Most people that travel at this point probably heard about airbnb.com but if you have not, it is basically the best thing that has come to travelers since the internet and Google maps. When I first left Canada and went to Miami for 3 weeks, I was very homesick living in youth hostels, I never thought long term traveling was for me, I can’t live with minimal privacy in the same location for long and having “my stuff” to cook with so I can avoid constant processed food or overpriced restaurant meals. That is, until I discovered airbnb the year after in 2012 and I have now been traveling for 2 years from Ukraine and most of Europe) to currently living in Thailand with an apartment found on airbnb. Before airbnb, you either had to book overpriced hotels in advance and then, if you enjoyed the country, had to look around for an apartment you like and a lease term you can work with.
Nowadays, before even going to a country I know exactly which apartment I will book and usually either for one week or one month. I went from huge apartments in Hungary to smaller more intimate places in Bangkok that are located exactly where I want them to be (in the center of the city) with the ammenities I want (kitchen and high speed wifi).
Here are a few pointers I keep in mind to negotiate apartments and to not lose too much time before going to a city.
1) Locate public transportation stations and/or the city center
I tend to look for popular bars and clubs since I know I will want to go out and I do not like taxis.
2) Open a tab with all the apartments near the location you want + amenities in the price range you want.
I open a tab with all apartments that have a kitchen+ Wifi (my personal preference, I like to have the option of cooking so I can control the food going into me …)
3) Find the prices to negotiate a 1 week or 1 month rental as your budget. then copy paste it to everyone.
I go for negotiating one month with a template like this: