Though it may seem like the biggest deal of all, we have some bad news: figuring out where to vacation is just the first in a long list of important pre-trip decisions. Once you’ve found a destination that matches your interests, your vacation goals and your budget, you have to do the same search for where you’ll stay. In fact, a seamless fit between the locale and the lodging will complete the vision you have for your vacation. So, what are you waiting for? Read on to find out about the places you could potentially stay — and figure out which one is right for you.
Are you heading out on the cross-country road trip of your dreams? If so, you might find yourself in and out of motels along the way. Motels are an American phenomenon, having cropped up along highways where drivers might want to pull over and rest for the night. For that reason, they’re typically pretty barebones: bed, bathroom, and maybe a TV to get you relaxed before a good night’s sleep. If you’re trying to spend your money on experiences instead of on your lodging, then a motel might be a great choice for your trip.
We described motels as being barebones, but perhaps we should have saved that for the description of campsites. Fortunately, though, if you’re considering a campsite, you probably know what you’re getting yourself into. When it comes to camping, there are more upfront costs than with other lodging options. You’ll find, however, that the rest of your trip will be a lot cheaper after you buy your tent, sleeping bag, and other equipment — and, you can use those items for future camping excursions, too. Once you stock up on supplies, take some time to consider what you’ll do while you’re in the wilderness: Hiking, swimming, cooking over a campfire—the possibilities are endless in the great outdoors.
Let’s do a 180 from the simpler options mentioned above: hotels can truly have it all. Choosing the right hotel can also ensure that you’re sending yourself on the vacation you want and need. For example, if you’re looking for a getaway with notable nightlife, take the time to find a hotel with its own roster of bars or in-house entertainment by way of a casino or club.
On the other hand, your hotel can usher you into the relaxed state you seek: just make sure that it has beach access, an in-house spa and an extra-large pool with quiet corners or hours for adults only. Chances are, if you’ve found a destination that suits you, there’ll be a hotel that takes that vision even further.
Somewhere in between all of the above options, you’ll find the option of a home rental. This is perhaps the best and most cost-effective option if you’re traveling with a large party, as you can typically find one with enough beds and bathrooms for everyone. Beach vacationers, take note: you’ll probably have the most luck with this option, since so many people rent out their homes and condos by the shore in order to make extra money.
Fortunately, sites like Airbnb have made it possible for you to rent spaces other than extra-large, beachside homes. Now, you can find a room or an apartment in the city to which you’re traveling. This is a pretty novel concept for American travelers, but it opens a wealth of new and quirky places for you to stay. Spend some time sifting through the listings for the city you’re visiting, and you might just find a rental with the right location, price, and character.
Bed & Breakfast
You can hit Airbnb for the quirky or a traditional bed and breakfast for the quaint. This option will have you somewhere between a hotel and a homestay: you’ll have your own room in a house run by its owners. The down-home deal also comes with a hearty, homemade breakfast, as the name implies. You might not be able to find this cozy choice everywhere, though they’re pretty prominent in small towns and coastal villages. If you’re trying to snuggle up with someone and simply enjoy your surroundings, then check out bed-and-breakfasts on your search.
Obviously, this isn’t an exhaustive list of options of where to stay on your next trip. It is, however, a jumping-off point and proof that not everyone has to stay in the same hotel. Consider your interests and your goals for your next trip and find a place to stay that suits your vision. Chances are, you won’t have to compromise in order to find the right fit — and have the trip of your dreams.