A few weeks ago, I shared a post that busted some of my top B&B myths, so it’s only fitting that I share my best advice for spotting a great UK B&B. The best B&Bs have three elements: positive reviews, clear photographs and up to date facilities.
Your first job is to consider your budget. Despite the fact that some rooms can be very cheap, I’ve always found that rooms that are somewhere between £100 and £140 a night including breakfast are both affordable and pleasant places to stay. Although your pocket may feel a little lighter, you might find that a slightly more expensive room means the little extras are there – we’ve had fancy teas, dressing gowns and SKY TV. In my eyes, a B&B is meant to be a home from home, and those extras might be the thing that makes your holiday.
Then you need to shortlist. I always use comparison sites and go by the official hotel photos, usually choosing the same kind of aesthetic – I love rustic decor; it’s very me. Then I study them: what type of bed is it; are there blankets and pillows that won’t be regularly washed; is the bathroom a reasonable size; are there any imperfections that I can blatantly see? I have been able to cross off some potential places based solely on the hotel photo selection.
Then I look at facilities to narrow my shortlist. We always drive when we are travelling in the UK so we absolutely need a place to stay that has parking facilities. I refuse to park my car in a pay and display parking spot if we are staying in a location overnight (thus why we never stay in city centres) so it’s the first thing we look for. Then, I check breakfast is included in the price of the room – if not, you’re out. I also make sure there is a private bathroom and WiFi, not that the two are directly related, but if there’s no data signal, I’d be devastated and I am not sharing a bathroom with someone else: sorry!
One more element I tend to look for is the refund policy. If the B&B offers a full refund on cancellation before a specific date, that’s always a win. Sometimes, they don’t charge until you actually arrive at the establishment, which usually sways me towards it, as almost all the locations we have paid after the stay have been wonderful.
Shortlist narrowed even further, I hit up a review site. I always hit Tripadvisor for reviews – primarily for the variety of reviews, but also for the pure entertainment of reading some of the more dramatic reviews. I like to remember to take all negative reviews with a pinch of salt – something that might cause an outburst in one person might be a slight inconvenience to me. If the positive reviews outweigh the negative, it’s a win for me, although I do like to search for some specific elements when I look, for example, parking, WiFi, and comfort of sleep.
Lastly, likely with two or three options left, I pass over to Dan. Not because he makes the final decisions, but I like his opinion on the choices – we both have to stay there after all. He usually uses this time to look at location and distance from the centre, since we do like to be walking distance from the local alcoholic establishment, and even better if they accept dogs!
Choices made: we book!
In summary, you want a B&B with well presented images, all the facilities you require as necessity, generally good reviews and an appealing refund policy. Don’t settle for less!
If you liked this post, how about this one? Busting B&B Myths