More and more people are choosing to stay in self-catering accommodation rather than hotels but why? What are the benefits of staying in a holiday home rather than a hotel? Here's our top ten reasons why self-catering comes up trumps!
1. Authentic travel - guests who choose to stay in holiday homes are likely to be naturally more adventurous than those who prefer the safety and familiarity of a hotel. Hotels may have everything under one roof which can make it very easy, but a holiday home can represent a far richer travel experience because guests really do go out and experience local life, activities and attractions and immerse themselves in the local culture.
2. Unique location - you often find holiday homes hiding in unique and spectacular locations where a hotel would never fit such at the edge of a body of water, in the middle of nowhere down a dirt track or miles away from civilisation.
3. Privacy - no worrying about the Housekeeper coming in when you're otherwise engaged, nobody knocking on your door or phoning your room number by accident, no loud noise from next doors TV or shower coming through the flimsy partition wall as you try to have a long lie. You have complete freedom to have your breakfast in your pyjamas if that's what you wish!
4. Space - if you compare the size of a standard hotel room (20m squared) with the space that you have in an apartment/cottage/house, it's easy to see why guests might prefer the space that a holiday home offers. There is plenty of space to spend time together or seek some time on your own too. For active guests, there is often safe space to store your bike, skis and even your kayak! Guests will usually have their own outdoor space without having to share it with other guests.
5. Live by your own rules - sometimes it's not that much fun to have to set your alarm early to beat the breakfast queues, having to leave your room just at the point when you were sitting down to read the paper because the Housekeeper needs in to clean your room or suffering the DJ blaring YMCA just at the point when you are trying to get to sleep. Instead, you can eat breakfast when ever you choose, practice your singing or maybe even play the bagpipes at your leisure.
6. Food glorious food - guests of holiday homes have little choice but to go out and buy food, be it at the local market or by trying some of the local restaurants and cafes, and this can greatly enrich their stay. Guests can eat what they want, when they want and and they often like to cook up a storm using the local produce. They may choose to use the outdoor cooking space which is often provided for those balmy evenings (we do sometimes have them in Scotland!)
7. Home comforts - no matter how luxurious a hotel, there are only so may 'creature comforts' that they can offer. Whether it's being able to sit on a sofa instead of a bed to watch TV in comfort, being able to do a quick load of washing or being able to make a phone call in private, there are many reasons why people prefer the home comforts of a holiday home over a hotel.
8. Bring your pets - many pet-friendly holiday homes welcome your furry friends. They have the whole property to move around in as well as outdoor space and they can bark (at least the dogs can) until their hearts are content. Compared to a hotel where they may only have a very small space and making noise may not be tolerated, that's if pets are allowed at all!
9. Facilities - forget paying extra for in-room movies or wifi, most self-catering properties offer free wifi, multi-room TVs, DVDs, games, books and rainy day items to keep everyone entertained. You can also do your laundry on holiday, which can cut down on luggage size and weight.
10. Entertaining friends - when you're on holiday, it's not always ideal to invite old or new friends up to your hotel room however it can be great fun to invite them over to your apartment/cottage/house for a drink or a meal in a relaxed environment.