Where do you stay when you visit UK?

(40 Posts)
Mummysaysno Tue 29-Jan-13 08:01:14

Just that really...previously we've stayed with my parents, but I find it hard work keeping children quiet, getting them to sleep with time difference, making meals for them etc. This year thinking of renting a short term let in the South East...really interested to know what others do, and any good websites to use!

EIizaDay Tue 29-Jan-13 10:19:31

I think it's much more relaxing having our own place so we rent privately usually. Airbnb is a good website.

Mummysaysno Wed 30-Jan-13 10:01:55

Thanks...I'll look at that site!

MELanglands Fri 01-Feb-13 18:03:29

If family and friends have the accommodation and we are welcome, then we stay with them. However we can't always see them all but there is an ongoing invitation each year for them to come and visit us. We only stay in rented accommodation if the alternative is impossible. The cost of the air fares and kennels is enough.

RichManPoorManBeggarmanThief Sat 02-Feb-13 05:08:08

I go home for a month and base myself at my parents for 2 weeks, and then DH's parents for 2 weeks.

It's effing expensive to rent in the UK short term. I was looking at a holiday cottage in Poole for 2 weeks, and it was going to cost close to £3.5k (admittedly it's Poole, and it's July, but even so). It was nice, and there were more basic places available, but I'm slightly reluctant to pay money to stay somewhere that isn't as nice as my own home.

I stay at my parent's when we're over that way (which is great, as DH not there and so my parents help with the DC a lot), and then holiday home when we're near PIL's as they moved to an apartment and cant put us all up. This year a lovely friend of MIL's is lending us their home as they're on holiday, which is such a godsend.

Before I had DC I was happy to move around all the time, but now it's just too much hassle. I cant deal with living out of a suitcase and different beds/ total lack of any routine for the kids for a month.

BlameItOnTheBogey Sat 02-Feb-13 05:26:23

Can I strongly recommend this website which pulls together a number of other rental sites (such as airbnb mentioned above) into one site. Am currently MN'ing at from a lovely rental place in Notting Hill thanks to that site (and a good does of jet lag...)

ClaudiaSchiffer Sat 02-Feb-13 05:30:58

I go over on my own with the kids, dh stays here (oz). So we base ourselves at my folks and then do a round of lovely friends for a few nights each. My children are now 5 & 7 though so happy to trundle around with me, when they were younger we just stayed at my parents (and I jollied off on my own).

When dh did come back with me (the first time) he racked up a HUGE bill at a London hotel and spent $$$$s going out partying with all his mates. It's far cheaper for him to stay at home grin

ClaudiaSchiffer Sat 02-Feb-13 05:35:56

Jeezus BlameItOnTheBogey, I've just had a look on that website for places to stay near my folks (Cotswolds) and it's all SO EXPENSIVE! I'm massively out of touch with the cost of accommodation but crikey! It would double the cost of our stay if we had to stay elsewhere.

Longdistance Sat 02-Feb-13 05:54:53

I stay at fils and mils.

We would stay at my mum and dads if their house was bigger and if my 40 year old brother moved out, they'd be bags of space for us all

C0smos Sat 02-Feb-13 05:56:44

With my parents, couldn't afford to go otherwise, a few meals out, car hire and day trips usually cripples us financially. The UK is so expensive for holidays.

Mummysaysno Sat 02-Feb-13 09:42:01

Oooh thanks everyone. There'll be three kids and a new baby this summer...I think we'll need our own space as it's been so stressful last couple of times with three kids, as my parents don't like sharing the washing machine/kitchen...I spend most of the days trying to avoid arguments!...can't imagine how my parents would handle baby crying in the night and all the extra stuff like baby bottles in fridge etc. In laws are totally unhelpful so they're not an option. If it's too expensive I'd rather not travel!

We stayed in a static caravan on a holiday/ caravan park last time - the fact we weren't staying with my parents meant my DH actually felt like coming with us, and the whole thing was less stressful than previous visits, and I even managed not to have a major row with my mother...

We were half an hour's drive from my parents and walking distance to the beach and a little town - much more conveniently located than my parents' home and made it a holiday rather than a duty visit (though the caravan got cold at night and the park was a bit Butlins-esque, which my husband grumped about as our previous caravan park experience has all been in Italy and Croatia)!

It was a bit cheaper than a holiday cottage or flat of comparable size, especially in a comparable location. We have 3 children who were 6, 4 and 13 months at the time. I have done caravan holidays with almost newborns but in warmer climates, not in the UK...

sleepdodger Sat 02-Feb-13 21:19:48

Can you house swap?

ClaudiaSchiffer Sun 03-Feb-13 07:42:33

Good idea sleepdodger, has anyone actually done it though - obv SOME people have actually done it, just wondered if it's worked out for anyone on MN.

Salbertina Sun 03-Feb-13 09:33:24

We did but only thro local connections, not one of the online sites...were v v lucky
Tend to mix it up on our stays- normally includes a couple of Travelodge stays. They're not characterful in any way but have cheap, clean family rooms (if u book way ahead) and are normally centrally located.

