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Private Accommodation - Without Booking?

Robo

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
CF SJPdP to SdC
(May 2015)
CF Sarria to SdC
(May 2016)
CF SJPDP-SdC
(May 2018)
VdlP (2022?)
For our next Camino, my wife and would like to walk in as flexible manner as possible. But I/we don't 'do' Albergues. (Long story). Previously we have booked 1 or 2 days ahead at least.

So next time around, we'll try not to book ahead too much. On my first Camino alone (CF in May), I found that I was booking ahead at least one day. And that provided a fair amount of flexibility. I was staying in CR, small hotels etc.

But I'm wondering, for Pilgrims who choose to stay in CR, small Hotels etc, what are the chances of just turning up and finding a bed? We'll walk in May again. And at that time of year I often found whilst booking ahead, I needed to try 2 or 3 places before finding a bed. So not booking at all, would seem to be risky?

Any thoughts from those who have used private accommodation only, and didn't book ahead at all?

I'm sure in the larger places it's easier, but places like Hornillos for example, only have one CR in town anyway....
 
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Deleted member 43985

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Any thoughts from those who have used private accommodation only, and didn't book ahead at all?
Hi Rob - In mid-April/late-May we to did not do the Albergues for about 2/3's of the Camino. In the beginning we tried just showing up but on numerous occasions we could not find a (relatively speaking) reasonably priced CR, P, etc so ended up having to spend far more than we had hoped for on a hotel room. After that we were all about calling ahead and booking one day prior or on occasion if we were coming into areas we felt sure would be bed challenged, we booked two days in advance. Once we started down that slope it led to Jacotrans and day packs too... :cool: I would note too that a surprising amount of CR's were still closed when we went through as well which was a surprise.
Good luck.
 

MTtoCamino

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Francis SJPdP to Finnestere April(2014)
I wonder how common when walking with a spouse the change occurs to places other than alburgues. As I plan my next with my wife. It would certainly increase the budget. More the concern is how much it would effect the freedom to stop when the choice is available. So the question to you all is does it make any difference in the overall walk?
 
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Deleted member 43985

Guest
So the question to you all is does it make any difference in the overall walk?
I think it makes a huge difference. As @SYates rightly says your immediate conversations will typically be with that person first. I don't know that necessarily precludes talking to other Pilgrims more or less nor do I think it necessarily puts Albergues on the 'no fly' list but I would also add that I think it realistic to believe each of you would naturally be accommodating each other in forms of compromises that you may well not have done otherwise. I don't see any of this negative but in my experience a solo Camino was significantly different than a shared Camino.
 
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dougfitz

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Spain: Mar 2010, Apr 2014, May/Jun 2016. Norway/Sweden: 2012, 2018. Other: 2011, 2019. CP (tbc)
Any thoughts from those who have used private accommodation only, and didn't book ahead at all?

I'm sure in the larger places it's easier, but places like Hornillos for example, only have one CR in town anyway....
I don't meet your specific criteria for responding, but I suggest that the availability of private accommodation, including private rooms in albergues, is likely to vary a bit across the year. Elaine and I walked in May/Jun, and booked ahead. While there were some places that we stayed with rooms still available, this was not all that common.
 
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Robo

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
CF SJPdP to SdC
(May 2015)
CF Sarria to SdC
(May 2016)
CF SJPDP-SdC
(May 2018)
VdlP (2022?)
I don't meet your specific criteria for responding, but I suggest that the availability of private accommodation, including private rooms in albergues, is like to vary a bit across the year. Elaine and I walked in May/Jun, and booked ahead. While there were some places that we stayed with rooms still available, this was not all that common.

That's what I'm tending to think Doug. Maybe smaller places, book one or two days ahead. Larger places, 'wing it'....

As for the lack of spontaneity that others have raised and often do; due to booking ahead, I'm not sure I actually ever found it that restricting in any way.

On my first CF I booked ahead all the way. Usually just one day ahead. I'd work out how I was holding up, and look for places to stay at the appropriate distance.

Were there days when I felt 'I'd had enough' and would have liked to have stopped sooner? Yes. But there was generally no where to stay anyway.... (other than an Albergue)

Were there days when I would have preferred to keep walking? Yes. Either because I felt I could manage a bit more, or because friends were going on ahead. In every case, my body was glad that I stopped, and I met up with friends later anyway... or made new ones.

So I'm not sure that booking ahead impacted me much....
 
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mcopeland

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Camino Frances - April-June, 2016
Portuguese Lisbon-Santiago - October, 2017
We went in May and June this year and booked ahead 1 day for private rooms. Sometimes we booked private rooms in regular albergues, thereby getting the experience of communal meals (those were our favorite), although some did not have private baths if that is a consideration. Later on we started booking ahead 2 days, but only on the weekends. There are a lot of Spaniards who walk on the weekends and it was harder to find a private room. Make sure you give them your first AND last name. We lost our private room to someone who had the same first name and country. There are some lovely new albergues with private rooms with bath.
 
