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Most Common Complaints

Destination Expert
for Las Vegas
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Most Common Complaints

I'm about to start planning a trip that will include Eastern Pennsylvania, possibly Philadelphia, Lancaster, Gettysburg and Hershey. I have never been to this area before and would like a little help. I realize Philadelphia is a city and will look at it differently, so my question is more about the other locales.

I'm looking for advice that will help me sift through all the data and opinions regarding choosing places to stay. I mostly want to know which complaints are common so I can give them proper weight in the decision process.

I know Las Vegas VERY well. So I can read TR's or reviews and know which complaints to ignore. The most common LV hotel complaints (besides the price of things) are: No coffee makers in room, there is a fee for internet use, and you have to pay around $25 to use the gym. I'm not trying to minimize these complaints, but the reviewers don't realize these items are common to all LV hotels. So they should be non-factors in choosing a hotel. These reveiwers often let these complaints color their opinions of the hotel. But I know this so I can take this into account when reading their review.

So what I'm asking is if there are any common complaints about lodging in your area that I should consider the norm rather than the exception when reading reviews?

I hope this make sense, and appreciate any help or advice.

Central Maine
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1. Re: Most Common Complaints

We've vacationed off-and-on in the Lancaster area for more than twenty years. In the beginning, we shopped around for hotels, but more recently have stuck with one which we found we liked a lot.

During our "shopping around" years, one of the things we found ourselves commenting on quite often was the obvious traffic noise levels at many of the properties along, or close to, US Rt 30. In addition to being a major local route to shopping, restaurants and attractions, it's also a major through-route for trucks and busses. We'd give comments about traffic noise a bit more attention than usual.

There are certainly a number of places where traffic noise is not an issue....one which we've found, and patronized for more than ten years now, is the Hampton Inn on Greenfield Rd. It's far enough off US 30 that you don't hear the traffic, but the US 30 interchange is less than a quarter mile away. It's also very near the Lancaster Area Visitors Center, making it easy to pick up maps, brochures, etc. We also like the fact that, like most Hampton's, that property includes free breakfast.

Rehoboth Beach...
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2. Re: Most Common Complaints

There is a lot of mostly irrelevant info in the hotel reviews here for all destinations, and knowing how to read them helps. Sounds like you've already figured that out. I sometimes disagree with the numerical rankings, but in general, the ones in the top ten must be doing something right, and vice-versa for the bottom tier properties.

Hershey, Gettysburg & Lancaster are all tourist destinations & have adequate hotel/motel density to accomodate them, especially Lancaster. With the addition of the new Marriott downtown, and in the current economy, local inkeepers are complaining that their occupancy rates are the lowest they have seen in three decades. Yet it hasn't brought rates down...yet. (The latter two destinattions also have a generous selection of historic B&B's.)

That's the only common denominator I've noticed in local accomodations...you can expect to pay about $100. per night (& up) in season, but at some properties a lot more is included.

Roselle Park, New...
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3. Re: Most Common Complaints

I too have been coming for many years and do stick with the places i like. I find you get great accomodations for the money if you choose the right place. I love Fulton Steamboat, i pay only 69.99 per night and the rooms have been redone not too long ago and place is immaculate. it is very near highway but you feel like you are in another world. I have never had a problem with highway noise. I love the cruise ship theming. It gets great reviews on here. I also like Willow Valley (its away from everything but more expensive). Bird in Hand is a few miles off major highway and still very close to everything. I used to stay at bird in hand family inn (great place has two indoor pools, resort like property without resort prices but rooms are a bit older. Lately i choose to stay at either FS or WV because they have nicer rooms. They are all like a resort type atmosphere and you cant beat the prices. If you want to be close to everything in a nice clean updated place try Fulton Steamboat. It really has a great atmosphere which i am sure you would love. The hotels in the area are pretty reasonably priced but do you homework and look at the top reviewed places.

