I generally stay at budget hotels, as I’d rather spend on food and experiences in places I visit.  I’ve stayed in a few throughout the UK, and thought my experiences might be useful.

This list of budget chain hotels is not exhaustive, as I’ve only given details of those I have direct personal experience of.

They all have certain things in common : comfortable beds, cleanliness, and security, with manned reception areas and entrance to bedroom areas by keycard.

Premier Inn

Perhaps the best known of the budget chains, these hotels can be found near motorways, at the edges of cities and increasingly right in the centre of cities.  Book online via their website.

Well established and at the top end of the budget range, these often have an attached restaurant or coffee shop.

They also offer free wifi, which is usually of average speed.

Rooms are a good size, as are the ensuite bathrooms, which generally have a shower over a bath.  Very good for travel with children, as they have family rooms which can comfortably be used by two adults and two children.

Tea/coffee making facilities and hairdryer in rooms.

The refurbished hotels in this chain are especially comfortable.

Brave Traveller tip : book well ahead if you can, and if you are sure of your travel dates, look for the saver rates – these are non-refundable but can offer a substantial saving.

Stirling South, refurbished room


Usually cheaper than Premier Inns, these can be found in the same variety of places. Book online through their website.

Very good value during their regular sales, though wifi is only free for a short amount of time and is then chargeable.

Some Travelodges have check-in machines, though they have manned reception desks as well.

Tea/coffee making facilities in rooms, though if you want a hairdryer you’ll have to ask at reception for one.

Good sized rooms with family rooms available, and showers over the bath in the ensuite.

Brave traveller tip : subscribing to their email list gives advance notice of sales and reduced rates.

Tune Hotels

These are generally found in city centres, and often have very good positions in the heart of the action.

Single, double, twin and family rooms to chose from, with free wifi.

Smaller sized rooms, but still plenty of room to move around, with shower cubicles in the ensuite bathrooms.

Brave traveller tip : book directly online for the best prices.

Tune Hotel, Liverpool

Easy Hotels

The cheapest of the budget chains, Easy Hotels are in excellent city centre locations, and have a choice of double or single rooms.

Rooms are small, with just enough room, and because of their size are really only suitable if you don’t plan on spending much time in your room.

Simple, pared back rooms with a small ensuite shower room.

Book directly on their website and look out for their sale prices, which can be exceptionally low, and for special offers at newly opened hotels.

Brave Traveller tip : best for very short stays as there is little excess room for luggage.

Easy hotel, Manchester