If you want to spend part of your holiday in another part of the country, you should consider hiring a holiday cottage to save on travel expenses. It provides a home base from where you can go sightseeing, take in country fairs or concerts, or enjoy daily outdoor activities. Here are some tips for hiring a cottage during your holiday.
Most options for cottages through the United Kingdom, including Scotland and Ireland, are self-catering cottages. Most people choose them so they can set their own schedules and do as they wish throughout their holidays, include preparing their own meals. However, self-catering cottages don’t usually provide maid service, a concierge, or any other amenities that you would have in a hotel or a resort.
If you want a break from meal preparation and just want to enjoy being on holiday, you will find some cottages with catering services. They may provide evening meals for when you come in from an excursion or a day at the beach while others will provide silver service and catering for parties. When you’re looking for rental cottages, check to see if they offer the amenities that you want for your holiday.
When looking for cottages to rent, you will have the option of going through an agency or a private owner. An agency will have several sizes of cottages available in different locations and a private owner will usually just have one cottage for hire. The cottage may be a small home in the back of his or her property or an investment property located in another town or village.
There are many advantages to renting a cottage from an agency, aside from the variety of options they usually have. Since offering cottages is the backbone of their business, the properties are usually well-maintained. The accommodations are usually modern even though the cottage may have been built in the 17th or 18th century, depending on its location.
Many agencies offer cottages near historical or in-demand tourist locations, such as near beaches. They also offer cottages in a variety of sizes so you may be able to find a small, intimate cottage for a romantic getaway or a larger cottage to spend a holiday with your extended family. Agencies will also have modern booking systems so there are fewer chances of mix-ups and losing your accommodations if a mistake is made.
Private Property Rentals
Renting from a private owner can work out well but sometimes you may be renting a cottage on the back of his or her property. This may give you less privacy if he or she is home throughout the day and the cottage may not be as modernised as you would like. Before booking with a private owner, ask to see current pictures of the accommodations and ask about the cancellation policy in the event of an emergency or if you find the property isn’t up to your standards after you arrive.
Book Cottages in Advance
Trying to find a decent accommodation during the peak travel season can be difficult to do if you plan a last-minute getaway. Most cottages in the popular tourist areas will be booked if you don’t rent one in advance. Since most people plan when they will take time off for their holidays, you should book a cottage after you have confirmation that you will get the dates you want off.
If you’re planning to travel during the months of June, July, or August when your children will be out of school for the summer, try to book about six months in advance. If you’re taking a winter holiday for Christmas and/or New Year’s, try to book a cottage a year in advance. By not booking in advance, you may be left with less than adequate accommodations, especially if you’re visiting a popular holiday destination.
Select Destination by Activities
Since there are cottages available throughout most of the UK, Ireland, and Scotland, you should choose the type of activities you want to do before looking for accommodations. Some cottages are available in National Trust areas so you could easily rent a cottage built prior to the 18th century or before. The National Trust has cottages for hire in the Peak District, the Lake District, and many other areas.
These communities also have privately-owned cottages and agencies that provide accommodations in the area as well. If you wish to go hiking, cycling, or sailing or enjoy local community events, the Peak District offers families many things to do in places such as Staffordshire or Derbyshire and beyond. You can usually find online event calendars and information about local attractions to help you decide where to spend your holiday.
Ask About Supplies
While most cottages will provide bed and table linens, they may not have multiple sets. Ask the owner or agency about what type of supplies are provided and what you should plan to bring with you. You may need to supply everything from bed linens, towels, hand soap, and shampoo to napkins and toilet paper. If you have small children, ask if they have high chairs or child gates or if you need to bring your own.
Also, find out their pet policy if you wish to bring your dog on holiday with you. Many cottages allow pets but you will probably have to pay a deposit for them. If you’re going to be in a rural area, keep your dog leashed when walking him or her so he or she doesn’t pester cows, birds, or other farm animals. Chasing or startling a cow or horse could cause your dog to be seriously injured, ruining your holiday.
Cottages are available for any budget so when you search for cottages online, you can usually filter the choices by how much you wish to pay. In addition to the rental fee, ask the owners or the agency about supplying heat as it can sometimes be an additional fee. By following these tips, you should be able to locate holiday accommodations that you can afford and that your family will be happy with during your holiday.