Booking a hotel via internet can be a surprising journey


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You want to book a hotel for your vacation? You are good in searching but not willing to choose always the Marriot Hotel? OK... here are some own experiences. ENJOY!

Be a 'cowboy'... or pay

Take it easy
Right from the start: I book my hotel always online but I can always easily lower my standards. I am a 'cowboy' and can accept some extra trails :-) Maybe that's one of the reasons, why I don't have problems to adopt the Philippine style and way of life. Let me first share some private experiences before I give you my ultimate tip, how to handle the hotel booking (in Asia).

Silom I have a very good friend. He is 50% Thai and his experience was very helpful for me, to accept different challenges when I started in 2007 my first trip to Asia. Of course, because of him it was to Thailand. I wasn't stingy when I booked for my 3 weeks stay in Bangkok a nice suite in Silom. The room was nice... but I could never read even a single line from the pigeons, living and sleeping on my ceiling, directly over the bed. No review mentioned that!

Ibis Bangkok For the next stay in 2008 I wanted to make it better and chose a IBIS Hotel. They are showing (I did not check if this is still available) a nice gadget in their website where you can explore the room in 360┬░ and interactive. The hotel is a bit away from the 'center' but easy to go there. The modern furnished room was really like seen in the 360┬░ view and for a nice price. But when I arrived with my Girlfriend there, the room was so small. We really had problems to store or big trolleys somewhere.

Regency Inn The next special experience with an online booked hotel was 2009 in the Philippines, Davao. The 'Regency Inn' provides, aside from being listed in several booking engines with some reviews, an own website with a lot of nice information about the hotel and the surroundings. Lucky me, I booked it only for few days because there was 'something' wrong with this hotel. Why there was so many Lady boy's sitting in the lobby and why most of the women there looks like ... waiting for a customer for work in one of the rooms?

Garden-plaza 2010 was the year to make changes: I used another hotel booking engine and I decided to book only max. for 2 night because I experienced: In Asia, they have more hotel rooms then guests. An exemption might be in a city like Kalibo while the Ati-Atihan Festival. This time I chose the 'Garden Plaza' in Manila, next to the Paco Park. The description sounds good and I only wanted to stay for a short time after my flight before I started to explore Baguio. Lucky me, I arrived Manila at evening and could already exchange some money because the hotel was asking for a '1.000 PHP safety deposit'. I could read nowhere something about this.

Some more short hints for 'special' experiences: The missing elevator in Olongapo's 'Ridgecrest Garden' but happily they have estimated 32 stairs up to the Lobby. The 'Oliveros Place' in Kalibo. Often the water is not running at daytime and missing warm water for a shower. No room cleaning up even you stay for more then one week. Many more to mention but I am not the kind of person to complain. I take it with a smile and make the best out of it. And because of this, handle your hotel booking like me:

Book always only for max. 2 days after your arrival and if you don't feel comfortable in this hotel, grab your chance and explore other ones, check the rooms and book there or, if you feel well in your hotel: Extend your booking.
And, by the way: Most of the hotels are having an own website and the rates there are often better then in booking engines. Check it out!

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