Study Reveals the Most Expensive Locations for Pet-Friendly Airbnbs

by Britt
Photo credit: Masarik /

Are you considering taking a trip to a dream destination in the United States with your best friend by your side? If so, you’re not alone! A growing number of animal lovers are taking steps to include the whole family in their travel plans, with Airbnb reporting that close to 50% of nights booked include pets. But have you ever stopped to consider how much your furry family member is increasing the budget?

The team at MarketWatch recently released a guide to pet-friendly Airbnb travel in the US with some startling stats.

Data was compiled about the cost of renting 11, 676 Airbnbs and 11,753 pet-friendly Airbnbs located in 46 of the most popular tourist destinations in the United States. By comparing the average nightly cost for pet-friendly and pet-free locations, they determined the price premium or the added cost pet parents must pay to include their furry friends.

While we’re not suggesting that the cost of accommodations should be the sole deciding factor for your next vacation, this could impact your top choices.

According to the guide, the most expensive city is Honolulu, Hawaii, with an average night stay costing $511. This is also the destination where pet parents will face the highest price premium for booking a pet-friendly location at $345.50.

If you’re an avid traveler, this likely comes as no surprise. Hawaii is one of the country's more popular destinations for luxury travel. Not only is the cost of living in the state one of the highest, but the state also charges a Transient Accommodations Tax (TAT), further increasing costs.

Of the 10 most expensive tourist destinations to book a pet-friendly Airbnb, 7 were in California. In addition to Honolulu, the list includes:

  • Monterey, CA ($509)
  • Sonoma, CA ($488)
  • Napa Valley ($380)
  • Santa Cruz, CA ($339)
  • Palm Springs, CA ($329)
  • Boston, MA ($238)
  • Los Angeles, CA ($226)
  • San Francisco, CA ($226)
  • Yellowstone National Park, WY ($219)

Don’t let these costs keep you from planning your next big pet-friendly getaway. Not only did they compile a list of the most expensive destinations, but they also identified the least expensive nightly rates in the US. This list is a great way to travel with your pet without worrying about your budget.

They discovered that the least expensive city to book a pet-friendly Airbnb is Oklahoma City, OK, where the average nightly rate is only $110. Other locations that made this list include:

  • St. Louis, MO ($111)
  • Cleveland, OH ($114)
  • Columbus, OH ($117)
  • Houston, TX ($119)
  • Salt Lake City, UT ($119)
  • Detroit, MI ($124)
  • Memphis, TN ($125)
  • Indianapolis, IN ($129)
  • San Antonio, TX ($130)

Booking a lower-cost Airbnb is only one of many ways to keep the costs down when traveling with your pet. Pack all your pet’s travel essentials before your trip, including a leash, food/water dishes, grooming supplies, plastic waste bags, and a first aid kit. If you are driving to your destination, you can also pack your pet’s food to avoid shopping for it once you arrive. You can gather these items by shopping local sales rather than paying a premium to get what you need on short notice.

Pet Insurance is another great budget-friendly travel tip. This may seem counterproductive, adding the monthly cost of your pet’s policy to your budget. But if disaster strikes, the insurance policy can help to significantly reduce emergency vet bills.

Whatever your budget, we encourage all pet parents to get out and explore, making memories with their pets by their side. You won’t regret it!

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Britt Kascjak is a proud pet mom, sharing her heart (and her home) with her “pack” which includes her husband John, their 2 dogs – Indiana and Lucifer – and their 2 cats – Pippen and Jinx. She has been active in the animal rescue community for over 15 years, volunteering, fostering and advocating for organizations across Canada and the US. In her free time, she enjoys traveling around the country camping, hiking, and canoeing with her pets.

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