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Waffling on my gamble...

So I signed up for a trip in 2025. (I have never planned a trip this far in advance...seems nuts, but doing it.) Anyway, I got the last seat on the trip and asked if there were any others that had signed up to room share. The answer was there are no other room shares, but that obviously could change. So, as it stands today, with all seats sold, I will get a single room. I much prefer single rooms, but after the Camino last year I do wonder if it is necessary. But then...I love to peace out in my single room. I digress. I bounce back and forth, pay the single supplement and forget about it. Or worry about it, sometimes, for months? What do you think the odds are that I will end up the only person who didn't pay for the single supplement and get a single room? Would you take the bet?

Posted by
2925 posts

Hi Wray. I don't know what the odds are your will get a single room. Personally, I'm not willing to take a chance having to share a room. At this stage of my life, my habits are set and after a day touring I appreciate my quiet time. I always pay the single supplement. One trip had 7 singles and last year's I was the only single (that was the pits in some ways). You just don't know until you get the participant list or really until the tour meet up because you don't know who's traveling with whom.

Which tour are you going on? Enjoy!
Kathy

Posted by
548 posts

Well, seeing as there are no others doing a single share, you have good odds. Of course, a single could cancel and then maybe change that. What is the departure date for your 2024 trip? Is it now within the no-refund period? However, since you didn't mind sharing on the Camino, you might be super lucky and get a single without paying for it. And if not, just have ear plugs. In past years when I've shared a single, I've had nice roommates. Now, I do pay for the single because I can. I'm surprised (in a good way, I suppose), that RS didn't make you pay the single supplement if it's the last room. Take the chance!

Posted by
679 posts

Early in my travels I have either signed up to share a room or gambled hoping that I would be lucky to end up with a single room. From the first trip the situation was complicated. I continued this process for a few other tours enjoying great situations and eventually a number of very annoying ones. On one trip the individual needed the tv to play all night. On another there were serious health hazards, while on another …! After the health hazard situation I decided enough. Never again have I gambled on enjoying the solitude of a private room. I’ve met and enjoy long term friendships from some roommates but I’ve not shared a room in over a decade.

Posted by
8664 posts

I am too old to deal with any snoring other than my own.

Posted by
1383 posts

Wray, I shared a room back in 2010 and while my roommate and I got along ok, the roommate was a smoker (not in the room or balcony) but smoke was all over her clothing. I have also stayed at hostels in the past where sometimes roommates arrived at the hostel at night or were partying and a bit noisy coming back into the room. For me, I will probably not stay in a dorm room anymore unless it is with my family and we take up the whole space. Also, another reason why I probably would not share a room with a stranger is my night time habits are different now.

Paying a single supplement just irks me though. It’s a hard decision, for sure.

Posted by
532 posts

I don't believe anyone beyond college should have strangers as roommates. But, I guess that doesn't actually answer your question. Here's how I look at it. I wouldn't want to spend months stressing over something I couldn't control. Your not knowing for certain that you would get a single room causes undue stress. But, if you pay the single supplement, you do have control; and you know for certain you will not have a roommate. I'm not a betting person, because I never win. So I go with certainty when I can. There's always some sort of cost/benefit to consider.

Posted by
930 posts

Early in my travels with RS, I gambled and did not pay the single supplement. Most of the time I had my own room. On two tours, I had a roommate and it worked out well. However, the third time with a roommate (and my LAST time) was a disaster on so many levels. So I learned my lesson and I have been paying the single supplement ever since. I will never gamble again even if the chances of me facing the same situation with a roommate is extremely small.

Posted by
498 posts

I was feeling extremely grouchy about the single supplement when I signed up for the best of Paris tour in 2019. The amount just irked me so I didn’t do it. After about a week I called in to add it and I was too late. All the available spots were already gone I was told. So I thought, ok lesson learned, never do that again, but went to Paris prepared to be a good roommate. But as it turned out I had a single room anyway! Still not sure how it happened but I was very relieved and have signed up for the single supplement ever since. The risk is not worth it to me. Even if your roomie is lovely, I need some chill time at the end of the day.

Posted by
3265 posts

Thanks for your responses. It's further food for thought and has me leaning towards the single supplement, begrudgingly. I can afford it, I just don't want to pay it. LOL. (I'm from a frugal old New England family...). On the other hand, on my RS Greece tour, I almost felt like it was Christmas each time they handed out a room key. I love my solo peace. The only reason I'm thinking about it is because I'm the last one on the trip...but obviously people drop out, others come in, etc.

