Finding the right location for your travelling needs can be tricky on your own. Using the experience and backing of a dedicated, responsible site can make your decision less stressful, and the result much more satisfying. Here are 6 top tips to consider when choosing your travel accommodation:
1. Convenience and Location
Consider how long you will be traveling abroad, as well as the timing of your flights and connections. Some locations sound fantastic, but can be a nightmare to reach because of late-night arrival times or even isolation from public transport stations. If you plan to stay in a place very far from main towns and cities, make sure that you also have primary and backup transport plans for whatever time you touch down at the airport.
The time of year that you choose to travel will likely affect both accommodation pricing and your experience once you arrive. Every destination will have ‘peak’ seasons, where certain combinations of weather, available activities, or special events draw the greatest number of visitors per year. For example, the world-renowned adventure capital of Queenstown – a town in the South Island of New Zealand – experiences peak visitor numbers during both the winter ski season and for the three months after Christmas – where people flock from nationwide around the world to enjoy Queenstown’s natural beauty.
It’s good to be aware of several factors that may affect your budget during peak season, including increased pricing for places to stay, as well as potential noise and crowding issues from thousands of enthusiastic tourists. You may be excited to book a four-star hotel with a huge indoor swimming pool, but consider whether you will be keen to share the pool with dozens of other travellers and families.
Conversely, traveling during ‘lean’ travel periods can help you skip the crowds and catch some great, cheap deals – especially if you book in advance.
3. Travel Purpose
Define what the accommodation needs to provide. If you are travelling for a holiday, decide which amenities (cooking facilities, WiFi, TV, etc) you will need and which you are willing to go without.
If you are combining a business conference with the opportunity for participants to also enjoy some leisure time, ensure that the location has all the facilities you need for each front. For events and meetings, give your guests a memorable experience with accessible, unique venues. Look for a charming, professional conference centre that can comfortably house all your guests.
4. Type of Accommodation
Whether you are looking for a campsite to pitch your tent, a camper van to rent, or a unique beach rental, you’ll be able to choose from plenty of options. Some people prefer hostels, for their affordability and their sense of community. Others are looking for home exchanges where you can have the chance to live like a local. Some people prefer a traditional bed and breakfast, small family run hotels, or self-catering cottages – while others look for a five-star, all-expenses-included hotel.
All of these options and more can be found with an internet search. However, not all accommodation on the web is exactly as it seems. Take care not to fall prey to unscrupulous sites that charge hidden service fees or falsely portray their properties with old photographs. When you have found an accommodation offer that sounds great, make sure you spend some time perusing customer reviews, including the most negative ones, on sites like TripAdvisor to learn what previous visitors have thought of the place. Also, if you can, also check for details about when the accommodation was last renovated. Whether you are a single traveller, holidaying with friends, or bringing a family, use filters on review sites to find feedback from people from a similar demographic.
In conclusion, planning the accommodation for your trip is very important, but does not have to be difficult. One tip is to look for hotels and other accommodation that have free cancellation, especially if you’re booking well ahead of time. That way, if your circumstances or plans change unexpectedly, you’ll easily be able to change your itinerary.
Once you have decided on the best size and type of accommodation that will suit you, check the reviews and make sure you have reliable plans to travel between the airport, your accommodation, and any other places you plan to visit – then book and enjoy your trip!
Harper Reid is a freelance writer from Auckland, New Zealand who especially enjoys writing about home, travel, and lifestyle topics. She travels to a new place at least once a year and loves staying in unusual travel accommodation options as part of the adventure. You can find more of her work here.
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