I am currently planning a spontaneous and not so spontaneous trip to Budapest. I have been to Budapest before during my time travelling eastern Europe after i finished my Bachelors degree and before I started my Masters. However at the beginning of the week my boyfriend mentioned wanting to go so I said lets do it!
(photo from my first trip of the parliament building during a cruise down the Danube)
That is the spontaneous part however he then suggested we go in August hence the not so spontaneous. During a particularly slow period at work today I had a chance to look at our travel, and with some persuading and price related incentives we have decided to go during the first week of June. Here is where it got tricky, he as a swim instructor work evenings during the week where as I due to a period of time over may and June where I will not be office bound and free to go whenever I feel like it. So after looking at our options I deprived wanted to go mid-week to get some crazy cheap prices such as return flights for under £40!
Now I do understand the constraint of work due to working in a variety of places such as a retail shop and currently and office where I am a Social Media Executive, but even then finding out Tuesdays and Wednesdays are off the table was so frustrating. This led to my great search for cheap and good flights as well as again a cheap and good hotel in a greta location.
During my time travelling solo in the past i have always opted for hostels, as long as it was central I didn't care. Hostels are usually safe, you get what you pay for and it's a great way to talk to other travellers and make yourself a friend or 2 even if it's just for the night. Even when not travelling solo i have alway booked either hostels or Airbnbs even if they are a little further out as when travelling with friends taxi costs or public transport becomes a lot easier. This time thought I am making an exception, it is the first trip together with my boyfriend and after all those hostels and Airbnb's I am craving a nice hotel with all the amenities. No messing around wth putting sheets on bunk beds, or dealing with lockers and keys. Just a nice simple hotel set up with an ensuite!
Now this all sounds pretty easy doesn't to we have the days we can go: Thursdays - Mondays, I have decided the type of accommodation I want: Hotel and my boyfriend has said August.
Alas it is not as easy as it appears and having many experiences with doing this in the past I was aware of what I was about to embark on. Firstly flight where automatically more expensive when counting in weekend days but I did manage to find some fairly cheap deals although not in the month I was suppose to be looking in. During my very initial investigation I decided that August was too long to wait and it had to be earlier. With not much persuasion needed I convinced my boyfriend that early June would be far better.
So I had good flights for the 1st June - 4th June even if this did count a very early start on the 4th to get our plane home. Next was a hotel and this is where the difficult part started, while searching I found that a lot of the accommodation was apartments which initially sounded great however the more I read about each one the more problems arose. I even got as far as booking one before realising they required you to pick the keys up from a location 20 minutes drive from he apartment which would mean getting ourselves and suitcase from the airport across Budapest to then come back the other way to get to the apartment. I quickly cancelled that one and narrowed my search to only hotels.
It is so hard to tell from photos what a hotel will really be like but i eventually decided on one called the Leanard Hotel (photos right and below). Located in the Ferencvaroud business district, it come with a double room, free wifi and fitness centre. For 3 nights the price was €206, making it €103 each or €34 per night which I don't think is bad at all combine it with the £43 return flights I found and we're looking at a pretty cheap weekend get away. Therefore I reserved us a room in this hotel luckily with great sites like booking.com I could reserve the room without paying anything and can cancel up to 23.59 on the 28th May giving us plenty of time to have another look around.
Now all that we need to do is officially book flights, decided on our itinerary which although we will have will not be rigid rather a general list of things we'd like to do, very much including the baths and ruin bars. Juts so we have an idea and don't miss anything we really want to do.
Luckily for me as well my boyfriends family live in London meaning we are able to stay close to Luton airport where the flights are from for no cost and hardly any commute.
All in all i'm very much looking forward to my first trip away with my boyfriend and second visit to the beautiful Budapest!
(photo from my first trip below)