Are you a frequent traveler? If yes, then you would know the value of a good room. For those of you who travel less often, you would still want the best room available at the place of your choice, isn’t it?
You’re probably sitting back right now, happy that you’ve gotten the room that you want at the price that you can afford. But, have you done enough? How do you know that you have the best room in the place? And how can you ensure that you do? Do note that when we say ‘best room’, we are not necessarily referring to price. The term can apply to a number of things ranging from location and amenities to the view and the comfort.
- 1. Loyalty points:
As a regular traveler, you must have heard of ‘frequent flyer’ miles. These are loyalty points that you stock up with an airline every time that you fly and redeem them at a later date, for a free flight or two. Some hotels have similar rewards programs, which can ensure that you keep coming back to them. If you like a particular hotel chain, you can opt to stay in their rooms across all locations. Accumulate enough rewards to garner a good stay and these points can be redeemed for an extra special suite at the hotel of your choice.
2. Do your research:
That is the great advantage with booking online these days. You even get great reviews online. Many hotels offer a picture gallery of their rooms. These would typically cover the size of the bed, the amenities in the room such as microwave, TV and refrigerator, the view from the windows and the seating area. On the off chance that you don’t find the gallery or are not too sure of the credibility of the photos, look for traveler reviews on websites devoted to this purpose. Almost every traveler who writes a room review will post a picture of the room and this is what you are looking for- the true view of the room of your choice. Pair it up with the tariffs given by the hotel and book your room accordingly.
3. Explore the surroundings:
This isn’t something we generally think about, but it’s worth bearing in mind. Where the room/hotel is located is crucial to the comfort of your stay. If it’s a wonderful room in an expensive resort, but it is far away from any sort of basic human inhabitation, you may want to think twice. You don’t want to look out of your room and see miles of emptiness (unless that’s what you’re looking for!). In the interests of security, in such locations, look for rooms that are centrally located. Corner rooms make it difficult for you to get to the elevator/stairs in case of an emergency.
4. Higher the better:
If you’re traveling on a tourist holiday and want a nice, relaxed sleep at the end of the day, it makes sense to stay away from distractions such as other guests coming in, the noises of the parking lot, the all-night café and the resident discotheque. Keeping that in mind, it would make sense to opt for a room on the higher floors, away from the hustle of the above.
5. Plan for the family:
When you’re traveling with young children, you have to arrange for them to be happy. Ask ahead if the hotel has play areas, gyms, swimming pools or other outdoor activities to keep them busy. If you have a very young child and would want to cook your own meals, ask specifically for a kitchenette. Most of these things are generally mentioned on the hotel’s website, but it never hurts to make sure. Hotels do not update their sites regularly and sometimes, walking into a room with a microwave and a mini bar, while expecting a kitchenette, is the worst kind of surprise for your holiday.
So, hope your bags are packed and your room is set. Have a wonderful holiday!
Shailaja Vishwanath is a freelance writer and a stay-at-home mother. She writes on subjects as varied as parenting, health, technology and fashion. Her background in teaching has helped provide insight on the topics that she covers. She has recently been on a holiday to Hotels Hunter Valley and she has shared some of her observations here with us. In her spare time, she likes to read, swim, play badminton and teach music.