When planning your trip to Pigeon Forge, your motto is clear: stay in a hotel with splendid views of the Great Smoky Mountains. They are the main attraction in town, after all!
However, there’s more than the terrace and what’s visible from it when it’s about finding the best place to stay on your vacation.
Convenient traveling distances, comfortable beds, and Wi-Fi that works at the speed of light are also can’t-miss factors.
So, how can you pick the perfect place to stay during your Pigeon Forge getaway? Here’s a list!
1. The Location of Your Accommodation
When you first start browsing TripAdvisor, you instinctively filter hotels by location. After all, you want to be close to the action, right? But what does that mean in Pigeon Forge?
If you have young kids or are traveling with elderly family members, being in the middle of the hustle and bustle might not be ideal. In that case, you might want to find a hotel with a shuttle that can take you back and forth to Parkway.
For some travelers, being in the heart of downtown is vital. That way, they can walk to all attractions without worrying about finding parking. So if you want to be within walking distance of all the major attractions, you would want to find a hotel Pigeon Forge TN offers on the Parkway.
Your fellow tourists have stories to share about their Pigeon Forge hotel experiences, and you should listen to them!
When you’re looking at different hotels, be sure to read the reviews. They can be beneficial in giving you an idea of what to expect from a property.
Of course, you shouldn’t take every review at face value. For example, if someone says they had a terrible time because their hotel didn’t have a heated pool and it was snowing outside, that’s not the hotel’s fault.
But if you see a trend in the reviews, like several people saying they had problems with their room not being clean or the staff being rude, you might want to think twice about booking a stay there. Of course, the hotel’s website will only show you the best reviews, but TripAdvisor and other travel sites will give you a well-rounded idea of what to expect.
You can also turn to your Facebook travel community for one-on-one conversations about specific hotels!
3. Your Budget
It is probably the most critical factor on your list, which you’ll want to consider from the beginning.
How much are you willing to spend per night on your accommodations?
$100? $200? $500?
You’ll find hotels in Pigeon Forge to fit every budget. But you must be realistic about what you can afford before you start your search.
Once you have a figure in mind, you can start to narrow down your options. You can also get a better idea of what your money will get you.
For example, a hotel that’s $200 per night will probably offer more amenities and be in a better location than a hotel that’s $100 per night.
Of course, there are exceptions, but it’s a good general guideline.
4. Hotel Amenities
What are you hoping to achieve from the vacation? Do you want to lay in your floaties by the pool all week and sip on Mai Tais?
Are you planning to hit the town every night and need a place to crash after a long night of fun?
Or are you looking for a family-friendly hotel with a kids’ pool and game room to keep the little ones entertained?
Your answer will help you determine what hotel amenities you should look for.
Here are some popular amenities that travelers often consider when booking a hotel:
- Free breakfast & parking
- Shuttle service
- Fitness center/gym
- Complimentary Wi-Fi
So, check the website’s amenities page (or give them a call) before you book your stay. That way, you can ensure you’re paying for your ideal vacation experience.
The stars don’t always narrate the whole story regarding a hotel’s cleanliness.
While a five-star property might look fantastic online, you never know what’s happening behind the scenes.
That’s why you should always read the reviews before booking a hotel. Look for key phrases like “not clean,” “dirty sheets,” and “bathroom smelled.”
These phrases will give you a decent idea of what to expect in terms of cleanliness. If you see many reviews with these phrases, booking a stay there is probably not the best idea.
You can also expect bedbug problems in some hotels. So, inspect your room for any tell-tale signs before settling in for the night.
6. Cancellation Policy
We don’t like to think about it, but having to postpone or cancel a trip is always a possibility.
When that happens, you’re looking at a non-refundable hotel booking. Unfortunately, that means you’re out of luck and stuck paying for a room you’re not using.
To avoid this situation, always read the cancellation policy before you book.
Most hotels will have a standard policy that allows you to cancel up to 24 or 48 hours before your arrival date.
However, some hotels have stricter policies. For example, they might require you to cancel at least a week in advance or charge you a fee for canceling.
You must know the policy before you book so you’re not caught off-guard if you must cancel.
7. Check-In and Check-Out Time
Only the most seasoned travelers pay attention to check-in and check-out times. But if you’re not used to staying in hotels, you should keep it in mind.
Most hotels in Pigeon Forge have a check-in time of 4:00 pm and a check-out time of 11:00 am.
However, some hotels have earlier or later check-in/check-out times. So, look for this detail before clicking “confirm.”
Why does it matter, you ask?
If you’re planning to arrive early or stay late, you might have to pay for an extra night. Of course, you can always ask the hotel if they can make an exception. But there’s no guarantee they’ll say yes.
Whom you’re traveling with, the purpose of your trip, and your budget will all play a role in what hotel you choose to book. We know that’s a lot to account for when booking a hotel. But don’t let that stop you from enjoying your much-needed vacation. Just be sure to do your research and plan accordingly. And only return when you’ve had all the fun you were hoping for (if the pocket allows, that is)!