Hotels are boring!

Anyone who spends a lot of time in hotels knows what to expect from a standard room: a bed, bedside tables with the obligatory Bible, an old TV, a small sitting area, a simple bathroom and a pamphlet with the house rules.

While far from an inspiring environment, this is often the reality business travellers face as these are the rooms that fit within their travel policy. So what can you do to make your stay more pleasant?

Play tourist

The purpose of your trip is not to spend hours in a hotel room. You'll likely be out and about visiting clients or attending meetings and conferences. You could spend what little free time you do have in your room. But why not use your time to explore the city? Pretend you're a tourist, grab a cab and head to a local restaurant or take a dip in the ocean. There's something to do everywhere, so take advantage of it. According to the annual travel management survey conducted by Zakenreis magazine, 86% of employers have no problem with their employees adding a holiday to their business trips (assuming no additional costs are involved). So put this to good use.

Choose better rooms

Another option is to choose better hotels with more luxurious rooms. While it may be tempting to book a room in Dubai's Burj Al Arab, a hotel like this is probably not in your organization's travel policy. A happy medium would be to choose a more luxurious room in a standard hotel. Your travel management company can advise you on the possibilities within your policy and it can't hurt to share your preferences with them.

Book a room in someone's home

A fun alternative is to book a room in a B&B or a homestay. These are extremely popular among holiday travellers, but rarely used by business travellers. A B&B can be a fantastic option. They are generally well-kept and relatively cheap and give you the opportunity to chat with the owners and get a taste of local life. The biggest challenge when booking a B&B is finding one that fits your organization's travel policy.

Hotel rooms contribute to effectiveness

Whichever option you choose, the room you end up staying in will contribute to the Total Result of Travel. A bad room also contributes to the effectiveness of your trip, albeit in a negative way. Make critical and well-informed choices and ask your travel management company to think outside the box and book a B&B or homestay instead. I know this would have a positive impact on me, personally, but how have you experienced staying at different accommodations? I'd love to hear about it.

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