glossary of terms


Advance purchase commonly refers to discounted rates on rooms being available if you book in advance of your stay. Commonly, these are broken up into 7 day advance purchase, 14 day, 30 day etc. Discounts are already applies to the rate, and sometimes extra conditions apply to achieve the discounted rate, including no cancellations or no amendments. Often these rooms must also be fully pre-paid at the time of booking. All of these conditions are visible before you make a reservation.

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Apartment accommodation is self-contained accommodation including the features you would expect in your own home. Apartments come in many sizes. Studio apartments are a single bedroom which contains the bed as well as the kitchenette and living area. The ensuite bathroom is separate. Studio apartments will usually have a kitchenette (see: 'Kitchenette' below) rather than a full kitchen. Other apartments have separate bedrooms, such as a One Bedroom Apartment, Two Bedroom and Three Bedroom Apartments. Studio and One Bedroom Apartments are the most common followed then by Two Bedroom Apartments. Three Bedroom Apartments are not very common, are mostly available in premium properties (4 Star and above) and so tend to be more expensive. There are also Interconnecting Apartments which are two smaller apartments connected by a common door or short corridor, and lockable to the outside. The most common Interconnecting Apartments are a Studio and One Bedroom Apartment interconnected to form a Two Bedroom Apartment.

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Tourist attractions are the best known and most visited places by tourists, visitors and local residents alike. These attractions are usually of an historical relevance to a particular place or else a place of social importance or special interest. Attractions will also include museums, galleries, houses of parliament, monuments or places of natural beauty such as beaches.

Sydney's best known attractions are the Sydney Harbour Bridge and the Sydney Opera House. Sydney's beaches are another main attraction with Bondi Beach and Manly Beach the most popular. Fox Studios, Sydney Cricket Ground and the Sydney Football Stadium, Taronga Zoo, Oxford Street, Mardi Gras, Darling Harbour.

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The availability of a hotel or apartment tells you whether or not you can book it. If a hotel room or apartment is available then you can book it. If it is not available, then someone else has already booked it before you. Available accommodation can be booked and secured with a credit card or prepayment of the accommodation cost. Rooms and apartments that are not available have been booked already and may only then become available later, if the guest who booked it first cancels their booking. Availability may be difficult to find during busy times such as over New Years Eve when some hotels are so popular that they book out well in advance. Some hotels offer a 'wait-list' during such busy times, and may offer you a room if a cancellation does occur. Rates and availability can change depending on season. Shoudl you cancel a booking and rebook, rates may not necessarily be the same, even if you rebook within minutes of cancelling your reservation. the room may not even become available again at all, if the hotel is oversold. 

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A balcony is a private area attached to the outside of an apartment or hotel room, and mostly on floors above the ground floor. Many hotels and apartments have balconies however these are mostly found in more expensive properties. Non-smoking rooms and apartments may feature a balcony where guests are allowed to smoke. Some balconies may only be juliet balconies, where there is no furniture or opening wider than around 1 foot. 

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The bathroom in your hotel room or apartment is where the toilet and shower (or bath) are located. Some bathrooms will feature a bath, though most will have only a shower. Baths may be more common in more expensive hotels and apartments. Many budget hotels or hostels have rooms that do not have a bathroom in the room, and provide communal bathrooms to share with other guests. Staying in hotels with shared bathroom facilities are a good way to save money on your accommodation.

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Boutique hotels and apartments are usually smaller properties that offer accommodation with more character than you may find at large chain hotels. Be it an old manor house or trendy new hotel, boutique hotels can provide a more intimate and friendly atmosphere, and they are generally found in popular tourist locations, places of historical interest or perhaps a somewhere out of the way. Boutique hotels can also specialise in offering a particular style accommodation such as that of a classic old manor house or a warm and friendly family hotel.

