Monday, May 22, 2017

Mediterranean Planning Update

view from our apartment

So in the middle of selling the condo, finding a new place, packing and still working I am getting things booked for our Mediterranean trip.

But research and booking are the best part of my days.  

Our next step is to book accommodations for the three cities. 

First one that is needed is Barcelona.

Bernie and I chatted and discussed what type of accommodations we wanted.  Apartment thru Airbnb (or other booking site) or a hotel for four nights.

Both have positives and negatives.  

Hotels are easy, well run, centrally located.  Usually include breakfast and daily cleaning.  The ability to get answers to questions from front desk staff can be very helpful.

Apartments are easy to book, and you can pick your location from the many booking sites.  The place is much larger and is in a residential area so it feels great to be part of the community.  The ability to buy a few groceries and make some of our meals saves a ton, especially in an expensive city like Barcelona.  The host normally offers tons of advice about recommendations. And best of all it feels like home and not sterile like hotels.

Negatives for Hotels are that they are small, impersonal and often expensive.  Also they can be noisy as you hear all the guest coming and going at all hours and hotels are often in busy areas.

Negatives for Apartments are that to get to initially requires a bit more planning (we normally take trains or transit but a taxi helps) and coordinating arrival with host. You need to do more research to ensure you are in a good area that suits your needs.  Do you want more residential or more nightlife.  Are stores, transit, sites nearby?  

So in the end we settled on an Airbnb not far from the port in a residential area that is walkable to the metro and to the Gothic quarter.  Here is a link to our apartment.  

I contacted our host Pierre to see about checking in earlier - like around 1500 and he responded back very quickly and said that that was possible but no earlier as there were guests leaving the day we arrive and they need time to clean.  

You also have the ability to see reviews from past guests and they say a lot and obviously people have been very happy with Pierre and his apartment.

If you have never used Airbnb I encourage you to try it. Airbnb has provided me with a coupon code to hand out for a discount off your first booking.  Click on this link and set it up and it is there for you once you make your first booking.  

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