How to Get an Airbnb Discount Without a Referral Code
Airbnb is a great way to save money on accommodation for almost any trip that is longer than 2 days. If you’re a first timer and are looking for an Airbnb discount, then here’s $40 to use on your first stay of $75 or more. If you want to learn how to get an Airbnb discount WITHOUT a referral code, then read on. 🙂
The OTHER way that you can get an Airbnb discount is by simply asking. Yep, you read right. It’s basic negotiation.
Did you know that it’s possible to negotiate prices on Airbnb? Private individual owners and small boutique rental companies are typically the people behind the Airbnb listings. They list their properties through the Airbnb site for free, and they only make a profit when a booking is made. Airbnb then takes their cut for connecting the two users.
On my 10-day solo trip to Bali, I was able to use the power of negotiation to get a discount on this gorgeous 2 bedroom 2 bathroom villa! I only paid $50 a night to enjoy this beautiful property all to myself. Can you believe that I even had my own private pool?! It also came with a homemade breakfast every morning, and I was even offered a welcome drink upon my arrival.
So how did I do it? Read on, and try it for yourself!
Keeping an Open Mind & Being Spontaneous Can Pay Off
I took some time to research several different options before my trip, so I had a few favorites saved in my account to access easily later on. Because I like to allow for spontaneity in my travels, I had only booked the first 2 nights of my 10 day Bali trip at a beautiful resort near the beach that wasn’t too far from the airport. This gave me enough time to deal with any jet lag and get acclimated before having to deal with negotiating an Airbnb discount. I also knew that there was a chance I wouldn’t get the villa, but worst case scenario, I could always get a cheap room somewhere else.
Save Your Faves
Once I settled in and felt rested, it was then time to find the best deal for the best place. I had about 5 properties saved to my favorites, and they were all great options. Since I was booking last minute, two of them had already been rented. However, three of them were still available for the dates I needed, and the date was coming up the very next day. This one, in particular, was priced at around $75 a night, which is still not a bad price for a private villa. It was definitely the nicest one and my first choice, so I emailed them first.
The Rules of Negotiation
#1 Be NICE! Have you ever heard the phrase “You get more bees with honey”? I use this all the time, and it’s the truth. Being nice is always a good idea, no matter what you’re doing in life, but it’s especially important if you’re going to try to negotiate. Would you really want to have someone inside of your private property who is acting entitled or not treating you with respect? Of course not. These are real people and not a huge hotel chain. Act accordingly.
Example: Hi there, how are you today? I’m traveling through Bali and I found your lovely listing! It looks perfect for my needs, and I’m very interested in staying here.
#2 Share Who You Are & Why You Are Awesome! Think of this the same as you would a resume or an interview for a job. These are private homes, just like yours. Why should they rent to you, a stranger, in the first place? They actually have the right to reject your offer, even if you’re paying full price. Make them feel at ease by stating your attributes. Also, list these in your profile. This works even better if you have great reviews confirming what you’ve said about yourself.
Example: I’ve always had great experiences with rentals on Airbnb. I’m very quiet and clean as you’ll see in my reviews from my past stays with Airbnb. I’m actually an Airbnb host myself when I’m not out traveling, so I will definitely love and respect your home just like my own.
#3 ASK! This is sometimes the hardest part, but you simply have to ask. If there’s one thing I’ve learned in life, it’s that you don’t get what you don’t ask for. Ask kindly though, and whatever you do, do not insult them nor the property. Never act as if the property is not good enough and that you somehow deserve a discount. This is completely rude and is definitely the wrong way to go about negotiations for this site. Also, do not make an offer so low that they feel insulted. You most likely won’t even get a response back if you do that. If you choose to make an offer, do it for a little bit less than listing price, and ask nicely. This is the best way to go if you want to be successful. Sometimes you won’t get a response right away. You can also do this with all of your other favorite properties while you wait for a response back.
Example: I’m actually traveling alone so I would only need full use of one of the bedrooms/bathrooms which will be less cleaning for you or your team. Are you able to accept $50 for the night? If so, I can book it right away after you send the updated special offer. I’ll keep an eye out for your message, as I need to book something very soon. Thanks so much!
Airbnb has an option for hosts to allow them to send you a special offer that they have approved. If the property is empty, and you are making a reasonable offer (as a desirable tenant who is polite), then they will probably take it. If for some reason they don’t, then you’ll still have all of the other properties saved in your favorites that you can try. Go down your list using these same steps. Statistically, one of them is bound to say yes. Then you can make your favorite choice from there.
With those 3 easy steps, I was able to negotiate a $25 discount off of my stay just because I asked nicely. Every little bit adds up, especially over a 10-day trip, and those savings allow me to travel farther and more often. The villa was amazing and I soaked up every second of the peaceful luxury and my private pool. I even made friends with the owners and they were so hospitable in every way. They also wrote a lovely review for me on my Airbnb profile. What a great added bonus! I’ll even be able to use it as a reference for future negotiations.
Extending My Stay
After my one night stay, I asked if I could stay 2 more nights and finish my trip at the lovely villa until I returned home to San Diego. They said it had already been booked in advance, but that they could offer me another property they owned for the same price of $50 a night. I said I would take a look at it and let them know. They walked me 2 doors down and the place was huge. It was a larger villa with 4 bedrooms, a private pool, an amazing rooftop sundeck with panoramic views and a beautiful koi pond! Needless to say, I said yes! I paid them cash directly in the local currency, and they even threw in a free scooter rental.
I finished my stay in the larger villa and went home happy, fulfilled and inspired. I had completed another fascinating excursion across the world on very little money. Travel is more accessible than meets the eye. Think outside of the box and be kind. Your next adventure is on the way!
Read Next: 4 Easy Ways to Save Money For Travel