At the beginning of the year, Roomorama contacted me with a tempting offer – free credit for their accommodation service in exchange for a review.
I held tightly to that credit, and finally hit on the perfect place to use it: Lima, Peru.
We’d been sleeping in hostels for two months, and it was wearing thin. I missed our apartment in Korea. I missed our apartment in Buenos Aires. I wondered why we didn’t rent more apartments. And I remembered Roomorama.
Roomorama is an online service that connects people who want rental accommodation with people who can provide that accommodation. Options include hotels, B&Bs, and apartments. I was hoping for an apartment, but a nice little bed & breakfast caught my eye.
Here’s the process:
1. Use the Roomorama search engine to customize your search according to dates, location, price range and more.
2. Make an inquiry: You contact the owner via an email form to confirm the property’s availability.
3. Make a secure online payment using Visa, MasterCard, American Express, or PayPal.
4. Receive your payment code: You will get a six-digit code to give your host when you check-in. They use this code to obtain your payment.
5. Complete a ‘Guest Agreement Form,’ an extra security measure to ensure your identity. You must submit an online or faxed copy of your ID.
We booked a B&B in the Miraflores neighborhood of Lima, which I was really happy with. Due to overbooking, we were actually moved to a different property – the Pucllana Lodge. This had nothing to do with Roomorama, but I was a little disappointed to miss out on the first place, because I’d read that they had a generous breakfast.
I take breakfast very seriously.
But outside of that, it worked out great. The room was large and clean, the water was hot, breakfast decent and the staff were extremely helpful. I ended up getting a wretched case of food poisoning (source unknown) so I was extra-grateful to have a comfortable room where I could be an invalid.
So how did I rate the Roomorama process?
- Online booking is easy.
- When my host didn’t respond to my inquiry, Roomorama prompted them and sped up the process.
- ‘Express booking’ is available for some properties, which cuts out the inquiry stage.
- You can always access the details of your bookings online with your Roomorama account.
- Access to a wider range of accommodation than the ‘norm’ – hostels and hotels.
- There was a $10 booking fee for using Roomorama. I think this is fair in terms of apartment rentals, but in the future, I’d book a B&B or hotel directly with the property to avoid this charge.
- The Guest Agreement Form felt like an extra complication. It’s for the safety of the guests, but if I hadn’t happened to have a scanned copy of my passport, I’m not sure how I would have completed this step.
- There were a few kinks to work out when it came to using my credit – I ended up paying, then receiving a refund, which meant that the host (Pucllana Lodge) couldn’t retrieve their payment. However, the Roomorama team was quick to respond and resolve the issue. I presume this would not come up during a normal transaction.
Overall, I was pleased with our Roomorama experience. Even though we didn’t choose an apartment, we got a cozy little B&B in a fantastic neighborhood that allowed us a few nights that felt like home. The Roomorama team was helpful whenever we needed it, although it can be frustrating to deal with a middleman when you need answers immediately. As stated, I’d happily use Roomorama again to rent an apartment.
Disclaimer: My stay in the Pucllana Lodge was sponsored by Roomorama, but all opinions are entirely my own.