Airbnb certainly has its place within the accommodation industry and has definitely made a statement. However, as someone who travels frequently for business and leisure, there are some advantages serviced apartments has over these unregulated private rentals.
You Know What You Are Getting
With Airbnb properties, you really don’t know what you’re getting until you arrive. As Airbnb is a review based system, you are counting on the honesty of previous guests to help you make your choice because neither Airbnb properties nor hosts are checked or regulated, so it is a slight stab in the dark.
Quality Control And Regulation
Airbnb has no formal way of ensuring quality control and they solely trust what the hosts says about the property. With serviced accommodation, attention is paid to quality control meaning you are much more guaranteed to get what you expect.
In the UK, the serviced apartment industry has accreditation bodies such the Association of Serviced Apartment Providers (ASAP) there to inspect serviced apartments. In order to be an ASAP accredited serviced apartment, the property has to meet a strict criteria of facilities, cleanliness and service. To add to this, many serviced apartment providers are part of large hospitality companies who just like hotels, have a standard to keep throughout their properties.
Support And Communication
When staying at a serviced apartment, you will be communicating with a small team of people who thoroughly know the property. That team will be readily available should something go wrong or if you need to get in touch.
If you need to speak with an Airbnb member of staff, you are likely to be waiting a while for assistance because the system deals with a huge number of messages from all over the world. Not convenient if you need immediate assistance.
Fees And Costs
There are no hidden charges when booking a serviced apartment. When booking an Airbnb property, Airbnb charges a 3% commission to the host and a 12% fee to the guest, so the price initially advertised is not usually the price you pay in the end.
Serviced apartments also provide cleaning services as standard inclusive of the price. When booking an Airbnb property, firstly not all places offer cleaning services or other services, but if they do, each service has an additional charge. Finally, with serviced apartments, rates get cheaper the longer you stay so provide quality and value for money at the same time.
As Airbnb do not usually meet the host or view the property, guests are arriving at a property where the website they booked it on, hasn’t actually regulated the host. Of course most people will be legitimate. But when staying at a serviced apartment, you never have to question that.
In summary, Airbnb has its place within the travel industry for sure, but serviced apartments can guarantee quality apartments, inclusive services, transparent pricing and safe accommodation.