I have had many people ask me…where do you stay when you are on the road? I, along with my trusty notebook (where I [naturally] keep all my lists) am here to give you a few examples. FYI, we generally do not make any reservations; we just take what we find once we decide where we are going.
- Usually we stay in hostels. They are generally the cheapest option and almost always have an availible bed. For usually about 10 US dollars each, you get a dorm bed. Yes, you have to share a room with other people sometimes. But normally it is only a couple other people and for the amount of time we spend at “home”, we are not there enough for them to bug us. In fact, you oftentimes end up making friends with the people in your room and usually get along with them well enough to even hang out the next day! If nothing else, you get great travel advice this way.
- We also did a lot of camping. Unfortunately, we ended up going to a few countries where even the hostels were too expensive, so we traded a Europe guidebook for a tent (thanks S&R!!) and this is how we lived for a couple of months. The camping facilities where we were (Zambia, Namibia and South Africa) were wonderful usually. They mostly had great views, were in nice locations and were anywhere from $5 USD to $10 USD each.
- Guesthouses in some of the cheaper countries, such as India and Nepal (and Southeast Asia), are definitely the way to go! You get your own room WITH a bathroom (Hallelujah! In most hostels you have to share) for only about $1.50 USD - $5 USD. If you feel like splurging, you can get a room for (gasp) $8.
- Thanks to my job, which forces me to stay in a hotel about 9/10 of the year, we have hotel points**. Although using them is about 1,000 times faster than gaining them, we did get a few free nights at a nice hotel, which we saved for special treats OR places like Venice, where a simple hostel is about 25 Euros each!! (that’s about 32 dollars…EACH!) **if I have not blogged about these before, which I am sure I have, let me suggest that even if you only stay in a hotel a couple nights a year, make sure you sign up for these programs! You will eventually get a nice reward out of it.
- One time we slept in a car, which fortunately we had, becuase we were staying in a tent and it was pouring rain and everything was soaking wet. This was not the most comfortable night, but it was an adventure!
- Lastly, although we would not pick this on purpose, once or twice we could not get accommodation (like I said, we do it all on the fly, without reservations) and we had to pay for a night in a regular old hotel. We saw it as a treat, although that was not our first choice.
So, this is where I sleep. Some of the places are nice; some are not. None of them were downright scary, but some definitely were not super clean. All of these are great places to find out about the area, meet other travelers and hopefully get some laundry done.
Where do you stay when you travel? Do you splurge on accomodation? Or do you sleep in your car on the side of the road? What is important to you? A clean bathroom? A pool?