I know I’ve said it before, but I really don’t like staying in hostels — especially hostel dorm rooms. I don’t like sharing my space when I travel, and I want to be able to stay up until 3 a.m. working on my blog (okay, or watching trashy TV shows) if I feel like it without worrying about bothering anybody else.
But this dislike of hostels often puts me into a bit of a tricky spot when I travel. Because, while I don’t like hostels, I don’t like spending an arm and a leg on hotel rooms, either.
So what other options are there for the solo traveler?
Well, there are apartments.
I’ve never rented an apartment while traveling before, though I’ve always been interested in the concept. So, when @Roomorama approached me about trying out their worldwide apartment rental service, I jumped at the chance.
And what better place to try living like a local than in Reykjavik, Iceland?
After breezing through the Roomorama site (it really is incredibly easy to search and use) and settling on a few downtown apartments that looked promising, I sent out a couple of inquiries. To do this, I simply indicated the dates I would be staying, and how many people would be in the apartment.
I had my pick of available rooms and apartments in all price ranges.
It took less than a day to hear back from the apartment owners and settle on the one I’d be staying in for 3 nights. I paid for the apartment via Roomorama and was then given a payment confirmation code, which I gave to the owner via e-mail after I arrived. This is a great way to ensure privacy and security when booking an apartment online.
I ended up in a lovely 1-bedroom, ground floor apartment on Grettisgata St., just one street up from one of the major shopping streets in Reykjavik.
The apartment owner, a woman named Helga, sent me a map to help me get from the bus terminal to the apartment, instructions on how to get my key, and even a list of good Icelandic restaurants to try out while I was in town. I felt welcome before I even arrived in Iceland.
The apartment itself was perfect — it had a full, scaled-down kitchen (including dishwasher!), a retro-style living room, a double bed with plenty of extra pillows and blankets, and a spacious modern bathroom. The apartment also came with cable TV and free wireless Internet, as well as access to a washer and dryer. Well worth $97 USD per night.
I was only a few blocks from a grocery store, and just a short walk from all the main things to do/see in Reykjavik. When it came time for me to move to a hotel further away from downtown after 3 nights, I honestly didn’t want to leave.
Check out my video tour of the apartment:
This apartment was great, and actually exceeded my expectations. Some rental apartment properties wind up not looking anything like the photos you see online, but this one definitely stacked up.
If you want to check this particular place out, here’s the listing. There’s also a 2-bedroom apartment upstairs that can be rented for the same price (starting at $95 per night). You won’t find any hotel rooms in Reykjavik for a better price.
Have you ever rented an apartment during your travels? If not, would you consider it?
*Note: I received credit from Roomorama to help with booking my Reykjavik apartment. As always, though, opinions are my own.