What would we do without TripAdvisor? A comprehensive online directory of almost every hotel in the world, TripAdvisor provides us with opinions and reviews by ‘real travellers’ who have been there, done that, and definitely have the t-shirt – but can we really trust the source?
Reviews are all well and good (my favourite to date was titled “Ramsay’s Kitchen Nightmare meets a clean, safe and happy place”), and I rarely book a hotel for myself or a guest without checking to see what others have to say about it first, but the fact is, we do not know if these reviews are written by genuine guests of the hotel, a hotel employee, or the owner of the hotel next door… So can we really rely on them?
Well, I believe a combination of the Hotel Star Rating and TripAdvisor reviews is a good place to start, and while there are some bargains to be had, I firmly believe that when it comes to hotels – you get what you pay for.
Five Star Hotels
I’m not going to lie, I love staying in five-star hotels, but the only reason I love staying in such properties is that you get all those little luxuries you generally don’t get at home, such as 15 pillows on the bed in pure white Egyptian cotton, bath salts, a big fluffy bathrobe, and chocolates on the pillow (lovely, but impractical if you have kids/dogs at home!).
Five star hotels should offer exceptional service, have a great location, and make you feel truly spoilt, after all isn’t that what a dream holiday is all about?
Four Star Hotels
More often than not, we stay in four-star hotels for both business and pleasure. Most four stars offer all the amenities one is used to at home such as comfortable furnishing, a TV, hairdryer and iron, internet access, and when you combine that with a 24-hour reception – well what more could one need?
Three Star Hotels
Three star hotels generally do what they say on the tin. A decent standard of accommodation at a decent price, three star hotels are ideal for those who want to stretch their holiday budget, and providing you don’t expect five-star amenities, there is no reason you should be disappointed. Referring back to TripAdvisor, you will find many three star properties out-rank their five-star neighbours!
One & Two Star Hotels
Often referred to as Standard and Tourist class hotels, one and two star properties provide a basic room at a basic price. Ideal for those who simply want a bed and somewhere to rest their head, these hotels are available in most cities around the world – and if you are looking for something ‘cheap and cheerful’ – this could be for you.
Of course, there are always exceptions to the rules, some five-star hotels are not up to standard, and you could find a cosy two star that meets all your expectations, but by combining the hotel star rating with TripAdvisor reviews – you should be able to read between the lines and get your perfect hotel at your perfect price!