London Apartment – Everything You Need To Know Before Booking A Serviced London Apartment

A few weeks ago a secretary telephoned me in absolute desperation. She was desperately searching for accommodation in central London for some VIPs from abroad. She stumbled onto my website, not really understanding what the service was about. I think the words ‘free service’, ‘apartments’ just helped her to figure out that Quality London Apartments had something to do with accommodation. Apologies for my long opening, but it is a prime example of how little travellers in the UK and Europe know about the serviced apartment industry. After explaining the concept of serviced apartments and helping her find an apartment, I realised that I needed to share this knowledge further afield. Thus, this article is my contribution to open up this elusive industry and offer tips to travellers.

What is a serviced apartment?

A serviced apartment is a flat in a block, which has a separate bedroom, sitting room/lounge, fully equipped kitchen, your own private keys to own door. Serviced apartments can be in the form of a studio flat (all in one room with a kitchenette), one, two or three bedrooms.
All apartments enjoy maid service, utilities and a management team to help….just like a hotel. Guests only pay for a nightly rate and can live in a flat with everything they would have in their own home.

Pros: Serviced London Apartment vs Hotels

  • More value for money and cheaper. In a hotel, no matter which star rating, you pay per night for one room which will have a TV, bathroom, sofa and a bed. This is similar to a studio apartment! In an apartment there is a separate bedroom, kitchen, sitting room, bathroom and dining table (exception is studio)
  • Pay per apartment and not per person. An example would be paying £250 per night for a two bedroom apartment, which could accommodate up to 4 people, that works out at £62.50 per person.
  • Freedom and privacy. An apartment is like being in your own home and there is plenty of space. You have your own keys to your own door.
  • Booking is easy, just like hotels. The majority of apartments require a credit card to guarantee, pre-payment before you arrive and that’s it. No deposits, no tenants’ contracts.
  • Cons: Serviced London Apartment vs Hotels

  • Apartments lacks the buzz and services of a hotel such as restaurants and Room Service. Albeit some apartments are owned by hotels and offer you the use of their restaurants and other services.
  • No 24-hour service around the clock. The apartments are ran by a small team who work Monday to Friday 9:00am – 6:00pm, so you are on your own during the weekend. There are emergency numbers to call should you suffer an electric cut, but no 24-hours hotel Duty Manager to run to your room.
  • No pool, massages, saunas like hotels
  • What to look out for when booking a serviced London apartment?

    1. Quality of the apartment – make sure you find out if they are clean, well furnished and well maintained. How? Check the photos, and ask if you can book an appointment to view the apartment. This is very important if you are staying over a long period of time.

    2. Do they have a friendly and efficient management team? If you need the comfort of a welcoming face to greet you on arrival, then ask for an apartment with a reception. Some apartments provide key boxes, so you can arrive any time, but there is no-one to meet you. A friendly and small team will be able to give you a very personal touch.

    3. Opening time of the apartments office – doesn’t sound important? Well it is because the majority of apartments’ operations team open Monday to Friday 9:00am to 6:00pm. If you arrive at your apartment during office open hours, then fine, but any other time and weekends will mean that you will need to pick up the keys from a different location.

    4. Key delivery by car at the airport? – If you are flying from abroad to London, and do not fancy traipsing throughout London at night to pick up keys, the majority of apartments will hire a taxi to deliver your keys to the airport upon your arrival. Convenient for a small charge.

    5. Payment procedure and cancellation policy – every apartment vary in their guest terms and conditions. All will accept a credit card as a guarantee of reservation, some will ask for 100% pre-payment at least 7 days prior to arrival and cancellation can range from 12:00pm on the day of arrival to 28 days. So, before you confirm the reservation, be very clear about the terms and conditions. Ask your apartment agents to explain the procedure to you and read the terms and conditions on your confirmation emails. It will save you a great deal of trouble and headache later.

    6. Apartments are always allocated on arrival. This policy is the same as any hotel, so unless you are a regular guest to a specific apartment, apartments are on allocations. In the same breath, some apartments only have a small number of flats, so if you are reserving the only 3 bedrooms penthouse in their collection, then you are guaranteed that specific apartment.

    7. Rates become more competitive the longer you stay. In this, we mean you have more bargaining power if you are staying for one month or longer. This is when your apartment agent can really help you by negotiating with a variety of apartments to get you the best deal.

