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Pilgrim rates for Hotel Accommodation?

Jensjaunt

Active Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Sept Oct - Camino Francis
I seem to recall reading somewhere that some of the Hotels or Pensions may have pilgrim rates that are lower than what you see on booking.com?
If this is true how common is this and do you need to ask or is it automatically given when they recognize you as a pilgrim? I would assume you would need to book directly? Anyone have any experiences they can share? I ask as it looks as if my accommodation budget will need to be higher per night than on the Camino Frances where Albergues were plentiful? 😊 Thank you - Jen from Canada
 
...and ship it to Santiago for storage. You pick it up once in Santiago. Service offered by Casa Ivar (we use DHL for transportation).
At albergues, I would just walk up and ask for a bed without reservation. If you reserve, do it with WhatApp or by phone. Booking.com does charge a fee to the hotel or albergue and generally the facility does not list all rooms on this site. If you find no vacancy with Booking, then call the location directly.
 
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Several times we have received a Pilgrim discount at non-albergues, but you need to contact them directly and inquire about it. To make it less awkward, we always start with it along the line of, “Hello, we are pilgrims walking to Santiago and would like to book a room”. This gives them the opportunity to offer a discounted rate out of kindness without us being so forward as to ask for it. We have been recipients of this kindness at paradors, gites, casa rurals, and hotels.
 
Ideal sleeping bag liner whether we want to add a thermal plus to our bag, or if we want to use it alone to sleep in shelters or hostels. Thanks to its mummy shape, it adapts perfectly to our body.

€46,-
@Jensjaunt , in my limited experience a pilgrim rate isn't that common on the more popular routes but can happen. The Portuguese coastal is a very well travelled route, with lots of pilgrim accommodation.

If needing/ wanting to book a hotel I take the same approach as @Vacajoe - I email directly, using much the wording given. Translated first of course!

Because they're not paying a commission, at the very least many then offered a slightly better rate than advertised on booking etc. And a few times I got lucky!
 
The rates on booking.com, in addition to not giving a pilgrim discount might actually be higher overall especially for individual rooms. You're usually better off to phone.

While walking a stretch of the mozarabe after cordoba i believe, a lot of private accommodation was needed and most offered a pilgrim discount of approx €5. On vdlp, many albergues and hostels seem to revel in being the only accommodation on the stage and in my view they overcharge.

*Some* hostels realised booking.com's fees are actually worth it to guarantee the reservation, process payment, integrate with their reservation system, process receipts, facilitate communication, even sometimes deal with registration (ID). So it's becoming slightly more common for hostels to say to book through booking.com, especially those that use a lockbox instead of personnel at reception..... but it's still rare. We might see more of it in future.
 
Along the cf, The paradors in Santiago and Santo de Dominigo both offer pilgrims rates but you must contact them via email to request the pilgrims rate. I suspect that the other paradors en route may also offer a pilgrims discount . In Santiago, hospederia San Martin pinario has smaller, more basic and cheaper rooms for pilgrims, again you must book by contacting them directly via email or WhatsApp. I have found that many of the pensions/hotels Along the route will offer a small discount if you book a private room directly with them (5-8 euro discount) or they will include breakfast in the rate for free. As places fill up, the availability of discounted rates seems to decline
 
The 2024 Camino guides will be coming out little by little. Here is a collection of the ones that are out so far.
Hey Jen (hello again from your other thread...)
Portuguese coastal is a different beast to the CF. As you can see on Gronze, a good proportion of the albergues are not exclusively for pilgrims, whereas on the CF nearly all of them are. No discounts for pilgrims!
We found (in February) prices at the albergues we stayed at in Portugal were comparable to CF. But once we crossed the Minho they went up a lot and from there to Santiago the private albergue range was €16-21 (except for the Xuntas we stayed at in Vigo, Redondela, Padron).
I felt the pricing was fair and the private places always offered some added value for their extra €€ - whether it was location (old town in Pontevedra, beach at Sabaris) facilities (like washing machines, kitchens, outdoor areas) or fascinating chats with owner managers about their stories, local history/politics/gossip.. (Caldas, Pontevedra).
 
The lowest pilgrim rates I have ever been offered was when I walked into the reception on the same day, wet and bedraggled but very polite, and asked whether there were pilgrim rates. Hotels would rather fill the rooms than leave them empty.
Got me a suite at the parador in Santiago for €100. Internet price was €800.
 
Technical backpack for day trips with backpack cover and internal compartment for the hydration bladder. Ideal daypack for excursions where we need a medium capacity backpack. The back with Air Flow System creates large air channels that will keep our back as cool as possible.

