Wednesday, August 15, 2012

German Travel: The Pension Option

Once in a while.....I will offer this bit of advice on travel in Germany.  Most of the time....you will search out and find some pretty decent hotels....at a decent rate.  Another option, is the German pension (pen-si-on is the best way of pronouncement).

Some folks will describe it as a bed-and-breakfast.  I might lean toward that definition, but it ends up slightly different in character.

For the most part, you get a breakfast deal as part of the price, which makes this an interesting deal.  Don't expect a four-star or even three-star breakfast.  You basically get a tray delivered around to your room early in the morning (at your preference of time), with a pot of coffee, some orange juice, a couple of brotchens, honey, jelly, a couple of hard-boiled eggs, a couple of slices of cheese, and maybe a few slices of salami or ham.  Nothing fancy, but it's enough to get you started for the day.

A place to search for pensions?  Try pension.de.

Pricing?  Well....usually you can find a place in the range of twenty-five to fifty Euro.  Accept the fact that twenty-five is pretty much at the low end of things and you should not have huge expectations other than simple bed for the night and a simple breakfast.

Here's the thing....you could end up in some great valley locations in Bavaria....where some farmer has three rooms that he rents out.  You settle in, and wake up with the sun rising over a monumental view of some mountain....with the farmer's wife delivering a tray of food.  Between the view, the fresh air, the simplicity of the room....whatever you paid....was likely worth the money.

If out in the eastern regions of Germany....you might find some great farming areas where a pension fits right into the scenery and offers you a decent price for a evening of rest.

No, I wouldn't advise you to stay an entire 2-week vacation at various pensions in Germany.  Occasionally, you probably ought to stay in a real hotel, especially if in a major town (Munich, Berlin, Wiesbaden, etc).  If passing through a rural area or mountainous area....try the pension option.

Finally, if you are the type with huge expectations and fancy surroundings.....don't bother with the pension option.  It's an offering of simple hospitality and reasonable costs.....which most Germans tend to prefer over paying out the big bucks.

No comments: