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Premier Travel Inn (Folkstone, Kent)

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      01.02.2009 08:45
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      Long drive to the continent - stop here on the way for a break!

      With this branch of Premier Travel Inn being just a couple of miles away from the Channel Tunnel terminal, it makes it an ideal stop-over either to or from the continent, especially if you have a long drive over in France. Being a skiing family, trips to the Alps are not uncommon for us and, for me, the chance to stop in Folkestone overnight on the way then allows us to get a nice early (and therefore usually cheap) crossing on the Eurotunnel the following morning, which then gives me plenty of daylight hours to drive through France to our chosen snowy destination. We have stayed in this particular branch of Travel Inn a few times now, and have always been very happy with it Premier Travel Inn is part of the Whitbread group of companies. It offers good quality, clean and functionable accommodation at a fair price. We usually opt for the Family room which costs about £56. The cost of this room is very often completely balanced out by the saving we can make by getting an early morning channel crossing, so we can basically break our journey up for free! **The accommodation** As I said, we opt for a family room. This consists of a large double bed, a sofa bed and a pull out bed - perfectly adequate for 2 adults and 2 children. There is an en-suite bathroom with shower over the bath, and a TV, together with tea and coffee making facilities. Everything is clean and tidy and I think that value for money-wise, this room does exactly what it needs to do. All rooms are non-smoking, and rooms to accommodate disabled people are available. **The site** This Premier Inn is just off the M20 - taking junction 13, then leaving the A20 after just a few yards. It is very easy to find. When you are there, you have ample parking (nothing further to pay). The Premier Inn is split either side of the car park - the main accommodation block being one side and the reception area with further accommodation being the other side. This is fine, except that if you want an extra blanket or pillow at 3am, you need to go outside and across the carpark to reception, and if it is cold, dark, and wet, that may not be the most attractive proposition.......never be surprised to see someone wandering across the car park in pyjamas.....! Adjacent to the reception area is a good sized family restaurant. We have eaten here a couple of times, and cannot fault it. Whilst it is basically a "chain" of restaurants, it gives the feel of being something individual. Good quaility food at good prices, with friendly staff. Whether you want a burger, a steak, or a curry, you will find something to suit you here, with a really comfortable atmosphere. Children are welcome, and catered for, and it is a nice way to start your holiday - providing you with the opportunity to relax before that long drive tomorrow. Also on the site is a Burger King franchise - so if you just want something quick and cheap, then this might be for you. **Reception** In my experience, the staff on reception have been extremely helpful. Whether booking in at the beginning of your stay, or needing assistance in some way while you are there - I cannot fault them, and have to say that this has been the case in each Premier Inn I have visited. The reception area itself also has a couple of vending machines offering fizzy drinks and crisps/chocolates.....so if you get the late night munchies, you know where to go! **Booking** You can book in the following ways: 1) online on www.premierinn.com, 2) by automated telephone booking on 0870 242 8000 - pressing option 1 3) by telephone to customer services on 0870 242 8000 between 8am and 8pm Monday to Saturday, and 9am to 8pm on Sunday **Good Night's Sleep Guarantee** Premier Inn offer a full money back gurantee if you do not get a good night's sleep for any reason outside your control. So for example if your next door guests are rowdy, or if the air conditioning won't turn off and your room is cold, then speak to the receptionist when you check out, and you can get a refund. This does not apply if your other half is snoring away, or your baby is refusing to sleep - that, understandably, is not something that Premier Inn will refund you for, otherwise they would be constantly paying out! This Guarantee does mean that you can book your room in the confidence that these people want you to sleep well. **My opinion** It takes just 10 minutes to get from this Premier Inn to the Channel Tunnel terminal, it is easy to find (no driving round industrial estates or inner ring roads), provides good quality, affordable accommodation, and the opportunity to relax in a nice eatery as well.......In my opinion, this branch of Premier Travel Inn is ideally located and does exactly what it needs to do as part of a long journey through to the Continent. My only criticism is the split site - having been one of those people dashing across to reception in the rain in my PJs, it would be nicer to simply be able to walk down the stairs and stay dry.....and for that reason, and that reason only, I am knocking off a star. As I say, the cost of staying here can often be offset by the savings you make in the tunnel crossing, so with a bit of careful planning, you could break your journey up, essentially, for free - that has to be worth a look! I would be very happy to stay here again, and to recommmend it to anyone else.

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