If you’re planning a first trip to the UK, and want to really get under the skin of the country, then choosing to stay in bed and breakfast accommodation is a great choice. They are generally independently run by people who are wholly dedicated to their properties and tend to be bursting with local character. Whether you are looking for someone to stay in the countryside, or in the heart of one of the UK’s bustling cities, there’s sure to be a B&B option that ticks your boxes. However, before you book, it’s worth being aware of what makes B&Bs different from hotels and other lodging options. This will undoubtedly help you to avoid any disappointment or misunderstandings which could otherwise occur.
The first thing which you need to be aware of is that most bed and breakfasts are located in people’s houses. The owners will generally sleep in a room of their own, but in some cases, you will share social space with them. Most B&B rooms now offer all of their guests access to ensuite facilities, but there are still one or two, particularly in rural areas, where you will have to share washing facilities.
The fact that you are staying in a converted house, often means that you’ll be staying in residential areas, rather than the commercial districts of cities where hotels tend to congregate. Again, this can be an excellent opportunity to see how the residents of a city actually live their day to day lives and see places and things which most tourists will not. However, if you’re keen to tick off a list of significant tourist attractions in a city like London or Edinburgh, it may mean that you spend a little more time travelling to and from your accommodation than you otherwise would.
The final aspect to be aware of, is that B&Bs vary, a lot. In many ways, this is an excellent thing, as each B&B is an expression of the owner, and their tastes and likes, but it does mean that it’s worth reading a few online reviews, so that you know what you are getting before staying in one. If you stick with one of the many online lists of the best B&Bs in the UK, then you are unlikely to encounter any problems.
Staying in a B&B is a great way to get to know the UK, and will be all the more fun if you know what to expect before you arrive. Treat the accommodation as a fun part of the holiday, and you’re sure to have a great time. There’s even the chance that you will leave with some new lifelong friends!