10 Ways to Be Safe While Staying at an Airbnb

Credit: Stephen Wheeler

Being on the safe side is a priority, and even more so because Airbnb is not exactly like hotels with 24 hour security and assistance. Now that you’ve booked your Airbnb and are getting ready to leave, make sure you keep in mind the following safety precautions so your stay is as comfortable as possible. 

Related: Booking an Airbnb – How to Get the Best Experience

Never Give out Personal Contact Information

Airbnb wants to keep your best interests in mind, including your personal information. That is why you should always use their website as the barrier between you and your host, to ensure that they are not getting anything you do not want them to have. This includes money, so always pay your host through the portal within Airbnb. 

Book with Airbnb SuperHosts

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If you have never used Airbnb before this phrase may sound confusing. SuperHosts just means that these are hosts that have passed certain specifications within Airbnb, including higher ratings and quick response times. They will make you feel at home during your stay and can eliminate some of the fears about not knowing who your host is, because they have been vetted by Airbnb themselves. 

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Read Reviews Carefully

Similar to the SuperHosts, make sure you read all of the information that people write in their reviews about the Airbnb you are looking into. Each review has an individual who has taken the leap and booked with this host, so make sure you look for anything that is concerning, or negative comments about the host. This will only make your trip better when you choose a host that is reliable and is backed by reviews. 

Lock Codes are Changed

Great! You’ve booked your trip and you are going to the destination. While some Airbnbs still utilize the standard lock and key for their houses/rooms, others use lock codes to get into the building. If the latter is the case, then ask how often these codes get changed, and who has access to the new code number. By asking these questions you will lessen the chance of someone you do not know coming into the building, and keep you and your belongings safe on the other side of the door. 

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Turn on Tracking

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This suggestion might sound a little weird at first, but it makes a lot of sense especially if you are traveling alone. Whether you just give a trusted friend or family member the address you stay at, or have an app like Life360 where you can be tracked in real time, it’s good to let someone know that you will be in another location. It should keep both yourself and your loved ones less stressed about the upcoming trip, and you know that someone will have your back even if they are far away. 

Smoke Detectors

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When you get to the Airbnb, or even beforehand, ask the host whether there are smoke detectors where you are staying. Though fires are unlikely, it’s better to make sure you have the proper equipment installed keeping you safe. If the host does not have a smoke detector installed, then you can either go somewhere else or buy a portable smoke detector to plug in when you get there. It will help your peace of mind, and protect you if there ever is a fire. 

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Hidden Cameras

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While hotels do not have cameras in your rooms due to other security measures, an Airbnb does not have the same regulations. Hosts may install cameras into the spaces they are renting just to make sure none of their property is damaged. This can feel like an immense invasion of privacy, so always check and see if there’s any cameras, or even ask the host if cameras are installed anywhere. If you’re feeling nervous, there are of course detectors you can buy to find any cameras your host forgot to mention. 

Check out Neighborhood/Rooms

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So you’ve found the perfect Airbnb with an accommodating host, but what about the space around you? Some houses may look great, but their location in a bad neighborhood may sour the deal. Always check out what town the Airbnb is in, and research if there is crime or other questionable things that occur near the property. It doesn’t hurt to ask the host either – they will know more than you will find online since they are more familiar with the area.

Similar to the neighborhood, check out where you will be staying and see if it is up to your standards, and if not maybe try something else. 

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Secure Your Belongings

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Since you will not be spending every moment with all of your belongings, make sure to secure or put valuable things out of sight, so they have a lesser chance of being stolen. This goes for your car too, in order to prevent break-ins. There are a couple ways you can secure your valuables. First, you can ask the host if they keep a safe in the place you are renting. If they do not, you can go out and buy a portable safe, or just locks for your luggage to keep it shut. Finally, make sure that whenever you leave the rooms, you keep all valuables tucked away so there is a lesser chance of losing your stuff.

Set up Your Own Alarms

I have mentioned this tip a couple of times in the previous paragraphs, but you should always bring a couple alarms with you in order to feel safer traveling away from home. This could include a smoke alarm, hidden camera detector, portable door lock, motion sensor, portable safe, or a bunch of other tools and gadgets you can get online. Whichever combination you choose should be the one that makes you feel the safest, and keeps your valuables safe as well. 

Airbnbs can be a fun new adventure for you to explore, sometimes even offered at a cheaper price than a traditional hotel room. But, with all types of travel you need to be safe and the best way to do that is using these tips before and during your stay, in order to have fun without all the extra stress.