Travel News 032207
When traveling I always prefer to stay at small hotels, guest homes, or hostels, rather than large chain hotels. I like the feeling of being part of a neighborhood and being a “temporary local” where I can get to know the local vibe and easily walk places.
Many people think of hostels as unkempt run down party houses where a blend of B.O. and marijuana permeate the air. Some are. But many hostels have accommodations that rival a mid range boutique hotel, at about a third of the price. Most hostels have private rooms with private baths for a reasonable price higher than the dorm area. Many hostels offer perks like breakfast, bike rentals, and internet access, and you meet people who know the city and how to enjoy it, rather than a stuffy hotel concierge steering you towards the highest priced bar.
I started researching small hotels and hostels in Munich and Prague for my upcoming spring visit and was overwhelmed at all the options. But with the internet it’s easier than ever to “tour” a place before staying there. I can read candid reviews, search photos, and map out the neighborhood. After some searching and reviewing some locations I found Miss Sophie’s hostel in the New Town section of Prague. Everything I read about Miss Sophie’s was stellar. It appears to be a smart looking hip place, with the only negative comment being “It wasn’t lively enough”. Read “it will be quiet ” They even have private apartments across the street. I sent them a quick e-mail with a couple questions, and now have a home in Prague, if only for a week. Even hipster webmaster Josh Spear’s gives it high praise. Check back later this spring for a review of my stay.
I never knew about Megabus until reading this article on CNN.com Fares for a dollar, and a decent route map around the midwest? Not bad for someone visiting the midwest on a shoestring, or trying to avoid high last minute airfares.
The Chicago-based company, which began operating in a number of Midwestern cities last year, plans to launch new service April 2 in Pittsburgh; Ann Arbor, Michigan; Columbus, Ohio; Kansas City, Missouri, and Louisville, Kentucky. It already offers service between Chicago and Cincinnati, Cleveland, Detroit, Indianapolis, Milwaukee, Minneapolis, St. Louis and Toledo.
Megabus uses online ticketing and sidewalk stops instead of ticket counters and bus terminals. Passengers do not buy tickets, but instead give drivers reservation numbers they receive when booking online.
The low-cost model was imported from the United Kingdom, where Stagecoach introduced a similar service nearly four years ago.