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Bed & Beakfast Etiquitte

Bakersfield...
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Bed & Beakfast Etiquitte

I'm an American and I'll be visiting London in a few months. A British lady that I've gotten close to will be joining me for most of the week. When I mentioned the B&B's I've seen on this site (great homes and great prices) she seemed hesitant to go that route. When you're staying in someone's home, is it considered poor etiquette for non-married people to be in the same B&B room? I think she's worried they'll be asking a hundred questions about our relationship, and it will make her uncomfortable.

11. Re: Bed & Beakfast Etiquitte

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Removed on: 11 August 2011, 17:35
Oxfordshire
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12. Re: Bed & Beakfast Etiquitte

British B&Bs can be much smaller and tattier than the extravagant small hotels you find in the US that Americans call B&Bs and we call boutique hotels.

In Britain they often carry an overtone of excessive familiarity on the part of the owners, and extreme proximity to each other.

You and your new friend may well be thinking about completely different kinds of accommodation

London
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13. Re: Bed & Beakfast Etiquitte

It may be that she is concerned about the accommodation and its quality (as anyone who has seen Channel 4's three or four in a bed would rightly think). B&B's are very variable and I find people who like them seem to have greater tolerance for things I find unacceptable (carpets in bathrooms/alien hairs in bathtubs, I could go on, for example). Not all are like this and there are now many that are as good if not better than some soi disant 'boutique hotels' but you need to hunt them down. Have you checked with her what her concern is or are you assuming the problem is as you have described?

Edited: 11 August 2011, 12:52
Ipswich, United...
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14. Re: Bed & Beakfast Etiquitte

With so many budget chains around (Travelodge, Premier Inn, Holiday Inn Express etc) there is usually little reason to go down the B&B route on grounds of cost as the savings would be minimal (unless you are talking about a B&B in the suburbs or a backpacker sort of place). Having said that, there is no reason to fear B&Bs either. Even the ones in smaller towns have seen it all, let alone ones in London. Nobody's remotely bothered about your private arrangements.

Londinium born and...
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15. Re: Bed & Beakfast Etiquitte

See how polite we are over here? ;)

That's enough beating around the bush, time to get to the nub of the matter!

(is that enough euphemisms?)

I'm not surprised she's a bit put off. If things are early on with you and her and she's thinking things might get a bit passionate, the last thing you want is to be in a tiny house, with your hosts snoring down the corridor, or worse, in the next room.

I reckon she's thinking more of your privacy than it just being a matter of staying in a potentially pokey B&B.

Find B&B's that have plenty of guest privacy and failing that, book some rooms in hotels that afford larger scale, anonymous privacy.

Good luck!

Hitchin, United...
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16. Re: Bed & Beakfast Etiquitte

After Trill's comment I'm somehow reminded of a scene in "Gavin and Stacey" where Stacey is staying in Gav's parent's house for the first time. Mum bursts into the bedroom and says:

"Dad's sparked out and I'll have my earplugs in, so no need to hold back".

UK
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17. Re: Bed & Beakfast Etiquitte

The lady in question will not have to produce any identification documents

under current English legislation.

I do firmly agree with the expression re advantages of annonymity in Hotels

Happy days for all

regmaiche

Vancouver, Canada
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18. Re: Bed & Beakfast Etiquitte

I think I can understand your friend's reservations.

In all the times DH and I have travelled, there have never been any such personal questions by owners (even though I have kept my own name). As has been pointed out, they are too busy looking after their business.

However, depending upon the size of the B&B, the seating arrangements at breakfast and the general comings and goings of the other guests, a certain amount of "sociability" occurs among the guests, along with superficial exchanges of information. It's just a normal part of sitting in the breakfast room of some B&Bs. The fact that your friend is British and you are American may bring up very innocent questions from other guests that she may not feel comfortable in discussing. It's only a week. Go for the anonymity of a larger place.

Edited: 11 August 2011, 17:15
London
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19. Re: Bed & Beakfast Etiquitte

<<The fact that your friend is British and you are American may bring up very innocent questions from other guests that she may not feel comfortable in discussing>>

Non issue even in lace curtain land.

Vancouver, Canada
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20. Re: Bed & Beakfast Etiquitte

Oh, it's not that it's any sort of "issue". However, it's been my experience that one reason many people stay at a B&B is to talk to other guests, learn from their experiences, meet people from other places, etc., etc. Some people may just regard it as an opening to begin a conversation along the lines of "where are you from"? "what brings you to London", etc., etc.. At the last B&B we stayed at (and OK, it was in Canada and perhaps the situation is different), we ended up knowing quite a lot of "superficial information" about the other folks sitting at the breakfast table just through the course of everyone carrying on this sort of conversation. (This sort of sociability is not for everyone, BTW.)

Edited: 11 August 2011, 17:35