Choosing a Place to Stay

Sunset in Nice from our hotel. Photo by Steve Collier.

Sunset in Nice from our hotel. Photo by Steve Collier.

Here are some resources that can help you find a great place to stay wherever you are while hopefully giving you a more interesting way to experience your stay than an identikit hotel may bring and help you find that cool local spot to unwind with a couple of beers…

Couchsurfing

A huge community based site where you can crash at someone’s place for free (make sure you offer to help out, cook dinner and keep tidy though). A couch, bed, room, floor will be your home and you get to meet the locals who will usually be more than willing to go out of their way to make you feel at home. The forums are a great place to find possible transport opportunities, Couchsurfer community events such as coffee meetups, museum trips, camping etc and anything else you want to know about travel in the area from people who live there. It’s up to the host as to how long you can stay.

airbnb

Like couchsurfing but you pay a really small fee (varies from place to place but generally you can find lovely homes for generally cheaper than a hostel if you set the parameters) to stay at someone’s place. Unlike couchsurfing you can book a specific amount of time using the availability calendar. It’s all verified by the site so it’s safe and the free, downloadable app is really smooth and easy to use. Great if you want to stay in a specific place for an amount of time while feeling at home and hanging out at a local’s pad.

Hostelbookers

Hostels are great ways to meet fellow travellers while finding a place to stay. Most hostels are happy to organise trips, bike rental, social events and more. This company make it really easy to find the perfect place. Detailed information, reviews and a pretty reliable rating system. They also don’t charge booking fees so everything is straight forward and transparent.

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