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Airbnb rentals are a great alternative to hotels both in terms of offerings and location but the convenience of using the site can often make it a pricey option. For both hosts and renters, there are advantages to making accommodation arrangements outside of the site. Using a simple reverse image search you can find the same rental if it’s listed on other local sites to avoid the “tourist” tax to save on your next stay.

How To Use Reverse Image Search

There are a few variations of this depending on the browser (below is the process for Firefox) you’re using but essentially you begin a regular Airbnb search. Once you’ve found a place or two that’s to your liking, click one of the photos posted with the listing. Right click the image, select “View Background Image”. Then, right click the image that appears, choose “Copy image location” and paste it either into TinEye or

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copy image location

You’ll see anywhere else those photos are posted online, which is a good way to find local listing directories, as well as gauge what rental rates might be if you went directly to the host. Many hosts will be open to negotiating rates since they can avoid Airbnb fees and pocket more money, but be aware you’ll both be forgoing Airbnb’s protections for both parties.

More Ratings To Rely On

Aside from potentially finding you lower rates on rentals, particularly in places where Airbnb isn’t as popular, a reverse image search can also uncover ratings for an apartment or house on other listing sites. Some listings on Airbnb look too good to be true or simply don’t have enough ratings for you to make a confident decision. A reverse image search can easily lead you to other sites where the same apartment or home is being offered for short-term rent so you can hopefully find out more about it.

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Although most of us have had overall good experiences with Airbnb, a reverse image search can alert you to shady listings, especially if the photos on Airbnb aren’t of the actual place. I keep an active list of all the hotels and hostels I’ve stayed at to help you out and several of you have shared your favorite Airbnb rentals. It’s probably not worth going through the trouble before every rental but for those hosts with few or no reviews on newer listings, a reverse image search can help you decide if you want to book or keep looking.