Nothing can ruin your trip faster than staying in a miserable place far from everything while paying a fortune for it. But with so many accommodation options out there it’s really difficult to choose a perfect place to live during your travels! We’re here to help and make you an accommodation search pro!
Step 1. Assess Your Funds
Hopefully you have some spending estimation for your trip, otherwise, you risk ending up dancing in the streets trying to get money for your ticket home. So take the average amount that you plan to spend in a day and divide it by 3. The rule of a thumb is that’s the maximum amount that you want to spend on your accommodation if you plan to have enough left for food and fun. Unless, of course, you are hooked on luxury or are traveling all inclusive.
Step 2. Assess Your Needs
The type of accommodation you need really depends on how you prefer to travel. If you only eat in restaurants during your trips then you don’t need a kitchen. If you are a light sleeper than probably hostels are not for you. And if you are gonna move around a lot in the wild, then maybe renting a house on wheels or packing a tent into a car is what you should do.
Step 3. Choose a Suitable Type of Accommodation
Now you’re ready to decide where you want to live. Here some pros and cons to the most popular accommodation options:
- they will probably speak English and help you with maps, taxis etc
- it’s safe
- wide price range
- no kitchen
- prices for decent options are pretty high
- can always find someone to go a party with you if that’s your thing
- noise, shared bathrooms, drunken roommates, you name it. Sometimes they offer separate rooms, but then the price is not so appealing
Renting an Apartment
- your own kitchen
- hosts can help with transport and other local stuff
- no everyday cleaning
- you don’t choose your hosts, and sometimes communication is not very pleasant
- it’s free! Although it’s customary to bring a small present to your host, or cook something
- you have somebody local to show you around
- you have to spend time with people that you may hate at first sight
- it’s not very safe
Tent / House on Wheels
- extreme mobility and flexibility
- cheap if you rent them long-term
- you’re always living outside the cities
- you may have to find special camping places (and pay for them)
Step 4. Research Your Options
Once you’re on a web page for the accommodation type you’ve chosen, don’t just book the first thing that looks vaguely suitable. Don’t budge if the site is screaming that the place is selling out and it’s your last chance to grab the deal. Take your time and get an overview of what’s being offered! Accommodation markets differ very much in different countries. For the price of an all-inclusive 5-star hotel in Turkey, you’ll only get a smallish 3-star apartment somewhere in London
Step 5. Think of the Location
It might seem like a good idea to save some bucks by renting non-centrally, but take into account the time and money it’ll take you to get to places! Try routing the way from your tentative accommodation to different locations you want to visit. Is there only one bus three times a day that takes an hour to get you there? You might want to reconsider your choice!
Step 6. Study Reviews
Almost all booking aggregators have a review system. Study these reviews carefully! Sometimes the place doesn’t look quite like on the photos or there have been some issues with the host, or somebody got the booking canceled the last moment! Keep in mind that people sometimes write mildly because they don’t want to offend anybody, so “a little noisy” may, in reality, mean “so freaking loud I couldn’t hear my own thoughts”
Now you’re ready to complete the booking and start packing for the most awesome trip ever! With a perfect home base for your adventures, you are going to enjoy them even more! Now tell us, what’s your favourite accommodation booking know-how?
Written by Kate