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Airbnb is currently offering a promo where, when you sign up for a new account and make your first booking before January 17 for travel between now and March 31, 2014, you get one night of a rental of two or more nights free up to $300 value. When booking, use the promo code ONENIGHT.
Per the terms and conditions: The discount is valid only for guests who have never completed a booking on Airbnb. To receive the discount, you must book via the Airbnb website with promo code ONENIGHT and successfully complete Airbnb’s Verified ID process prior to booking. You must complete a booking (including host acceptance) using the code between 12:00am PST (California time) on January 13 and 11:59pm PST (California time) on January 17. The discount applies to one night of your stay up to a maximum of USD$300. The cost of “one night” is calculated by averaging the base reservation rate for each night, excluding taxes or other fees charged by your host, such as cleaning fees. Your stay must be at least two nights in length at the same listing, and must begin no later than 11:59pm PST (California time) on March 31, 2014. Limit one discount per new user. The offer is valid for a single use and is not transferrable to another user or redeemable for cash. If your booking later qualifies for a refund, the maximum refund you may receive is the amount you actually paid. The code cannot be used for bookings made through Airbnb’s mobile apps. The code may not be combined with another Airbnb coupon or discount code. Host payouts will not be affected by permissible guest use of the code. Airbnb reserves the right to any remedy, including denial of the discount or cancellation of your account or reservations, if fraud, tampering, violations of Airbnb’s Terms of Service or technical errors are suspected.
To use your promo code, select the property you want, then when your subtotal is added up, enter the code in the box that says COUPON CODE and click apply and your new subtotal should display.
Though I obviously focus mostly on hotel points programs when it comes to booking stays, Airbnb is a very useful site – especially because there are hundreds of thousands of listings all over the world in everything from shared rooms up to mansions in places where there might not be points hotels available. Or if you are traveling with a group, it can be more economical to rent a larger property that can accommodate you all rather than getting a ton of hotel rooms for several nights.
The payment method is secure and the site has a system of guarantees and insurance in place so both renters and landlords are protected. There is also a social community aspect to the site where users can rate each other and their stay experiences, which helps keep everyone honest.
You can pay for your Airbnb rental with a credit card, so you can earn points and miles as you usually would, but even better, Chase classifies Airbnb as a “Travel” merchant so you get 2.14X points per $1 when using your Sapphire Preferred card to pay. The Barclaycard Arrival also codes Airbnb as a “Travel” merchant, so not only do you earn 2X miles per $1 on your spending, even with the no-fee version of the card. It also means you can redeem your Arrival miles for the purchase as a statement credit at a rate of 1 cent per mile and get the 10% mileage refund for travel redemptions. So, if you were to use either version of the Arrival to pay for your Airbnb stay, you’d earn 2X miles. Then if you redeemed Arrival miles for the purchase, you’d basically be getting 2.2% cash back based on the fact that it’s a travel merchant – not a bad return on your spending.Obviously the way to maximize this promo is to book a two-night stay so that you are getting 50% off, or to book a property you were going to anyway that gets close to the $300 nightly rate so that free night maxes out the discount cap. If any of you take advantage of the promo, share your experiences in the comments below.
For more information, check out my post on Maximizing Points and Miles on Vacation Rentals with Airbnb and VRBO.