Paralyzed with indecision

1. I was going over our Europe trip itinerary last night and LO AND BEHOLD, discovered we don’t have a hotel yet in Amsterdam. Thunk (that’s my head hitting the desk). Good thing I discovered this now instead of when we arrived there.

2. It’s not hard to book a hotel. Unless you’re me. Because I always choose the worst places. I’ve ended up in dangerous neighborhoods (ala the Mister’s and my 1994 trip to Atlanta, where we were just one street shy of Skid Row), or non-existent hotels (a 1993 business trip to Dallas–who’da thunk there’d be so many Holiday Inns in Dallas? how was I supposed to know which one to pick?–our entire office’s sales team was relegated to the Hotel Grassy Knoll after that snafu), and even a haunted hotel in Phoenix. At least I was by myself then, which, at the time, was not reassuring at all.

3. I struggle with hotels because I want something interesting, not just a box room that looks the same as every other box room in every other city.

4. Hotel booking sites and their infernal reviews are not helpful in the least.  No one is ever 100% pleased with their hotel. Ever.

5.  The Mister put me out of hotel booking misery for this trip and picked all the other hotels (I don’t know how Amsterdam went unforgotten). Now it’s my turn to pick up the slack. But why Amsterdam? Too many options. Inn? B&B? Little hotel? Chain hotel? Houseboat? I really want to stay on a houseboat! That’s unique! Can’t ever do that here in the US. But with my luck, I’d pick one that leaks, or even worse, sinks!

6. Now I know how I’ll be spending my weekend–staring a tiny thumbnail images, pouring over reviews, clicking back and forth between maps…

oh, dear Lord, keep me away from rickety, haunted boats on dangerous canals…just this once give me good hotel booking karma.


  1. ooooh, houseboat! sounds like fun. I agree with you about non-box rooms. what I have learned is that for small hotels and inns, don’t go for bargains if you don’t know the area or any one who has stayed there. the pricey ones are usually nice. 🙂

  2. Omg Paige so funny you should post this now, we just booked a hotel for hubby for tomorrow only to hit confirm to see it was the wrong date. Aaaaahh. Nice man helped stupid people out and credited our card! Phew.
    I stayed in a hotel in Amsterdam once, won’t recommend it, the toilet was the smallest room ever, literally you sat, closed the door and it touched your knees! I’m a shortie so no good fir you Paige. Good luck!

  3. We have used for Paris, London and Dublin and have had pretty good luck. Paris’ apartment was a little tiny and you really couldn’t tell from the pictures, but totally fine and in a great location. Good luck..I know that I always worry that I am going to pick the bad place and have to hear about it for the rest of my life!

  4. If you really want to stay on a houseboat, I say go for it. How often do you travel to Amsterdam and get the opportunity?
    My one stay there was the last night of a 2-week trip. We were booked at a Best Western (sounds like an awful place to stay in such a colorful city), but it was in the heart of the museum district and an older building that felt like Amsterdam.
    As expected in a European hotel, room and bathroom were small but comfortable.
    Cant’t wait to hear about the houseboat experience.

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