Staying in hotels is a usual choice for most travellers. Convenient and hassle-free, hotels also have an added benefit of providing breakfast, clean towels and nice small shampoo bottles. What most hotels lack though is a sensible price. Hence – many creative options travellers have for a cheaper, and often much more interesting, accommodation.
- Bed and Breakfasts. Great hotel alternatives, they are usually much smaller and intimate. Best of all – they come in a bundle with nice hosts, meal packages and quite an affordable bill. Hosts are also usually very helpful in terms of showing you the best sightseeing spots or arranging tours around.
- Hostels. Even cheaper than B&Bs, hostels are usually associated with large crowded rooms and lack of basic amenities. They don’t have to be. In Armenia we stayed in one where for 10$ a night in addition to nice room you received access to the swimming pool, breakfast and free wifi. Besides, hostels are an excellent option to meet fellow travelers over the bottle of beer in the common area.
- Short-term rentals. Services like Airbnb allow you to rent the whole properties abroad – ranging from a single room to huge three-floor houses. A great option for the group who value privacy and their own space, it also gives you a chance to save on food as often you get a kitchen to cook your own meals. The best part is the variety of apartments listed: houses on trees, trailers and houseboats are among only a few extravagant choices to rent out.
- Homestays. With services like couchsurfing you can stay in someone’s bedroom or living room. The main benefit – it is absolutely free. An added one – you get to meet locals who can be a priceless source of useful information. To be fair – in our travels we collected a whole range of homestays experiences, ranging from amazing to creepy. In any case, it always made a great story to tell.
- Farmstays. Popular in Europe, Australia and New Zealand they are quite similar to homestays and recommended for those enjoying rural surroundings. Some are happy to host you for free, others expect some help with the farm in return. Make sure to check before booking – otherwise you might find yourself milking a cow for the entire holiday.
- Religious lodging. An interesting option to dive into the local culture. In India and Nepal you can stay in temples with monks, and Italy offers some beautiful monasteries to host travellers.
- Camping. If you are a proper backpacker, camping might be a preferred option, especially if travelling outside cities. Even in towns with services like Campinmygarden you can discover hosts who won’t mind you tenting in their garden.
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