The range of accommodations around the world is incredible, from luxury multi-million dollar resorts, to dorm-room style bunks packed together into common rooms. You should choose your accommodations on the characteristics of cleanliness, cost, location, security and amenities
Your budget will probably be the primary consideration when looking for the type of place to stay. If money is no object, then there are many luxury hotels and resorts to choose from. However, you do not need to spend a lot of money to find a very nice place to sleep. Lodging is available almost anywhere at reasonable prices. All it takes is research, looking around a bit and doing some bargaining.
The cardinal rule in renting a room is to "see the room first before you accept it!". While this is not a requirement if you are staying at a luxury resort or hotel - it is a requirement if you are shopping around from hotel-to-hotel to find the best deal. Don't believe the hotel clerks description - their viewpoint and yours may differ as to what is "spacious", "clean" or "fantastic". You also can't bargain effectively until you've seen the room, and seen any problems with it.
When bargaining the following factors can work in your favor:
You may sometimes actually get a cheaper rate by going through a travel agent then by booking it yourself.
Location doesn't just mean a fantastic view, other factors to look for are:
In the ideal world you want a room that is both comfortable and beautiful that also has a great view. However, don't just a place just on it's rooms - you will also want to take into account the common areas of the hotel - any pools, quiet courtyards and the friendliness and professionalism of the hotel staff.
When checking out the room you will of course first notice if the room is clean and beautiful, beyond this there are several things to check:
Finding someplace, anyplace to stay is usually not a problem. The minute you step from a train depot or airport in most cities you will be surrounded by touts flashing hotel pictures and pamplets. Getting a good and reasonably priced place to stay may take a bit more work.
Your guidebook will probably be more reliable then any touts on recommending a place. Also - don't forget that you are perfectly capable of finding a good place all on your own. Just go out and look around!
Here are some tips for finding a good place:
Hotels are not the only place to stay. Guest houses, Homestays, Hostels, Elderhostels, YMCA's and YWCA's, backpacker hotels and Formule 1's are all great alternatives to hotels and will generally help you save money! They are also great places to meet fellow travelers and the local people.