Daunting is the word that many would use to describe planning a long trip to an unfamiliar city. Simply put; there are a lot of factors that can influence your choice of long-stay accommodation and it can be difficult to know if you’ve considered all options. We have been working with corporate travellers and re-locators for over 20 years and have a pretty good idea of what you need to research ahead of booking. Here’s a few of our top tips about not only what you need to consider, but also a few places you should search for advice.
So you arrive at your beautiful home from home all ready for a 6 month stay, only to realise that it’s almost a 2 hour commute to your office. In the words of Kirstie Allsopp and Phil Spencer, booking long-stay accommodation is all about Location, Location, Location!
This may seem obvious, but a lot of travellers make the mistake of assuming that their dream accommodation will work despite not being near anywhere useful. Staying close to an office or workplace that you’ll be regularly frequenting is often a safe option, but what else do you need? Is there a nearby supermarket? Do you plan to join a local gym, or are you bringing children who will need enrolled in a local school? You might not be able to check every box on your ideal wishlist, but remember to look out for easily accessible transport links from your apartment.
You and a few work colleagues will have different requirements to you and your two children. Above all else, your choice of accommodation needs to be fit for the people using it.
Is a hotel room really enough for you, or do you need a fully-fitted apartment? How many bedrooms do you need and is the apartment spacious enough? A hotel room with a sofa bed might seem like a cost-effective choice for you and your family at the time, but you could find yourself quickly forgetting the concept of “personal space.”
Every year travellers choose accommodation that provides style but not substance and unfortunately end up changing accommodation mid-stay. Choosing an aesthetic might be fine for a short leisure break, but you need functionality on an extended stay for real comfort. You need a true home from home experience.
The thrill of eating out every night is nice for a week or two, but it becomes exhausting quickly. Make sure you investigate their cooking facilities; a kitchenette can work for a shorter stay but a fully-fitted kitchen is necessary for any longer trip. Ideally, this should include a washer/dryer to cut down on costs and make your life a lot easier. On a similar vein, having a living area that is separate from your bedroom will ensure you have defined spaces during your time away. Nobody wants to only have a bed as a sitting area for over a week.
Finally, is there an on-site reception that you can contact at 2am in case of an emergency? A 24-hour reception will make for a more secure stay, and they should be happy to answer any questions you may have. It’s a cliché, but you would be better having this support and not needing it than needing it and not having it.
Who better to ask than the real people who have stayed there before you? Despite the fact that only around 1.5% of all people write reviews, you can get a pretty good idea of the quality of a provider by spending a few minutes on any review website such as TripAdvisor.
Have a look at the overall average scores, but also take the time to read a few 1 star and 5 star reviews as well as the most recent reviews. This insight will give you an idea of what your life there would look like but remember: reviews are all opinions and therefore subjective so take them all with a pinch of salt. Also look to see if the host is taking the time to reply to customer reviews. This is a good indicator that the company is concerned with providing good customer service and certainly ticks the box.
Social Media and Apps
How can you ensure that the place you’re staying is real and that you aren’t about to stay in the 9th circle of holiday hell? Any accommodation provider creating excellent guest experiences will likely be shouting out about it over Facebook, Instagram and other platforms. Browsing through their posts is a great way to gather information not only about the apartment but also the local area.
Similarly, give their app a wee download and test ride to see what they’ll be offering you while you’re with them. Some providers have exclusive discounts or offers for app users, including discounts at the best places in town. Why not practice by downloading our app for iOS or Android?
Get in touch
Sometimes you really just need to talk to a human. Any accommodation provider will happily work with you to ensure you find the right apartment for your stay; you need only ask the question. They might even be able to provide you with resources otherwise unavailable, such as relocation guides and 3D floorplans to help you decide, and can often offer you the best available rates for a longer stay. If you speak directly to a provider before you book then you’ll have already established a relationship to rely upon should anything go awry during your stay. It’s a win-win situation for everyone.
A common mistake made by many corporate travellers is booking on the cheapest rate they find online, and then being hit by additional terms and conditions. The terms and conditions for long stay guests can offer differ and may include additional savings such as free parking, free stays for guests or more flexible cancellation terms. It is always worth asking what additional amenities you can enjoy for booking direct.
You can contact our team via firstname.lastname@example.org.
Travelling to Edinburgh?
We hope that these tips will help you figure out what you are looking for in your accommodation and will also help you vet a few options.
Are you looking for a short or longer trip to Edinburgh? We have over 100 apartments at multiple locations in the city centre. Each apartment features a fully-fitted kitchen, spacious living areas, high speed WiFi and are even dog-friendly!