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Budget hotels and apartments accommodations are the least expensive options for any stay. This type of accommodation is best suited for those who are "on a budget" and who want to save money on the accommodation so as to better enjoy other attractions and activities during their stay. Budget accommodation options include dormitory accommodation and backpacker hostels, as well as some serviced apartments. These budget options will be cheaper because they do not offer the same level or quality of services which other more expensive hotels and apartments do, such as a weekly clean rather than a daily clean, or because the rooms feature only a shared bathroom.

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A bunk bed is a set of two beds where one is over the other. In most cases this is two single beds in a frame, with one of the single beds directly above the other. This bedding is suitable for two guests only. Bunk beds are common in family rooms for children, as well as in dormitory accommodation or in backpacker hostels. A triple bunk bed is where you have a single bed which is above a double bed. The triple bunk can accommodate up to three guests, with one person in the single bed on top and one or two in the double bed on the bottom. For children sleeping in bunk beds there may be a restraining bar which you can attach to the upper bed to prevent falling out of the bed whilst asleep.

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When a hotel accommodation, conference, car hire, travel insurance policy or tour booking is made, the guest may secure the booking so that it will be held and will not be sold to anyone else. A booking may be secured by providing a credit card and by so doing the guest is committing to paying some part of the cost of the booking.

If a hotel room has been held for a particular guest and the guest does not show up on the day, or has to cancel at the last minute, then the hotel has lost that opportunity to make money from that booking because it was held for the guest who didn't show. The Cancellation policy is the way to cover some of the cost of this lost opportunity. No-Show fees are usually the cost equilivant to the first night of stay, or possibly the entire stay booked. 

A hotel's cancellation policy allows the hotel to charge a Cancellation Fee where the booking is cancelled within a short time prior to the date of the booked arrival. For example, a '48 Hour Cancellation' policy means that if the booking is cancelled within 48 hours of the date of booked arrival, the hotel will still charge the guest a Cancellation Fee. Cancellation policies can vary especially over High Season (such as over New Years Eve) and may be more strict than the Low Season Cancellation policy. Make sure you are aware of the cancellation policy which applies to the booking, so you know what will happen if you are forced to cancel or don't show up. 24 hours is calculated not on what time you noted you would turn up at the hotel, but the hotels check in time. So if the hotel has a 24 hour cancellation policy, and the hotels check-in time is 2.00pm, then a 24 hour cancellation policy applies from 2pm the day prior. 

World Blue reccomends travel insurance to cover any losses incurred due to unforeseen circumstances. Click here for our QBE travel insurance deals. 

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The expression CBD stands for 'Central Business District' and refers to the busiest part of the city centre usually where the tallest buildings are located. Commonly this will be where you can find the houses of parliament if it is the capital, and may also include many of the main tourist attractions, museums and shopping. As this is the busiest part of the city, then hotel and apartment accommodation rates will be among the highest in this area.

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Different hotels have different times of Check-In and check-out. Most commonly Check-In time is after 2 pm. The most common Check-Out time is by 10am, which allows the hotel time once the previous guest has departed, to have the room cleaned and ready for your occupancy from 2pm onwards. Earlier arrivals cannot be guaranteed but can be requested.

In circumstances where an early arrival request cannot be guaranteed (e.g. requesting a 7am Check-In time) the hotel can in most circumstances hold luggage until later in the day. The only way to guarantee early Check-In is to purchase the night beforehand (or "pre-register" the room). This means the room is booked by the client on the night before the actual date of arrival, so that it is held empty and is then ready for early arrival at whatever time the guest arrives the following morning.

Most commonly Check-Out is before 10am on the day of departure. In certain circumstances, a later Check-Out can be requested at time of arrival, but not guaranteed. The granting of this request will depend on arrival times on the day of your departure and may involve extra cost. The only way a late Check-Out can be guaranteed is to purchase the extra night at the end of your stay (on the day of your departure), so you have the room all that day and may leave at whatever time you require.