€83,-
I have found on the off-piste caminos (e.g. Castellano-Aragonese or Catalan) that hotels will often give pilgrims the commercial travellers' rate (or the truck-drivers' rate in hostales which cater to them). Usually the arrival of a dusty or sodden pilgrim earns one a sympathetic greeting and a conversation usually results in the discount (very occasionally I would get a welcome drink). I would not for a moment dream of asking for it if I had reserved on a booking site and I would not suppose that it would be available on the Camino Francese, which is pretty swamped with pilgrims. Hotels would rather see empty rooms filled, but that is not a problem on the Francese. And, as @GraemeHall hall senibly notes, we should have no expectation of it.
 
At albergues, I would just walk up and ask for a bed without reservation. If you reserve do it with WhatApp or by phone. Booking.com does charge a fee to the hotel or albergue and generally the facility does not list all rooms on this site. If you find no vacancy with Booking, then call the location directly.
Thank you! I try to use what’s App where possible when booking it’s so handy!
 
Several times we have received a Pilgrim discount at non-albergues, but you need to contact them directly and inquire about it. To make it less awkward, we always start with it along the line of, “Hello, we are pilgrims walking to Santiago and would like to book a room”. This gives them the opportunity to offer a discounted rate out of kindness without us being so forward as to ask for it. We have been recipients of this kindness at paradors, gites, casa rurals, and hotels.
Thank you this is what I thought! I am trying to be more flexible with not booking too far out but want to book some of the pinch points on the Coastal or Spiritual variant All recommendations are appreciated! Jen Frm🇨🇦
 
The focus is on reducing the risk of failure through being well prepared. 2nd ed.
I have found on the off-piste caminos (e.g. Castellano-Aragonese or Catalan) that hotels will often give pilgrims the commercial travellers' rate (or the truck-drivers' rate in hostales which cater to them). Usually the arrival of a dusty or sodden pilgrim earns one a sympathetic greeting and a conversation usually results in the discount (very occasionally I would get a welcome drink). I would not for a moment dream of asking for it if I had reserved on a booking site and I would not suppose that it would be available on the Camino Francese, which is pretty swamped with pilgrims. Hotels would rather see empty rooms filled, but that is not a problem on the Francese. And, as @GraemeHall hall senibly notes, we should have no expectation of it.
Yes thanks no expectation but wanted to clarify what I had read, with travelling solo the price of a room is something I need to account for with the budget and cash I am taking😊. I so hope that w walking the coastal and Spiritual in Late April and May that I will only be sand blown and not wet! Jen from 🇨🇦
 
The lowest pilgrim rates I have ever been offered was when I walked into the reception on the same day, wet and bedraggled but very polite, and asked whether there were pilgrim rates. Hotels would rather fill the rooms than leave them empty.
Got me a suite at the parador in Santiago for €100. Internet price was €800.
Many thanks! I so appreciate the staff in Albergue and Pensions - they were so helpful to me on the CF - good to hear of your experience! Jen
 
Hey Jen (hello again from your other thread...)
Portuguese coastal is a different beast to the CF. As you can see on Gronze, a good proportion of the albergues are not exclusively for pilgrims, whereas on the CF nearly all of them are. No discounts for pilgrims!
We found (in February) prices at the albergues we stayed at in Portugal were comparable to CF. But once we crossed the Minho they went up a lot and from there to Santiago the private albergue range was €16-21 (except for the Xuntas we stayed at in Vigo, Redondela, Padron).
I felt the pricing was fair and the private places always offered some added value for their extra €€ - whether it was location (old town in Pontevedra, beach at Sabaris) facilities (like washing machines, kitchens, outdoor areas) or fascinating chats with owner managers about their stories, local history/politics/gossip.. (Caldas, Pontevedra).
Thanks again Tom this helps me w my budgeting….with doing the coastal and spiritual v - do you know if there are any pinch points where it is good to book ahead - I have told myself I would cab it if need be to next local - just exploring…Jen
 
...and ship it to Santiago for storage. You pick it up once in Santiago. Service offered by Casa Ivar (we use DHL for transportation).
do you know if there are any pinch points where it is good to book ahead - I have told myself I would cab it if need be to next local - just exploring…Jen
My experience is not much help on this as I walked in February when it was pretty quiet. Obviously the central and coastal options meet at Redondela and run together to Pontevedra. Then shortly after you'll turn left on the Spiritual route. So that R->P stretch is likely to be the busiest. However I can see a lot of pilgrim accommodation all along there on Gronze.
For Pontevedra we stayed in the Turoqua hostel right in the old town ('casco antiguo'). It's modern, friendly and the cubicle bunk beds have curtainy things for privacy. Anyway you can contact them via WhatsApp in English, on the number listed on Gronze - but I can give you names and more details if you'd like me to PM you.
 
