Planning to Travel? Do You Know How to Find a Good Hotel?
Choosing a hotel should involve more than tracking down something close to tourist attractions.
Will you be flying to your destination?
• If you need to park a vehicle for a few days, you might be able to obtain a stay-and-park package at an airport hotel. Some city hotels with airport shuttle service also have lodging promotions that include parking.
Do you travel with a pet?
• Be sure to look for pet-friendly hotels. Do not wait until you are standing at the check-in counter to tell the hotel staff you have a dog or cat with you.
Do you have allergies to cats or dogs?
• Even if a hotel does not accept pets, you could still be exposed to allergens. Housekeeping staff and other guests with pets at home can transfer pet dander and fur from their shoes and clothing onto hotel surfaces. If you have extreme allergies, pack your allergy medications and inhaler.
Do you have a family?
• Many hotels have programs such as kids eat free – or they may offer organized activities and babysitting services.
Are you planning a romantic getaway?
• Avoid hotels with special family programs or any accommodations that are close to attractions such as Disneyland. Noisy children in the hallway could dampen the mood.
Is breakfast included?
• Some hotels advertise themselves as bed and breakfasts when, in fact, their meal packages involve an extra fee. If breakfast is provided, check to see whether it is complimentary and what is offered. Food could range from pastry, juice, and coffee to full breakfast buffets with several hot dishes and multiple choices of fruits, pastries, cereals, and beverages.
Do the rooms have microwaves?
• Although many hotel rooms are not equipped with a microwave, you might be able to arrange for one if you ask for it when you make your reservation. It is nice to be able to warm up a snack or even cook a small meal.
Is there an extra charge for local telephone calls?
• If you plan to make any outgoing calls, your bill can quickly escalate at some hotels. Be aware of any charges you might incur before using the phone.
Is there a restaurant on the premises?
• You might not feel like going out for meals. If there is an onsite restaurant, check to see what hours it is open.
Is there a shopping mall nearby?
• If you plan to buy souvenirs, toiletries, or groceries, a shopping mall within a block or two will be a definite advantage.
Make a list of desired amenities and rank them in order of importance:
– Absolutely necessary
– Nice to have
• Eliminate any accommodations that do not offer all amenities in the absolutely necessary category. That narrows down your list, and with a bit of common sense, you will be able to choose something suitable for your unique situation.