Ooops! A little Problem With Hotels

Slice of life

This coming Saturday I have a flight leaving at 6AM from the Caracas airport (about two hours from my apartment in Valencia). I’m going to Colombia- yay!!

My problem is that I have been thinking that my flight was leaving from the Valencia airport! This means I don’t have my hotel booked yet! This is a problem because at any holiday (and usually a couple of days before the holiday) Venezuelans travel and many try to leave the country to get stuff that they can’t find here (toilet paper, shampoo, soap come to mind).

Not having a hotel is a problem because everything takes longer to book in Venezuela. I either have to call and wait on the line for someone to eventually pick up, or I have to email and place back and forth.  While occasionally you might be able to book a hotel online, they will then charge your US credit cards and it is always better to pay in Bs.

Anyway, I’m still searching for a hotel near the airport that has an available room with two beds in case anyone has any ideas.

Wish me luck!

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10 responses to “Ooops! A little Problem With Hotels

  1. Oh dear. Just practice seeing yourself in just the right hotel. Don’t worry that it won’t happen. Just see yourself there and then do what you need to to find a hotel. I bet you’ll get just the right one!

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    • I honestly didn’t think it would be a problem, but then I realized that this is how one of my friends has ended up with a $1000 bill instead of $100 because she used her credit card to book stuff on Venezuelan websites. The rule is to just not use your credit card in this country!!

      I spent about two hours trying to look for a hotel but all of them require my credit card and a prepayment. So I then spent the last 20 minutes trying to call the Mariott but they shuttled my call back and forth so that I could never make the reservation.

      I’m just going to talk a taxi driver into leaving at 2AM and driving us there. I just found out that this means we will need an armed driver to follow our taxi because the stretch of highway near the airport is highly dangerous. Sigh. Travel is not easy in this country!

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    • Oh, now they wont even drive at that time with an armed guard! We just went ahead and booked a last minute stay at the nice airport hotel that miraculously still had rooms available when the five other hotels I contacted didn’t!

      Thanks for your kind thoughts!

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  2. I am moving to Maracaibo in July to teach. How much would you say is a good amoung to have saved up before I go? I do not want to have too little… Thanks

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    • Hi Vicki! I normally live on $200 USD per month to pay for food and entertainment. However, when you first arrive you need to buy a lot of basic stuff for your apartment and anything that is imported costs more. Unless you ship your own stuff, new teachers normally need to buy pots/pans, pantry staples, some extra blankets (my school just gave me sheets), cleaning supplies, etc.

      I would bring $2000-3000 with me if I were you, just because I don’t know what the school will provide you with. You could also ask them what apartment stuff will be provided.

      Remember to bring cash dollars to do your exchanges with at first and then you can find someone reliable to exchange using a check or wire transfer.

      Good luck and let me know if you have other questions.

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    • Thanks! My local friend let us use her credit card to book the hotel (no conversion rates to worry about). We had to go with a nice hotel since the posadas were already booked, but I am just telling myself that I deserve the extravagance of a $90 room! Hopefully the hotel will just use the card to reserve the room and then I can pay with my local debit card once we get there.

      Now we just have to figure out how to get home since none of our normal taxi drivers want to pick us up at midnight (when our flight arrives back in Venezuela). We might have to book another hotel!

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    • Indeed! While I might have a kind of boring routine (work MF 7-4, maybe go out for dinner on Fri or Sat, and grocery shop on the weekends), I can’t say that my life is ever BORING. haha

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