I am SO stoked.
Do you remember a while ago I made this post? It was basically just me moaning a whole lot about my unfulfilled desire to travel. WEEELLLLLL… I’m travellingggggggg! 😀 😀 😀
For the past few years i’ve wanted to take Souly somewhere abroad for his birthday and i’ve never had the money, well i’ve been saving super hard and selling my clutter and now i’ve booked a trip to Paris! 😀 AAH! How exciting right?! It is only a short break for three nights but it means so much to me to be able to treat him because he ALWAYS goes all out on my birthdays. I want it to be all about him but i’m so so so excited to finally take a trip somewhere. Somewhere new and exciting!
I chose Paris because it is somewhere Souly has wanted to go for a long time and he has been all over the world but never to Paris, and after all it is considered super romantic. There were cheaper options than Paris but I wanted to splash out for his birthday, normally i’m SUPER frugal when planning any travels.
Souly and I are pretty much complete opposites with travels. I want cheap as possible for as long as possible and Souly wants 5* luxury and an English tour guide. It can be very difficult to plan trips because I can’t bare to pay more than I deem necessary and Souly can’t bare to share a room with 24 other people. And who can blame him? :’)
Airbnb is always my first port of call because you can get hotel luxury at hostel prices! I also love the fact you get a kitchen which reduces food costs too. Souly is still picky but it is almost always cheaper than a hotel and sometimes nicer.
Well in saying that you can imagine my surprise when the best deal (by far) was on Expedia. I never even consider Expedia for my travel plans, to be honest I don’t even know how I happened upon their website but I did and I found that their package deal to Paris was significantly cheaper than the package I had put together.
I always go to Airbnb and Skyscanner first, flights to Paris are always steep, I also find flying from my hometown to be more expensive than other airports but lucky for me, we are going in winter time so it gives me time to comb through the details and for us to get super excited. I wanted to keep it a surprise but when I mentioned the flight time was an hour and twenty he sussed me out. Anyway the point I wanted to make was that Winter is a wonderful time to go anywhere because few people go away in Winter so it is consistently cheap.
My birthday is in the middle of summer, so that is always a rubbish time to book a trip and our anniversary is in early December, which also always seems to be expensive. Well all of my knowledge comes from hours of clicking around on Skyscanner so please do not quote my facts. :’) Oh I also check Ryanair regularly because they have some great deals if you’re not social with your hours, another great thing about Airbnb is owners are happier with super late check ins than hotels tend to be.
The Expedia deal I chose was not the cheapest, but it was the cheapest of the nicer hotels available. I know what my Souly likes: white bedding, free internet and a bright white bathroom, so I went with the cheapest one that had all of that. In all fairness it was only £40 more than the cheapest hotel, which after seeing prices in Paris, seemed worth paying, besides it’s his birthday he’s got to love it! I also get my wish because it is cheap (for Paris) AND has a kitchenette! It’s more like a sink with two burners next to it but it means we don’t have to eat out for every meal, which will save us money!
Of course Souly demanded to know which hotel and where and to my amazement, he really liked it! I guess it’s a step up from a 24 bed dorm right? I think compared to the hostels and guest houses I usually present to him he was probably surprised to see a TV and cushions on the bed. Haha. :’) Of course he scoured the net for reviews and before I could sit down to dinner he had already emailed the hotel asking for a south facing room. “It overlooks the Seine” I said hopefully. “It’s on a main road and someone on Trip Advisor said it was loud so I want to change the room.” Damn you Trip Advisor.
When I first mentioned we were staying in a hotel Souly replied “It’s an Airbnb though, right?”. Haha. :’) He is very happy to be staying in an actual hotel, with a reception desk, a TV AND white bedding, which surprisingly isn’t a trend amongst Airbnb owners.
The hotel I picked is the Sejours & Affaires Paris-Ivry, it sounds a lot more exotic than it is and it has less-than sparkling reviews, but the pictures look good, it’s cheap and Souly is happy….for now. :’)
Yeah! Not bad huh? I mean sure, it’s not the Radisson Blu but that was £995 for 3 nights. This sweet little “studio” room was roughly £140 for 3 nights, like I said, not the cheapest option but it’s the one with all the features I knew Souly would want. However Paris still seems to be one of the more expensive European cities to visit…. maybe i’m not doing it right? :’)
I chose to fly because it is very convenient, Souly prefers it and with the Expedia deal it worked out that the ferry would have been only marginally cheaper. Besides it’s Souly’s birthday and I wanted to make this trip more about him and I didn’t want to be too penny-wise. Of course I still looked for the best value I could find so I have spare money for transport and dinner etc.
I’ve been trying to book a trip for a while and i’ve also wanted to take Souly abroad for ages so this worked out really well. I always seem to take so long to book things, even today I decided I wanted to just take the plunge and do it but I still ended up stuck on my laptop for like 5 hours. :’)
I got no writing done. No crafting done. Nothing. It’s like 11:00pm. But i’m so stoked that I finally just did it! I took the leap and spent a big chunk of savings on a birthday trip for my loved one! Best wasted day ever!
I just want to take an irrelevant minute to relate back to what I wrote about the other day, this post in which I spoke about why i’m not envious of the rich. It is because of moments like this. I feel so happy that I was able to save, sell and declutter at the same time in order to afford to take Souly away for a few days. Would I have got the same feeling of gratitude and triomphe (see what I did there? 😉 ) if I had just put the Radisson on the plastic. I really doubt it.
I also think Souly appreciates it more because he knows how long i’ve wanted to do this and how hard i’ve saved. Appreciation in life is important for overall happiness. If I could take him away for a city break any time without even thinking about it, it would lose some of its magic, it just wouldn’t be as special. 🙂
I cannot wait to take lots of photos for you and hopefully tick a thing or two off of my bucket list! 😀