It is the huffy manager, the room full of spiders or the placement in the hotel’s annex that you simply didn’t foresee. Accommodations for travelers are often a gamble. We read reviews and research religiously where we want to stay from hostels to apartments, only to meet a bad experience on the other end. Travelers toss their hands in the air and lament that it will all be over soon. They will hit the road and leave that hotel and its problems in the dust. However you can always prevent and deal with bad accommodations to a certain degree by following these travel tips.
Print Out Documentation From Bookings to Cancellations: A common accommodations scam going around is the cancellation trick. A hotel could cancel on you for whatever reason or you could change plans. Then you notice your credit card was still charged for the stay. Travelers should always get a cancellation number and confirmation if they do. I have heard horror stories of travelers being charged the room amount with no proof they canceled or that the property cancelled. Always document these cancellation polices and numbers. Travelers should also always arrive to their accommodations with booking confirmations printed out. It might seem old fashioned in this age, but when you can’t find the email, you will be glad you had the actual booking on paper when the sulky check-in employee says there is no record of your reservation.
Know What You’re Getting By What You Paid: If you coughed up a meager 10 euros a night for a 50-person hostel dorm room in Barcelona, understand that your standards should be much lower than if you paid more. If you look at many hotel reviews, you will see travelers complaining about noisy roommates or a lack of amenities at places that didn’t break the bank by any means. Before blowing your top at a bad accommodation situation, consider how much you paid and what you received in return. Suddenly those noisy hostel bunkmates don’t seem so unreasonable. Of course, this can be reversed. If you paid a large sum for a room and you didn’t get what you were told you would have, you should speak up to management about making changes or receiving a discount.
Read The Fine Print: I have read many hotel reviews where travelers complain of showing up to a hotel, only to find it overbooked. Yes, the hotel industry can be just like the airline industry. If you are shipped off to an annex hotel, a far cry from what you booked, it might be your own fault. In the booking process, there is often fine print at properties that commonly do this. If you are worried about being bumped by a hotel, read the fine print and make certain the hotel has to honor your reservation at that property.
Communicate Rather Than Keep Quiet: In Croatia, I was met with possibly the rudest apartment owner. Arriving at my agreed upon check-in time, she was nowhere to be found. I stood out in the cold, pondering what to do for an hour. Finally she arrived, with no apology for literally leaving me out in the cold. Instead of shying away from controversy, I said something about her rudeness. Needless to say, I didn’t feel comfortable staying at her apartments after a long conversation about hospitality. I ended up leaving for a hotel down the road. It seems all too often travelers keep quiet when their accommodations let them down or they are treated poorly. To avoid being angry over some charge you didn’t ask about, communicate with your accommodations. If your room is covered in dust, don’t just deal with it. Call management and show them the problem.
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