Let’s start this off by saying I’m someone who is ALL about what I can to never pay full price if at all possible. It’s kind of what I do. If I don’t have to pay full price for something, even if I have the money to spend on the full price, I’ll do what I can do not pay the full price. It’s just how I’m wired. When I’m heading to an out of town event, my first question I ask myself is if I’d be better off with a roommate vs. no roommate when attending a conference. It’s a very difficult decision, and one I’ll never make without weighing all of my options!
My previous roommate experience
I’ve gone to events in New York City, as well as events within driving distance of my state of residence, New York. Even if I’m heading to New York City for anything more than a one-day event, I stay in the city. It’s just easier, and less of a hassle. I’m not just about saving money, but also time, and my sanity. In years past, I’ve had a myriad of roommates, and well, let’s just say, it’s not always a great situation. Here’s some of the things I’ve battled with in the past.
- Snoring. I don’t snore. It’s been documented that I do not snore by MULTIPLE people I’ve shared rooms with, beds with, and homes with. When I’m sick, I breathe heavier, but I don’t snore. Awesome for anyone sharing a room with me. It benefits me in no way, shape, or form. On the other hand, I’ve had roommates that snore. I hate snoring. My husband snores, and even his own cousins have told him he’s the loudest damn snorer they’ve ever known. Conferences are not a place where I want to be stuck with someone who snores. It’s my chance to actually get some kind of sleep, since the husband isn’t with me. It’s almost worth paying huge money, because a cranky November Sunflower is not one you want to deal with. I don’t even like her, and I am her.
- Unlocked doors. A roommate I shared a room with in New York City left the door to our hotel room open. Not just unlocked, but open. The little part at the top of the door, to give you extra safety – it’s sort of like a “chain on the door.” You can open the door to a certain point, and then it stops it. Yeah, well that piece was left between the door to keep it from closing. Apparently it was important to not bring a key card with her, and I woke up to a man standing over my bed at 3 or 4 in the morning. THANKFULLY, he was a security guard for the hotel. He made me aware the door had been left open. He was just checking in to make sure we were all okay. “Oh yes, security guard. SURE, I’m fine. Let me just clean the piss out of my bed from being scared by YOU standing over my BED!” Let’s just say it wasn’t a good thing, and paying for my own room isn’t such a big deal after something like that happening!
- Messiness. I’m not the neatest person in the world, but at a hotel, I try not to be a slob. The bathroom, as well as the entire hotel room. I just prefer to keep it neat, and just ask for new towels so that the service doesn’t come into my room when I’m not in it. I put the DO NOT DISTURB sign up, and leave it up until I am ready to leave. I hate people in my room when I’m not in there….it’s not that I think they will take things, it’s just the thought of someone in my space. I just cannot. And when sharing a room, you have to be willing to have flexibility with your roommates. I’m not flexible, apparently.
- PRIVACY. I despise entering my hotel room and finding I’m not alone. It’s got nothing to do with the roommates. I’ve always had lovely roommates, super friendly, and we always got along. But when you’re over stimulated from a bazillion things being thrown at you at once, and you want to escape, the roommate being in there when you want to just walk in, sit down and be silent – it’s just BLAH.
Checking in with family while away
When you’re away from your family, especially for a week, you just want to check in with them without having to schedule it around people in your hotel room. I don’t need to censor myself when I’m chatting with my husband, and kids. I just want to be the wife, and mom. Bitch and moan, complain if I wish to complain. I just want to be ME in my own room. I don’t want to have to be “on” the whole damn conference. I’m not always chipper, and social, and awake. Sometimes I just want to be silent, and sit in a corner and be sleeping.
It’s damn hard to keep my sarcasm at a low level when outside of New York, where sarcasm is just part of our regular vernacular. Keeping it on simmer all day, around people who might not get my sense of humor, is EXHAUSTING. I need a release, and with a roommate, it just means you’ve either got to have someone who knows you inside, and out, and won’t mind all your quirks, or no roommate at all. More importantly, if you’ve got a roommate, the roommate can’t be easily insulted by all your quirks. It’s not about THEM, it’s really about YOU. Too many people get insulted easily, when honestly, much of what I do has nothing to do with anyone else.
Roommate vs. No Roommate cost difference
Having a roommate, or multiple roommates, does bring the cost down a lot when attending a conference. I know this, I understand it. However, in terms of relationships, it might cost you more in the long run. I’d rather keep my bonds with my blog friends firm, and solid, than save the extra money. If another snoring pain in the ass was a roommate of mine, I might have to throw them out the window of the hotel room. It would be tragic. Totally not worth the cash I saved, right?
In all seriousness, it’s just a matter of weighing all the options, and knowing what’s right for your experience. Not all people attending a conference are meant to share rooms with one another. There are some that are fantastic roommates…..I’ve had them. However, they are few and far between, so I’m sticking with the no roommate this time around! It just means I’ve got to hustle a bit more to make the cash to cover the expensive hotel bill at the #ENMNCon14 happening in just a couple of weeks in Anaheim, California.
What’s your preference when attending a conference? If you can’t get a sponsor to cover the hotel costs, what do you do? Comment below and share your experiences, and thoughts!