When you’re planning your next trip, hotel rooms can seem like the only viable option for lodging. But if you’re searching for an untraditional vacation, you might be looking over options that could be more exciting than staying at a generic hotel room. So if you’re looking for a place to stay that offers more than just a bed and a hot shower, read on to explore some hotel alternatives that are waiting for you.
House sitting is an excellent alternative to staying in a hotel room, particularly if you want to save money on your trip. In exchange for looking after someone’s pets and plants and maintaining their house, you can stay at their home free of charge. In addition, staying at another person’s house means you’ll have access to a kitchen and fridge, so you can save money by cooking your own food.
It’ll also give you a chance to experience a destination from the perspective of someone who actually lives there. Staying in a real neighborhood rather than in a hotel lets you see another side to whether you’ve traveled.
Housesitting can take some organization, so it’s best to sign up for a professional website that can connect you with people looking for house sitters. You should have some options over areas you can stay, and some people will be looking for a house sitter to stay a couple of days and others a couple of weeks. Still, given that you’re not able to dictate how long you’ll stay in the house, it might be worth planning the housesitting first and then moving on to booking travel arrangements. As you may be staying a little outside your chosen city, it may also be worth hiring a car or driving to the house, so you can see all the local sites when you’re there.
Housesitting may take a little extra time in planning, but it’s well worth it to stay in a whole house for free and see your travel destination from the eyes of whoever lives there usually. You may even find yourself making some furry friends!
Like housesitting, hiring an Airbnb can be a fantastic way to stay somewhere that feels more permanent than a hotel, with access to a kitchen and potentially a living room. Although Airbnb’s are more expensive, you’ll have much more choice and where and when you’ll stay, and there are definitely some bargains to be found.
You will find some hotels advertising on Airbnb, so make sure you carefully check out all your potential pads to ensure it’s exactly what you want. One of the major positives of staying somewhere through Airbnb is flexibility, so you can stay in the whole house of someone who’s away or the spare bedroom. Like housesitting, this also gives you the perspective of wherever you’re visiting from someone who lives there – most Airbnb hosts are happy to provide tips for what to check out in the area.
It’s easy to overlook hostels in favor of more private and classic accommodation, but a hostel could fit your plans perfectly depending on the kind of holiday you’re after. For example, if you’re traveling with a large group, you could find that you can book a hostel room out with just people you know, or some hostels offer rooms with two or three beds if sleeping with strangers worries you. However, the major positive of staying in a hostel is meeting new people from all walks of life. If you travel looking for adventure and to make some new friends, booking a hostel is a step in the right direction.
The variety between hostels is immeasurable, so make sure you research where you’re going. Some hostels will offer free meals on certain nights or organized nights out and activities where you can blow off some steam and make new friends from all over the world. While a hostel may not be the best choice for a family getaway, they’re an affordable and fun option if you’re looking for a looser-style holiday with some friends.
If you prefer sleeping under the stars to in a hotel, camping may be the solution for you. Some countries offer wild camping, which is the perfect way to get off the beaten track and set your tent wherever you like. Other places are stricter about where you pitch, so booking a campsite in advance is probably necessary.
If you’re looking for a holiday focused on nature and love hiking or fishing, camping might be the right choice, so you don’t have to retreat into a town at the end of each night. There are even options for those who want to stay outside but don’t fancy sleeping rough, like glamping. Glamping is more luxurious than camping but still can give you the rustic feel you’re after. You’ll still be staying somewhere beautiful, and places like Maine glamping spots may convince you to give it a try over bringing your own tent.
Camping can take a bit more planning than simply booking a hotel room, and you want to make sure you have the right equipment to cook and sleep properly. If this is something you think you could do regularly, it’s worth investing in your own camping tools and scrawling web to get the best deals. Cooking your food and sleeping outside can feel immensely rewarding, and the break you need away from screens, work, and potentially, other people.
Campervans and Caravans
Campervans or caravans have similar positives to camping, in that you’re not beholden to a single place or hotel room and instead you can get closer to nature and away from the city. However, unlike camping, they’re also a good option if you’re looking for a hybrid. It might be a bit of a squeeze, but in a pinch, you can navigate a caravan or campervan in a city and certainly in small towns.
Campervans and caravans are also a wonderful choice if you’re planning to travel to several different places over a long time. Getting between your various planned destinations as well as packing and unpacking at each pit stop can be exhausting, but with a mobile hotel room, you can retire each day to somewhere familiar. Many caravans and campervans will also have rudimentary kitchen equipment which you can use out in nature or if you want to save money. The major downside of hiring a campervan or caravan can be the cost, particularly if you’re after a roomy model. However, if you’re going to be on the road for several weeks at a time, it’s worth investing in a spacious van, so you don’t feel cramped in your temporary home.