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At some hotels you can 'charge back' purchases at shops and restaurants to the bill for your hotel room. This is usually only offered at more expensive hotels for shops and restaurants in the hotel building or very close by. In order to use any charge back service you will need to have your credit card provided to the hotel for your bill.

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A 'complimentary' item such as parking at a hotel or maybe a bottle of wine at a restaurant is something which is offered at no extra charge. This item is offered 'with the compliments' of the hotel or restaurant and is in addition to the product or service that you are buying.

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The hotel 'concierge' is a staff member of a hotel or apartment property who assists guests or residents, usually by handling the storage of luggage, taking and delivering messages, and making reservations for tours. The Concierge Desk will be found in the reception area of a hotel and can also assist you with booking a taxi, tours or making special arrangements for services within the hotel. In Australia and New Zealand, it is not customarary to tip concierge staff, however should you feel inclined, do so discretley as not to embarrass employees, as culturally this practice is not common. Some concierge staff may refuse your tip. Do not take offence to this as this may be an employment rule of the hotel. 

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A cot is a bed used for infants usually under 2 or 3 years of age. Other equipment provided by the hotel or apartment can include a high chair or a stroller for walking. Many hotels provide this equipment and in most cases there is a fee. Make sure you find out about these items before you make your booking. Cots in Australia and New Zealand do not refer to an adult bed, as in other countries such as the United States. 

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A discounted hotel room rate or service, such as a tour, is one where you are paying less than the normal price. There are many reasons why a discount is available to you, and as well many reason why no discounts are available at certain times. A discounted rate on a hotel room may have particular conditions which only apply to this discounted price, such as 'fully prepaid and not refundable'. In this case to achieve the discounted rate you must pay in advance and thereafter the discounted cost is not refundable. Discounts are common at hotels when there are lots of rooms to sell on a particular day, or a discounted rate may be offered if you are staying for a long time. Discounted rates are usually available most of the year, except during busy times such as on Saturday night, or over high season times such as when large sporting events are on or over New Years Eve when rates may actually be higher than normal.

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District views are views offered of the surrounding city area from your apartment or hotel room. These views will not include views of Sydney Harbour or the Sydney Harbour Bridge. District views may include city views of the skyline or of nearby buildings.

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A room described as a Double room, is one hotel room which features a double sized bed or larger. This room type may have a Double bed, a Queen bed or a King bed. This room type is suitable only for up to 2 guests.

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A Double bed (53" x 80" or 132cm x 200cm) is the standard size of bed suitable for 2 people to sleep in. A Double bed is not as large as a Queen bed (60" x 80" or 150cm x 200cm) which is not as large as a King bed (76" x 80" or 190cm x 200cm). A Single bed is (38" x 75" or 95cm x 188cm).

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An 'Ensuite' is a private bathroom that is located within your hotel room or apartment. A hotel room can be described as an 'Ensuite Double Room' which means a double room for 2 people, which has a private bathroom in the room.

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Executive quality hotel rooms or apartment are suited to business travellers or those who require a better standard of accommodation that may include services or facilities such as high speed internet, a business centre for photocopying or faxing. Executive hotels and apartments will be in the four-star to four-and-a-half-star star ranges and are usually located in the middle of the city or areas which are close to certain business centres. Executive class accommodation tends to be stylish and modern.

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Hotel room and apartment rates are quoted for up to the number of guests shown for that rate. It is common in some rooms and apartments, but not all, that extra guests can be accommodated. Where additional bedding for extra guests is available this will usually be at an extra cost per night, and this will information will be available with the nightly rates. In most cases an extra guest will sleep on a sofa bed or a roll away bed, which is in addition to the number and type of beds already in the room. Sometimes extra children will be allowed 'in existing bedding' which means that there is no extra charge if no extra bedding is required when the infant is sleeping in the parent's bed. It is important to note the 'maximum occupancy', or most number of guests allowed in a room or apartment, when considering which is the most suitable accommodation for the number of people staying. Hotels may cancel a booking or request that guests leave if the number of guests in any room is greater than the maximum number allowed for that room or apartment. If you are unsure then be sure to find out before your stay.

