Saturday, March 22, 2014

Recommending Air BnB, I used it in Belfast

While in Belfast last month, I stayed at the Europa Hotel. When the taxi driver was dropping off my boss Ehi and I at the hotel from the airport, he said "this hotel is the second most-bombed in the whole world". It didn't look it. The hotel was a little expensive though and I was going to have to cough up a little extra to stay there 3 nights. So I decided that after the 2nd night, I'd check out and find a cheaper place to stay. Enter +Airbnb aka Air Bed & Breakfast. I went to airbnb.com and started looking for a place for a night in Belfast. Knew friends who'd used the service, nothing to be scared off. It would give me a story to tell anyway :-)
Okay, this scared me. I knew I had to pay for the accommodation, thank you GT Bank Visa Card. But I didn't think that I would have to verify my identity after giving out the money. What if that went wrong?
Because Air BnB is such an excellent service, they tweeted back at me when I finally verified my account and confirmed my booking. This was tres cool. I had to let them (and the whole world) know.
Was excited to stay with a complete stranger for 26 pounds sterling that night. My friend & +GhanaThink Foundation colleague +Kafui Anson-Yevu hosts various people in Accra and I was able to convince +Irene Nyavor to try the service out next time.
My host, Mary, had many great reviews on Air BnB from people she's hosted. I like how she slowed down while talking to me because the Irish accent can be tough to grasp. When I had dinner with Ehi and 2 Intel employees on that Wednesday, I couldn't hear half of what our waitress said. In fact, Ehi and I thought her accent was so cool, we made her speak for like a minute so I could record what she was saying.
Turns out Mary was hosting 2 other guys that night. I only found out when I had to rush to the airport. I enjoyed using AirBnB. +Ericka Engel can also testify, she used it in Croatia. Can't imagine when I would go to Croatia but if I do go to a place like Belfast where I don't know anyone and am alone, I'd very likely use AirBnB again.

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