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Saturday, May 7, 2011

Tips for Choosing and Booking Hotels

Hotels in Eastern Europe don't always have the amenities that you'd expect. You'll want to make sure before choosing and booking Eastern European hotels that they've got all that you require.
Access for Guests With Disabilities

Not all hotels in Eastern Europe have access for guests with disabilities. Many hotels simply weren't built during a time when this was considered a necessity. At the same time, building regulations have not always required access for those with disabilities. If you or someone traveling with you needs wheelchair access, a room with properly equipped facilities for guests with disabilities, or a working elevator to use to ascend to upper floors, check with the hotel before you book.

Not all hotels will accept credit cards. Some hotels will gladly take a credit card, but they will tack on a hefty fee (sometimes as much or more than 10% of your bill). Larger, more expensive hotels are more likely to accept credit cards. Smaller, budget hotels might not. Always check what forms of payment are accepted before you choose and book your hotel in eastern Europe.

Non-Smoking Rooms
Smoking hasn't undergone the same restrictions as in the West, and some hotels may not have non-smoking rooms available. Some hotels will advertise that they have non-smoking rooms available, but other parts of the hotel will allow smoking. Hotels in Eastern Europe will advertise if their facilities are completely non-smoking. If this is important to you, make sure you verify that you will be getting a non-smoking room, or that the hotel is completely non-smoking before you book.

Air Conditioned Rooms
Believe it or not, many hotels in Eastern Europe do not provide air conditioning automatically. In Eastern Europe, air conditioners are not common devices, and hotels are no different. More expensive hotels will offer completely air conditioned buildings, while other hotels may only offer air conditioning in individual rooms. If your hotel room does not have an air conditioning unit, especially if you are on a top floor, you might regret it when traveling during summer. Check with your Eastern Europe hotel to make sure air conditioning is available.

Private Bathrooms
Most hotels will offer private bathrooms with each hotel room. However, make sure this is the case before you choose and book. Hostels in Eastern Europe, and very low-budget accomodations, may have communal bathrooms - remember, during the Soviet era, everyone was expected to share.