AIRBNB COMPARISON: HK vs Seoul vs Tokyo #solotravelinasia
Date: April 9th, 2019
While visiting Hong Kong, Seoul, and Tokyo, I used Airbnb to find and book accommodation. The main differences I noticed while finding accommodation in the three locations was space and cost.
- Hong Kong: Since the central areas of the island and mainland is heavily populated, there is limited space, and accommodation is very expensive. The architecture style is to build upwards, in order to maximize space and create more housing options. As a result there are a lot of Apartments, sky scrapers, etc. However the space within the buildings are small and very expensive. The housing situation albeit differences, reminds me of New York City, where there is limited space and real estate costs are insane. In my experience finding an Airbnb in HK I was fortunate to find a centrally located room in an apartment on HK island (Wan Chai), at an affordable price. The Airbnb was put up by a Scottish woman who had been working as a teacher in HK for 4 years. The apartment was a two bedroom walkup, with a living room, and very small bathroom and kitchen, which is the norm. It was clean, comfortable, and I felt at home. When comparing Airbnb spaces in HK vs Seoul vs Tokyo, HK had limited space.
- Seoul: Finding Airbnb’s in Seoul was the easiest. There is more space within the city and it is affordable! My Airbnb host was a Korean woman from Busan who moved to Seoul for work. The apartment was a three bedroom two bathroom walkup, with a huge living room, dining, kitchen, and balcony area. The apartment was located in a great area close to Itaewon and in close proximity to public transportation. My total stay for 6 days costs less than my Airbnb for 3 days in Hong Kong (JUST IMAGINE THAT). Overall when comparing Seoul vs HK vs Tokyo, there were more spacious apartments spread over the city in Seoul vs HK and Tokyo.
- Tokyo: In my experience, finding an Airbnb in Tokyo was the most difficult. The Airbnbs were expensive, particularly in more sought out and central locations, which is especially crucial because Tokyo is LARGE. Similarly to major cities like Hk and NYC, there is a limited amount of land in central Tokyo, which has to satisfy a large working and visiting population. My Airbnb was a self contained studio with its own kitchen and bathroom, located in the Chuo area. The former Fish market used to be in Chuo and the area is walking distance to Ginza. I truly enjoyed my stay in the Guest House and would stay there again however the cost of staying there for a week, was the cost of my accommodation in Seoul and HK combined (JUST IMAGINE THAT AGH).
- Hong Kong: When comparing HK, Seoul, and Tokyo, in my experience accommodation in Hong Kong was more expensive than Seoul but a little less expensive than Tokyo. Furthermore, in HK as opposed to Tokyo, there are more affordable Airbnb’s in centrally located areas, such as in Kowloon.
- Seoul: When comparing Seoul, HK, and Tokyo, in my experience accommodation in Seoul was the most affordable.
- Tokyo: Of all the three, when comparing Tokyo, Seoul, and HK, in my experience accommodation in Tokyo was the most expensive.