What is the Difference Between a Hotel and a Motel? thumbnail picture
By: Joshua Etim Joshua Etim
  27 Nov 2020
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Article

What is the Difference Between a Hotel and a Motel?


The difference between a Motel and Hotel is pretty widely spread out, but the preconceived opinion is pretty much small. Suppose you do a random survey asking people in your neighborhood to tell you the difference between hotel and motel, you would be surprised most of them wouldn’t be able to give you a definite answer, and this is because most individuals tend to use them interchangeably. 

You will likely come across a motel or hotel whenever you travel on a business trip or a simple vacation with the family. Nevertheless, hotels and motels are quite different in many ways you don’t expect. There is a stark difference between the hotels and motels, which this article will discuss in details. 

What is a Motel?

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A motel is a combination of two words which are Motor and Hotel, surprised? A lot of school of thoughts have this notion that motel is a subcategory of a hotel. This article will look at the two entity as a separate one while outlining the differences between them. 

The term ‘motel’ comes from the areas where they are located, which is usually near long stretches of motorway, thereby benefiting drivers who travel on long trips. Normally, Motels are known to offer fewer facilities to its customers and at a cheaper rate when compared to hotels. 

What is a Hotel?

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A hotel provides visitors with paid lodging services that usually offer other services/amenities. Amenities such as swimming pool, spa, restaurant, conference room, and so much more depending on the hotel. 

As mentioned earlier, some hotels offer conference and meeting rooms to customers who may use the location for a business meetup. Hotels are classed with a rating system which comprises of one to five stars, the higher the number of stars, the better the quality of services offered and other amenities the hotel offers.

Difference Between Motel and Hotel

1. Size and Appearance

A Motel is usually built in either of the following;

- Single

- Double storied building with connected rooms

It is built in such a way; its rooms open to the interior of the building. They are usually smaller than hotels in size and facilities. They commonly are known to have one or two-floor layout, and as a guest, you can easily locate your room right from the parking lot. In short, Motels tend to be more of a useful construction in place for guests.

A Hotel is built in either of the following;

- Single

- Multi-storied

- Varies

A hotel has a unique structure which defers from the motel, as they have open walkways and exterior entrances. For a hotel, there are usually hundreds of rooms and several floors, and it is usually equipped with a staircase or elevators that lead to new floors with rooms. 

Hotels have a different and unique style of architecture and design when compared to a motel. It also has a luxury feel to it

2. Price and Cost of Staying 

A motel is often less expensive when compared to hotels prices. Well, this is basically because motels don’t offer the sort of amenities you will find in hotels and the type of room offered. 

The location is a big factor to consider since motels are usually near motorway which is found in remote areas. They provide a place for travelers to sleep a night or two except in some cases. They are for short term accommodations by their architecture. 

Hotels are quite expensive, with the price range between motel enormously high. The prices are dependent on the star ratings for the hotel, location, amenities they provide, type and architecture of the room. 

Often less expensive hotels are usually lacking in probably amenities, or are located in an area that doesn’t fit the business, or the room designs and architecture are not elegant. Hotels are built for long term stay, which is also a big factor to consider when pricing a room. 

3. Location

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Motel, as explained earlier, motels are usually found on highways, but there are other places motels can be found. They can be found in outskirts of town, rural areas, or places that are not overpopulated. This is because motels are built for short term stay for travelers/guests who wish to pass one or two nights before continuing their journey. 

Hotels, on the other hand, are usually situated in areas of a large population, which ranges from a village to a city. They are found in areas of tourist attractions, business districts, airports, vacation hotspot, casinos and gambling, sports arenas, basically areas that see an influx of visitors. 

They are usually built for long term stay like guests for a business convention, a sports festival, vacation with family. The quality of services offered also depends on the star rating of the hotel. 

4. Ratings

Motels are not usually rated due to the facility being a temporary abode for travelers. But if it was to be rated, most motels are rated on the level of 1.5 - 2.5 stars on various travel blogs or sites. 

Hotel as mentioned earlier, Hotels are rated based on various factors like;

- Location

- Room designs and architecture

- Amenities

The more they offer, the higher the star rating they will get. The rating for quality is 1-5 stars on various sites and blogs. 

5. Amenities

Motels generally provide guests with basic amenities such as room, electricity supply, and others. They lack other amenities like a restaurant, fitness centers, jacuzzi, swimming pool etc. Motels are available for one- or two-night’s sleep.

A hotel provides lots of amenities depending on the hotel’s star rating. Amenities that range from meeting and conference rooms to game rooms. Hotels also have a different level of rooms, all with different price. The better the service offered by a room, the higher the price of the room. 

Final Thoughts

Hotels and motels are similar in lots of ways but still differ when compared side by side. Hotels look more like a luxury facility, but it’s because it offers better comfort and varying amenities. Motels are best for short-time guests who want to rest before continuing their journey. 

With the above-listed differences, you shouldn’t stutter when asked to differentiate between the two facilities.