The Forbidden City
Hotels in Beijing
There are an abundance of accommodation options in Beijing. The times when foreign visitors were restricted to staying in high-priced official hotels have gone.
A stay in a top end hotel will cost you around the same as Western Prices but tour groups are known to receive considerable discounts. Listed prices can sometimes be negotiated down. Just ask for the lowest rate.
In general, restrictions on where foreigners can stay have become less and less frequently enforced. Hostels and western-style travel hotels are almost universally open to foreign guests. The lowest end Chinese accommodations – Zhaodaisuo, are generally inaccessible to the foreign community. However, for those determined to get a bargain, you may be able to get a room if you speak Chinese.
In the outlying areas of Beijing, especially by the Great Wall there are some country club style resorts as well as some unique, one-of-a-kind, hotels. The quality of these are obviously reflected in the price.
Hotels in Beijing
Beijing is a modern, metropolitan city with plenty of hotels to choose from. Varying in value and price. A stay in a top end hotel in Beijing will cost you around the same as western prices but tour groups are known to receive considerable discounts. Listed prices can sometimes be negotiated down. Just ask for the lowest rate. In the outlying areas of Beijing, especially by the Great Wall there are some country club style resorts as well as some unique, one-of-a-kind, hotels. A good 3 star hotel will cost around 40 EUR per night; there are plenty of 4 stars to choose from at around 60 EUR per night, worth the extra cash if you have it. A simple, unpretentious room that’s clean and comfortable can be found for around 20 EUR per night.
The Dongcheng district in Beijing is a great area to base yourself if you can find a suitable hotel, being a few minutes away from The Forbidden City, Wangfujing Dajie and historic hutongs (narrow alleys) spreading out in every direction. Bookings are usually taken online or by telephone.
Hostels in Beijing
For lower budget travellers and backpackers, Beijing now offers hostels all over the city, which not only offer a bed for the night, but can also provide internet access, airport and train station pickups, either for free or a very low price, laundry services, day trips to the Great Wall, help with booking tickets and some even include free breakfast in their own restaurant or café. There are many Hostels to choose from in the best locations in Beijing, near the most popular sights and close to the bars, shops, and restaurants. Most hostels in Beijing will also include cooking facilities if you want to self cater.
However, it’s best to read independent reviews of any Beijing hostel you think you would like to stay at, many backpackers have been lured in by dubious advertising and inaccurate descriptions to find themselves in filthy, badly smelling rooms with no hot water or clean sheets. Travellers have also complained of being over charged for day trips and mislead as to what exactly they’re paying for.
Prices range from around $10 for a bed in an 8-bed dorm, to $25 for a private room with en-suite. Most hostels in Beijing are available to book online but if not they should have a website with a telephone number.
Apartments in Beijing
Renting a holiday apartment in Beijing is a great way to feel independent, have some privacy and live like a Beijinger! There are a great quantity of apartments to rent in Beijing, either privately owned or through a company. Apartments in Beijing come in all shapes and sizes, prices start from as little as $20 per night but average is around $50 for a studio with basic facilities. Beware of the lower priced apartments, tourists have complained that the interiors are not always like the pictures, also bear in mind that some apartments have a minimum 3 night stay. A discount is usually given if you stay for a week and there are usually plenty of spaces available but book in advance, either online or by telephone
Bed and Breakfast in Beijing
There are a number of Bed and Breakfast options in Beijing, varying in price and quality. Prices vary from around $75 – $125. To book: telephone, email, fax or send a reservation request through an online Bed and Breakfast website. Most Bread and Breakfasts in Beijing have their own website with contact details and more information about the rooms, such as facilities including TV, Internet, kitchen, laundry etc.