The world travels constantly. At any given time millions of travelers are checking into rooms that were recently used by someone else. Kind of a scary thought isn’t it? Social media has participated in a major way to influence consumers to be far more informed about the quality of the accommodation they choose. Consumer sites like TripAdvisor, Google, and B&B.com to name a few provide quality information from consumer experiences that are regulated for true content before being published.
Of growing popularity are the small business entrepreneurs that own and operate bed and breakfast locations. The reason for emphasis on the individual business owner is that often they are also the operator and closely involved with daily procedures that affect the quality of accommodations the next guest will occupy. Small innkeeper entrepreneurs are a group that takes great pride in providing a service that will give customers a lasting impression. These consumers are more likely to take time to submit an honest review for future guests.
A bed and breakfast may utilize more locally originated suppliers to equip and supply the daily items used for guest comforts. Items like local, fresh in-season produce (strawberries, peaches, and apples, etc.) are amenities you won’t find at the large hotels. Often they employ high quality chefs to provide a multi course breakfast you won’t find anywhere else. In-room amenities are often provided for guests’ comfort and are equal to or exceeding premium hotels in much busier high traffic locations. B&Bs in their own, while likely costing a little more per night are a good value providing a quality breakfast; likely cooked fresh.
Consumers who are planning traveling accommodations will benefit by consulting several reviews from over a period of time; not just the most recent. Travelers leaving reviews often make comments of the quality of cleanliness, hospitality, and overall quality of their visit. While recent reviews are good, if they are consistently favorable this is a good indication that the facility is maintaining a good practice.
Many locations have convenient reservation services on the home page of their website. While this is efficient, taking a couple of minutes to speak with someone (like the owner or general manager) is also a good indicator of the quality. It’s OK to ask detailed questions if you want to know their housekeeping practices. For example, if guests have dietary preferences, by reaching to management in advance of arrival, often their needs can be accommodated, making their visit much more personable and memorable.