    8. Using an apartment agent will also save you time searching, but most importantly they will work with your budget and negotiate a great deal for you. Of course, you also need to be realistic about what you can book, don’t expect to spend £80 per night for a luxury apartment. For example, one of our clients had £300 budget per night for a two bedroom apartment and he wanted something luxury. For those readers who know London well, also understands that this budget is actually very small. Despite that, we booked him and 3 friends into the Victoria Park Plaza luxury apartment (£150 per night less than the usual price) for £300 per night with free breakfast, gym and access to the executive lounge. Any apartment agent worth their salt can and will move mountains to help you.

    What if I don’t like the apartment when I get there?

    If you really feel that you have been hard done by, tell the apartment management team and ask to be moved to another apartment. All of the apartments that we work with are very customer focussed and try to help guests enjoy their stay. If this does not work, talk to your apartment agent, if that is how you booked. Best advice though, is to ask all the right questions before you book an apartment.

    Your appetite for apartments is now whetted – how do you find London apartments?

    1. As already explained, you can choose a free search and book service of an apartment agent or go direct to a specific apartment that you know. Both methods are absolutely fine, dependent of your knowledge of London apartments. Using an agent will mean that they will search far across their portfolio and present you with a variety of choices…all within 10-15 minutes. Agents are impartial and will only (good agents anyway) recommend the quality apartments for your needs.

    2. You can use search engines like Google, Yahoo and MSN to find apartments. Type in keywords like ‘London serviced apartments’ or ‘quality London apartments’ and so on.

    3. Stating the obvious but, ask for a recommendation from friends and acquaintances.

    4. Check on Tripadvisor.com and other customer review websites.

    Summary

    If you have read this far, then thank you for your time. I have tried to make this article clear and as helpful as possible, but I welcome your comments and any further information that you feel is very important.

    Why Use a People Finder Service?

    Most of the people across the world are already aware of people search services, but only few of them know how to use these services and what its capabilities are. If you want to search for someone you have not seen for a while, then you should consider people search service as an effective mean to perform the task efficiently and quickly.

    Of course there are several methods available to track down a person, but people search service is the most effective and the fastest one available so far. These services comprise of powerful database and a search engine that allows you to grab the information you need in minutes or sometimes even in seconds.

    Since several years, people finder services are raising in popularity, and these days millions of users are utilizing these services all around the world. The search engine available with people finder service searches in various public databases to snatch out the information that might be useful for you to locate someone.

    Apart from searching for a particular person, there are several other methods for which people finder services are utilized, like to search for the official birth records for determining the relationship with another person. If you are having some dilemma that you are related to a particular person or not, then you can perform a search through people finder service to get confirmed information.

    Modern computerized technology has helped a lot in comforting the lives of millions of people around the whole world. It has served people in several ways making their life easy and convenient. No matter if you are in USA or some other parts of the world, with people finder service you can search thousands of databases situated worldwide with a single click. Already there are several service providers and tools are available that are perfect for any person looking for some whereabouts of some other person.

    Modern technology has really played a vital role in the lives of millions of individuals around the world. People’s needs are served in many ways to make things convenient and easy. Those who find it hard to locate someone in the USA will not be a problem anymore with the help of the People Search tools over the Internet. There are already several online records providers today that feature services on searching and locating for people in the USA. Such search tools are perfect for anyone to find out the whereabouts of other people.

    The People Finder USA tools are very effective in conducting a quick retrieval of important information regarding the person’s contact details and location. People moved out for various reasons, it could be due to a change of career path or simply required for some reason. This has caused some people to part ways or to be far from each other. Situations like these could lead to losing contact with the people you had associated with in the past. The tool helps individuals a lot in locating for the long lost relatives, friends, or whoever who live in the US.

    Apart from using the tools to locate friends, they could also be useful in searching for criminals who are known to have relocated in the US. The tools can also be of great help in looking for potential employees and other legitimate purposes. Although the traditional ways of searching for such information are still available through the newspapers, telephone, radio and private investigators; the online USA People Finder is popularly used today. It is more efficient because the services are quick convenient.

    These online service providers are actually available in different ways. There are two versions for you to select from. First is the free-of-charge version, which produces raw information. Second is the fee-based method, this is commonly used for any legal purposes. The choice is yours, but if you want a professionally researched result you should select the fee-based method.

    Finding for the sites that offer such services is not a problem because they can be found from all of the major search engines. These online search providers are helping a lot those who are tracing the whereabouts of certain individuals in the US. The online databases contain a huge record about the people living in the United States. Thus, you will have the greater chances of finding the person whom you are looking for.

    Looking for someone now in the US is not a difficult task to perform. The availability of online services is a big help towards searching for people you want to be reunited with. The amount of money needed is very reasonable for the quality of services that these online providers offer. You may do it yourself anytime at the convenience of your own home.