Travellers are continually getting more sophisticated and spending more time analysing accommodation options before booking accommodation these days. The age of the Internet means that we now check 4 or 5 sites before making a booking and add onto this the fact that holiday apartments have also became a popular way to stay in a destination, the options are even greater.
In the past, booking a hotel was the clear option and this perhaps made life easier in that it was simply a case of searching for the best price, facilities and location and selecting the hotel of your choice. In the last 10 years though holiday apartments (also often known as vacation rentals to the American market) have become increasingly popular and really can offer great value and mean the chance to have a far more interesting experience in the destination in which you are staying. So what are the main differences between staying in an apartment or villa or choosing a hotel?
What is worth looking at when you compare the accommodation options is to analyse the per person price. When you see pppn, this refers to per person per night cost and when you work out the pppn, you will get a much more honest idea of what the real cost is for each traveller. Apartments often mean the chance to accommodate a large group in the same place i.e. the rentals can often be 2 or 3 bedroom and normally with kitchen and lounge area. Try and work out the real cost of the stay with the pppn prices and compare against the same rates for a hotel stay. You might find that as a group, you need to book 3 hotel rooms as opposed to one luxury villa.
Facilities is really one of the big selling points when staying in a rented apartments and villas with the self-catering facilities really a way in which you can drive down the cost of your holiday. Shopping in a local supermarket and thus buying food cheaply and being able also to easily choose healthy options (if you wish to) means that by eating one meal a day such as breakfast, in your own kitchen, you can save significantly. Many of the villas and decent sized rentals you can choose from, have excellent facilities and it is common to have a cooker, fridge/freezer, microwave and often a washing machine and other white goods you find in a kitchen. If having use of a kitchen would feel too much like being at home then you do not have to use the kitchen facilities. You can though benefit from the significantly larger space than you tend to get as compared to in a hotel room. Internet access, a parking space, pull out bed are typically included in many rentals also.
Many rentals also do have secure entrances and sometimes reception areas and from a security point of view, staying in an apartment can be as safe as a hotel stay, if not safer. There is no reason to see safety or security as an issue if this were to be on your mind. Just focus on trying to stay in a good area and which is close to the main amenities.
Further Information: You can contact the owners direct (many have their own websites) whilst you can otherwise take a look at the various price comparison sites which give you a wide selection of options. Companies in this market include the likes of visiting Easytobook.com and both offer a solid selection of rentals across the most popular European cities and in many other countries worldwide. You might also be interested in also buying your own holiday apartment abroad?
Written by Paul Symonds.