my friends are avoiding booking ahead because they want to be spontaneous. Just wondering if anyone can tell me what they think about not booking hostels or any accomodation before going over to europe during july/august.
has anyone travelled during these months and not booked a place to stay, or been thankful they booked cause others found everywhere was booked?
is this an extremely bad idea? did it end up costing a lot more instead of just booking ahead?
Depends where you're going. I would would be very careful. I worked in the hotel industry in Glasgow for some time and there are some nights when the city is just completely full, not a bed to be found anywhere. And much of Europe is the same - Amsterdam is a classic. I was having breakfast in Amsterdam watching people walking about from the night before still looking for a room.
I would book in advance, especiall for that time of year.
It did not end up costing more, because I slept in train stations, and in a tent in the woods, for free. In July, book accomodation, before u arrive in places in Europe. Booking a few days in advance might be enough.
August is not as bad, but I still think it would be wise to book ahead. At the very least it will save u from trecking from hostel to hostel, when they turn out to be full.
Definitely book ahead at that time of year. Even if you can find a place to stay without booking in a really crowded city at this time of year, it is likely to be a long way from the centre of town, could be more expensive and possibly not as nice as if you book online ahead and read reviews/get to make a choice on where you stay. It's not much fun being a long way out of town (unless you're at a camp site i've heard), especially when your hostel sucks. This is particularly true at weekends, where everything is super busy!
If you friends are insistent on not booking maybe make a compromise and book on weekends but not during the week? Though I would try and book them all personally.
yeah agree! u must book ahead in july/august. Go offseason and you can be spontaneous.
i travelled a lot through europe (mainly southern part) in summer and never booked ahead but think it's a question of desired comfort... think about bringing a small & lîghtweight tent since there's always some space on a camp site - being even cheaper than hostels!
yeah it depends where youre going....
amsterdam SUCKS to find things in the summer. everythigns so booked, and REALLY expensive. hostel beds are like, 40euros :S
i personally, would book ahead, but im a bit organised, and like to know that i have a place to dump my things etc, and a bed/shower.
Weekends are more critical. It depends on your tolerance for adventure and in lodging (aka train station benches, for example). You don't have to book six months in advance, but you could try for a week or so, making the bookings as you go. Berlin is pretty busy in the summer; one small guest apartment that I know of is booked up during this time about 8 to 10 weeks in advance, but there are often little 2-3 day gaps. So, in the larger cities you may well always be able to find something (except on weekends or during special events), but it may not be for the price you want to pay, or the type of accommodation you prefer, or in the central location you are seeking.