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Family Rooms are hotel rooms with multiple beds, suitable for a family to stay in. Family rooms will come in a variety of bedding configurations, usually a Double bed (or larger) and a Single bed, or a Double bed and more than one Single bed. One Bedroom, Two Bedroom and larger apartments are generally more suitable to families as they have multiple beds in more than one room. Family room rates will be given based on the number of guests shown for that rate. Cots and other baby needs can also be provided by some properties, but not all. If you need extra equipment for infants, such as a cot or high chair be sure to find out before your stay.

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Group bookings are usually bookings of more than a certain number of rooms or apartments, for which a special 'group rate' is offered. This may be for a booking of more than, say ten rooms, for which a rate lower is offered than the normal rate available for just one room or apartment. Rates for group bookings will be based upon the number of nights and number of rooms or apartments quoted. The booking conditions for a group booking are usually different from booking only one room. For example, in order to achieve a group rate you may need to book 10 rooms, and for this number of rooms the cancellation fee may be greater (see: Cancellation Policy) or payment may be required at an earlier date. This is because after a cancellation of a group booking, it is more difficult for a hotel to re-sell a large number of rooms that are now not going to be used, but which were held off from other bookings for the group. Group rates are also offered for accommodation needed by guests attending a conference at a hotel.

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High season times are the busiest times for accommodation in a particular city, or area. The best example of a high season time is over New Year's Eve, or during summer when bookings will be heaviest and discounts are usually not available. It is not uncommon that for bookings during high season, higher rates and booking conditions will apply. Where this is the case these rates and conditions will be provided at the time of booking. At other times than high season, a low season rate or discounted rate may be available and booking conditions won't be a strict.

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The main two types of accommodation are hotels and apartments. Hotel rooms provide a room only, with a bed and certain other room features. Hotel rooms that do not feature a private bathroom in the room (ensuite) are generally called 'budget', or when you share the room with other guests in singles beds it is called 'dormitory' accommodation. Hotel rooms will not feature cooking facilities, laundry or separate living rooms like in apartments. Hotel rooms will usually feature a Television, small fridge and tea and coffee making facilities. The hotel itself may have any range of facilities from swimming pool and gym to conference rooms or a business centre. The cheaper the hotel the less features and facilities will be available to guests.

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An 'incidental' cost is any cost incurred by the guest during the stay, other than the cost of accommodation (e.g. nightly rate). This may include costs for such services as parking, telephone, dry cleaning or to pay the cost of any damage. Incidental costs are to be paid prior to the guest departing from the property.

It is standard practice that hotels and apartments require a credit card or cash bond to guarantee incidental costs. Any cost not settled prior to departure may be charged to the credit card or deducted from the cash bond.

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The 'inclusions' are those services or products which are included in the rate at which you make a booking. If you book a hotel room then a common inclusion may be daily breakfast, or complimentary (free) use of the hotel fitness centre. Information on any inclusions in the booked rate will be available to you at the time of booking.

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To make a larger hotel room or apartment some properties are able to 'inter-connect' two smaller rooms with a common door. The inter-connecting room then has the all the combined features and facilities of each room available to all guests. Inter-connecting rooms are suitable for larger families or groups who want to share their accommodation.

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Many hotels provide internet access for an extra cost, calculated on the length of use or up to maximum cost per day. Where internet access is available it will usually be a high speed connection, found in executive hotels and apartments of a four-star standard or better, but not in budget accommodation. Some properties will have a wireless service available but again this will usually only be available in better hotels. Guests must provide their own laptop. If this is included in the room rate, it will be noted in inclusions. 

