Where will you choose to sleep on your next holiday? A cosy hotel bed? Or in a sleeping bag under the stars? There are so many different accommodation options to consider and each has their advantages. Here is a brief guide to some of the different forms of accommodation.
If the aim of your holiday is to relax, a hotel is the best option for you. They’re also the most expensive option however, so bear this in mind if you’re on a tight budget.
Hotels guarantee your own room and catered facilities. Some types of hotels such as B&Bs may only offer breakfast, while full board all-inclusive hotels serve breakfast, lunch and dinner all included within the price of the room. Decide the facilities that you want so that you can find the ideal hotel.
There are lots of nifty ways to save money on hotels. A few great cost-cutting strategies include:
- Looking for a hotel that’s off the beaten path (the closer to attractions, generally the more expensive).
- Booking far in advance in order to take advantage of early bird discounts.
- Booking last minute in order to take advantage of last minute discounts.
- Chancing a two or three-star hotel, instead of a four or five-star hotel (lower star ratings don’t always mean poorer quality facilities, but simply more basic facilities).
- Using hotel comparison sites to find the best deals.
Hostels are more basic than hotels. You pay for a bed, not a room – which could mean that you share with strangers. Many hostels have restaurant facilities and bars but they’re generally not included in the price. The advantage is that hostels are a lot cheaper than hotels.
If you’re on a city break and are more interested in exploring than relaxing, a hostel can often be the right choice. If you’re travelling solo, you could also find that a hostel is more suitable than a hotel (they’re great places for meeting fellow backpackers).
If you like the idea of your own private space and aren’t interested in meeting new people, a property rental could be perfect for you. They’re ideal for large families and groups of friends. In some cases, they may even work out cheaper than hotels (especially if multiple people can split the cost).
Most property rentals are self-catered, which means you’ll have to cook your own meals or dine out. On top of this, you may have a duty to do your own cleaning at the end of your holiday. Some people don’t mind this, while others may want a break from cooking and cleaning.
There are many different types of property rental to look into, often varying depending on where you travel in the world. Sunny tourist hotspots often have villas and apartments to rent, while chalets are common in ski resorts in the Alps. In the UK, cottages are popular. There are also home rentals to consider if you’re staying somewhere long-term such as these houses for rent in Selangor. You can even rent out castles in Scotland and chateaus in France for hosting large family get-togethers and weddings.
Camping is the cheapest form of accommodation, but also the most rugged. If you’re exploring somewhere rural and simply need somewhere to rest your head, camping is a suitable option. Some people love camping because it adds to the adventure and can allow you to feel closer to nature. Others hate the lack of luxuries and don’t see it as a ‘holiday’.
There are lots of different types of camping. The most basic is wild camping – this involves pitching up in the wilderness (it’s totally free, but not always legal). Most people choose to pay the small fee of pitching up in a campsite so that they can still use bathroom facilities. You could bring your tent or stay in a campsite-supplied tent that is already pitched up for you. On top of tents, some campsites offer fixed caravans, lodges and ‘glamping’ yurts (these are tents that may come with small luxuries such as a bed and electricity). You can even bring your own caravan or motorhome for a more elegant form of camping-on-wheels.
Homestay accommodation involves staying with a local family. It can be cheaper than many other forms of accommodation and you’ll usually get your own room and home-cooked meals. Homestay accommodation is ideal for those wanting to experience life as a local. For those that want their own private space, it may not be so suited.
There are different types of homestay accommodation. You may be able to simply rent a room or outbuilding in a city home, or you could consider renting a room on farm property and possibly do some voluntary work while you’re there. It all depends on your travel goals.