The rates on booking.com, in addition to not giving a pilgrim discount might actually be higher overall especially for individual rooms. You're usually better off to phone.

While walking a stretch of the mozarabe after cordoba i believe, a lot of private accommodation was needed and most offered a pilgrim discount of approx €5. On vdlp, many albergues and hostels seem to revel in being the only accommodation on the stage and in my view they overcharge.

*Some* hostels realised booking.com's fees are actually worth it to guarantee the reservation, process payment, integrate with their reservation system, process receipts, facilitate communication, even sometimes deal with registration (ID). So it's becoming slightly more common for hostels to say to book through booking.com, especially those that use a lockbox instead of personnel at reception..... but it's still rare. We might see more of it in future.
Many thanks - due to my limited language abilities what’s app with translation was needed when I walked the Francis! My hope is that this will help! Appreciate the info! Jen🇨🇦
 
Hi, Orbitur Angeiras
offered discounts to pilgrims last time I walked through, try them. Just north of Matoshinos. They have cute little self catering chalets.
 
The one from Galicia (the round) and the one from Castilla & Leon. Individually numbered and made by the same people that make the ones you see on your walk.
@Jensjaunt , in my limited experience a pilgrim rate isn't that common on the more popular routes but can happen. The Portuguese coastal is a very well travelled route, with lots of pilgrim accommodation.

If needing/ wanting to book a hotel I take the same approach as @Vacajoe - I email directly, using much the wording given. Translated first of course!

Because they're not paying a commission, at the very least many then offered a slightly better rate than advertised on booking etc. And a few times I got lucky!
Thank you! Curious any pinch points - I am planning on walking only around 15 or so km per day as I want to spend longer in churches or other places of spiritual and cultural reflection? Thx for any comments Jen
 
Yes thanks no expectation but wanted to clarify what I had read, with travelling solo the price of a room is something I need to account for with the budget and cash I am taking😊. I so hope that w walking the coastal and Spiritual in Late April and May that I will only be sand blown and not wet! Jen from 🇨🇦
Not suggesting that you had expectations!! Budget planning is very legitimate. I was writing more for the information of a general readership (and, I fear, a few pilgrims I have met whose notion of the Camino included lots of cleverness!!) Best that they have no cause for misapprehension!
 
...and ship it to Santiago for storage. You pick it up once in Santiago. Service offered by Casa Ivar (we use DHL for transportation).
Along the cf, The paradors in Santiago and Santo de Dominigo both offer pilgrims rates but you must contact them via email to request the pilgrims rate. I suspect that the other paradors en route may also offer a pilgrims discount . In Santiago, hospederia San Martin pinario has smaller, more basic and cheaper rooms for pilgrims, again you must book by contacting them directly via email or WhatsApp. I have found that many of the pensions/hotels Along the route will offer a small discount if you book a private room directly with them (5-8 euro discount) or they will include breakfast in the rate for free. As places fill up, the availability of discounted rates seems to decline
I’ve booked the Pilgrims rate online for the Parador. You set up an account and then you see all the specials and discounts.
 
Thanks for the correction about the paradors . I should have been specific and said that you can’t book the pilgrims rate on third party booking sites , like booking .com
 
Not suggesting that you had expectations!! Budget planning is very legitimate. I was writing more for the information of a general readership (and, I fear, a few pilgrims I have met whose notion of the Camino included lots of cleverness!!) Best that they have no cause for misapprehension!
🙏
 
Ideal sleeping bag liner whether we want to add a thermal plus to our bag, or if we want to use it alone to sleep in shelters or hostels. Thanks to its mummy shape, it adapts perfectly to our body.

€46,-
My wife spent close to 15 years in Hospitality industry. Pilgrim or no pilgrim - chances are that when you contact the establishment directly you most likely will get a better rate than published by the middle-man- 3rd party.
My motto always was and will be "if you don't ask you dont get" and with that "what do you have to lose"

The lowest pilgrim rates I have ever been offered was when I walked into the reception on the same day, wet and bedraggled but very polite, and asked whether there were pilgrim rates. Hotels would rather fill the rooms than leave them empty.
Got me a suite at the parador in Santiago for €100. Internet price was €800.
Next time around maybe I'll try for that suite at The SdC Parador. I'll gladly even pay €101
🤣
 

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