Traveling and Hotels
Traveling and hotels are inextricably linked as people who are traveling will often need accommodation for a short period of time while they are away from home. Hotels offer a range of services that can be tailored to the needs of different travellers. Some hotels specialize in particular types of accommodation, such as luxury hotels and family-friendly hotels. Others offer a more general selection of rooms for all kinds of travellers. Many hotels are members of chain hotel systems, which provides a standard that travellers know they can expect and also offers loyalty programs. A number of hotel chains also operate their own brands and properties to target different market segments. For example, a hotel that does not meet the standards for the Days Inn brand may be marketed as the Knights Inn, or a hotel with full-service amenities can launch an economy limited service marque under separate branding to enter the economy price range without jeopardizing the reputation of its core brand.
A variety of websites are available to help travelers find hotels. There are online travel agencies (OTAs), which typically offer deals that the hotels themselves cannot match; hotel sites, which can often provide a more complete selection of amenities than OTAs; and aggregators, which are search engines that trawl both OTAs and the hotel sites to return a compendium of results. Some of these search engines are owned by the hotel chains themselves, while others are independent.
Choosing the right type of accommodation is essential for any trip, especially if it is a special occasion or a holiday. It is also a good idea to book a room in advance, especially during peak seasons when accommodation can be scarce and the best rates are available.
Most countries have a system for rating the quality of hotels. This is usually expressed in terms of stars, though some use letters or particular names. These ratings are used to set tariffs, and to attract and retain customers. Some are regulated by the state, while others are independently assessed by organizations that aim to be impartial.
Some hotels are geared toward business travellers, offering meeting space and services that can be useful to those travelling for work. They are often located close to central business districts, business parks and other places that would be of interest to a business traveller. Other hotels are aimed at leisure travellers who wish to stay for extended periods of time in one place and cater for themselves, partly or fully.
When choosing an accommodation, it is important to consider the environmental impact of the choice you are making. According to Sustainable Travel International, tourism is responsible for 8% of the world’s carbon emissions and this can have disastrous consequences when it is unsustainable in nature. When staying at a hotel, there are many things you can do to reduce your carbon footprint. For example, choosing greener hotels and travelling during off-season months when prices are lower can be a great way to make your holiday more environmentally friendly.