Horsewoofie, I know what you mean. It's just my Camino roommate was very similar to me and we roomed very well. She was lovely. (Now what she might think of me...LOL...who knows?)She might just be too polite...but because of this, I think I might end up with another really good friend, who likes to travel!
Raymonelee, You started out on the positive, but your experience ended up sounding horrible. That certainly would lessen or ruin the enjoyment of a trip.
Stan, Who knows, maybe I'd be the snorer and the bad roommate...I wouldn't like that either!
Linda, I totally see what you are saying. And I didn't think of smoke smells or health hazards...
KD, I never had good luck with college roommates, but on my European trip in college I had great luck with roommates, and then on my Camino, too. I was just thinking that maybe travelers are better roommates. And I agree, is it worth worrying about until the trip takes place? Probably not.
Mary, I think you've convinced me (and everyone before you). It just seems like a 19% add on seems like a lot...but I guess perhaps not as it's not 50% and the room cost is not split. At least RS gives the option. And my peace of mind and enjoyment of a nice room to myself where I can keep what ever hours I want not worry about disturbing someone in the middle of the night because I can't sleep for a few hours, etc...and then if the other person gets sick...

Ok, thanks everyone. I'll see if I can pay the supplement now. I lasted 5 days on this gamble. LOL.

Posted by
3265 posts

Lyndash, Well, that certainly worked out. What annoyance that you had to worry about it so long before the trip. We'll see what happens for me...

Posted by
315 posts

I didn’t pay the supplement on the first two tours I took and lucked out not having to share. However, I felt I had tempted fate long enough, and since I really do like (need even) the personal space, I do now (begrudgingly) pay the supplement each time.

I remember someone posting several years ago (Pam maybe? Pam, if you see this and I don’t have it right, lmk :) that she viewed the cost as insurance that you’ll have your own room. I’ve never forgotten that and take the same view myself each time I bite the bullet and pay that extra amount. I just wish it didn’t have to be paid at the time the tour is reserved.

Posted by
2230 posts

Eight years ago, when my husband and I moved cross-country and had to find a new attorney, we lucked into a great woman. She was interested in our European travels over the previous 15 years and questioned us as to what we might have done differently. I replied that I would have stayed in slightly nicer places if I hadn't been so worried about finances. (Mind you, this is an older attorney who loves Santa Barbara but stays in the Motel 6 when she goes there.) Eight years later, every time I see her, she brings up the idea that I planted of staying in nicer places and says she has taken it to heart.

If you can afford the single supplement, pay it! That's what I do now. And I even stay in hotels when I'm visiting places in the U.S. where I have friends who invite me to stay. I need the privacy and to follow my own routine. Inflexible - yes! And I won't apologize to anyone for it.

Posted by
14291 posts

I remember someone posting several years ago (Pam maybe? Pam, if you see this and I don’t have it right, lmk :) that she viewed the cost as insurance that you’ll have your own room.

Haha…that sounds positively brilliant but I don’t think I can take credit for it as I don’t remember saying that!!

As to Wray’s dilemma…it looks like you have decided to pay. My thought was what if there are 2 singles choosing to room together then one drops out for some reason and you are now in a situation where you are rooming with the other single. Very tough call.

You KNOW we are going to want to know how things sort put on the tour!!

Pam

Posted by
3265 posts

Yes, I am that coward. Even the response back from RS inferred that I was free and clear...unless someone drops out. As I have no way of knowing the makeup of the group; ie, couples, single friends, etc. or who might drop out, I am paying the single supplement. I do love the room to myself after a busy day. So that's it. I caved. I wouldn't have survived the 'not knowing' for months. Thank you all for all your help and your interesting stories, successes and failures. And now I guess I better seek out some trip insurance...LOL.

Posted by
24 posts

I believe you are making the right decision. Just returned from the amazing Greek trip and saw the situation
play out with difficulty for our tour guide. He handled it masterfully. And yes, one of the tour members snored and
the other could not sleep.
I will be paying the single supplement, grrr, next year for my 7th trip. But need the peace and relaxation at the end of
our active tour days.
Kathy
A fellow New Englander

Posted by
2925 posts

I remember a thread from several years ago where someone said her (his?) roommate didn’t bathe for most of the tour. Yuck! My husband snores but at least I can jab him in the ribs with my elbow to shut him up.
You made the right decision Wray! Enjoy your trip!

