ABCs of choosing a Hotel

Everybody who has faced the need to choose a hotel online knows that this task is not as easy as it seems to be at first sight. There are hundreds or even thousands of accommodation options, but how to pick the one that will meet all your needs and expectations? The cost of mistake is high — frustration and disappointment of sleeping in a place that isn’t what you wanted may spoil the whole holiday. So, to avoid unpleasant surprises and to pick the best hotel for your trip, read the tips below.

Decide what is the most important to you.

If you don’t know what you want from a hotel, how can you ever hope to pick the right one? Before searching for accommodations, make a quick list of the things that you require for a good night’s stay. Is it a free breakfast? Do you feel more comfortable in a smaller, intimate property with staff that will learn your name? Are you willing to splurge on something luxe? Do you like old-fashioned decor, business-like rooms, or over-the-top interior design? To break it down simply, first think about what you want in terms of price, basic amenities of the hotel, and location. Once you have a good grasp on what you’re looking for, will offer you some options that will correspond to your wishes.

Check the amenities

There are four amenities you should be sure a hotel offers before you arrive as these are the most often cited complaints on review sites. They are air-conditioning, parking, Wi-Fi, and breakfast. You should always check to see if there are any costs associated with these amenities. You don’t want to arrive at the hotel assuming Wi-Fi would be free, only to find that it costs a fee (yes, there are still many places that charge for this basic amenity).

Check the hotel’s website

While our reviews are comprehensive, sometimes it takes us a little time to update them when hotels change policies, add amenities like a new restaurant or a spa, or undergo a renovation. It’s a good idea to double-check a hotel’s own website. Calling a hotel directly doesn’t hurt, either.

Look at a map to determine a hotel’s exact location

Travelling is all about location, location, location, and if you don’t know where your hotel is in relation to where you want to be in the city, you aren’t going to be happy when you arrive. You probably shouldn’t trust the hotel’s own description of their location. They often say things like “The Louvre and the Eiffel Tower are easy to reach from our hotel.” Many people assume this means they can walk to the attraction, but what the hotel might be saying is that you can “easily” walk to a metro stop 15 minutes away, then “easily” take a 20-minute metro ride to a station near these attractions. Before booking a hotel, check a map to determine the location of the hotel. Be sure to see how long it would take you to reach attractions, dining options, shopping, and other points of interest on foot.

Find out when both the rooms and public spaces were last updated

Travellers often put their trust in hotels to provide them with a clean, modern stay, and too often, that’s not the case. Before booking a hotel, find out when the whole property was last updated. Remember, hotel’s photos can lie. If the hotel has updated or renovated their spaces within the last four years, you can usually expect clean, well-maintained decor. No one wants to see grime in the showers or peeling wallpaper! Between four and six years is when things start to look dated and any more than six years—well, you might not be satisfied. Don’t just focus on the decor when it comes to asking when the hotel was updated. You also want to know things like when the mattresses were replaced, so you don’t end up sleeping on a saggy, spring-riddled bed.

Focus on guest reviews published within the last year

If you decide to read guest reviews, interpreting the rating can be tricky. Some hotels were fantastic five years ago in terms of management, decor, and amenities, and therefore may have received an overwhelming number of positive reviews. However, a lot can happen in five years, like a change in owners, dating decor, or the hiring of new staff. Therefore, those positive reviews from five years ago might interfere with the negative reviews from the present. So, when researching, be sure to focus on reading the reviews from within the last year. This will generally provide you with a good sense of what you can expect during your stay.

Read the “Terrible” and “Poor” reviews

This might be the best tip for anyone looking to book a hotel room, as you will find the hotel’s underbelly. Read through the ones within the last year and you’ll start noticing a pattern of issues. It may be Wi-Fi connectivity issues, cleanliness problems, or booking complaints, whatever the case may be, notice the trend and consider if those major issues would be a problem for you. For instance, no air-conditioning in a hotel isn’t necessarily a problem for all guests, especially if they are travelling to London in December when it isn’t needed.

Find out the hotel’s main client

Couples, business travellers, families, solo travellers, backpackers, adults in their 20s, groups of friends, and budget travellers are all drawn to different types of hotels. Before booking a hotel, find out what kind of traveler tends to visit that hotel. If you want a quiet getaway, but you discover a hotel is popular with families with small children or groups of friends, you might want to look elsewhere. We hope these tips will help you avoid some common mistakes and pick the best accommodation. By the way, if you want to be sure about the high quality of the venue, pay attention to selected hotels in your destination city. Choose an appropriate option and Have a nice trip!

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