Whether you’re on your holidays or travelling for business, staying at a hotel can be a wonderful experience. There’s something immensely satisfying about being spoiled with great food, facilities and service.
It’s also nice to have a home base at the ready when you need to recharge between tourist escapades and the inevitable food binges (perhaps that’s just our holidays!).
In the latest Canstar Blue survey, we asked Australian travellers to tell us about their experiences with hotels.
We think it’s interesting that half of these respondents would rather splurge on the trip itself than the accommodation. That means – for close to half of surveyed travellers – one of the better things about the holiday is the hotel.
So, let’s see what they liked most – and least – about their hotel stay.
What Australians like about their hotels
The beds (53%)
A freshly made bed can really make you feel at home. We love entering a hotel room for the first time and jumping onto an enormous bed with light fluffy sheets and a doughy mattress. More than half of the survey respondents thought the bed in their hotel was one of the best things about staying there. Perhaps the biggest sell when going on vacation is a good night’s sleep?
Included extras (51%)
Welcome gifts, free desserts, complimentary WiFi: getting more value for what you pay for the hotel is a big deal to travellers. Honestly, we’re happy enough with a free dessert…
Pool and amenities (51%)
A big favourite with kids and adults alike, a great pool can really liven up your afternoon. Similarly, if you’re a bit of a health buff, it’s great to have access to a private gym when you’re on the road – in case you want to burn off a little energy (or some of the travel treats you’re eating).
Room service (29%)
Nothing feels quite as opulent as the illusion of having your very own kitchen staff at your disposal. Do you feel like cake at 11:30 in the morning? Order some – we won’t judge. Fancy a drink? Have a mimosa at 3pm – why not, you’re on vacation!
Hotel staff knowledge (22%)
One of the most appealing aspects about travelling for many is “living like a local” and experiencing all the great things that are unique to the area. For that, however, you need an insider’s knowledge, and hotel staff are usually more than happy to tell you where all the hot spots are. You have the resource, so make sure you use it!
What Australians don’t like about their hotels
Dirty rooms (72%)
Cleaning up and keeping house is what you have to deal with back home – you shouldn’t have to do it on vacation! If you feel it’s warranted, call up the front desk and demand someone comes up and cleans your room, or better yet, that they move you to a clean one (ideally a better one, considering the trouble).
Noisy neighbours (55%)
Noisy neighbours aren’t too big a deal during the day, but it’s the last thing you want to deal with when you’re tired after a long day of sightseeing – let alone if you’re jetlagged. We recommend calling the front desk and making a polite complaint in the first instance and, if that fails, knock on their door and calmly confront them yourself. Failing that, ask to be moved to a new room the next night.
Hidden costs (54%)
A member of Canstar Blue’s digital team was once charged for taking the dressing gown from his hotel… despite having done no such thing. Even if it’s warranted, no one enjoys hidden costs and fees. When booking your hotel, take some time to read the terms and conditions, and don’t be afraid to stand up for yourself if you think you’re being ripped off.
Unhelpful staff (46%)
If staff are unhelpful, make sure you send an email to the hotel’s management ASAP. At the very least you may help out a future guest. At best, you may get an apology from the hotel before you check out.
Expensive rooms (42%)
We don’t enjoy overspending on anything, especially when holiday costs can already be quite high. Combat this by choosing your hotel very carefully. But before you even get to that stage, first consider which online accommodation booking service to use. We rate all the big brands on our site, so you can compare all the players and pick the right one for you based on top ratings for overall satisfaction and value for money.
What do you love and hate about your hotel stays? Let us know in the comments section below!