Whether you’re planning a holiday or you’re off on a business trip, you’ll need to find affordable and comfortable accommodation while you’re away from home. Two of the most popular options are bed and breakfasts and hotels – but which is right for you? Below, we have rounded up the pros and cons of both so that you can make the right decision.
Pros of a bed and breakfast
Perhaps one of the biggest benefits of a bed and breakfast is that it is more affordable than the traditional hotel. Typically, bed and breakfasts are small family-run establishments, and as such, they can offer a comfortable room and a tasty breakfast at a reasonable price.
Another advantage of a bed and breakfast is that the service you receive is likely to be much more personalised than it would be at a hotel. If you need to stay an extra hour in your room while waiting for a client, or you want advice on where to eat in the evenings, bed and breakfast owners are typically much more accommodating than a chain hotel would be.
Add to the mix that bed and breakfasts offer truly unique rooms, unlike the cut and paste approach of chain hotels and that B&Bs are often located in key tourist locations and business hubs, like hotels in Blackpool that offer access to the city centre and attractions such as the Pleasure Beach. This means you’ll be able to get to your next stop without having to rely on your car or public transport, something out-of-town hotels can’t offer.
Furthermore, breakfasts are usually much more filling and enjoyable, and opting for a local bed and breakfast means you’re supporting the local economy rather than handing over your cash to multinational firms.
Cons of a bed and breakfast
While there are some huge advantages of bed and breakfasts, there are, of course, some drawbacks to contend with. First of all, bed and breakfasts may not offer the same luxuries that you’re used to in the typical three-star hotel – bathrooms may not be en-suite, rooms may not be as modern, and add-ons such as room service, laundry and free toiletries may not be available. It’s important that you understand that bed and breakfasts are a cheaper alternative to hotels, and so the service may differ to that in a professional establishment.
Another disadvantage is that bed and breakfasts are usually much smaller than hotels, so if you’re travelling with family, you may not want to spend too much time in the room together. The same can be said for occupancy rates and the number of available rooms – if you’re travelling in a group, it’s possible that you won’t be able to get a room in the same hotel, and so you may need to travel to meet up for lunch, etc.
Pros of a hotel
On the opposite side of the fence is the hotel. Unlike bed and breakfasts, hotels are usually uniform and feature clean, bright rooms with similar designs. As such, you can be sure of the same experience every time you visit the hotel – with a bed and breakfast, all rooms are unique, and so you may not get the same features of luxuries when you make a return visit.
Because of the more corporate nature of hotels, guests are usually offered complimentary drinks, snacks, toiletries and tea and coffee making facilities, and they’re manned 24 hours a day by security and a receptionist to ensure your safety and provide support if required.
The majority of hotels also offer room service, laundry facilities, and many feature an onsite bar, restaurant, gym and spa. Because of this, hotels are often considered more luxurious.
Cons of a hotel
One of the biggest drawbacks of a hotel is that, wherever you are in the country or indeed the world, you’re likely to receive the same experience, without much variation. If you’re travelling and want to immerse yourself into the culture of your destination, staying in the nearest Travelodge, for example, could hinder this experience.
Another downside of staying in a hotel is that it is often much larger than a bed and breakfast, and as such, noise is more likely – especially during the night when you’re hoping to get some sleep before a big day. You can combat this by requesting a room on a higher floor or at the end of the corridor and using the ‘do not disturb’ sign on your hotel room door.
Should I choose a bed and breakfast or a hotel?
Deciding whether to stay in a bed and breakfast or a hotel depends on the situation and your budget. If you’re looking for cost-effective accommodation that offers somewhere to wash and sleep, a bed and breakfast is likely to be your best choice. If, on the other hand, you want a luxurious room and access to amenities like a gym and onsite sauna, then a hotel is most probably the more sensible decision.