I th8nk Airbnb would be fine but make sure you are close to a BTS station to aid getting around the city. Some of the best eating places are in the more residential neighbourhoods.
crellston is offline  
Feb 16th, 2018, 02:53 PM
  #11  
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Thank you all for your thoughts and input. I have the weekend now to compare between Air BNBs and other options - such as the guest houses mentioned here. I had a quick look on Trivago and I think a number of these guesthouses are there. So will make some comparisons.

Our trip is in December - our son is getting married on Koh Samui, (a very popular destination for Aussies to get married these days)so we will be spending a week at the resort there. Then we plan to travel around for another two plus weeks with another couple. Call us crazy but we will likely hire a car for the trip. My thinking was that an entire house/townhouse would be nice for the four of us to share - we'll see how we go.

Thanks guys!
stormbird is offline  
Feb 17th, 2018, 01:52 PM
  #12  
 
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If this is your first trip to SE Asia, you might appreciate the services of a hotel. Hotels are very well-priced in this part of the world.
Kathie is offline  
Feb 18th, 2018, 05:10 AM
  #13  
 
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"My thinking was that an entire house/townhouse would be nice for the four of us to share - we'll see how we go."
".. our son is getting married on Koh Samui,"


-

If I were the son - my preference would be my own hotel room, my own shower and my own private bathroom! And not have my "wife to be" constantly too close to "prospective" parents in law 24 hours a day, every day!

Maybe also include your son in your lodging selection if you haven't already.

Good luck.

Last edited by SirHalberd; Feb 18th, 2018 at 05:15 AM.
SirHalberd is offline  
Feb 18th, 2018, 11:48 PM
  #14  
 
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"Call us crazy but we will likely hire a car for the trip." Not crazy at all! In fact for Northern Thailand and Kanchanaburi a car will make life a lot easier, especially with four of you. We have done this many times and often use these downloadable maps from Budget Rentals https://www.budget.co.th/WorldClassDrive.aspx

In Chiang Rai we stayed at a Na Rak O Resort a pleasant little guesthouse in a good location close to the centre. It was next door to another nice place Grandma Keow’s both comfortable and very friendly.
crellston is offline  
Feb 18th, 2018, 11:58 PM
  #15  
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Not travelling with ou son and his wife to be - the itinerary is for after the week on Koh Samui - we’ll be travelling with another couple, as mentioned above.
stormbird is offline  
Feb 19th, 2018, 12:10 AM
  #16  
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Crellston thank you so much for those maps - they are awesome! I had read that driving up north was actually quite ok and we are quite comfortable at the thought but also agree that I think a car would be so much easier.
stormbird is offline  
Feb 20th, 2018, 12:17 AM
  #17  
 
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You are with welcome stormbird, we used them several times to drive several of their routes which took us all over Northern Thailand and right down to Hua Hin.we found them really useful. I did a trip report on one of those journeys around the Mai Horn Sorn Loop - Cooking in Chiang Mai & Driving Around Northern Thailand
crellston is offline  
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