HouseTrip allows hosts to list their properties for free and simply decide which dates their place is available. This means hosts can offer homes in amazing locations on the days they are out of town. For travelers this means the chance to be in a real home for short-term stays.
Having a whole apartment or house means you can stay together with friends or family and become part of the local community for the duration of your stay. While you won't have a hotel reception to go to, you're much more likely to get to know your neighborhood and gain a more 'authentic' experience of the city.
I asked HouseTrip if they had any London Accommodation for Large Groups that would be good for a group of friends or a family get-together and they had some great recommendations.
HouseTrip.com went live in January 2010 and saw 1000% growth in its first year. At the last count over 400,000 nights' accommodation had been booked, and over 1,000 properties are being added to the site every week. Those who stay can leave a review on the site and the feedback is looking good as from 5,305 reviews the average score is 4.3 out of 5.
The Idea Behind HouseTrip
Arnaud Bertrand, the CEO and Founder of HouseTrip.com, wanted to book an apartment for a short holiday and found no way to do it online. After wasting time calling classified ads and sending money via Western Union he knew there was a need for a safe and secure online booking system for short-term rentals. Then when he needed to rent out his flat in Lausanne he found it hard to find a way to arrange short-term rentals as a owner and the flat sat empty while he was out of town.
These problems convinced Arnaud and his wife JunJun to develop a holiday rentals website to offer safe and secure online booking, great search facilities, an easy way to show each property well, a way to open a dialogue between the owner and traveler, and a chance for travelers to leave tips about each property to help each other.
Why Not a Hotel
I love staying in London hotels but they don't always suit every trip. For example, when travelling with children, staying in a hotel can mean nights sitting quietly with the hotel TV on low while the kids sleep next to you. But staying in an apartment means you can shut their bedroom door and enjoy your evening in, and even have friends round for dinner.
Apartments can offer better value for money, especially for more than two people travelling together, and even for couples who want some true privacy and a home from home. For families it no longer means booking multiple rooms and worrying about your children not being in the same room as you or sitting in silence at night when they are.
It's the freedom, privacy, flexibility and space that make these short-term rentals so appealing. You can shop at the local store and cook your own meals in your own kitchen. You can have friends round to visit and don't have to get up, or come home, at 'hotel hours'.
Value for Money
Don't think that this type of holiday accommodation will mean you will have to sacrifice a love of luxury hotels as there are many luxury apartments available yet you'll pay a much lower price than at a 4 or 5 star hotel. The current average cost for a two-bedroom apartment is just £105 per night across HouseTrip's entire portfolio of properties.
The team at HouseTrip is "determined to revolutionize the industry and make travelers realize there is a simple and safe alternative when they are looking for a value and experience-packed holiday."