Our stay in Chiang Mai is, sadly, drawing to a close and I am spending a lot of time researching our next adventure, our crazy budget tour of Europe.
Our two-month odyssey will take us through France to Switzerland, down to Italy and up to the Netherlands, with a quick stopover in Egypt on the way home to Asia. We don’t have as much saved as we expected so a LOT of planning is required.
We are going to keep our costs down by cycling and camping for at least a month. But I expect we’re going to need a break from camping, particularly on the days I have to start work (another budget-related necessity) at the obscene local time of 4am. I will need some afternoon naps … and a desk to work at would also be nice.
Just as I turned my thoughts to this tricky part of our planning puzzle, I was contacted by Easytobook.com, a Europe-based online hotel reservation site, and asked to review their site.
The site has made planning so much easier … there are maps to show where hotels are located, there is instant booking confirmation, there are customer reviews and there is a handy “compare” function.
I did have a bit of trouble with the search function because I am not familiar with names of the French regions we will be traveling through. But a bit of creative clicking allowed me to check hotels in the Vaucluse region as well as hotels in the Drome-Provence region.
I almost ran into another problem – I fell in love with a hotel in a 13th century castle village that wasn’t on our route. But once I dragged my eyes away from the pretty picture, I realised it wasn’t available for the dates we’d be passing by. Whew, potential planning dilemma solved.
Even with the 80% discount on hotel rates that easytobook.com offers, staying in a hotel in Provence will be one of our “luxury” nights. But the currency selection function shows me exactly how much damage each hotel will make to our Singapore dollar savings account. (A quick search shows hotels in Cairo will be much easier on our budget, that’s for sure.)
The booking site also won me over because not all the reviews are positive, indicating that they are honest. I’m happy to book a place with a negative review, after all there are so many different kinds of travelers. We don’t a bit of peeling paint and thin walls if we are staying in a low-star place. But forewarned is forearmed and it’s better to be prepared for that kind of thing that expect something fancy and be disappointed.
All in all, I recommend using easytobook.com to plan for a holiday anywhere in the world. It’s not as well known as some of the bigger hotel booking sites, but it is easy to use and helpful in ways that other sites are not. I was so impressed with the booking engine that I booked our first two nights in Paris through the site.
*This is a paid review of easytobook.com. The opinions expressed are entirely my own.
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426 days ago