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A King bed (76" x 80" or 190cm x 200cm) is the largest size of double bed, suitable for 2 people to sleep in. King beds are larger than Queen beds (60" x 80" or 150cm x 200cm) which are larger than Double beds (53" x 80" or 132cm x 200cm). A Single Bed (38" x 75" or 95cm x 188cm) is the smallest bed size.

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Hotel rooms in most cases do not include a kitchen. This would be a feature of apartments. Kitchens in larger apartments, such as two bedroom and three bedroom apartments, will almost always be a full kitchen, including a stove and oven, microwave, sink and the usual range of appliances such as a refrigerator, toaster and kettle, as well as cutlery (knives and forks), crockery (plates and bowls) and glasses. Smaller apartments such as Studios will usually have a 'kitchenette' with only basic cooking facilities like cook tops instead of full stove and oven, and may not include as many appliances. One bedroom apartments usually have full kitchens but at some properties they may not. Make sure you check the features of your room or apartment before booking. Refrigerators (or a bar fridge, which is smaller) and a kettle with tea and coffee materials are common in all apartments and all hotel room except in budget hotels and dormitory accommodation.

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Last minutes rates are discounted rates that are offered only within a given time until the date of booking. For example hotels and apartments may offer a discounted rate at the 'last minute' in a room type for stays within the next 14 days. This will usually occur if a property has lots of rooms or apartments still available to sell within a short period, most commonly in the next 7 or 14 days. Last minute and discounted rates may have booking conditions which include a full prepayment which is not refundable.

Make sure you are aware of the booking conditions when making a booking at last minute or discounted rates.

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Low season describes times during the year when there are no large events on and when bookings are not heavy. Low season generally means Winter season in places like Sydney, and then Summer season is considered high-season. Low season rates are usually discounted rates available for stays during quieter times, when the hotel or apartments do not seem as though they will book out. The opposite to low season is high season when bookings are heavy and rates may be higher. This is usually when there are events on like big sporting matches or large conventions, or during special events such as over New Year's Eve. If a period is described as high season then discounts are unlikely to be offered.

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Luxury hotels are the best hotels with the most services and the most comfortable rooms or apartments. For this reason these are also the most expensive. Certain hotels or apartments, usually only five-star properties will be called 'luxury' as an indication of the quality and amount of extra facilities and services available to guests staying in that hotel.

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A room make-up is when it is refreshed, the sheets may be changed and the rubbish removed by the hotel housekeepers. This is also known as "servicing". Hotel rooms are usually made up daily or for longer stays this may be reduced to a weekly make-up. If your booking includes daily make-up, then you can elect not to have your room made if you would prefer privacy by letting the hotel know.

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The Annual Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras occurs each year at the start of Spring, in the last days or February or start of March. Starting more than 20 years ago as a gay protest march, the Parade of the Sydney Gay and lesbian Mardi Gras has evolved into one of the Worlds big gay events that captures the imagination of a city for one night in every year. The spirit of the occasion has evolved into one of celebration rather than protest, and it is a cherished experience of all who participate and of anyone lucky enough to get a look. The Mardi Gras atmosphere is fun and frivolous and more than half a million spectators show up along Sydney streets to witness the parade.

The Mardi Gras period is a high-season time in Sydney, when bookings are heavy and hotel and apartments rates usually higher. Areas close to the Mardi Gras party and parade include the suburbs of Darlinghurst, Surry Hills and Paddington, whilst also Newtown and its surrounds are busy with activities and events of the Mardi Gras festival.

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During high season hotels may require a minimum stay, which is the minimum number of nights you need to book in order to make a reservation. For example, over New Year's Eve a hotel may have a 3 night minimum, such that only bookings of 3 or more nights will be accepted. Where hotels or apartments apply a minimum stay, the minimum number of nights is usually at a higher rate and may be subject to special booking conditions. Make sure you are aware of the booking policy for any bookings you make. Special rates and conditions will be available at the time you make your booking.

