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Selecting the best hotel for your Robotics Team

It’s 2016 and robotics competitions are kicking into full season for teams all over the world.  Teams and sponsors are busy with all the coding and testing that needs to be done to make this season a success and get to the big competition. Around all 50 states, they are also working on presentations for RoboWeek.   The last thing that teams and administrators/sponsors need to focus on, however, must do is find the right hotel to stay in.  Selecting the best hotel for your robotics team should not be left until the last minute.  This involves more that just finding the most cost conscious hotel, but the right hotel that provides the security and a great value for the team.  Throughout years of booking groups and staying in over hundreds of hotels, below are a five tips to getting the best hotel.


  1. Always look for hotels that offer a complimentary breakfast.  Hotels like Fairfield Inn & Suites by Marriott, La Quinta Inns & Suites, Comfort Inn and Suites & Hampton Inns all offer complimentary breakfast that will be key to getting your team off to a fresh start.  As it relates to wi-fi, most hotels offer for free nowadays so that should be expected as a standard item just like air-conditioning is in a car in Texas.


2.  For a hotel that offers more, look into Drury Inns and Suites or Embassy Suites, which in addition to a complimentary breakfast, also offer complimentary light hors d’ouevres in the evening hours.  I have stayed at these hotels and the managers reception as they are called could substitute as a light dinner.  This could get you more designing and programming time and back to polishing your presentation.


3.  If you are travelling by bus to the competition, look for a hotel that may be slightly further away from the main venue.  This is a sure proof way to save money, and ensure you are well rested the next morning.  Consider staying at hotel that may be close to an airport or in a suburb as rates could be up to 20% lower than  staying next to a main venue.




4.  Prepare your team by taking place in as many regional competitions that are within your area.  This way you continue to hone your presentation, and also get the added bonus of feedback of your peers that are doing the same thing.  One place to find out about events that are taking place in your region is to view the events center on   National Robotics Week.


5.  Do not be afraid or hesitate to ask the hotel for a meeting space that you can practice/meet in while at the competition.  Many hotels may have a small meeting room that is not being used and experience shows that they will be delighted to accommodate groups that are so excited about working on a project.  You may even get lucky enough to promote the hotel on your presentation.


Last but not least, have fun.  It is the experience of building dreams today that will make you the leaders of tomorrow.

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