3 THINGS YOU NEED TO RESEARCH BEFORE BOOKING ACCOMMODATION
One of the reasons why I started this travel blog was to share my experiences, both successes and mistakes, to make travelling the world easier for you. Flights, saving, accommodation, destinations, transfers, tours - the works! When it comes to booking accommodation, it’s no easy task. It can be very overwhelming with travel agents, online booking sites and hotels competing for our attention everywhere we look – advertising, magazines articles and now even more, social media. This is now where I tell you to forget everything you’ve been told. There is actually more to booking accommodation than securing the best hotel and a great rate. Yup! It’s called ‘reading between the lines’ and making sure where your booking is actually what and where you think it is.
Have you ever found yourself in a situation where you’ve booked accommodation only to discover when you arrive it’s not in fact ‘a few minutes walking distance from the beach’?
Have you ever found yourself in a situation where you’ve booked accommodation only to find the ‘ocean view’ is actually just a tiny speck of the ocean if you stand on your tippy toes from your hotel balcony?
Have you ever found yourself in a situation where you’ve booked accommodation only to realise the photos of the five swimming pools are actually a lot smaller than appear and not ideally located as you thought?
I know I have. And it’s really frustrating.
With that in mind I thought I would share my tips for things you need to research before you book accommodation by the beach.
TRIPLE CHECK THE LOCATION Google Maps isn’t just for getting directions from one location to another. I use Google Maps when booking accommodation to help me locate exactly how close the hotel is to the airport, beach and city. Also use ‘Street View’ to see the street entrance of the hotel, and move the mouse around to see what else is around. Another tool I use is Instagram. Most hotels have a hashtag for social media, so enter the hashtag into Instagram and you can see the latest photos other guests have taken.
HOTEL FACILITIES If you want to check the facilities at the hotel – rooms, swimming pools, restaurants, fitness centre - jump onto Trip Advisor, research the hotel name and take a look at guest photos. Don’t expect high quality but it’s a great indicator as to what the hotel really looks like and offers.
WEATHER Weather – the very thing you have no control over. However it’s very important to be mindful of the time of year you’re visiting and booking accommodation. I mentioned Instagram earlier; it’s also a great tool for using the hashtag search for the destination you’re visiting so you can see what the weather is like.
Do you have any other tips you use when you research accommodation? I would love to hear them!