Posted by
315 posts

Aha! I found the thread from 2019 where someone referred to the single supplement as a type of ‘trip insurance.’ It was Carol now retired who said it.

I agree Pam, it’s brilliant (apologies to both of you for the mis-recollection)!

Posted by
315 posts

@ Wray I agree with those above on your final decision, so much better than wondering. I’ve waffled on the supplement as well.

Posted by
532 posts

My husband says (jokingly?) that I have a way of erring on the side of spending money!!! I always told my kids that money does not buy happiness, but definitely buys convenience. Wray, your final decision wasn't caving. You just bought convenience, happiness and peace of mind that you said you could afford! (: Enjoy!

Posted by
2532 posts

Though you've already decided, I'll just chime in that the real gamble is that several people back out of the sold out tour (which does happen, especially with bookings this early), thus opening spots that could be filled by solo people that don't pay the supplement. I don't know how "late" you can wait to add a single supplement for a tour, but there is some value in not spending the next 12+ months worrying about it. Plus calling the RS office frequently to find out the tour composition to see if your situation has changed. All that fret could go toward something more productive like figuring out how to get from the airport to your first hotel :)

FWIW I've had good and not so good solo sharing arrangements on 4 RS tours, including being the lucky single that hadn't paid the solo supplement but still got my own room. On my recent 5th tour I paid the supplement. I had a prior tour discount (4 tours x $50) so I applied it to the supplement - making my per day cost for the solo room about $35. Worth every penny for the privacy and peace of mind.

Posted by
130 posts

It could very well be the best trip related money you will spend. We've been on many RS tours, and although it "generally" goes well .... when it goes bad, it really looks miserable.

Posted by
321 posts

I book the single event though I hate paying for it. I value my privacy too much.

Also, on one tour I was on years ago, there were 3 who didn't pay the supplement. The guide had to constantly switch them because it wouldn't have been fair for only one of them to get a single every night when none of them paid the supplement.

Posted by
2113 posts

I refuse to share a room with my sister. She sounds like a buzz saw when she inhales and when she exhales. I’d be afraid of getting a buzz saw as a roommate.
My September tour is with two girlfriends. I opted for my own room because I fly in from the west coast while they fly from the east coast. The time difference between us would be difficult for me being awakened hours earlier than I would need. One of them gets up everyday at 4:30 AM. The other is a bathroom hog.

Posted by
3265 posts

Though you've already decided, I'll just chime in that the real gamble is that several people back out of the sold out tour (which does happen, especially with bookings this early), thus opening spots that could be filled by solo people that don't pay the supplement. I don't know how "late" you can wait to add a single supplement for a tour, but there is some value in not spending the next 12+ months worrying about it.

CL, This is exactly it. Right now, as it stands, the chance that I'd get a single room is huge. However, I've seen in life that someone has to be in that 5% or 10% area, whether me or family or whoever. Then there is luck of the roommate situation within that 5% or 10% (I'm sure most people are fine...but even that, as an introvert who needs to re-energize alone) that percentage gets even lower, but the need to be alone is just as great at 1%. I hope this paragraph makes sense, just drinking my morning coffee now.

Keep in mind, if I hadn't been the last seat on the tour, I wouldn't have even thought about taking this gamble.

I wish I were more of a gambler, I guess, but I've always been a risk manager instead. Same with this situation. I've thoroughly enjoyed everyone's stories and opinions, nonetheless!

Posted by
5067 posts

Wray, I don't mean to be a smart alec, I really don't. But my thought is simply two words. "Murphee's Law".

With regard to being a gambler, consider this: If you pay for the single supplement, then you've made a sure bet.

Posted by
3265 posts

TC, You had us laughing over here! You are spot on.

Posted by
14291 posts

"I remember a thread from several years ago where someone said her (his?) roommate didn’t bathe for most of the tour. Yuck!"

That was me. I'd paid for the single supp on a Road Scholar tour so she was rooming with someone else but we ALL noted she was not showering or changing her clothing. It was pretty appalling. The leader tried to intervene but it didn't last but a day.

And Wray....yes, I am much more a risk manager than a gambler!

Wray, this is a good reference thread as well...

Posted by
17 posts

I tried to book the last room on a tour as a single paying the supplement and they wouldn't let me. They said I had to move to a different date. i'll be curious to find out if they actually let you pay the supplement!

Posted by
3265 posts

CR, Yes I have paid the single supplement. I imagine it has to do with the make up of the trip. Perhaps there are more couples on my trip, leaving single rooms available than were on yours.