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Anyone ever stayed at the cheapest hotel offered on a package tour and lived to tell about it?

Anyone ever stayed at the cheapest hotel offered on a package tour and lived to tell about it?

Aug 4th, 2003, 06:08 AM
  #1  
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Join Date: Aug 2003
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Anyone ever stayed at the cheapest hotel offered on a package tour and lived to tell about it?

Recently I have seen some incredible air and hotel packages to a variety of cities in Europe. The best rates start after September 1st and can be as low as $600.00 for air and 6 nights hotels.

I notice that they list a variety of possible hotels with the package and the range of prices from the bottom to the top is incredible.

Has anyone just put caution to the wind and chosen the cheapest hotel on a vacation package and lived to tell about it? What are the rooms like? Are the people sharing the hotel dangerous? Is there any service? Does the room look over the "projects or a busy intersection" Is the room larger than a closet? Is there alot of noise? What is the story about the hotels advertised on the lowest end of the price range? Help!
Andytrav is offline  
Aug 4th, 2003, 06:16 AM
  #2  
 
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On our first trip to Paris and London we took the cheapest package. It was for the Tavistock in London and a hotel in the 13th district in Paris (forgot the name now). It was with British Airways Vacations.

In short, we ended up not liking either hotel and upgraded.

Because these hotels were the cheapest on offer, of course, the rooms were basic and very small. The rooms had space to walk around but as soon as you opened your door your bed was right there. The hotels are budget hotels so just don't expect much. I think we did not realize then that hotel rooms in the UK and Europe are much smaller than in the US.

francophile03 is offline  
Aug 4th, 2003, 06:19 AM
  #3  
 
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It depends on the tour. We've never heard of one that actually put the participants in any danger, but the lowest price will usually get you a very basic room with minimal services. That wouldn't be a big deal for me as I don't normally spend much time in my hotel while on vacation--if I was going to stay in, I'd just stay at home for a lot less money.

The big problem I've seen is location--tour hotels are often WAY out in the boondocks. For example, hotels in Mestre for Venice or way west of the Vatican for Rome. I'd make sure this wasn't the case.
RufusTFirefly is offline  
Aug 4th, 2003, 08:02 AM
  #4  
 
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I have traveled on these combo trips with Northwest a few times, to London and took the most economical hotel and in their brochure they show diagrams where each hotel is situated and none of them were out of the way of the Underground. Of course the accomodations were basic but like someone else put it, you do not plan on spending much time in your room and generally were good values for the place or country you were in. Come to think of it, we went for the 2nd hotel listed, not the very cheapest, however chosen because of location. All in all, a basically good value. Halfpint
halfpint is offline  
Aug 4th, 2003, 09:11 AM
  #5  
 
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ANDYTRAV
I've use Go-Today.com for several trips! Stayed at least expensive & most expensive. BOTH ends of the spectrum are good with this company. The first thing I do when deciding lodging is to look at the location...pull out my maps to see how close it is to Metros, sites, etc.
A beautiful hotel in an out-of-the-way location isn't great for me!
The two low-end hotels that I've used with Go-Today , were: Hotel France Louvre- 40 rue de Rivoli (Paris) and
Hotel Novanox (Paris)- 155 Boulevard du Montparnasse. BOTH had great locations, small but pleasant rooms, adequate breakfasts....helpful staffs.
Another thing that I do...check out the hotels own web-site. Additional pictures & info helps me to make a better decision! Hope this helps!!
Bailey is offline  
Aug 4th, 2003, 09:12 AM
  #6  
 
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Two years ago we took the cheapest hotel option for a London package through Go Today. The hotel was bare bones and in an acceptable (though certainly not optimal) location. The hotel was rather run down, and the room was quite small and drab even by European standards. The included continental breakfast was a hard roll and concentrated orange juice. Throughout our stay, we felt like we were on a budget vacation.

The next year we booked a Paris package, again through Go Today. This time we upgraded our hotel choice and were thrilled we did. For a matter of just $100 or $200 each, we stayed in a lovely hotel right across from the Luxembourg Gardens. The breakfast included freshly-squeezed orange juice, a basket of fresh croissants, and cafe au lait. For a modest increase in price, we felt we had a far more luxurious experience.

That said, however, if it was a choice between staying in the cheapest hotel or staying home, I would definitely "rough it" with the lower-end accommodations.
Lorna is offline  
Aug 4th, 2003, 09:39 AM
  #7  
 
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Hi
there is no need to choose a hotel "blind" these days
look for comments right here (search on the hotel by name), in the fodors hotel section at the top of your screen, and at tripadvisor.com All will have comments from prior guests.
If I can't find any comments other than guidebook listings, which can be outdated, then I don't take the chance.
I looked into some go-today packages recently for Paris. Of the budget to moderate hotels, only one had favorable comments. The others generated comments that could only be called warnings. That is not to say that I wouldn't use go-today, just that I'd check on the hotels.
elaine is offline  
Aug 4th, 2003, 09:39 AM
  #8  
 
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Andytrav, I was going to respond to your query about staying in the cheapest hotel in a package but then I realized I hadn't lived to tell about it.

My wife and I have used packages from Virgin, Northwest, United and British in London, Paris, Rome and Amsterdam and generally have chosen those hotels that the airline rates 3 star and been satisfied with the choice. We try to pick in that category by location. We are like Rufus and are very happy with a basic room and we require the minimum of services. Obviously, it must be clean, safe and en suite.

A couple of years ago we used the Royal National in London when BA had a special of $25 per night per person. It prompted a spur of the moment trip with our grandchildren for their February vacation that we otherwise might not have taken. We were satisfied but it is not a hotel I would want to use in warm weather. There is no AC and the rooms mostly face an inner courtyard with tour buses in and out at all hours and there is a pub with outdoor seating that gets very noisy.

The airlines are in the seat selling business and hope for repeat and referral business. It would be very shortsighted of them to jeopardize thatby using substandard hotels.


jsmith is offline  
Aug 4th, 2003, 10:05 AM
  #9  
 
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I've also used the cheapest hotel option on a go.today.com trip to London and Paris. In London, it was the Royal Sussex Hotel in the Sussex Gardens area. Sure the area wasn't "charming", but the hotel was clean, plenty of inexpensive restaurants in the area, and only 4 blocks from Paddington Station. In Paris, Hotel Louvre St Romain, was even better. Located in the 1er, half a block to The Louvre, cute room with a huge bath and small iron balcony, metro station on the corner, and plenty of restaurants. Sometimes you can get lucky with the budget hotels.
ErinS is offline  
Aug 4th, 2003, 02:57 PM
  #10  
 
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The Louvre St-Romaine is in the BA packages also but it is not the cheapest. It is carried as 3 star with BA rating system.

I've stayed there also and it was very nice but a little noisy because of the traffic on Rue Rivoli. The mototcycles started from a stoplight a half block away.

ErinS did you have to mention the name. The last two times I wanted to stay there they were booked. Big mouth.
jsmith is offline  
Aug 5th, 2003, 05:42 AM
  #11  
 
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Hi
I've stayed at the Louvre St Romain too, though not for a while, and noise wasn't a factor in my room at all. I found rue St Roch to be quiet, and it was half a block in either direction to rue de Rivoli or rue St Honore.
Maybe the noise issue depends on the room.
elaine is offline  

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