Already soaked up all the culture available at the nation’s best museums? If you’re truly serious about learning and exploring more of this vast planet, you’d do well to book a flight and explore countries abroad. However, traveling so far from home can be tricky or frightening if you don’t have all of your ducks in a row. Here are five tips for finding your home away from home – the perfect accommodations for your trip.

  1. Proximity.

Some travelers do pick countries to visit at random, explaining “I just thought it sounded good”, and this can be fine. But even the most spontaneous globetrotters have a landmark or general scene in mind when they envision that country.

Be sure that your destination is positioned close to the experience you’d like to have. You may not want to stay rurally, or in a tourist-unfriendly district where getting to the sights you want to see is difficult.

  1. Reviews.

In this day and age, there’s no excuse for not reading up on where you want to stay. Sure, places off the beaten path will bear less reviews than, say, hotels near the Eiffel Tower, but you’re probably not the first to go there. Conduct thorough desktop research on all prospective accommodations.

From there, take your short list of possible places to stay and call to confirm that the features you were attracted to are still available. Some of the information you got online could be out of date, and you don’t want any unpleasant surprises.  

  1. Ask About Restrooms.

Here’s a small, unexpected tip that’s put a damper on many a vacation. In some places overseas, even guests in pretty nice hotels will be expected to share a restroom with other guests. If you’re not familiar with the culture of the land you’ll be visiting, it’s best to ask beforehand if your room comes with its own private bathroom.

  1. Accommodation Style.

Of course, maybe restrooms aren’t your first concern. The free-spirited and budget-conscious may choose to hit the hostel circuit, or stay at a locals’ place, Airbnb-style. It all comes down to how authentic you’d like your experience to be.

Many are most accustomed to private hotel accommodations, such as those found at Protea Hotel Livingstone. Just like restrooms, ask yourself what you don’t mind sharing with others. If you value privacy and time alone to reflect on your day, book the hotel.

  1. Level of Service and Amenities.

Electricity is different overseas. You’ll likely need adapters to use appliances like hair dryers and laptops abroad. You might also want a safe for your passport, a concierge who can help you figure out where to go, or a restaurant on-site. If the comforts of home – as well as a little help from a friendly face – are necessary in order for you to have a good trip, confirm that that’s what you’ll be getting.

The same goes if you’re bringing children on your trip. Learn about the usual clientele at your potential hotel and ensure that everyone is welcome, safe, and free to have a good time – whatever that looks like for you.


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