How To Find Cheap Hotels – A Guide For The Budget Traveler

Let’s say your budget really only allows for you to stay in cheap hotels. Does that mean you should stay home until you can afford more luxurious digs? NO…. At least we don’t think so.

We prefer to look at these options as inexpensive… not cheap. Makes it sound a whole lot better doesn’t it? If you want to be a frugal traveler, no matter what your budget, these little places can be a great option.

If you plan to be out and about seeing that new country you’re visiting, you’re not going to be spending all that much time in your room. You just need a nice clean bed to sleep in. Well, you need a little more than that.

So how to you find budget accommodations? You can search the internet, but while inexpensive hotels may be on the internet, it could be hard to find their listing. They are more apt to be independent and show up far, far down on a search page. We’ve found that it’s easy to find these little gems when we travel by stopping and checking them out when we need a room.

So what can you expect from cheap hotels? You will probably be staying in an older place. New buildings with a spiffy lobby, an elevator, and a reception desk staffed for 24 hours do not fall into the cheap category.

Look for small family run hotels. They may look a little shabby from the outside, but they could be very nice inside. Don’t judge them until you’ve walked through the door. Look at the room to see if you can live with it for 24 hours or 48 or however long you’re going to be there… but remember… you’re only sleeping and showering there.

You’ll most likely have to climb stairs to your room and carry your own bags, though some places do have very small… and “atmospheric” elevators…. You know, those little old rickety cages… the ones that might even make you want to take the stairs.

Keep in mind that some very cute little places are forced to stick with only one or two stars because they don’t have elevators and a reception desk… those are definitely NOT cheap hotels… they are travel BARGAINS.

Bargain hotels may have just a simple bed and the chairs could be mismatched. The light bulbs may be a little dim, the carpets and wallpaper may be dated, and perhaps even faded. You’ll probably find a small TV, but you may not have a phone. The closet is apt to be a small, free-standing one, or maybe an old armoire.

Most will have ensuite facilities with showers and toilets in the room. In the U.S., almost all cheap hotels come this way. In Europe and other continents, these facilities may have been fitted into a corner of the room. You do need to check though… because there are still some cheap hotels that have the toilet and shower down the hall.

This is the minimum you should have to settle for. Sure there are worse almost everywhere in the world…. We’ve even stayed in some of them in our younger days, but keep in mind, bargains come in all kinds of packages, and you should be able to find a nice cheap hotel that you can live with… at least for a day or two.