One of the most popular ways to stay in the United Kingdom (UK) is to rent a vacation cottage instead of staying in a hotel. With renting a cottage often being so much cheaper than staying in a hotel, it’s no wonder so many people do it. Before you rent a cottage in the UK though, there are certain things you should consider, things that will make your UK cottage vacation much more pleasant and stress-free.
What’s The Best Way To Rent a Cottage in the UK? – There’s plenty of ways you can rent a cottage in the UK. You can go through a UK real estate agent, rent through a newspaper or magazine ad, rent through a British friend or relative, or rent online.
Sure, you can rent through a real estate agent, but they tend to be more expensive and getting the information you need about the cottage isn’t always as easy as online, unless they have a good website. You can rent through a newspaper/magazine ad but, again, you’ll usually find the information you receive is limited and with no comments from other renters, you’re not always sure what you’re renting. And, as for renting through a friend or relative, we did this a couple of years ago and, although the cottage our friend choose was adequate, it was not what we would have picked ourselves or up to our usual standards.
Overall, I would recommend renting through an online website. There are many to choose from, most have excellent photographs and descriptions with clear information about the area in which the cottage is located, as well as comments from tourists who have rented the particular cottage you’re looking at. For suggestions on websites, look at the resources section at the bottom of this article.
What Should You Look For In Location When You Rent a Cottage in the UK?
The most important thing is where is the cottage located? The UK has some gorgeous cottages but some of them are in the middle of the moors and miles away from anywhere. While this may sound romantic and very ‘Cathy and Heathcliff’ , when it’s pouring down with rain, which it often does in the UK and you’re in the middle of nowhere – not romantic, really. Make sure the cottage you rent is near shops, public transportation, restaurants and a few local attractions.
What Amenities Should The Cottage in the UK Have?
Most of the time, UK accommodation is not as large as in the US or as luxurious. Many UK cottages are actually quite basic. Make sure, before you plump down that deposit or payment, the cottage has a kitchen, washer and dryer, comes with linens and towels, the beds are large enough, it has TV with cable or satellite, parking (if you’re going to rent a car) and, even that there’s a pub nearby. This might not sound necessary but pubs have some of the best and cheapest meals in the UK and they’re a great place to meet people.
Why Do UK Cottages Not Have Air Conditioning?
Many Americans worry about not having air conditioning when they rent a cottage in the UK. The UK is a pretty cold country, particularly compared to most parts of the US with high temperatures in the summer running only 80 degrees in some areas, and this will only last a few days. You honestly do not need air conditioning in the UK. It will never get hot enough. Heat, on the other hand, you do need as it will definitely get cold enough.
Is There a UK Cottage Rating System?
Yes, the Tourism Council has a rating system where they assign stars depending on the quality of the cottage, what amenities it offers and where it is etc. Look for the higher star ratings. If the cottage you’re interested in however hasn’t been rated, then read the customer comments of other people who have stayed there, as that can tell you a lot.
Research the Area Before You Rent a Cottage in the UK
One of the most important things you should do before renting a cottage in a certain area of the UK is to research the area. If you’ve never been there, it could sound interesting, only to find when you get there it’s the most boring place on the planet. Research the area looking for places of interest, tourist spots, restaurants, art galleries and museums, public transportation system, other towns it’s close to etc – then you can make an educated guess about your vacation cottage.
Staying in a cottage in the UK is a fun way to have a vacation as well as save some money. With cottages being as cheap as £250 for a week (around $415) and hotels being more than double that per room, renting a cottage can be a much cheaper UK vacation, particularly as they’ll usually sleep 2-6 people.