10 Things you may want to Bring when Staying in an AirBnB
Planning a vacation soon? Looking to avoid expensive hotels in favor of more private, less costly accommodations? That’s generally why people book AirBnB rentals or other vacation homes on sites like VRBO. Of course, staying in an AirBnB is not exactly like staying in a hotel.
While some AirBnB locations have lots of extra amenities, many do not. You have to be careful to book places that list most of your wants, but even that might not be enough. Here’s a list of ten items that can come in handy when traveling to a new AirBnB location:
1. A Streaming Stick for Netflix / Hulu / etc…
The vast majority of AirBnB locations have access to a Wi-Fi signal, but not all locations offer access to smart televisions or streaming hardware. Heck, I recently stayed in an AirBnB in San Francisco that didn’t even have HD channels activated on their TV, despite their cable box having a HDMI port.
The easiest way to get around this problem is to bring your own streaming stick. You won’t have to bother logging into the streaming services; you simply connect to the Wi-Fi network and stream! The most popular options for portability are the Roku Streaming Stick and the Fire TV streaming stick; both relatively inexpensive and include 4K hardware options if desired.
2. A Carbon Monoxide Detector
Leaning towards better safe than sorry (and avoiding this tragic event), packing a carbon monoxide detector is not a bad idea. While the vast majority of AirBnB locations will include smoke alarms, it’s possible that your area of a home or guest house won’t include a carbon monoxide detector.
This can be particularly problematic when staying in a foreign country that has less stringent laws about protecting people from dangerous carbon monoxide levels. You can typically battery powered carbon monoxide detectors for around $20 to $30 on Amazon or more compact handheld versions from $80 to $100.
3. The Good Toilet Paper
Toilet paper quality in an AirBnB can really be hit or miss. I’ve stayed in expensive entire home rentals serving up 1-ply sandpaper and inexpensive 1-room rentals that offer the softest Charmin rolls available. It probably has to do with hosts hiring property managers to mange their AirBnB rentals, which brings cost cutting measures.
So you can either toss a roll into your luggage or get a more portable solution like StallMates. The same advice goes for tissues as some AirBnB locations don’t offer them, assuming guests will want to blow their nose in that horrible, scratchy toilet paper, I suppose.
4. Comfy Footwear
House slippers, flip-flops, non-skid socks, whatever floats your boat! When you are staying in a place that has hardwood / cement floors and you are used to carpet at home, packing something to keep your feet warm and protected from flooring irregularities is a good idea.
5. An Expanded Charging Plug with USB ports
When hosts turn older homes into AirBnB locations, one of the biggest problems is trying to find enough plugs to charge all your devices. Solve this problem yourself by bringing a travel charger with additional plugs and USB ports.
This compact Belkin charger is pretty handy with 3 plugs, 2 USB 2.1A ports and surge protection. If you need something larger, Belkin makes a 6-plug port that’s roughly the same price as well. There’s also a number of options on Amazon that don’t offer surge protection.
6. A Washcloth
If you prefer to wash your face off with a washcloth or use it in the shower to clean yourself, consider bringing it with you. I’ve found the vast majority of AirBnB locations offer towels and hands towels, but not always washcloths.
Perhaps it’s considered more of a personal item? In any case, pack an extra one or a shower loofah if you prefer that. The same advice goes for beach towels, if your AirBnB location offers access to a pool.
If you wake up in the middle of the night to make a trip to the bathroom, it would be good to know which way to go if unfamiliar with the bedroom layout in your groggy, sleepy state. You can get packs of these on Amazon for less than $20, ideal if you want to light the way to and from areas of the home. Obviously, good for kids as well.
8. K-Cups / Sweetener / Tea
If your AirBnB advertises a Keurig machine, bring your favorite K-Cups with you. It’s better to have a few on hand instead of heading out to the grocery store to buy an entire box, then leaving it behind because it won’t fit in your suitcase.
The same advice does for tea bags, sweetener or even condiments. I once stayed in an AirBnB that only offered rock candy sugar sticks for sweetening my coffee. That’s cute, but not practical. A few packs of Splenda would have done the trick and made me happy.
9. A Wine Opener
If you like to pop open a bottle of wine after a long day, it’s a terrible feeling when you have to go back out searching for a wine opener instead of relaxing in your AirBnB. There are plenty of hosts that do offer one, but it may not be included if there’s no kitchen access. Just bring your own.
10. Laundry Pods / Dryer Sheets
If your AirBnB host offers access to a washer / dryer set and you are staying over a week or two, then consider packing a few laundry pods / & dryer sets. That way, you can avoid purchasing them at the store and having to leave a box behind.
This also helps you pack less and avoid additional baggage fees at the airport, since you can simply re-wear outfits after washing. You can also just pack a bit of detergent in a zip-lock bag, if you prefer the powder over pods.