When you use Airbnb for the first time to book travel accommodation, you don’t have to pay full price. You can get an Airbnb discount coupon that in some places could even cover the cost of a night or two!
Airbnb has a nice incentive for new users – if you sign up through an existing user, both get some credit in their account, to be used towards their bookings.
This Airbnb joining discount is available to all new users.
The discount amount changes from time to time. At the moment it’s a $42 or €35 or £31 discount off your first booking, which can certainly pay for a night’s stay in many places around the world (and in cheaper destinations even more than one night).
How to use the Airbnb discount code
It’s very easy. First, click here and if you’re new to the site, you will get this message on your screen, letting you know that you are eligible for an Airbnb first booking discount:
Sign up with Facebook, with Google or with Email. Either way, you will get your Airbnb discount.
That’s it 🙂
Where to enter the Airbnb promo code
You don’t actually have to enter a discount code on Airbnb and you don’t need a voucher either. Everything is automatic: when you book accommodation on Airbnb for the first time, the discount will be applied and deducted from your payment.
You’ll see the amount of the joining discount displayed on the screen when you sign up.
Airbnb will sometimes require you to make a booking at a certain amount in order for the first booking discount to be applied.
For example, to get the £32 discount, you may have to book a room or a house for £60 or more. It’s still worth it though, as you’ll obviously save a lot of money.
When I first joined Airbnb, I didn’t know about this first booking discount, and I regret now that I didn’t find out about it in advance and didn’t take advantage of it.
As this is a joining discount, if you’ve already signed up you won’t be able to get it. However, if you travel with a friend or a family member who doesn’t have an Airbnb account yet, they can sign up and get the first booking discount.
I’ve seen some advice online suggesting that if you already have an account and still want to enjoy the Airbnb joining discount, then you should sign up with a new email address. This doesn’t seem legit to me.
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That’s really all you need to know about getting your Airbnb joining discount, but if you’d like to learn more about Airbnb – what it is, why I like it and some helpful tips on how the site works – keep on reading 🙂
What is Airbnb
The idea for Airbnb came from a real necessity. The founders of Airbnb hosted a tourist in their flat, when hotels were fully booked.
It gave them the idea to make a website that makes it possible for others to do the same.
It’s a win-win solution for both locals and tourists.
Locals make a bit of money on the side and visitors get to experience the place through local eyes, and often at a price that’s cheaper than a hotel.
You typically rent a room in someone’s house. That’s the basic Airbnb concept.
As the site developed , more options were added, so now you can also book an entire house for yourself or stay in a shared space, like on a living room sofa.
Why I recommend Airbnb
I’ve been using Airbnb pretty consistently in the past couple of years in different countries I visited on my travels.
There are some good reasons for that:
1 – The site is really user friendly
After you use it once or twice, you’ll realise how much thought was put into making it easy and convenient to use. Ill talk more about how to use it later.
2 – The customer service is very professional
I was pleased with all of my bookings so far, except one, where the room didn’t fully match its description.
When I contacted Airbnb’s customer service I got a quick reply and the way they handled my problem showed me that they care about their customers.
3 – So much choice!
In any city I’ve been to, when I searched Airbnb I got more than enough search results to let me select a vacation rental that was just what I wanted.
Having such a huge range to choose from is really important, as the last thing you want to do when you’re abroad is compromise on where you’ll be staying, it could affect your whole trip.
I love having enough choice so I can find a place that’s just right for me.
How to use Airbnb to find travel accommodation
I’ve posted a detailed guide on how to use Airbnb on this blog before. I recommend you check it out, as it pretty much sums up everything I’ve learnt from my experience on the site and will save you time.
Here are the main things you need to know:
1. Search for the destination. It’s OK to search without specific dates if you don’t have them yet. Add the number of guests and click search.
2. Limit the price, so you will only see results matching your budget. Use “Price Range” and move the sliding scale to the price you want to pay.
3. Choose “Room type” – you can choose between an entire home, a private room or a shared room.
4. Use the various filters to find a place that’s really suitable for your needs. Click on “more filters” , then “Amenities” and then “see all amenities”. Select everything you might need – TV, air conditioning, a washing machine, a laptop friendly surface and so on.
5. Select a good location: You can search as you move on the map, which is a very useful feature if you want to stay in the centre, or far from the centre (I sometimes prefer that) or near a certain attraction etc.
6. Check reviews! This is crucial. I wouldn’t recommend booking a place that doesn’t have any reviews. Read what others have said to avoid potential disappointments.
These are the essentials. For a more detailed guide with more tips, read my full guide: What to Check When You Book Accommodation on Airbnb
How to make a booking on Airbnb
Once you’ve made your choice of your perfect accommodation, enter the dates and number of people staying.
When you enter the dates, note that you can often get more discounts on Airbnb by booking long term accommodation! Many hosts will offer you a weekly or monthly discount.
Next, the full rent will be displayed and your Airbnb discount will be deducted (it’s called “travel credit” on the site).
Click “book” and send a short message to your host. I normally say something along the lines of “Hi, I liked your flat and would love to stay there when I visit your city.” If it’s an “instant booking” listing, there’s no need to message your host.
All that’s left is to contact your host about a week before you arrive to arrange for the check in. Airbnb will send you a reminder by email to do that.
Extra Tips – Save more money on Airbnb in future
If you want to give the same Airbnb discount to your friends and family, go to Invite Friends in the Airbnb menu, and you will get your own personal referral link that you can send to anyone. Once they sign up through your link, you’ll both get travel credit 🙂
Airbnb offers more than a place to live – it also helps you explore your destination through unique activities!
Under Airbnb Experiences you’ll find a lovely selection of things to do at your destination.
The experiences include local guides who show you around and take you on local tours, live concerts, workshops, social impact activities and much more.
You can find photo walks, cooking workshops, street art tours, dance classes and lots of other interesting things to do.
The credit you get for signing up also applies to experiences, so if you want you can use it to pay for tours and activities rather than accommodation. It will give you a discount or in some cases cover the piece of the experience!
Some examples of cool Airbnb experiences you can try:
Awesome travel photos on Instagram photo walk in London
See local Amsterdam by bike in Amsterdam
Drawing on the Danube: Art Class in Budapest
Pasta, Pizza and Tiramisù workshop in Rome
Sunrise or sunset yoga on hidden beach in Vietnam
Street Art of the Lower East Side in New York
Berlin’s Best Kept Secrets Tour in Berlin
Louvre : Masterpieces and History in Paris
Learn to Surf in Hawaii
Brush and Ink (Japanese calligraphy) class in Tokyo
How to book Airbnb Experiences
Booking experiences is easy.
Enter the name of your destination in the search box and Airbnb will show you both homes and experiences on the same page.
Click “Popular Experiences” to see the full list of activities available.
You can refine your search and look at specific categories, e.g. food & drink, nightlife, history and so on or just browse everything.
On the experience page, read about the guide, what to expect, what to bring and other people’s reviews. Then click the red booking button. You’ll see the price next to it. When you make the booking, your Airbnb credit will be applied and you’ll get a discount.
Prices vary and seem to match the general cost of living at the particular destination, so if it’s an inexpensive city, the experiences are likely to be quite affordable. However, this isn’t always the case, and you might find surprisingly inexpensive experiences even in expensive cities!
If you’re not sure where you’re about to travel to, use the experiences page just to get inspired! It shows you the popular activities around the world, and also has categories you can browse, such as sports, entertainment, nature etc.
This is an amazing way to upgrade your trip. Meeting with locals who know their way around and learning about local culture first-hand is the best way to travel.
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