Heading away with friends or family on a vacation? Going on a week-long team building exercise? STOP right there! Read this before booking your group accommodation, it could make or break your trip!
Travelling in a group is not always easy and certain factors need to be considered before you have even left. You cannot just assume that everyone will have the same interests or that the other group members have the same budget as you; chances are everyone will have something different in mind. This is why it is crucial to discuss and consider what anyone else wants before booking the accommodation. Don’t let rushing into making your reservation turn the holiday into a disaster!
Booking group accommodation, what really needs to be considered
How badly could booking accommodation go? Terribly, if you do not read and take these five factors into consideration before making your reservation. Take your time and do it right!
1. Accommodation style
There is so much to factor in with just the establishment alone! You need to decide if the accommodation is suitable for every guest. The style of accommodation has to be decided before anything else – does everyone want self-contained apartments, bed and breakfast, cheap motel rooms, luxurious five star hotels or possibly just a large house that can act as your home away from home? Typically group accommodation is enjoyed through holiday houses and camps but that isn’t to say hotels with individual rooms aren’t recommended; it is entirely up to the group and their preferences.
From there you need ensure the accommodation is suitable for everyone’s personal requirements or limitations. Particularly if any of the guests have a disability that requires ramps or no stairs. Does the accommodation offer enough space for all guests to be comfortable and does it have enough rooms available for your stay?
What additional facilities does everyone want? Is parking a requirement or will you be catching public transport or have a chauffeured car? Many establishments do not include parking, so be sure to check. Other facilities guests might like are free Wi-Fi, a swimming pool, sauna, spa bath and perhaps even a gym. Before booking your group accommodation you should ensure they offer the desired amenities and also check if access is restricted at certain times as it would be devastating to want a late night swim only to be locked out.
2. Is the location convenient?
As they say, location is the key! In your case it is the key to a successful group holiday, so make sure the location is perfect.
There are several factors you need to consider when thinking about the location, they include:
- Public transport – is public transport easily accessible and within comfortable walking distance from the accommodation? This could be taxis, bus routes, trams or trains. If not, scratch it from the list.
- Reason for holiday – The purpose of your trip will play a significant part in how great of a location your accommodation is in, if you are there for a wedding for one day but have decided to turn the event into a family holiday than somewhere close to everyone’s interests is more ideal than the wedding venue. If you are there for work with colleagues than accommodation close to the conference centre is most practical.
- Activities – What things to do are there in close vicinity to the accommodation? Does everyone want to do different things while staying there? Are there explorers and adventure lovers or does everyone prefer to surf? If this is the case National Parks and beaches should be located close by. Or perhaps outlet mall shopping is on the agenda or something entirely different? The purpose and vacation goals of all guests must be considered.
People often book in a rush and skip over reading the accommodations policies and terms and conditions, this is a huge mistake! Before making your reservation you should:
- Check the cancellation policy – if someone pulls out at the last minute are you liable to cover their costs or will the venue simply cancel their room? You may have accidently entered into a non-refundable booking contract and will be charged the full rate of the room.
- Check the deposit policy – some establishments require you to pay the entire amount upfront which could see your credit card unsuspectingly being charged thousands of dollars.
Is the booking affordable for everyone? Budget plays a big part in the style of accommodation that will be booked as everyone will want to have some spending money.
When booking accommodation for groups, the budget and value for money plays a big part in why Airbnb are so popular. An entire modern house on the beach with a swimming pool, six bedrooms, etc. could cost as low as $1500 a week for up to 10 guests. But again, the desires of everyone must be considered.
Don’t just book the first place you think is nice. Do your research and do it well!
Read previous guests reviews both on and off the booking website as past guests will be honest and provide their opinions on how the place stood up to the descriptions, images and expectations. Previous guests may also be able to offer insight into how the host or booking manager was to deal with, along with useful information on the features and condition of the accommodation.
Hindsight is a wonderful thing and you don’t want to have a holiday ruined by a poor accommodation experience that could have been prevented if you had read previous guests reviews.
Booking group accommodation isn’t as straightforward and easy as it is to book for yourself however it doesn’t have to be difficult either. By getting everyone’s input, you can filter out accommodation that won’t be a good fit. And by following these tips you will ensure you and your group have a trip to remember, for all the right reasons.