I’m a daydreamer, and my favorite daydreams always include traveling. When I lived in a town with a bookstore, I loved to spend a rainy afternoon there with a guidebook. I’d pick a random place, like Fiji or South Korea, and research what transportation I’d take from the airport. Then I’d examine the hostels and pick one within my budget that was centrally located. After spending a couple of hours with the guidebook, I’d go home and look up photos of the destinations on the internet. Finally, I’d research flights, picking when I thought was the best time to go. When I was finished I loved thinking, “Today I went to South Korea.” It was always satisfying and stimulating to daydream a possible trip.
Now that I don’t live in a town with a bookstore, I’ve satisfied my daydreams by doing all my planning online. In the process, I’ve discovered that Craigslist.org is an excellent location for finding possible accommodation. Almost every country is represented, but Europe has the most representation outside the U.S. Check out some of my findings today: There’s this apartment in Paris. Also this one in Florence. In Tuscany there’s this farmhouse. And these examples are just a small sampling of what you can find on Craigslist. I’ve already got a fake surprise weekend in Provence planned for me and my husband.
So what exactly is Craigslist.org? It’s a free (except for job postings in 7 U.S. cities) online text-based classified forum, started by a San Franciscan (named Craig!). Users self-publish and self-regulate, which means that improper posts or known scams can be “flagged” for removal. This community moderation ought to add some security to anyone booking vacation lodging online, but it seems as though there’s probably a risk of misrepresentation at the least and outright theft at the worst.
I haven’t used Craigslist to book accommodation. But I’m curious, so I’ll put it out to you readers: has anyone booked vacation rentals through Craigslist? What was your experience? Post a comment and let us know!