Hotel Stars – A guide

Hotel star ratings, a simple guide…..

Hmmm, it’s not always easy to figure out. Many a time we’ve booked a five star place only to find the crappy attitude of the staff let it down and we think “never again“. Conversely, sometimes a 3 star hotel exceeds all expectations and we rave about it.

Nowadays, hotel star ratings are only part of the choices we make as the reality check is blogs like this and real life experiences of fellow travellers shared on social media and travel sites like Expedia & TripAdvisor.

We suggest balancing the best reviews on social media with the number of average/poor reviews, using the hotel star rating/price as the initial filter only.

Hotel star ratings, a simple guide…..

hotel-travel-blogs-onestar ” Disappointing, we really didn’t like it “
Sometimes known as a “Fleapit”, no-one wants to advertise this rating and it’s usually awarded by disgruntled guests looking for a bargain but ending up with something that is cheap & nasty or very much worse than expected. You’ll most likely be mingling with Chavs during your stay in the crack of nowhere. Expect a simple, possibly noisy, uncomfortable, smelly and itchy night. Its not all bad though, if you are lucky, you might be blessed with a cheap & cheerful Hostel.  Price range, ” Peanuts”

hotel-travel-blogs-twostarstar” Basically ok,  “
Reasonably well presented, no frills. Basic room, shared bathroom, cleanliness standards may not be 100% and bed linen might not always be refreshed. Location is usually the best bit. Think of a typical, seaside B&B and you get the picture. Price range, > £30/night

hotel-travel-blogs-threestarstarstar ” Functional rooms, mostly average “
Good level of quality & comfort. Geared towards price conscious travellers, rooms 
with ensuite options, in a practical location with the beginnings of the concept of “customer services”. Will not boast luxurious amenities, but will be good value for money, functional rooms, with minimal style/ambience. Family’s on a budget will be here.  Can expect in-room, tea/coffee making facilities, hotel restaurant and maybe even a gym. Price range,  > £50/night

hotel-travel-blogs-fourstarstarstarstar We really enjoyed it, would recommend to a friend
Excellent standards throughout. Deluxe guest experience, with a wide range of facilities, complemented by service standards that reflect the varied & discerning tastes of the middle-class guest. Multiple, larger rooms & suite options, restaurants, bars, business facilities, concierge, swimming pool, gym, spa & crèche. Price range, > £100/night

hotel-travel-blogs-fivestarstarstarstarstar  We loved it, felt like we were special  “
Exceptional, has everything a 4 star hotel has and then some. Superior luxury across an extensive range of facilities. Nothing is too much to ask , comprehensive & personalised guest services. Extra’s like suana/steam rooms, turndown service in evenings, Valet parking, bathrobe & slippers supplied. Attention to detail in all areas. High-end, building design, refined & stylish themed rooms, with luxurious comfort. Price range,  > £150/night

See below, exert from The AA Hotel Quality Standards on ratings assessment for hotel reception staff,


In the UK the following organisations assess and rate hotels through period inspections and mystery guests.

Should you avoid Hotels with lower than 2 stars ?

Absolutely not, there are some superb 1 star places out there, just make sure you do your research and manage your expectations. Many lower star rated accommodations, may still offer high quality, but do not meet all of the facility and service expectations for higher star ratings. Generally speaking though, more stars means a better hotel, but there is no international standard for allocating them. For example, 4 stars in London does not equate to 4 stars in Milan, – it can be very subjective, and very much dependent on the culture of the country  you are visiting, for instance, in that glitzy, desert oasis (Dubai) there are now six and seven star hotels (Burj Al Arab)

Keep an open mind

Use the star rating for initial guidance, balance with online research and reviews. Above all, keep an open mind and spirit of adventure as that’s what travelling is all about.

 ” the great advantage of a hotel is that it is a refuge from home life !



Burj Al Arab

3 Comments Add yours

  1. louisejones04 says:

    Seem like I stay at fleapits mostly

    Liked by 1 person

    1. melaniesotherland says:

      LOL, yeah but sometimes “fleapits” have the best staff

      Liked by 1 person

  2. conrad says:

    Excellent guide, thanks


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