Friday, November 7, 2008

It's an image thing

- 'So I hear you're going on holidays'

- 'Yeah, heading away for the weekend, can't wait! The place is meant to be lovely, lots to see; we'll be up early every day to get in the sights and then out late each night'
- 'You'll need another holiday once you're through with this one! Where are you staying?'
- 'Some hotel with all the extras - pool, sauna, gym... the whole nine yards'

This is the kind of conversation I've had with certain friends down through the years and it just doesn't make any sense to me whatsoever. Why pay for fancy accommodation when you intend on spending as much time away from it as possible? Why have a pool when you'll never get to actually use it? What's the point in having a flat screen TV in your room with 24hr news stations when you're trying to get away from it all for a while? What's the point in spending silly money when you could be spending it on something brilliant!? 

Next weekend I'll be in Paris and I don't plan on spending too much time in bed. Instead I'll be out and about taking photos, eating good food and dancing the nights away. The hostel that I'm staying in has a great location, a bar next door and is great value! (
I'll be there with friends but I also expect to meet quite a few other people in and around the common room and bar which is always nice. This hostel offers me everything I need - which admittedly isn't much.

I'm not going to Paris for the accommodation, I'm going for Paris. I want to squeeze as much into my time there as is possible. I don't have a lot of money to do that and neither do my friends. This hostel is perfect!

I think that sites like have a bit of an image problem. The first issue is that the name suggests there are only hostels listed which of course isn't true (hostels, apartments, budget hotels, guesthouses, B%B's, campsites,  etc). 

The second issue is that when people go on holidays they want to spoil themselves. The best hotel in town, the finest food and maybe a spot of shopping along the way. My advice for people who want this type of holiday is to go on a cruise - don't take up space in a location you're not interested in! :)

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