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Italy: What preferences should I request when booking a Room?

Italy: What preferences should I request when booking a Room?

Old Aug 15th, 2007, 10:28 AM
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Italy: What preferences should I request when booking a Room?

When booking a hotel and B&B rooms in Italy, do you have suggestions as to what to request from the place? Most of the places we are staying at our near tourist attractions, so I will ask for a quiet room. any other suggestions?
sberliner is offline  
Old Aug 15th, 2007, 10:42 AM
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that's pretty much a personal prpeference isn't it? Some require a view, others not. SOme want certain things in a bathroom (size, types of showers) etc. Don't you know what you want in a hotel in the US? I would think it would be the same.
sandi_travelnut is offline  
Old Aug 15th, 2007, 10:44 AM
Join Date: Jul 2007
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sberliner, I am "of a certain age" gt; and so, for my DH and I, an "ensuite bathroom" is of primary importance, as is a "Dbl TWIN" room (some are 2 twin beds shoved together and you roll to the center--we prefer two separate twins if a Q or K is not available, and is usually not). Also "individually controlled" A/C (or heat) so that you are in charge of the temp.

I would check the reviews on Venere, Trip Advisor and here!!

Good luck with your planning.
lovesroses is offline  
Old Aug 15th, 2007, 10:44 AM
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 3,227
You can ask whatever you need..but don't think you will have it for sure.
The hotel probably will do their best, but in Italy they are full most of the time..so many times it's not possible.
But that's my experience..maybe you have better luck
kenderina is offline  
Old Aug 15th, 2007, 11:05 AM
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Do you need an elevator?

Do you want AC?

Do you want a shower or bathtub or both?

Are you looking for a place with a 24 hour front desk - or are you comfortable with being given a door key when you go out for dinner?
nytraveler is offline  
Old Aug 15th, 2007, 11:12 AM
Join Date: Mar 2005
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Hi sberliner. You sound like me - like to have all of your bases covered to reach the maximum possible satisfaction! However, I hope like me, when you get to Italy & see how different the hotel rooms are from what Americans (assume you are US, maybe not) experience in the US, I hope you go with the flow, enjoy the differences, & still get the max pleasure out of your trip. Hubby & I love Italy! Here are some thoughts I have:

If you need or want an elevator versus stairs, ask if one available. Also, if an elevator is important, even if one is on premises, consider it may often be out of order - so request a lower floor. However, it is usually noisier on lower floors. My husband likes lower floors because of fire possibility in the old buildings.

Ask if "wash cloths" are supplied & clean ones daily, because most do not provide those. That way you will know before leaving home to go by Walmart (in the grocery cleaning section) & get some disposible cleaning cloths - not much weight in luggage & come in handy.

Ask if clean bath towels are provided daily.

Ask if room cleaning is provided everyday - without extra charge.

Don't count on bath toiletries - some replenish; some don't.

If important to you (depends on time of year) ask about AC & heat. Is it individually controlled in your room? Does it get turned off at certain times of the day & night - might be the deciding factor between hotels. Some only leave it on at certain hours of the day/night. Is there an extra charge?

Ask about the size of the rooms, if that matters to you. Sometimes asking for certain things like quiet, low floor, view, can get you into the smallest room. Maybe you will want to request according to room size.

Be sure to check the reviews on tripadvisor.com, slowtalk.com, venere.com. Often there are hints of what to request at some hotels.

Specify whether you want a "matrimonial" bed (double or queen - usually double) or twin beds.

Ask about smoking vs non-smoking rooms.

Ask if the room has a telephone - some don't. Ask if extra charge to have it activated for local calls; can your phone card be used without extra charge?

Some hotels have mini-bars in the rooms. If so, ask if it can used for your personal items. Some charge for that use or do not allow it at all.

Ask if a room safe is in the room; extra fee?

Use a map & determine if hotel is relatively close to transportation - bus & metro.

Ask if breakfast is provided free of charge. Check the review boards mentioned above to determine if the breakfast is good and how much food.

Is a deposit required or just a credit card hold.

Is there a cancellation policy & when is it applied - 2 months out, 24 hours before? How can you cancel - by email?

If it is a B&B, apt, convent, ask about the curfew, if any. Will you have your own key?

Most importantly, ask for a "special" price! Many times you will be given a discounted rate for asking - but do so only after you have determined your type of room & ask to be sure the discount includes all of the amenities, such as breakfast. I got a discount once & when I asked if that included breakfast, was told "No".

You may get a discount
1. if you are staying 4 or more nights, especially 1 week - there is usually a weekly price.

2. if you are staying in off season.

3. sometimes just say, "Oh, that is over my budget. Do you have any specials or discounts?"

But remember, discounts, double beds, etc. may put you into a smaller room if you have not determined that.

Be sure to get an email outlining everything you have agreed upon - before you pay. After I settle the terms, if by phone, I ask for an email to outline all that we have agreed upon & then I will call back & give my VISA.

Good luck & enjoy, Julie

Julie_Hurst is offline  
Old Aug 15th, 2007, 11:30 AM
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And if you ask all those questions, be prepared to have the hotel/B&B tell you that they have no room for you.
Zerlina is offline  
Old Aug 15th, 2007, 11:43 AM
Join Date: May 2005
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Oh, my..I never have done so much questions to a hotel in my life LOL

To think I have problems to have a room NEAR the elevator....
kenderina is offline  
Old Aug 15th, 2007, 12:15 PM
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My preference would be to have a nice handsome Italian man in it!
SharonG is offline  
Old Aug 15th, 2007, 12:31 PM
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sberliner, all I can give is my own experiences. Have never had a problem getting all of the info I need with a friendly response. I'm sure how one approaches others is the key. However, if I did receive a non-friendly response, I would not want to stay there. After all, those are the people who receive sooo many questions everyday from their customers.

I usually start with the hotel's website for info - that answers some questions.

Then the review boards give some info.

Then I email the hotels of interest with some of the most important questions.

Then when I get to about 3 choices, I call with my $10 AT&T international phone card from Walmart. I introduce myself, make a friendly contact, ask any last questions, confirm any info that I may already know that needs confirming, then get to specifics. Request an email confirmation of our agreement & then call back with my VISA.

I have done this for 3 trips to Italy & have made some great friendly contacts. It helps to express your enthusiasm for visiting their city & staying in their facility, calling the person to whom you are speaking by name & talking with them not at them, not being an arrogant traveler (like they are doing me a favor; I know it all, etc.)

Of course, not everything on my list is important to me & may not be important to you.

Have fun with it all. Julie
Julie_Hurst is offline  
Old Aug 15th, 2007, 01:05 PM
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Thank you all--especially Julie.
I understand that this is a best-practices wish list, but it really helps to know all the right questions so that I know what I'm getting into.
After reviewing their website, I just tried these questions with a B&B and
it was well received. Thank you.

Sharon: Although my husband would have a problem with your request, I loved it! Thank you!
sberliner is offline  
Old Aug 15th, 2007, 01:15 PM
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I like being helpful
SharonG is offline  
Old Aug 15th, 2007, 02:39 PM
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Especially Julie? OK, those of us giving straight-forward responses, please leave the room.
sandi_travelnut is offline  
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