My kids love to play would you rather, but little did we know on our trip we would actually be playing it for real…would you rather stay in the more expensive hotel or the one that is cheaper?
We were on the fence about taking a final summer road trip out to Billings, MT to visit family. It was a toss up…should we stay home and work on the never ending projects at home, or take a break and spend some quality family time together. It was a tough decision, but the QT option won!! We mapped out the route with all the stops and decided we needed to get two hotels. One in South Dakota on the way there and one in North Dakota on the way home.
Usually we travel from Minneapolis to Billings through ND both ways, but this time we felt the older two kids were at the right age to go and see Mount Rushmore and drive through the Badlands. We searched Orbitz, our go to site, and found there wasn’t a whole lot available in Rapid City, SD. Lots of families on vacation and Sturgis was going on that week to.
There were a few rooms available and we booked the one with a 3.8/5 star rating.
It was a long first day, lots of getting in and out of the car to look around in the Badlands.
By the time we got to Rapid City and found our hotel, we were tired. All we wanted was to get to the room and go to sleep. We wanted to be well rested to go to Mount Rushmore, then off to Billings the next day.
We opened the door and let me ask you this, have you ever walked into a hotel room and knew instantly it was not the star rating others were saying? Our thoughts were, they must not have stayed in the same room we are in. I could tell the carpets were gross just by the first step. It felt spongy…eww! The furniture had seen better days, but we didn’t care about that. Thankfully the beds were clean and decent looking.
My husband set-up the pack and play for the little man while I got him ready for bed. The other kids I had them keep their sandals on before climbing into bed. The following morning we would find out I had made a good call.
We woke up ready to go in the morning and while we were all getting ready, we let the little man walk around the room. When I picked him up to change him, I saw the bottom of his feet and they were filthy! Let me tell you, I was not shocked they were dirty, but I was shocked at how dirty. It looked like he was out running in dirt or the parking lot. How often do hotels clean their carpets?
I quickly got him ready to go, then took him to the bathroom and washed his feet in the sink. Thankfully we were all ready to go, I was not letting him down again. This is a hotel we will not be staying at again, not worth the $110 a night!
Fast forward a week and we were making our way back home through ND. We had better luck with hotel choices and found one for $76…this one had a 3.7/5 star rating, but we felt the hotel chain was better than the first hotel we stayed in. We took the plunge and could tell right away when we walked into our room, it was way cleaner. The furniture was nice, the beds were nice and the carpet wasn’t spongy!
Little man was free to roam around the room in his bare feet (he won’t keep his shoes on, so why bother putting them on). After a little bit, I picked him up to see the bottom of his feet and I was happy to see them clean.
On this round of would you rather and we all chose…the cheaper hotel!! What would your choice have been?
The first hotel was the first time we have experienced “spongy” carpet and we hope it is the last. Going forward I will be sacrificing my feet for the clean carpet test…just another way to be phemommienal.