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Booking accomodations

We (2) are traveling at the end of August and renting a car. We are hoping to not have to have a real tight schedule. Is it possible to travel and not have accommodations such as B n B booked in advance and just do it a day or 2 in advance of arrival to the particular town?

Thanks in advance

Posted by FastEddie
Florida
852 posts

Absolutely. It's how I usually roll unless I know I will be in a place in peak season or a festival.

Posted by Andrew H.
Portland, Oregon
3219 posts

August is high season in Croatia, though. Some places will get booked up early, and some properties (e.g. on the islands) may have minimum stay requirements. I would probably book a few things at least places now that you can cancel without fee a few days prior if your plans change. Having a car will make things easier, though.

Posted by Emily
Vienna, Austria
2966 posts

I think you are going to waste precious vacation time running around looking for a place to stay in a very popular destination at the height of high season. Half of Europe will be there and will have booked ahead.

Posted by Jennifer
Tunbridge Wells
2316 posts

Once you get to the second week of September, the schools will have returned and places will be quieter. I would book now for travel prior to this time, unless you want to risk taking what accommodation is left, which may not be ideal or within your target budget.

Posted by acraven
Washington DC
10369 posts

Where do you plan to be? I travel without advance reservations except for my first and last stops. (There are over 20 stops in between.) I make arrangements, mostly using booking.com, via the Wi-Fi in my hotel room, most often 1 to 4 days in advance. The timing has been gradually increasing, because I've found myself stuck with places that were perfectly fine but either not as well-located as I would like or a bit more expensive than I prefer. And, as noted above, it does take time to do the online searching. I would never want to just show up in an area and look for a place for that very evening. The world has changed since the 1970s, pre-internet. Everybody except you will have pre-booked. And you know those folks chose the best places.

In general, July and August are difficult in coastal towns. You'll be competing with, it sometimes seems, half the population of northern Europe as well as many folks from the country you're visiting. Having a car is definitely helpful, since you're not tied to choosing a place in a high-demand coastal town. Look (online, in advance) for lodgings at inland locations instead.

One place where I had a great deal of difficulty finding a place on shortish notice was in Croatia: Rovinj, on the Istrian Peninsula. I planned a fairly short visit there, then I learned of a one-day bus tour to some inland towns I wanted to see. The bus tour only ran on Wednesdays, so I needed two or three extra nights in Rovinj, starting the next day. All the reasonable places were booked up, so I started visiting the little storefront travel agencies, each of which seemed to have its own notebook of private rooms on offer. Eventually I found a place that was a bit farther from the historic area than I wanted to be, but still walkable. It was a very nice room with its own kitchenette, in a home in a rather new neighborhood. But the male half of the couple who owned the house was a chain smoker. I got to see Motovun and Groznjan, but I would not have chosen to stay there if I had known.