Choosing bed and breakfast over other accommodation options is a great way to customize your stay, get to know the locals, and find a dry, cheerful room at the same price as a big hotel chain. There are so many variants of B&B’s that it may seem overwhelming to choose the perfect one. The word has come to describe everything at an unassuming farmhouse from a sprawling upscale estate of restored cottages to a bed, and morning coffee. There are plenty of great opportunities to find both online and off-line B&B accommodations. Read on to get our top tips on bed and breakfast while living the Vegas life.
Is Bed and Breakfast Right For You?
Bed and breakfasts are a favorite option for many travelers, but not everyone is happy with them. If you want to find a B&B:
- You want more private, smaller rooms than a big hotel.
- You appreciate individually decorated rooms, especially with antiques or period furnishings.
- Over a luxurious shared meal, you enjoy getting to know other travelers.
- You choose charm over amenities and don’t mind getting Internet access or other modern conveniences. (Editor’s note: more B&Bs introduce these new features daily — so ask your innkeeper!)
By the way, you might want to avoid B&B’s if:
- You enjoy facilities such as gyms, swimming rooms, room service, and business centers.
- You enjoy the privacy of a large hotel and its anonymity.
- Also, you would prefer to eat breakfast alone or with your travel companion rather than having a small talk with a bunch of strangers.
- You are on a very small budget (B&B appears to be a little more costly than hotels and motels with ultra-budget).
Ask the Innkeeper
Even if book your accommodations online, we advise you to call the innkeeper at least once before you leave. Here are a few topics you should consider. While some B&B’s are sophisticated and very pricey, others are quite plain and can be a real deal. Ask yourself what you should find in-room accommodation. Most B&Bs have comparatively tight check-in times. Find out what the policy is, so you’re not (as is often the case) barging hours after hours into someone’s house. With all the guests, most inns have individual en-suite bathrooms, some may allow you to share a bathroom with an adjacent suite, and some have only one bathroom for several rooms. Ask!
In contrast to what you might think, the room price doesn’t always include breakfast. It can also range from a bagel and coffee to a sumptuous feast and may be served in your room’s privacy or in a public dining room. Even inquire when breakfasts are served. Sadly, for families who enjoy traveling together, you can not believe that children would be welcomed in an establishment. While it does, find out if there is a minimum age.
- Do pets make bed and breakfast? If so, are there restrictions on size and breed?
- Ask if credit cards are approved, and ask about cancelation policies.
- Was there an on-premise restaurant?
- Was a disability-accessible B&B? If it is in a historic house, maybe it is not.
- Always ask about promotional special offers or coupons.
If you’re smoking, you need to know about the B&B’s rules. You will note that most of them do not allow smoking of any kind. Many allow it outdoors or in designated public areas, but others do not allow it on the ground anywhere.
Online Booking and Researching Resources
BedandBreakfast.com is one great place to start. The platform has a vast B&B directory all over the globe. You can find inns, if you are so inclined, in places as obscure as Vietnam and Botswana. The company provides gift cards that can be used at participating locations in the United States and Canada.
SelectRegistry.com only features about 400 approved B&B’s in the U.S. and Canada, all of which have been quality-inspected. The database can be searched by the venue, by amenity, and by price. It also provides member property gift certificates for use.
BnBFinder.com has thousands of B&B lists, exclusive deals, and even a B&B blog. You can also purchase gift certificates for stays across the U.S. at more than 1,500 inns. It is a great present for your favorite traveler.
Pamela Lanier, a well-known bed and breakfast expert and author of numerous guidebooks on the subject, hosts the website Lanierbb.com, which allows you to search for thousands of listings worldwide by location or style (beach, gourmet, disability accessible, etc.). There’s also a B&B store on site where you can shop for mattresses, wines, and cookbooks.