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New Years Eve is the night of 31st December, the eve of the New Year which arrives on 1st January. This is a busy time where ever you happen to be staying, and in places such as Sydney it is usually the biggest night of the year. Sydney has become world famous for the firework spectacular which annually attracts hundreds of thousands of families, tourists and young people to the shores of Sydney Harbour on the night of New Years Eve. This is a high-season time, and higher rates and booking conditions are common. In Sydney, minimum stays in the best hotel rooms and apartment can be as long as 14 nights, and may have bookings conditions which require a full prepayment that is not refundable. Special rates and conditions will be available at the time you make your booking.

Accommodation and tours over New Years Eve regularly sell out in advance and it is recommended that you book early to avoid disappointment.

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Parking is available at most hotels and apartments properties, or nearby. Parking provided by the property that is secure and undercover will usually be at an extra cost to your hotel or apartment rates. At some properties there may be 'off-street' parking that is in a parking lot which may not be undercover or secure, and may not cost extra. 'On-street' parking is parking that is available on the street nearby to the property. Parking in the centre of Sydney can cost up to approximately AUD$25-AUD$50 daily, and be cheaper in other areas. The cost for the parking will usually apply to a single entry, meaning that you may pay this cost each time you park your car. Otherwise the parking cost may be multiple entry, and allow you more than one entry within 24 hours. Parking information will be available at the time you make your booking.

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There are very few properties which will allow guests to bring pets when staying in their hotel rooms or apartments. Most properties will not allow pets because of health regulations and to prevent any undue problems or mess the pet may cause. At properties which allow pets there may be an extra cost for the pet, in addition to your room rate. Information regarding pets and costs will be available at the time you make your booking.

The exception to this is for registered guide dogs for the seeing impaired. Hotels are obliged to accommodate such guests and their guide-dog, however this should be discussed with the agent at time of booking as not all room types will suit these special needs.

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To guarantee an early Check-In time (which in most cases is anytime before 2pm on the day of booked arrival) you may 'Pre-register' the room. This means that you purchase the night before the actual date of arrival, so that it is held empty and is then ready for early arrival at whatever time the guest arrives the following morning.

If you do not wish to pre-register your room you may request an early Check-In, which the hotel will do if they can but cannot guarantee.

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A Quad room is a room with bedding for up to 4 guests. The bedding configuration can be a double sized bed (or larger such as a Queen Bed) for 2 guests, and two single beds for 2 other guests in their own beds. The single beds may be bunk beds where one is on top of the other. Other bedding configurations can be 2 double sized beds, or 4 single beds.

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A King bed (76" x 80" or 190cm x 200cm) is the largest size of double bed, suitable for 2 people to sleep in. King beds are larger than Queen beds (60" x 80" or 150cm x 200cm) which are larger than Double beds (53" x 80" or 132cm x 200cm). A Single Bed (38" x 75" or 95cm x 190cm) is the smallest bed size.

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A hotel room 'rate' is another way of saying room price. Most common it is a nightly rate, which is the price you pay per night, or weekly rates for payments each week. Discount rates are prices which are discounted from the normal price. Higher rates are prices higher than normal which are common during busy times such as over New Years Eve.

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Rental of a product or service is paying a price, or 'rent' for a certain period of its use. For example, rental of a car may cost AUD$50 per day, then the cost of this car rental for 2 days will then cost (2 x AUD$50) AUD$100. With hotel apartments, rent usually refers to an extended period of use of the apartment such as for 6 months or a one year rental. For rentals of accommodation, this is usually available through a real estate agent or serviced apartment provider, and this may include other costs such as a bond (security) and utilities (electricity and water etc.). Short term accommodation, from one night up to several weeks, is commonly fully furnished and tends to be more expensive but does include the extra costs like a bond or utilities.

