10 Fun Alternatives to Staying in Yet Another Hotel When Traveling

Written by Georgie Mellow

Summer is probably the most rewarding season in terms of traveling – all you need to do is book your tickets and accommodations, and then you can pack and set off! And if you are in the middle of planning your next vacation, you might want to consider looking for a more exciting and fun alternative to staying in a hotel room this time around as well.

Indeed, hotels are convenient and comfortable, but they eliminate the possibility of immersing yourself in local life while traveling. In this article, you will find 10 alternatives to staying in a hotel, including Couchsurfing, camping, apartment rental, house sitting, academic housing, unique hostels, and many more. Read on and choose what suits you best!

1. Camping


Camping is one of the most affordable and adventurous ways to travel worldwide without spending too much money. You can do it either in organized tents with electricity, while staying next to a lake or in the middle of the forest, or even just sleeping under the stars on the beach. This way, you can save money for other things and still experience amazing destinations on a budget.

For an even more independent trip, you can buy or rent an RV. According to RVing experts from, the popularity of this type of traveling has been growing for the past several years and is only expected to grow further. Maybe it’s worth checking out what the buzz is all about?

2. Couchsurfing

The idea of staying with a local and sharing the city’s hidden gems with them sounds like a fantastic travel experience. And you have probably heard about Couchsurfing – it is a network of millions of people all over the world offering their couches and spare rooms to traveling strangers. It is a great way to not only stay in places that you would never be able to afford but also meet new people that will make your travel unforgettable!

3. Apartment Rentals


Another affordable alternative to hotels is renting an apartment for your trip. This allows you to live like a local while exploring different neighborhoods and enjoying various amenities of the particular area. Apartments might be a bit expensive, but they are definitely worth it if you stay longer in one place – especially if you are traveling with a group of friends or with your family!

4. House Sitting

This alternative to hotels is very similar to apartment rentals, except that you are not renting an apartment but a whole house at once! This means that you will get to experience living like a local in one specific place for a longer period of time than you would in an apartment. Not only does this give you ample time to explore the neighborhood, but you can also get to know your neighbors better and perhaps even make some friends for life! The best part is that you don’t even have to pay for accommodation if you become a house sitter – many homeowners are happy to let their homes while they are away – you just have to promise to take care of the place, feed pets, and water plants.

5. Boathouses


Boathouses can be a good alternative if you want to mix camping with the convenience of having a roof over your head. However, it might seem quite challenging at first because booking a boathouse might require some previous preparation and skills in terms of boat handling. If you are up for an adventure, boathouses could be just the thing for you!

6. Academic Housing

If you are attending university or college while visiting a new city, why not look for academic housing? Some universities offer discounts for short-term accommodation if you book several months in advance; others might even let you stay for free. Just think how much money you can save on your travels by avoiding hotels and looking for academic housing instead.

7. Unique Hostels


Unique hostels are another popular alternative to regular hotels. Most of these are designed to bring together people from all over the world, thanks to exceptional design and features. They usually offer memorable experiences and services and social events that allow people from different countries and lifestyles to interact with each other and share their stories. Unique hostels can be found virtually everywhere, so if you want to experience something special while traveling, try one of these hostels for yourself!

8. Homestays

Homestays are yet another alternative to hotels that will allow you to live like a local and get to know the city better. It might take a bit longer to find a good homestay (performing some household chores might be required as well), but it will be worth it in the end! Most homestays are also very affordable so that you can save on your trip or further traveling. Who knows, maybe you will make some new friends or even find your future spouse?

9. Crash Pads


Crash pads are very similar to homestays – the only difference is that you will be sleeping at someone’s home instead of renting your own room. It might seem like a great alternative to hotels if you don’t want to spend a lot of money, but think about what you are really getting: you will be staying in someone’s home, which means that you will have to follow their rules and feel like a guest in their place. If you are the kind of person who doesn’t mind staying with a local family, this alternative could be interesting for you!

10. Unique Airbnbs

Airbnb is a website where people worldwide rent out their apartments, houses, rooms, couches, etc., to other people. This is a great way to save money on your travels and have a unique experience in different cities and countries, not to mention the comfort and independence of having your own place. However, it also means that you will have to book everything in advance and pay for the accommodation upfront. If this is something you’re ok with, Airbnb is probably one of the best ways to go!


If you are planning your next trip and want to avoid the hassle of booking a hotel, then any of these alternatives will make your travel more fun and even more affordable in some cases. Of course, choosing one of all of the above options will depend on your personal preferences and budget. So, if you are still unsure what to do with your next vacation, try to think out of the box and come up with some alternative ideas!


Georgie Mellow


  +  12  =  22