Health Risks of Staying in a Stranger's Home

November 18, 2014 12:28 PM

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Health Risks of Staying in a Stranger's Home

Holiday travel season is almost here, and this year more people than ever could opt for nontraditional lodging once they reach their destination—renting rooms, apartments, or entire houses on home-sharing websites like Airbnb, HomeAway, and VRBO. (Airbnb had 1 million guests in the last two months of 2013 alone, TechCrunch reports.) But is staying in a stranger’s house, or even in a family member’s guest room for that matter, as clean and safe as staying in a hotel?

Hosts who register with these sites are given hospitality standards and responsible hosting guidelines to follow, and user reviews can alert guests to potential dangerous or unsanitary situations before they book. Airbnb, the largest vacation-rental website, also recommends that hosts keep a first-a...

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