A few days ago, I left Barcelona and flew halfway across the world for Startup Abroad in Bali — fresh off completing my first stay with a AirBnB host family. It was my 3rd AirBnB  booking, and it blew the other two out of the water.

Let me tell you why.

I biked home from the bar one night. Granted, drunk bicycling isn’t the best idea ever (I wasn’t really that drunk) – but it was still awesome to ride through the streets of Barcelona and see the city from a different, slightly faster, perspective. I didn’t fall.

I went out for drinks with Phil at a few local spots, and had some unbelievable conversations.

I had a 5 month old puppy to play with for 5 days.

I learned a great deal about a family with a inspiring story to tell.

I got a better understanding what raising kids is all about.

I had the chance to help a very deserving family with their own online business (ourbnb.com).

I built [what I think is] a fantastic relationship with an amazing family that I know I’ll see again somewhere in the world (likely in Barcelona, but it could be anywhere).

All because I stayed with a local family rather than renting with a regular host or staying in a hostel. Life has a way of bringing amazing people into your life if you have the right mindset, and Phil, Fiona and their family certainly fit into that bucket for me.

phil and fiona

Will every AirBnB host family be as accommodating as Phil and Fiona?

Not likely.

Will the vast majority of them be better than individual hosts, hostels, and hotels?


And that’s a good enough reason for me.

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