Finding accommodation is one of the first steps to planning a travel adventure. Fortunately for us, it’s something we do very often. We change hostels/guesthouses more often than we can count. Finding accommodation has become a normal part of our travel routine. People often ask us how we find a cheap place to stay. Well, there are many ways to find accommodation all over the world, I’ll list a few that we use and you can also use in you upcoming travels.
- Search when you arrive at your destination: This is typically our strategy. Often times you’ll find that it’s cheaper to just ask around when you get to your destination. We always take some form of transportation into the area where we want to stay and just walk into hostels/guesthouse and ask how much the rooms/beds cost. Typically, we ask 4 or 5 places before we decide on one.
- Search online: In certain countries, it’s better to book online because the hostels/guesthouses aren’t visible or abundantly available in a specific area, so it’s better to book online to be safe. We always booked online when we traveled through South Korea and Japan because it was easy and cheaper than walking around for hours trying to spot out the hostels/guesthouses. We typically use these websites:
- Agoda.com: Agoda is cheap as chips! It’s often has the cheapest prices on rooms online.
- Booking.com: A bit more expensive but sometimes it has more options.
- Hostelworld.com: Suitable for single travelers or backpackers to find hostels.
- Airbnb: Great for long term stays and to find rooms that aren’t available on the other sites.
- Ask the locals: Locals always know best! Before we walk around to look for hostels/guesthouses, we often times ask a friendly face for some help. Most of the time people will give you a general idea of where you can find cheap accommodation.
- Try couchsurfing: If you’re up for the adventure and you have time to to message a few people at least a week before your travels, try couchsurfing! We love couchsurfing and definitely recommend it to anyone looking to make new friends, spend some time with locals, and save some money.
- BEFORE you try couchsurfing, don’t forget to read “The Do’s and Don’t’s of Couchsurfing”
Especially in third world countries. They’ll tell you one price and it’s likely that you can get up to 50% off that price if you really try.
Book online if you plan to arrive at your destination after sunset.
We’ve learned this the hard way. After a long day of travel, you don’t want to spend your night walking around aimlessly in a completely new place with nowhere to go. It can get very frustrating.
Ask to see the room before you decide to stay there!
Again, learned this the hard way. I slept in a room with a pet rat once because I didn’t look at the room before I said yes. I was tired and the price sounded great, so I said yes. Never again.