Edited: 20 December 2009, 15:41
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4. Re: Most Common Complaints

Thank you for the replies. We are not familar with that area of the country at all so we are really starting from scratch. In fact I was quite surprised when looking through the AAA guide at how many hotel choices there are in Lancaster. I was expecting a smaller community-type environment, maybe that was a little naive.

The noise issue from Rt 30 is very helpful as that would definitely be a problem for me. So I will certainly take that into account.

I probably should have provided a little more information. We will almost certainly fly into Philadelphia, and end up spending maybe 2-3 nights in the area. We also need to spend a couple of nights in New Jersey and want to spend a few nights in Philadelphia itself as tourists. We usually prefer to stay in quiet areas when we travel instead of the most crowded tourist sections. Such as Dupont Circle in DC or the Garden District in NOLA. With some exceptions we don't normally stay at luxury hotels, enjoy B&Bs and Inns, but are also comfortable in Hampton Inns or comparable choices. But we will not consider economy motels or make lodging decisions based mostly on price. Value and comfort are much more important than economy. And we are on vacation and will not consider cooking or cleaning ourselves, lol.

Again my thanks. I will certainly look into your recommendations and any input is appreciated.

Manassas, Virginia
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5. Re: Most Common Complaints

There is a website with info that may help. Don't know if you have been to the sitebut, it's www.padutchcountry.com. It lists places to stay,eat,shop (my wifes favorite) and many things to do.

We'll be out there ourselves this April to see the story of "Joseph" at the Sight & Sound Theater. But my wife won't know about it until Christmas day.We have not been to Philly or Gettysburg yet, but we really enjoy the Amish country with all it's back road shops

What ever you decide to do,enjoy.

Merry Christmas,


Over the Rainbow
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6. Re: Most Common Complaints

If you've only got a limited amount of time here in Lancaster and want to get the best experience for your $$, then I suggest you stay at a Bed & Breakfast property. Many very positive and consistently good reviews here on TA. The innkeepers know the area and will be able to direct you to the best places to shop & eat and what to go see. Much better value for your money, especially considering that full breakfast is included (no waiting in line for the waffle maker like at the chain hotels). Innkeepers are willing to accommodate special requests, too. Lots of customer service there.

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7. Re: Most Common Complaints

great question!

complaints i hear most often - rooms aren't super-modern. of course there are some exceptions, but most places are pretty basic and won't have things like wifi, flat screen tv's, modern furnishings (ie beadspreads rather than comforters). and traffic.

Northern NJ
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8. Re: Most Common Complaints

A couple things to keep in mind - while "Lancaster" is often used as the name of the destination, Lancaster is a large town while Amish Country covers a good sized area of small towns and farmland in the surrounding county(s).

The closer you get to the actual city of Lancaster the more crowded and busy it becomes. You want to really consider what experience you're looking for. If you want a quieter time in the area stay further out; if you're looking for hustle and bustle keep closer to the city.

For peace and quite our preference is to stick to Route 340 as much as possible; this road runs parallel to Route 30 but is much less built up. Get a map and take random side roads between 340 and 30 to take in the country and farmland.

Personal opinion is the rooms at Kitchen Kettle Village can't be beat and the town has some nice stores and is less than 15 minutes from Route 30 Outlets etc.

To answer your question about complaints I think the one I hear often that is normal for the chain hotels and a couple resorts is complaints about children. Hotels near Dutch Wonderland and other attractions that appeal to kids plus resorts like Willow Valley market themselves as family friendly with playgrounds, pool play areas etc but you then find reviews that complain about the children running around, noisy play, crowded with families and so on.

I'd first decide what I want to do or see in the area then carefully check my hotel choices on a map to see if the location and type of accomodation fits into either the urban or country experience I'm looking for.

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9. Re: Most Common Complaints

I have yet to go to this area too BUT I have to say THIS is why I always camp! I use my own sheets, cook my own meals for alot cheaper, dont pay too much usually 11 to 20 bucks a night and best of all its more fun to sleep under the stars than it is to sleep under a ceiling with water stains!

10. Re: Most Common Complaints

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