For international businessmen or travelling salesmen, staying in hotels is a necessary part of the job. You may not like it. For being away from home, on your own, can be a lonely experience. Especially in a foreign country or remote location. You may miss your bed. You may miss the family. You may just miss the comfort of home. Yet it is something many people have to do. Particularly if they want to stay employed.
When looking to book a business hotel then it is important to find somewhere that will make your stay as enjoyable as possible. You are after all there on business, so you need to be in a place that will allow you to remain on top of your game. But what exactly does that entail?
Below is a list of 10 things you should consider when booking your business hotel. Find one with most or all of these factors and the chances are you will actually enjoy your business trip next time around!
Where exactly do you want your hotel to be? Near the airport or the highway for a quick getaway home? Near where your meeting or event is due to be held? Or in the centre of town near all the main attractions. Once you have decided this you can narrow your search for hotels based on these parameters. For example you can search specifically for hotels near Wall Street in New York or Heathrow Airport in London. Once you have established your shortlist of hotels it is also probably a good idea to find out more about the town or neighbourhood it is in. A simple Google search or a quick call to the local police should advise you as to have safe the area is.
2. Room Amenities
If you require a hotel outside of the city limits, or simply would prefer to spend your evenings relaxing in your room then it is important to find out what kind of amenities your hotel room offers. Does it have the size of bed you are after? Does it offer Wi-Fi internet access? Does it have satellite TV? A fridge, mini bar or even free local calls? You know what you are looking for in a hotel, so before you start searching why not make a checklist of the most important things for you? It will make it easy for you to compare what you want with what the hotel room has.
3. Hotel Amenities
As above, you also know what kind of amenities you are looking for in a hotel. Whether it be a gym, sauna, pool, massage, onsite parking or beauty services if you make a list of the kind of things you would like your hotel to offer it will help you decide more easily on the suitability of the hotels you are browsing.
4. Business Facilities
Bearing in mind you are on a business trip it is probably a good idea to establish what kind of business facilities the hotel has, even if it is just as a back-up plan. Most hotels offer internet access as well as fax and photocopying services. Some even have conference and meeting rooms as well as secretarial services onsite too. Whatever business facilities you might require make sure beforehand that the hotel can provide it. Better to be prepared than potentially caught short.
5. Restaurant and Bars
Everyone has to eat and if you are planning to entertain a potential customer then the significance of food takes on even more importance. It is important to establish what if any restaurants and bars are onsite, or at least within close proximity to the hotel. The last thing you want is to be stuck in the middle of nowhere with the nearest dining options a 20 minute cab ride away. If your hotel does have restaurants onsite you should be able to request a menu. If they suggest restaurants in the locality a simple Google search of the area should show up some reviews of them.
It is always worth finding out if your hotel has a concierge as these people are usually worth their weight in gold. (Especially in a crisis!). As a general rule concierges have a wealth of local knowledge and are there to advise and problem solve as required. Whatever you need they will do their best to get it done for you quickly and professionally, with the minimum of fuss. You might not end up using them during your stay, but it is great to know the option is there.
7. Transport Links
For business travellers transportation is a real issue as it is important to get from your hotel to your meeting, event or even the airport with the minimum of hassle. When evaluating a hotel it is always worth establishing whether it has transportation shuttle buses, or car hire options onsite. At the very least it should have good access to securing taxis or private cars, especially if you are staying in an area where most people drive their own vehicles. The last thing you want to do is miss an important meeting because you are stranded in your hotel.
8. Other Guests
It is often a good idea to establish the clientele of the hotel and also whether there is a major event taking place at the time of your stay. If One Direction are in town you might want to check whether there will be lots of hysterical teenagers staying on the property. Similarly if the hotel is located near a nightclub or the centre of town you don’t necessarily want to be awakened every 20 minutes by the group of party goers making loud noise. Similarly if you want to socialise at night with other guests a hotel that caters to octogenarian coach parties might not be the place for you.
9. Guest Reviews
Hotels are very good at promoting themselves. With the power of words they can quickly seduce the reader with flowery prose and emotive language. So when looking for a hotel it is always worth checking out previous Hotels Guest Reviews. When doing this, the thing to look out for most is not just the average rating of the hotel, but the number of people reviewing the hotel. A hotel with an average rating of 8.1 out if 10 from 1243 reviewers is often a better measure of suitability than a hotel with a rating of 9.5 from only 12 people.
Once you have found a hotel that meets all your requirements be sure to get the best price possible for it by comparing all available rates and deals from a range of different booking sites. There are hundreds of Hotel Finder booking sites out there and you can check the prices of them all through the search box below.