Year of past OR future Camino
2019
I have limited experience in booking, short notice ahead or not. But I can say walking last year in late March it was possible on the Meseta (I was walking with a friend and we made a spur of the moment decision to stay at Casa el Cura in Calzadilla de Hermanillos. (It was fabulous by the way...)
But in May? Probably another story altogether...

So I'm not sure that booking ahead impacted me much....
Perhaps not, but really the only way to know that for certain would be to try it out for yourself, right?;) (Not 'pressuring'...I'm well aware that this is not your 'thing' @Robo, nor need it be.)
I've walked both ways--alone, not booking ahead/with a friend, and booking--and they're really different experiences. Both good, just different good. And I have to say I was surprised just how different they were. I didn't expect that.
 

MelissaSue67

New Member
Year of past OR future Camino
I plan to start my walk on 23 September (2016). Will be travelling from Paris by train to SJPP. Planning to spend about 8 days in Paris.
We went in May and June this year and booked ahead 1 day for private rooms. Sometimes we booked private rooms in regular albergues, thereby getting the experience of communal meals (those were our favorite), although some did not have private baths if that is a consideration. Later on we started booking ahead 2 days, but only on the weekends. There are a lot of Spaniards who walk on the weekends and it was harder to find a private room. Make sure you give them your first AND last name. We lost our private room to someone who had the same first name and country. There are some lovely new albergues with private rooms with bath.
Hi, just out of curiosity, what was is the price difference from albergues to private rooms? I know that might seem like a tricky question, but I'm just curious to know the price of staying at albergue compared to a private room. Thanks heaps.
 
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hikingmd_05

New Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Camino Frances in 3 stages (2016/2017 & 2019)
CP in 2021
I'm in pamplona now n will be going to SJPdP today to start walking Sunday. Because of a back problem, ill be using pack transport so ill be staying in private albergues. Last night, i emailed a private albergue in larrasoana for a sept 6 reservation n i was informed that it's already full. Im exploring other options n hoping i get a confirmation today.
 

dougfitz

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Spain: Mar 2010, Apr 2014, May/Jun 2016. Norway/Sweden: 2012, 2018. Other: 2011, 2019. CP (tbc)
Hi, just out of curiosity, what was is the price difference from albergues to private rooms? I know that might seem like a tricky question, but I'm just curious to know the price of staying at albergue compared to a private room. Thanks heaps.
You might try researching this question on a site like www.gronze.com, which does have listings of prices. My recent experience on the CF was that private rooms in albergues were 30-40 euro when available, going up from there for other options.
 

Robo

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
CF SJPdP to SdC
(May 2015)
CF Sarria to SdC
(May 2016)
CF SJPDP-SdC
(May 2018)
VdlP (2022?)
You might try researching this question on a site like www.gronze.com, which does have listings of prices. My recent experience on the CF was that private rooms in albergues were 30-40 euro when available, going up from there for other options.

Just to add to that. in 2015 on the CF I stayed in private rooms all the way. Some of these were in Albergues. Other were Casa Rural, small Hotels etc.

If I take out the more expensive ones, like the Parador in Santo Domingo, my hotels in St Jean, Pamplona, Leon and Santiago, i get an average room price of Euro 36.40 These ranged from 24-49 Euro.

I was paying similar room prices for a private room in an Albergue and for a Casa Rural.

Others can advise on the range of costs for Albergues....
.
 

long trails

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Frances 2012
In May / June this year I stayed in a few places that were not albergues and never booked ahead. Think it's more than possible, just be wary of weekends and any festivals. I was caught out in Leon and struggled to even find an albergue bunk. Some of the cities are popular stag/hen party destinations for Spanish.
 

MelissaSue67

New Member
Year of past OR future Camino
I plan to start my walk on 23 September (2016). Will be travelling from Paris by train to SJPP. Planning to spend about 8 days in Paris.
You might try researching this question on a site like www.gronze.com, which does have listings of prices. My recent experience on the CF was that private rooms in albergues were 30-40 euro when available, going up from there for other options.
Thanks so much for that link.
 
John Brierley Camino Frances Guide
This guide is one of the ones that has been around for over 15 years. Updated yearly. Please read the reviews.
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MelissaSue67

New Member
Year of past OR future Camino
I plan to start my walk on 23 September (2016). Will be travelling from Paris by train to SJPP. Planning to spend about 8 days in Paris.
Just to add to that. in 2015 on the CF I stayed in private rooms all the way. Some of these were in Albergues. Other were Casa Rural, small Hotels etc.

If I take out the more expensive ones, like the Parador in Santo Domingo, my hotels in St Jean, Pamplona, Leon and Santiago, i get an average room price of Euro 36.40 These ranged from 24-49 Euro.

I was paying similar room prices for a private room in an Albergue and for a Casa Rural.

Others can advise on the range of costs for Albergues....
.
Thanks so much for that information.
 

lbpierce

Linda Breen Pierce
Year of past OR future Camino
Camino Frances 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016
I stay primarily in private rooms with private baths, preferably in albergues. The cost of a double room with a bath in an albergue is roughly the same as the cost of a double room in a pension or casa rural, about 40-50 euros. I have found single private rooms to be about 10 euros less.
 

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