Booking hotels on line can seem like a money saving way to book your own tour in China. Be sure to read the fine print for each hotel. As a tour operator for 25 years in China I think I have seen it all. One customer said he could book a hotel in Xian which is listed as a 5 star hotel. He said he could book a room for $89. I know the hotel well and have been a consultant to them. So I checked out his price with the hotel. He indeed could book the room for $89……..plus a 15% service charge, city tax, and no breakfast included. Room was in an old section bottom floor with no window to the outside but facing inside a dark courtyard used for storage. Breakfasts in China are usually included in most hotels in the cost IF they list it as included. If it does not list it as included, then it is in addition. Hotels have such rooms so they can list a low price and attract business. One does not go to a restaurant for breakfast unless it is McDonalds. Western breakfasts are only served in Hotels and then they are large buffets with mixed Asian and Western food of many kinds. Cost ranges from $12 to $25 per person depending on the hotel. Add it up. That poor room costs $151 plus tax for two people including breakfast and service charges. Be careful of hotels that give rave reviews by customers as many are often written by friends or staff members of hotels. Booking through a Tour Operator or ‘Travel Agency that KNOWS China well, can often be less expensive since we have contracts with our partners in China with quality hotels that are well located and suitable for Western people. You get what you pay for in China. Make sure your tour is a pleasant experience rather than a disappointing one. Visit my web site at: www.interlakechinatours.com
In Seattle, Washington in our 25th year of doing Quality tours to China and Tibet.
It is too late once you are there and you have to stick it out.