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If you are interested in alternatives to staying in hotel rooms, here are some options to try. The sites list private accommodation for rent. You pay less than hotels and can get an entire apartment or home to yourself. I have used both with the following advantages:

• Savings
• Comfort
• Privacy
• Kitchens for home cooking

I have rented a studio in Paris, apartments in Barcelona and Venice and a yacht in Yaletown’s Quayside Marina in Vancouver (that was fun!). There are many sites to choose from but here are two that I have used.

Vacation Rental By Owner (VRBO) –
FlipKey by Trip Advisor –

Another interesting alternative for renting local accommodations on a budget is Airbnb. This site lists B&B accommodation. My daughter and I tried this out in Verona, Italy and had an excellent experience.

Airbnb –

I highly recommend it. Give it a try!


If you arrange private accommodation as opposed to through a hotel or B&B, make sure you, and your travel companions, have the renter’s contact information with you at all times. (It seems pretty obvious now). We rented a studio apartment in Paris through VRBO. The very first day we lost the key to enter the building. I had left virtually all the contact information in the apartment and there’s no doorman to let you in! Fortunately, I had a little notebook with me that had a contact number. It took several anxious hours but we did eventually get back into the apartment. Not exactly how we had intended to spend our daughter’s 21st birthday.