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Can any of you Sydney MNetters help me, please?!

(18 Posts)
BIWI Mon 20-Jul-15 21:57:34

We're coming to Sydney for Christmas/New Year, to visit family. Flights are booked.

There's no room for us to stay with the family, so we're looking to book something for three of us (me and DH, and BIL) near the family (Balmain and Lilyfield).

However, everywhere I've tried on Airbnb has been unsuccessful. We've been declined by one property owner (who owns several rental properties, and who claims that none of his properties are available for our period), we've been asked by one to wait until nearer the time, because she's not sure how much she wants to charge, or if it's going to be available, and the one we thought we had secured has been withdrawn from the market because the owner now has family visiting.

There are others in the area, but they are really expensive for the length of time we're staying.

I found a website that deals in short term rentals, and found the first property that we had been declined for on Airbnb being advertised there, so tried again - it's a really good property and very handy for both Balmain and Lilyfield. However, we've also been turned down by them, on the basis that the people currently renting those apartments are given first option to extend their bookings, and/or that it's too early in the year to commit to a rental.

I want to get somewhere booked so that we don't have to worry about it, but I'm not really sure what else to try. So thought I'd ask those of you who live in Sydney your advice!

Many thanks in anticipation if you can help point me in the right direction.

BIWI Tue 21-Jul-15 13:37:32

<sad bump>

MrsDe Wed 22-Jul-15 04:04:09

How frustrating, no advice other than suggesting a hotel or hotel but suspect that's not what you want? I would continue to look for short term rental companies.

SunflowerSmile Wed 22-Jul-15 04:08:19

Might be worth trying the website

I am not sure about Sydney specifically sorry but have booked holiday rentals through that site before in Australia

Smidge001 Wed 22-Jul-15 04:24:06

I'm based in Sydney and I'd second the Stayz website. It's the main place I'd every use to look for accommodation when we go away for the weekend.

Just a warning though, it's not likely to be cheap at that time of year. Sydney also has serviced apartments which might be an option. Depends how long you are staying for.

There's a great ferry service to Balmain, and buses too, so you might not need to restrict yourself to that particular location. If you want to look at travel options within sydney, I depend on an App called "TripView". They do a 'lite' version that is free, and it is superb for selecting routes on trains/buses/ferries. The only difference between the free app and the paid for version is that you can't save trips and have to look them up each time.

ThumbWitchesAbroad Wed 22-Jul-15 04:28:12

How long are you coming for, BIWI?
I can't help with the accommodation situation as I've never had to deal with that; I've only stayed in YHA places or with friends.

LadyCassandra Wed 22-Jul-15 04:36:15

There is a FB group called Grand Pair Rents which was set up about a year ago for expats in Sydney and their visiting family. We are heading back to the UK this weekend and have rented our place in Manly to a couple visiting their son and newborn grandson. It means we cover our rent while we're away and they get to stay somewhere cheaper. It works like Air BnB, but you do it privately.
Would also recommend Stayz and also maybe try Gumtree.

LizzieBK Wed 22-Jul-15 05:02:55

Agree with Smidge you might be better off staying in the CBD and getting a bus/ ferry/ light rail to Balmain/ Lilyfield as it's a quick journey, aslittle as 15 mins depending on exactly where your family are. There are lots of serviced apartments in the CBD and you'll also be able to sight-see more easily. Some brands to try are Meriton, Adina, Quest, Mantra, Breakfree. Good luck

BIWI Wed 22-Jul-15 07:54:09

I've tried Stayz as well, and have had no luck there either.

I'd rather not stay in a hotel - but most hotels seem to be fully booked anyway - particularly, I'm guessing, as we're there over NYE.

The aparthotels were one of my first searches - and they are horrifically expensive - again, the NYE factor. Although we're prepared to spend a reasonable amount of money, having shelled out loads for our flights (because I couldn't persuade DH to book earlier - that's another story!), I'm trying not to go overboard on accommodation costs.

We're there from 21/12 till 8/1, Thumb.

Thanks LacyCassandra - I'll try there.

And I think you're all right in your suggestion to try the CBD. I'd hoped we'd be able to find somewhere we could walk to our family, but that looks out of the question now.

Thank you all.

ThumbWitchesAbroad Wed 22-Jul-15 08:01:08

When my best friend came out to Australia over Christmas and New Year, she was visiting a friend in Sydney, us (1.5h north of Sydney) and family somewhere up near Coffs Harbour. She came with her husband and son, and I think they spent a few nights in Sydney - but not as many as you, obviously - and managed to snag a family room in a YH. Would that be something you would consider? Might not work as it's your BIL, not son, but it could be an option to look at?

BIWI Wed 22-Jul-15 10:07:54

Will check it out.

We've been offered the use of someone's home, as they need a cat sitter - which is fine by us! But it's not especially close to the family nor the city centre. Nevertheless, it's a really good option whilst I continue to check out any other options.

I think a large part of the problem is going to be budget - because it's Christmas/NYE a lot of places really ramp up their 'per night' fee, making it very expensive. And although I would be prepared to pay more, I have to really argue the toss with DH about it. (Again, another story ... hmm)

ThumbWitchesAbroad Wed 22-Jul-15 10:53:38

Oo wow, take the cat-sitting job! Where is it? Do you get their car as well?

bunnygirl80 Wed 22-Jul-15 11:22:20

My pil come over every Xmas and have this exact problem (and we were living in Lilyfield until very recently so I imagine they looked in similar areas) but they've never been homeless yet. They usually end up in a serviced apartment in Darling Harbour, which is only 20 mins by ferry or bus to Balmain/Lilyfield.

I'm on a couple of local fb groups for the area, and people often have houses/apartments in need of house sitters over Xmas. If you're desperate pm me and I can ask on there for you, or point you in the direction of how to join

regisitme Wed 22-Jul-15 11:32:37

I would go for the cat sitting - Sydney NYE is madness. There was a thread a couple of months ago and we managed to get the OP into the last YHA place in the city for NYE. Everything books up very early and it's all really expensive, as you've noticed.

If you want to keep checking your options, will show you all of the hotels available during that time along with their prices and sometimes have holiday lets in their rental section. I also second

Good Luck! Fabulous trip for New Year and you will find somewhere - the further you move away from the CBD/water the easier (and cheaper) it will be.

BIWI Wed 22-Jul-15 13:39:39

Ooh thanks - more options to check out grin

BIWI Thu 23-Jul-15 07:21:51

Keep everything crossed - looks like I've found somewhere ... grin

ThumbWitchesAbroad Thu 23-Jul-15 12:50:53

Excellent! hope it works out for you smile

BIWI Thu 23-Jul-15 14:51:05

Woo hoo! Booked and paid for. Lovely apartment in Balmain, so I'm dead chuffed.

Found it through Stayz in the end.

Thanks all!

Can get excited about the trip now grin

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