A Guide to Bed Breakfast France
Here are some general guidelines and information on what to expect when you stay in a chambre d’hote in France – how the meals work, booking a room, and payment.
The concept of a Bed and Breakfast in France is different from a hotel, as is the case in many countries. For example, there may not be concierge or reception desk.
But the benefits far outweigh anything else – most importantly, they can be much cheaper, and excellent value for money.
We’ve found many of the best BandBs are out in the rural areas – so while you may not have the convenience of being within walking distance of major city sights, you’ll be surrounded by stunning french countryside!
Bed Breakfast France: Dordogne
In general, it’s assumed that you’ll be out (sightseeing) during the day. Many BandB hosts have day jobs and other errands to run so may not be on hand 24/7.
None of these things may be an issue… but it’s good to know how it works.
In our experience, we’ve enjoyed BandBs far more than hotels. You can find some truly beautiful places to stay, that are immaculately clean, offer plenty of privacy and oodles of hospitality and kindness.
And if you’re looking for cheap vacation ideas, we’d strongly recommend this type of accommodation as it can cost a great deal less than hotels of the same standard.
Bed Breakfast France:
Meals and Tables D’Hotes
For breakfast, you may eat at the family table, or there could be a special dining area where you have your own table. Some places even bring breakfast to you in your room!
If you want to know in advance what it will be like or you have special requirements, ask your host for more information, and they will be happy to help in any way they can.
Some BandBs offer dinner (which must be booked in advance) – called Tables d’Hôtes. Meals can range from a simple home cooked supper to a 4 course gourmet extravaganza cooked by a professional chef. Normally there isn’t a menu – its the same for everyone.
Bed Breakfast France: How to Book, How to Pay, Getting There
Booking in advance is essential, especially during the summer months. You may need to put down a deposit for your booking; some, although not all, accept credit cards. A large number of BandBs will accept a reservation simply via a confirmation email, without a deposit.
Check in advance what payment methods are accepted when the time comes to pay the final bill (some may only accept cash).
Also confirm with your host in advance what time you plan to arrive. If anything changes (eg you will be later than anticipated) let them know.
All the BandBs we have stayed in have their own private bathrooms (ie no sharing). But always confirm this when you book (it’s good to know how to ask for these in french).
In terms of getting there, your host will probably provide you with a map or directions. It is still essential to have a good detailed map of your own.