Howto sleep in Boston for under $50
By bblfish on Jun 16, 2007
Boston is an expensive town to stay in I discovered. The first night I arrived here I got a room at one of the IA Hostels for $40 + tax + whatever. Did I say room? I mean a bed in a six person room, with shared toilet, dingy sticky carpeting, moldy walls, and a smell of times past. I also had to pay a taxi $15 to get there as I arrived late and was carrying a big box containing a robot. Like Dolphins that sleep with half their brain, in order to stop from sinking, as I recently discovered on NPR radio, humans have difficulty sleeping first nights in rooms, especially of course in shared rooms, and even more so when they carry a lot of valuable equipment around with them. Snoring room mates does not help, though I was lucky this time.
The next day I found out the cheapest hotel in the whole area are at $100 a night. If you sleep 8 hours, then that comes to $12 an hour, which seems a bit much to me for doing nothing. Most hotels are more expensive. In San Francisco, I could stay for $60 at the Elements Hotel in a spacious room with private bathroom, and for a little more stay at centrally located The Mosser Hotel in a very clean if small room with shared bathroom. So I was not expecting the Boston prices.
Given that I needed to drive to Sun offices in Burlington, which would require either paying a lot for a taxi and getting lost on public transport, I rented a car for $40 (including insurance and everything). As it happened I got quite a nice comfortable car, with reclining seats, so it occurred to me that here I had a good private bed, with shower in the Sun campus to go with it. So I slept overnight in the car.
The Sun campus has some very nice large rooms with comfy sofas that at night are completely deserted. These sofas also make for good beds. And the wireless connection is really excellent! Now you have to be a Sun employee to use those, so I can't recommend this for every Boston traveller. It's a pity to spend so much on property that goes unused at night, so I did my little thing there to help Sun make the best of its investments.
Yesterday, Friday, I stumbled upon "the plough and stars" in Cambridge just as a band of BlueGrass musicians were setting up (photo). The music was great. I could enjoy the band, drink some beers, and without fear go to my carhtel parked down the road. I was woken by some police early in the morning though, after pub closing hours, who were concerned that I was about to drive somewhere. I just explained to them that I was from Europe and that hotels were a little expensive in the area so that I had decided to sleep in the car. They confirmed that this was legal, and walked on.