Mummysaysno Sun 03-Feb-13 13:45:06

Finding these posts v helpful...hadn't thought of travel lodge either.
We did a holiday a few years ago while still living in UK in caravans...I loved it! Yes I do remember how cold it would get at night, and generally bring afraid one night after three days of heavy rain in Cornwall that we would be swept out to sea...but it was fun! (And the terrible 'entertainment' at the campsite club, which ended in the entertainer getting angry at all the children for not laughing....cringe!!!)
House swap...I don't know if I would...not sure why really!!!

soapnuts Mon 04-Feb-13 04:31:07

We always used to stay with PILs for a few days to a week max (couldn't last much longer as house is teeny tiny) then to my parents for a couple of weeks - often PILs would come down for a couple of days (luckily PILs and parents get on like a house on fire - v odd!) while we're there. This usually meant though that DH didn't get to see much of his parents for the short time he'd join us and he didn't see the rest of his family at all.

Last summer we bit the bullet and rented an apartment close to his family which worked out brilliantly - we saw the family every day but weren't under each others feet. It actually worked out so well that we ended up buying a house to stay in when we go back (of course that's only possible because of the ridiculously low house prices in PILs area - couldn't have afforded it elsewhere!!) Eventually we'll rent it out for holiday lets to help pay the bills but at the moment we're still doing it up - I have to say it's made the world of difference to the length and the enjoyment of our stays - we were there for two months over the summer and even longer over xmas (though that was unusual circumstances). We'll be there for 8 weeks again this coming summer and it has been amazing for DS to spend more time with his cousins and the rest of the family.

Of course renting/buying somewhere is costly but we look at it as our annual holiday and only ever take short breaks away from here now. weirdly enough we've become total home birds (after years and years of saying we'd never go back) and thoroughly enjoy our holidays back in the UK - it's really hard to leave! also MIL and I have become much closer as we're not under each others feet all summer and don't get to the "I'm going to kill her" stage like we did when we were staying with her. It's also become a bit of a regular holiday jaunt for friends/my family (well my parents virtually live there anyhow!) who come over everytime we're back for a weekend which is fab as it means we don't have to traipse around visiting.

SissySpacekAteMyHamster Mon 04-Feb-13 04:37:48

We have always stayed with family, however, it is a bit of squash, so this year we have decided to rent an apartment. I think having our own base will make things so much easier.

ClaudiaSchiffer Mon 04-Feb-13 07:22:16

God soapnuts that sounds ideal.

Would your finances stretch to a little place in the Cotswolds for me? grin

Mummysaysno Mon 04-Feb-13 09:45:32

I always thought Virgo Fidelis was Catholic...thanks. All the replies are so helpful as so want to find the right school that can accept him at his speed!

Mummysaysno Mon 04-Feb-13 09:47:13

Of course previous post makes no sense as it was for another thread I'm on...never try to text during kids dinner time!!!

differentnameforthis Mon 04-Feb-13 12:03:02

We stayed with relatives & it was difficult. Next time we go we will find a cheap rental somewhere, that way people can also come to us instead of us being the ones who do all the travelling.

Be careful with Travel lodges. We stayed in a couple for a nigh here & there & some of them are grim now. Premier Inn are much better!

Engelsemama Mon 04-Feb-13 14:06:23

If staying for a week we tend to rent a holiday let, but were disappointed with last one. For the last year we've gone with Holiday Inn as so close to my parents, good value if you book early enough (and we often only go over for a long weekend). Often we get with breakfast but not always. Close enough to my mum and dad's to go and rustle up dinner there if we want to, or a really nice Beefeater over the road.

Mummysaysno Tue 05-Feb-13 01:25:02

Very impressed with airbnb so far...great selection of lets, with price range of an apartment in central London through to cottage on Kent coast...so suits a range of budgets. Hopefully about to book and that will be straightforward! We may have the odd night or two inbetween our holiday lets in which case I will look at travel inn...hopefully if it's just a night and isn't great we can grin and bear it!

We have mixed it up on our last few visits.

Usually we have a little tour of friends around Brighton and Hampshire to stay with for a few days as we make our way from Dover to the west. Sometimes a stop at a Premier Inn (agree with the comment on Travelodge btw).

Last Feb we rented a wooden chalet in Yorkshire. It had two spare rooms and a hot tub so people came to see us thanks to the lure of an evening in the hot tub under the stars! It was through Forest Holidays. We then got the overnight ferry back from Hull to Rotterdam which was an experience (stag night prison).

In the summer we met halfway in a campsite near Brugge. That meant both DB and his family got a holiday too and it was nice to adventure together.

We tend to luckily be out of UK school hols a lot of the time.

We have a wedding in Wales in the Autumn which thankfully is in DS holiday time so I have rented a cottage through Owners Direct. It had a spare room to invite a family member round to look after DS as it's a no kids affair, even though we have no option but to bring him with us.

But as most people probably experience, you have to do all the legwork in organizing trips and visits and shelling out for property and travel, dinner etc, as it's your fault you chose the lifestyle. Yet if I make one visit here due to work and don't manage to see every last friend and family member they all get the right hump!

This half term we've said arses to all and rented a luxury apartment in Dubai! Everyone is welcome to come over if they can make it though! wink

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