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Requests are common for bookings in hotels and apartments, such as for a high floor or for a particular room number. These requests can be made but in most cases cannot be guaranteed by the property. The request can be made and the property will accommodate this request where it can. Hotels and apartment properties are unable to guarantee a high floor or for a particular room number since they are unable to know the movements of other guests at that time, some guests may check-out early or extend their stay so the allocation of rooms will only be done shortly prior to the stay.

A request for an early check-in can be made but this also is only subject to availability. The only way a guest may guarantee an early check-in is by booking the night before arrival, so that the room will be held off-line (stay empty) and will then be ready the following day at whatever time the guest arrives. The same applies to a request for a late check-out, that it is subject to availability, but can be guaranteed only by booking the following night so the room is available for the guest to use up to the time that it is required.

You do not need to request a particular room type, such as a 'Harbour View Room', since you are actually booking a room with a harbour view. This is not a request. Common requests made with hotels and apartments are for a quiet room, for a car parking space or if booking more than one room, for rooms that are close to each other. Requests must be made at the time of booking.

At no time is any request guaranteed by a hotel, and where a request made for a booking cannot be granted by the hotel this in no way nullifies the accepted conditions and charges for the booking.

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Hotel rooms are different from apartments in that they may not feature the kitchen facilities or separate bedrooms that an apartment offers. All hotel rooms feature a bed and have access to bathroom facilities where, in all but budget (cheaper) hotels, the private bathroom (or ensuite) is contained inside the room or apartment. Dorm (dormitory) rooms are rooms with separate beds that are used by other guests, and will usually come with access to a shared bathroom also. Dorm rooms are the cheapest rooms available and most popular among students and backpackers.

Many hotels also offer conference facilities including meeting rooms and break-out rooms for short breaks in between meeting times.

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When you secure a booking, that accommodation or tour booking cannot be sold to anyone else. In securing a booking you are then committed to that booking and may be required to pay some of the cost whether you actually use the booking or not. Bookings may only be secured with a valid credit card, and/or a form of prepayment, unless agreed otherwise. When you secure a booking the cancellation policy applies, so make sure you understand the booking policy before you make the booking.

An unsecured booking is only tentative, and may be sold to other guests without notice.

See also: Unsecured or Tentative Booking.

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A serviced apartment is fully furnished apartment accommodation at a property which provides servicing, that is a periodic make-up or cleaning of the apartment and removal of rubbish. Serviced apartments are most popular for longer stays, like a home away from home where you can do your own cooking and washing to help keeps costs down. Not all apartments will have laundry facilities, and if not these facilities will be available elsewhere in the property. All serviced apartments have cooking facilities, however commonly it is only in larger apartments such as Two bedroom and Three bedroom apartments that there will be a full kitchen with all the usual appliances. Smaller apartments, such as Studio and One bedroom apartments may have a kitchenette which has basic cooking facilities such as microwave, cook tops and a sink.

Unserviced apartments are also available and these will usually be privately owned apartments where the guests are responsible for the cleaning and maintenance of the apartment. A compulsory departure cleaning fee is common for unserviced apartments, which is a one-off fee for cleaning the apartment after the guest has left.

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Servicing of an apartment or hotel room refers to the periodic make-up of the room and removal of rubbish. Hotel rooms and apartments offered at a discount for a longer stay will usually include less servicing, such as once a week.

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A shared bathroom is usually a facility offered with dormitory or budget (cheaper) hotel rooms. A shared bathroom one that is available to be used by multiple guests.

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A single room is a room for one guest. A single room may have a single or larger bed, however the rate for this room is based upon one guest only. A single room is sold only to one guest, and if there are more guests staying in the room the rate will be higher.

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A King bed (76" x 80" or 190cm x 200cm) is the largest size of double bed, suitable for 2 people to sleep in. King beds are larger than Queen beds (60" x 80" or 150cm x 200cm) which are larger than Double beds (53" x 80" or 132cm x 200cm). A Single Bed (38" x 75" or 95cm x 188cm) is the smallest bed size.

