Thomas Cook has a new optional extra for holidaymakers this year – those wishing to secure a sunbed for their summer hols can pre-book one – at a cost. Would you pay to beat the early-morning scrum?
In a trial scheme launched by the travel agent, customers will be able to pay £22 to pre-book a sunbed. Not only do you get peace of mind that you’ll be able to get a spot around the pool, but you can even book a specific spot.
Now, depending on your holidaying experiences some of you will be well-acquainted with an early-morning scrum for a sunbed. If you are, this news may be music to your ears, but for others it will be yet another added ‘premium’ to what is already an expensive outlay.
I recall one holiday to the Balearic Island of Menorca where we couldn’t work out how early some people got up in order to secure a sunbed in the premium pool-side spot. We tried on a few occasions to get to the pool in time to bag a nice sunbed, and despite being outside for 8am we still weren’t early enough. We gave up and settled for the beach instead.
On another holiday to Rhodes, we watched the hotel staff fastidiously enforce the rules of ‘no sunbed reservations’ as they paced the pool before its opening time and removed all the towels placed on the beds before breakfast.
In truth, we holidaymakers can really get ourselves worked up about a sunbed spot. And sometimes for good reasons too.
The hotel in the video below in Gran Canaria opens its pool at 8am, with people reportedly queuing from 7.30am in order to bag the best sunbeds. This video recently went viral for exposing just how ridiculous the scramble for sunbeds can be:
Are we going booking barmy?
While it may seem excessive to rush to reserve your sunbed, sometimes it might be necessary. What happens when you’re a large family and you need several sunbeds together, surely then it makes sense to be able to secure a bed… maybe even pre-book one?
Having stayed in hotels before where they’ve had around 700 rooms, but only around 200 sunbeds and a pokey pool area to crowd around. I now know that dealing with those kind of ratios means there’s no way I’m going to get a spot by the pool, let alone a sunbed in the first place.
And to me, that all seems a bit unfair – I wouldn’t expect every room to have a sunbed assigned, but surely a holidaymaker’s hotel should ensure that it has the capacity to fit its customers comfortably around its pool. I couldn’t see myself booking and paying extra to secure a premium-spot sunbed.
Where does it all end, are we going to be booking zones in the pool soon too?!
Would you pre-book a sunbed?
Thomas Cook’s sunbed reservation service will be available in 30 hotels this summer, with a proportion of sunbeds excluded from the scheme to cater for those customers who don’t wish to pay more.
So will you be paying to reserve a sunbed this summer? Do you think this is a good scheme, or do you see this as yet another added extra charge to your holiday costs?