When the government orders another lockdown the whole country lets out a collective sigh and prepares to hunker down at home to see out the extreme restrictions as best they can. Tough times for everyone but at least you’re in your own home aren’t you?
Well, not everyone. Due to our life choices we don’t actually have a home. Perhaps we were too reckless and should have planned ahead but who on earth could have foreseen this pandemic? So when Boris and his team keep telling us all to ‘Stay Home‘ we need to knuckle down and find ourselves somewhere to call ‘home’.
Now I know that staying in hotels and bed’n breakfasts is strictly banned currently but there are a few exceptions. Obviously if you’re a keyworker you may need somewhere to stay but also if the guest accommodation is your main residence it is also allowed. Which means that we can book hotels and other places for overnight stays.
We’ve have found that we have booked accommodation in three distinct ways.
- Premier Inn
As I’ve said before, Paul Young may have sung the soundtrack to our JWalking lives – ‘Wherever I lay my hat that’s my home‘.
Our go-to budget hotel is a Premier Inn as we like the large rooms and generally the beds are mega-comfy. Oh and I think the purple colour scheme suits my complexion! The only problem with a long stay is the fact that they have no cooking facilities and we are restricted to cold food from the local supermarket. Ok for a couple of days but thank goodness Ryan lives close by to the Maidstone hotel so we can pop round for hot meals every other day.
Our go-to site for booking overnight accommodation when backpacking or travelling has always been booking.com as it just has a huge selection of properties but we’ve found it less useful during the recent lockdown. Trying to find places for a month at a time is virtually impossible unless you want to spend thousands of pounds. Our two week stay in Herne Bay in January was a fortunate exception to that (Herne Bay).
The best place to find month-long stays at a reasonable price (not always though) is definitely Airbnb as most properties offer monthly discounts. Plus if we’re staying somewhere for a number of weeks we have to have a separate kitchen, bedroom, living room etc and things like washing machines, WiFi, and heating are essential. Our stay in Birchington was a lovely Airbnb (Never heard of Birchington).
It seems incredible but over the past 5 and a half years we have stayed in 95 different Airbnbs in 13 different countries. Only five to go to get our century award! Actually four as our next already booked stay is an Airbnb.
The uncertainty over housesits and the ban on overnight stays with friends and family has really caused us serious issues over the past months and moving ahead it won’t improve until the country starts to open up.
April 12th is when self-contained hospitality reopens and I think May 17th might be the prospective date for all national travel reopening. Only if there are no more spikes in Covid infections of course. Currently looking good but let’s carry on being sensible and wait and see. Fingers crossed……