Hotels & travel go hand in hand. Travelers have to book some sort of accommodation in order to enjoy their time away from home. While this can be pleasant, many people also relate it with stress. This is usually because they fear that the room or apartment will not live up to their expectations. In the worst cases, they may even find the room downright disgusting, which will ruin a trip. This all depends on how lucky you get and the research you do before leaving. Of course, one way to minimize your chances of a bad surprise is to book in advance. This gives you time to talk to friends about their recommendations. Also, with the Internet, you can go on forums and get advice from people who know a certain destination well. This still doesn’t guarantee that you won’t have a bad experience, but it does help you narrow choices down to accommodation options that travelers have enjoyed in the past. Other people find that booking so far in advance really takes away from the excitement and freedom of discovering a new place. For these travelers, locating hotels along the way is an enjoyable part of the process. This doesn’t mean that they don’t do research. Many people research several options before leaving home. Then, they decide on the road once they get a feel for the town and see the rooms in person. Guesthouses and bed and breakfasts are popular variations on the standard hotel. These often offer a more personalized experience. This mostly depends on the owners of the establishment. Some owners really foment a community among guests to make the experience more than just a stay at a hotel. Making a quick phone call to the establishment in question can really give you an idea of how hospitable they are. A unique variation on this type of accommodation is a home stay. These are set up by organizations or families that agree to host travelers, usually for a fee similar to a guesthouse. So, don’t assume that you will always save money this way. However, many travelers love getting to know a local family and have some contact with the area’s culture. There are some locations, however, where only a truly traditional hotel will do. Often, there are no other options. These more top-end hotels tend to offer more services as they have more capital and space to do so. Again, just because you know the brand or name of the hotel, don’t assume that it will be like others you have stayed in before. Even large chain hotels do not always maintain the same level of quality across locations, so it pays to read reviews. You should always try to get the best deal you can, even from large hotels. Many have special rates for people who book online or off-season. Smaller establishments might also give you a discount or add something extra to your stay. You won’t know if you don’t ask. Some people think of hotels & travel as separate parts of their trip and don’t focus too much on the room they end up with. But most people still feel like a comfortable and welcoming room makes or breaks a trip. No matter how you go about it, do some research and talk to people familiar with the destination before you decide.
Hotels and travel work hand in hand in the interests of the tourist industry. Each has it place in a stop-start process which is replicated in the movement of ants along ant tracks. Each little being en route to somewhere, pauses briefly to check its bearings and then hurries on. So too with tourists. They need to move and they need to pause and get their bearings. In hotel lobbies around the world people come and go. Like actors moving across a stage they represent various characters but each illustrates something about the meaning of hotels. Wrapped in a temporary film of security each person who is waiting for a taxi or coach is like a bird on a branch, ready to depart from what has been a temporary refuge. There is something of an oxymoron in the words ‘hospitality’ and ‘industry’ which are often juxtaposed in the phrase, ‘hospitality industry’. On the one hand, ‘hospitality’ connotes the disinterested and humane extension of welcome to guests. On the other hand ‘industry’ suggests activities that focus primarily on profitable activities. Taken together the two words create a new concept of the hotel room as an economic tool with humane characteristics. Each room is serviced daily and has been designed by experts to present to each successive guest an impression of order and welcome. Beds are neatly made and fittings are often of higher quality and more functional than what guests have in their own homes. Despite such professionalism most guests cannot escape the impression that each room in a corridor is the same. Odors are an unseen but significant problem for housekeepers. An establishment may have a pervading fragrance that either repels or attracts guests so that they return or do not return without quite knowing why. Chief among the odor concerns is cigarette smoke which clings to every article in a room like an unseen mold. The only solution appear to be segregation into smoking or non-smoking rooms. The categorization of rooms is more rigid than the dichotomy between hotels and travel in the tourist industry. Whilst there are subtle differences between being in a hotel and being in a vehicle en route to somewhere both states are melded together as part of one experience. There are many reasons why people travel. They range from business commitments, through domestic obligations to secret liaisons. However, most travelers have one thing in common. They experience a slight sense of alienation which comes from not being at home. Being in a permanent place imparts a sense of security, and when that sense is impaired ever so slightly the human being, like a migrating bird, is slightly lost. Online travel sites probably make migration easier and more secure than it ever has been. Information about all the various options in respect of hotels and travel may be accessed, reviewed, compared and booked well in advance. Time can be taken to reflect upon the merits and demerits of various options and this can be very important in exploiting the rich offerings of the hospitality industry.