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Tech Minute: Best Web sites for alternative lodgingIf you're visiting friends and family this holiday season, the idea of sleeping on an air mattress or bunking with your teenage cousin probably sounds about as appealing as an overcooked turkey. In this Tech Minute, CNET's Kara Tsuboi reports on...
Airbnb.com gives you alternatives to hotel room and thousands of cities and locales around the world people like you and me can lease their apartment, house, or castle for rent. Begin producing the site by entering your destination, travel dates, and number of guests. Couchsurfing.com works in a similar manner where locals open their homes to guests, but through this site, you're encouraged to not just rest your bones, but make new friends. The lodging probably won't be fancy, but it comes with an insider's perspective on a city and a price tag that can't be beat free. Finally, VRBO.com or vacation rentals by owner won't necessarily bring you great deals, but rather incredible rental properties and vacation destinations. This is a site to check out if you're looking to book a spectacular home for a large group. Of course, make sure you properly vet the host when you book your trip and read any safety precautions and insurance details on the website. In San Francisco, I'm Kara Tsuboi, cnet.com for CBS News.