Don’t assume that all bed-and-breakfasts are quaint country inns. You may be greeted by below-standard rooms and terrible service. Only 39 states currently have b&b trade associations, and just 27 actually inspect the facilities. To ensure cozy comfort, consumers should ask pointed questions, suggests the American Bed & Breakfast Association (800-769-2468), which inspects 450 B&Bs annually.
Ask the following: Has the B&B been inspected by a national organization? When was the last inspection? What is the policy if you don’t like your room upon arrival? Do they serve breakfast? All B&Bs must include a full or continental breakfast. Ask for a detailed description of the and the guest rooms.
The AB&BA magazine, Bed: Breakfast Traveler’s Companion, rates 450 B&Bs. To order a copy, send $5 to P.O. Box 1387, Midlothian, VA 23113 or obtain the information at www.abba.com.
The Independent Innkeepers Association also has very stringent guidelines for its members. They inspect everything from hospitality and security to cleanliness and dining. Each B&B is reevaluated every three years. The more than 350 members are described in the Innkeepers Register, available for $12.95 plus $3 shipping. The IIA also gives recommendations over the phone (800-344-5244). AAA and Mobil Travel Guides also rate B&Bs.