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Your Best Bed and Breakfasts in Europe

Are you ready to stay at Bed and Breakfasts in Europe?

One of the secrets for finding affordable accommodations in Europe is to check out bed and breakfast properties. They are mostly located in the outskirts of a major city or in the countryside.

They used to be just a room in a private houseÖsome still areÖbut now youíll also find them in city apartments and farmhouses. B&Bís are called Zimmer Frei in German and Chambre a Louer or Chambreís díhotes in French.

Europeans generally regard B&Bís as an inexpensive place to stay, unlike American B&Bís, which are often more luxurious and expensive. They can also be small, family run hotels where the family has its own living quarters on the premises.

A free breakfast comes with the room...of course

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Benefits and drawbacks of staying at Bed and Breakfasts

The ProsÖ

  • Itís a great way to meet the local people and, get insider tips on what to see, where to eat and what to doÖ
  • B&Bís usually cost less than hotels, however, some Castle B&Bís are a little more.
  • Staying at B&Bís gives you great opportunities to experience living in a castle or private home in Europe.

But also think ofÖ

  • Meeting the people is part of the fun at a B&B. But, if you want privacy, stay at a hotel.
  • Check in and check out times at B&Bís are more limited.
  • The owners and some other guests may already be in bed when you come back from a night on the town. Hotels are a lot more sound proof.
  • Be sure what you getÖB&Bís on the web can mean lots of different things.

    In Portugal, for example, you find three types of B&B's in the countrysideÖ from basic farms to upscale manor houses.

Prepaid B&Bís but not reserved in advanceÖ

In Ireland the Farmhouse and Country Home associations offer pre-paid vouchers through tour operators. The same applies to Great Britain.

However, if you arrive in Ireland after a long flight, we suggest you ask the tour operator to book the first night in advance. Or even better stay the first night, and maybe the last night, at a hotel or luxurious castle.

You will appreciate the private bathroom and other amenities before or after a long flight very much.

Start your vacation off...or end it on the right foot!

SoÖwhatís the best and simplest way for you to book bed and breakfasts in Europe?

Before you leave homeÖyouíve got four optionsÖ

Remember, booking B&Bís in advance can be a bit confusing because on the web everything that offers a bed and a breakfast is called a B&BÖincluding small hotels, pensions, guesthouses and even houseboats on the canals in Amsterdam.

  1. Larger B&Bís have their own website.
  2. Many B&Bís belong to groups. In Ireland where B&Bís are extremely popular most belong to Bed and Breakfast and Farmhouse associations. In France itís the Chateaux B&B group.
  3. In the European Travel Resource Center you find details and direct links for 19 European countries.
  4. Special B&B booking offices such as Uptown Reservations for London are available.

And once youíre in EuropeÖ

Maybe you prefer traveling on the spur of the moment without making plans or reservations in advance.

Thatís no problem. Each B&B has a B&B sign on the house so here are some tips.

  • Just go in and ask to see the room, ask the price, and if you like both, stay. If you donít, go to another one. This is especially popular in the countryside and smaller towns.
  • Go to the local tourist offices and ask them to make a reservation for you. They know the B&Bís and they will tell you check in times and the price upfront. Iíve often used these offices myself in Europe.
  • In Wales we stayed at a B&B that belongs to the Great Little Places group. The place was not open when we arrived at 4:00 PM; however, an hour later the owner welcomed us with open arms.

    And what a place it was! Much better and certainly more personal than many hotels.

The choice is yours!

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