Travel is an important part of our life. We may travel for work or for leisure. Sometimes, it is a solo 1-day business trip while at other times it may be a week long holiday with the parents and kids in tow.
“An old small hotel is much more valuable than a seven-star hotel because the former has a spirit and a literary posture!”
Irrespective of the length or purpose of travel, it is critical that you select a good hotel for your stay. A cheap accommodation works for you, you say? Sure, as long as it checks all the below points too.
- Comfortable Room – A spacious, clean, air-conditioned room is most important for your stay in an unknown place. You may use it only for sleeping but even those few hours are critical to ensure a good night’s sleep. Afterall, with all the travelling you did today and that important conference scheduled for tomorrow, it’s important that you spend the night not swatting at mosquitoes. Well rested is well prepared.
- Bed – A firm, comfortable mattress is just as important as the room itself. Some hotels have very soft mattress which may seem very comfy and cushiony but will give you a sore back the next morning. A firm mattress is more comfortable since it gives support to your back, ensuring a good night’s rest.
- Washroom – A good exhaust system with running water supply to keep you stress-free. 🙂
- View from the Room – it may not have to be an exotic sunrise every morning but any decent view is good enough. Even if it just of the hotel grounds, city skyline, kids splashing in the pool or just the highway chok-a-block with cars, and its bright hoardings and flashing neon signs.
- Access and Approach – You do not want to manouver dingy by-lanes or smelly gulleys to reach your hotel at the end of each tiring day. Give due importance to the access and approach road to the hotel. You want to be able to feel safe walking back after a late night cruise.
- Location – An exotic resort closer to the airport but miles away from your workplace isn’t going to be a good choice, even if it is the best in the city. Select a hotel based on the purpose of your travel. If you are travelling for leisure, choose a city centre hotel closer to the tourist spots. However, if you are travelling for work, choose one that is closer to the work-place. A cheaper hotel closer to the metro station is better than a higher priced full service one on the city outskirts.
- Food – A good hotel need not necessarily have the best restaurant in town. Some basic sustenance to last you till the next meal should suffice. Choose a hotel that offers breakfast or atleast has some good dining options nearby. On a trip to Kerala last year, we deliberately chose a basic, no-frills hotel offering fantastic rooms but with no restaurants. Since, it was flanked by famous local eateries, we had no trouble getting good, hygienic food throughout our stay.
- Leisure & Recreational Options – A hotel that has some leisure activities is better than one that has none, especially if there aren’t many options nearby. On our recent family trip, we found ourselves away from the city, with not many options for recreational activities. Luckily, our hotel had a “Gaming Room”, where we could play Carrom, Table Tennis and even Billiards. Our family spent more quality time together inside the hotel than we would have had on conducted tours outside.
- Safety & Security – It’s extremely critical that a hotel ensure safety for its guests and staff. You do not want to constantly worry about losing your passport and travel insurance in a foreign land.
- Guest Service and Hospitality – A hotel doesn’t have to be a 5 -star to ensure a pleasant experience. Some of my most memorable hotel stays have been in un-categorized hotels, where, the management and staff would go out of their way to ensure a comfortable stay for the guests. A lot of alternate accommodations like home-stays etc provide good service at reasonable prices compared to the more pricier options.
What have been your best and worst experiences regarding hotels? Share your feeback in the comment box below.
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