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A Studio apartment is the smallest type of apartment available. Whereas a One bedroom apartment has a separate bedroom, in addition to kitchen and living area, a Studio has no separation between the bedroom and living area. As well, Studio apartments usually do not have a full kitchen like the larger One and Two bedroom apartments, and may have access to common laundry facilities. Studio apartments offer the facilities of an apartment at rates that are usually competitive with hotel room rates.

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Most requests made of a hotel, such as for a room on a high floor, are 'subject to availability' which means that it depends on whether it is available or not at the time of stay. When requesting a hotel room on a high floor, if such a room is available and the hotel can accommodate this request then the hotel will. If a room is not available on a high floor then the hotel cannot accommodate this request. All requests will be subject to availability, and where the hotel can do it the hotel will, but in some cases this will not be possible.

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A luxury hotel room or luxury apartment may be called a suite. This term for accommodation usually refers to better quality, larger or more stylish rooms which include extra space and/or features that are not available in standard rooms. As such suites will be more expensive. For a example, in addition to the hotel room, bed and bathroom a suite may feature an extra room as a study, be on a higher floor and enjoy better views. Descriptions of these features will be available from the property.

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A tourist is a person who travels for pleasure. If you are a visitor to somewhere like Sydney then everyone could be a tourist, as Sydney has a great range and many world famous pleasures to enjoy. Tourist class accommodation refers to three to four-star hotels and apartments which offer most services and facilities and represents value. These properties may not include the premium features of executive or luxury properties such harbour views, high speed internet or a pool and gym. Tourist accommodation tends to be located in or near the most popular areas and accessible to tourist attractions. Tourist attractions are the best known places that a city is known for. For example Sydney's tourist attractions include the Sydney Harbour Bridge and the Sydney Opera house, whilst Cairns in tropical north Queensland boasts the Great Barrier Reef as a tourist attraction.

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A room described as a Triple room, is a one hotel room which features either a double and a single sized bed, or 3 single sized beds. This room type is suitable only for up to 3 guests.

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A room described as a Twin room, is a one hotel room which features 2 beds. A Twin could have either a double and a single sized bed, or 2 single sized beds. The rate for this room type is based on up to 2 guests. If the Twin room has a double and a single bed, and a 3rd guest stays in the room then the rates payable would be that of a Triple room for 3 guests.

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When a booking is secured it will then not be sold to anyone else. In securing a booking you are then committed to that booking and may be required to pay some of the cost whether you actually use the booking or not. If you have an unsecured booking then you are not committed to any cost of the booking, but as well this booking may then be sold to someone else. This is also called a booking which is 'tentative'. A booking remains unsecured without a credit card being given or when an agreed prepayment does not occur, or where charges to the credit card provided cannot be made. Hotels and tour operators are not obliged to hold any unsecured booking.

The booking policy does not apply to an unsecured booking and no charges will be payable if you cancel, or don't show up for the booking. If a tentative booking is made then the guest is encouraged to contact the hotel or tour operator on the day to check for availability. If the hotel room or tour is available the guest can then make a booking at the rate of whatever is available at the time. So, no price guarantee can be given in these circumstances before the booking is actually secured.

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A valet is an employee of a hotel or on a ship, who performs personal services for guests or passengers. This kind of service will only ever be available in the best luxury hotels. Valet parking is commonly available in hotels of a standard higher than four-star, and allows the guest to readily park a vehicle near the hotel entrance, have the car parked by the valet (employee) and then retrieved for the guest upon departure. Where available, valet services and valet parking will be for a fee.

Can you help us?

We are always looking for ways to improve the information on our sites. If you have a great experience in Sydney and think it would be fun for other gays and lesbians who may vacation there, let us know.

We are also interested in partnering with business who want to help make Sydney one of the most popular gay destinations.

Please contact us on:

phone: +61 2 9318 2361

email: reservations@world-blue.com