T’s Threes : Hotel Stays – The Before, During and After

Home away from home. I believe that is every hotel message to their guests. In my decades of traveling I have stayed at the most luxurious hotels and the most budget friendliest hotels. If I had to place an estimate of hotel stays in my travelling; I would be comfortable to say it has been over 300 days and nights. With that being said there are some things I have learned into making my stay and room feel more like home. Below are some tips you can use while booking your next hotel stay.

Booking your Hotel

This comes down to more than just the bottom line price for me. I look at the purpose of the trip and what things on that particular trip will I want to do. Right from the start establish your deal breakers. This could be breakfast service to what type of gym, pool.

For instance if one of my objective is to accomplish a lot of work; I will focus on hotels with good internet connection and a business center. If I am going full leisure then my focus will be on spas treatments and room service. One of the most valuable tip I can share is: read the REVIEWS.

Reviews can reveal a lot and you can get another perspective from a guest versus the hotel itself. I now try to write reviews after my stays; the good and the bad. I always sign up for the members program to add points and potential savings in the future. They are free to sign up so take the time to do so. When possible I select my room when I book but will call the hotel to specifically request a certain floor or area of the hotel. Personally I prefer not to be right by the elevators for example nor the ground floor. If I plan on doing a lot of work I will ask to be placed on a floor that isn’t fully booked or pay more for a corner room. I always look for a hotel that offers some sort of gym with at least free weights and a treadmill. If I am doing a solo retreat I will check to see if there any major events happening that could cause tons of people and an overload of energy; that could interrupt my chilled out objective.

For my relaxation stays; I will even go a step further and call the hotel to see how friendly the front desk is. I know it might sound weird but

I have entered a hotel lobby, ready to fully immerse myself into serenity and have it shattered by a rude front desk staff.

My take is this: most hotels are aware that their first impression is the front desk so therefore they will place their best representation there. If that representation is rude and lack professionalism then it will be removed from my consideration. Trust me there are tons of hotels out there for you to feel like a welcomed guests.

During your stay

I have learned from all my stays that any hotel room no matter the star rating or the price can be turned into a little piece of home by doing these four things:

Unpack Completely– No matter how tired you are. Trust me. That one gesture creates a space more familiar to you when done. I have told myself “later” and normally if it starts with doing it ” later” it ends up as ” never”.

Plugins – They will instantly change a standard hotel room into a space of your own. I use plugins for safety reasons.

Customize that Bathroom – I have stayed in hotels where the toiletries selections are so good and then I have stayed where there was no toiletries selections. I have learned that even at the finest places, enhancing it with your go to items brings it closer to home. I always bring my favorite hand soap, body soap, shower puff and flip flops. If I am going to a hotel that doesn’t supply robes then I will be bring my own.

Favorites – To complete my room I travel with a favorite picture I either place on the work desk or bedside dresser; as well as a good book.

Leaving the hotel

I only have two tips and they are simple but very efficient.:

Grab Essential Items First and place in handbag, suitcase, or briefcase first.

Once everything is packed and you head out the door . Stop. Place your luggage right by the door and do a run through in the entire room and switch off the lights when done with each section.

Hopefully you can use one of my tips during your next hotel stay. Cheers.

~Terra Howard
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