Should You Splurge On A Hotel At The Summer Olympics?

Photo: flickr/karolajnat

If you’re lucky enough to attend the 2012 Summer Olympics, you might be asking yourself whether it’s worth it to splurge on a lavish hotel or rough it Woodstock-style in a tent. We decided to weigh the pros and cons of splurging $740/night at a Hilton in London versus throwing down $15/day to camp at the games. Here’s what we came up with: 

Shower and Bathroom

Hilton: You get what you pay for at this big chain hotel, including your own bathroom and shower. 

Camping at the Games: Though you’ll still have access to shower facilities, it will likely be locker room-style. Get ready to share “me time” with whoever else fits in the stalls.

Bottom line: Think of the weird naked guy in the common bathroom. There’s always one. 

Food
Hilton: The hotel goes all out for meals, offering dinner and a breakfast buffet, as well as a separate bar.

Camping at the Games: You can’t call it camping without a cook-out. Most camp sites will host BBQ nights and other cook-outs throughout the Olympics. Plus, there will be open cafes and bars serving drinks and grub all day. 

Bottom line: A BBQ sounds way more fun (and social) than an overpriced dinner. Unless they’re serving steak, in which case we’re in. 

Parking
Hilton: There’s no complimentary parking at this hotel, so get ready to shell out the big bucks—and pop some Advil. 

Camping at the Games: Parking your first car is free, while the second car will cost you $7.75.

Bottom Line: If the rental car prices don’t get you, the parking fees will. Go with the camp. 

Internet
Hilton: The Hilton offers high speed internet in its rooms and you can also get free Wi-Fi in the lobby, according to some reviews on Priceline.com.

Camping at the Games: Some camping sites offer Wi-Fi, but be prepared for major slow down as everyone and their mother will be trying to log on at the same time. 

Bottom Line: Hilton hands-down, but who needs the Web when you’re watching the Olympics?!

The vibe 
Hilton: Quiet rooms with a pleasant view of the gardens and Hyde Park.

Camping at the Games: BBQ nights, music, and hundreds of other sports fans to meet = party time. 

Bottom Line: You didn’t travel all the way to London to relax, you came here to celebrate. To that we say to live it up—on a budget. 

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