If you search for a hotel in a specific location, you will immediately be bombarded by options. Different hotels, different sights, the same hotel listed several times at different prices. Reviews, comments, pictures – it’s a minefield. So how do you know where to start?
It is important to figure out the main priorities of your trip. A family holiday abroad will be different to an overnight stay for work. Perhaps you already have a list of criteria, or maybe you have no idea where to start. This is where we can help you discover, rediscover, or decide what to look for when booking a hotel.
Pick Your Necessities
The easiest way to narrow the list of options is by picking the top features you aren’t willing to give up. Perhaps you are in a hurry and will need a free breakfast? Or do you need a modern hotel with soundproofing and blackout blinds that will ensure a perfect night’s sleep? Or maybe you are hoping to unwind and take a bath somewhere no one can bother you. Once you have that locked down, you are already on your way to picking.
So that’s the style of the hotel decided, now you need to select what they have to offer. Can you live without WIFI? Is it possible? And will they charge you to use it? Similarly, are you going to need parking or a radiator? These are all things to decide and once you have your list then it’s time to hit the comparison sights.
Tick all the necessary boxes for your wish list and get searching. It’s important to remember that even though the hotels listed will offer your amenities, check whether the price shown includes the use of them. Your hotel may have a 5* breakfast on TripAdvisor, but when you book a budget double room it may not be included! Take your time to weed out options like these to avoid future disappointment.
Check the Reviews
Reviews can be both the most helpful and the most misleading part of picking a hotel. However, it would be madness not to check them before booking. Take a look at multiple review sites to see how other guests found their experience.
Again with these reviews it good to be selective. An older guest staying on a strip in a busy city will have had a different experience than the hen party of young adults who stayed over the same weekend. By finding out the main clientele of the hotel, you will avoid any nasty surprises provided by other guests.
Make sure to look at why they have ‘poor’ reviews. Is the WIFI terrible? Does the water pressure suck? These are all things you need to know.
It’s also important to check the dates of the reviews and compare it with the hotel website. Problems that guests faced six months ago may be irrelevant now due to renovation so take the time to look at the hotel directly to see if your information is current and all-encompassing.
Check the Map!
For most people, the main reason to pick a hotel is its location, which is why it is important to be crystal clear about where it is located. Also bear in mind that the hotel will most likely claim to be in easy reach of most locations. The is a key selling point and easy reach to one person is different from another.
The only way to clarify this is independently checking the distance yourself. Are you hoping to walk everywhere? If so the five-minute drive turns into a 45-minute walk and this could be a deal-breaker. Also, check the availabilities of taxis/lift services – there’s nothing worse than getting stranded away from home!