Recommended Guesthouses and Local Accommodations in Ulaanbaatar Mongolia
What is the “Real Situation” of Local Guesthouses in Ulaanbaatar Mongolia?
Today, guesthouses are everywhere and the goal of this post is not to belittle anyone’s efforts towards advancing their guesthouse businesses in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia – however after more than 5 years of having to personally deal with some very unethical guesthouses (a couple are just around our office building – we have “no” affiliation with them as they unlawfully used our GER to GER Brand Name to sell their tours), we do have a list of “wise recommendations” for you. The mission of this post is to save you a lot of heartache before you even arrive to Mongolia as we wish you all to have a wonderful experience. With all the recent developments in Ulaanbaatar Mongolia you don’t have to opt-out to continue supporting unethical guesthouse tour operators – there are many other options around the city. But please do keep in mind that not all guesthouses are “unethical” and the goal of this post is designed to assist you in your efforts to determine “which is which” – GER to GER is not a guesthouse so we here to help you unbiasedly.
5 Steps to Choosing a Proper Guesthouse in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia
1. Do Research: beyond the hype that is often generated by a handful of people (sometimes fake reviews generated by their own contacts, employees and even relatives).
2. Find out if they support responsible and ethical business development or not: this is important as you may be purchasing services from a company that intentionally tries to hurt other local businesses (showing you a wonderful smile while bullying others when you are not watching).
3. Find out do they have a real and tangible “Corporate Social Responsibility” mission (CSR): Do they create jobs for locals or just for themselves? Do they give back to the local community? Is it all fake talk and words or do they really have tangible evidences that support their CSR Claims? etc.
4. Find out if they work in cooperation with others or are they just “poaching” or “copying” other’s works and community-led efforts: Some unethical business in Mongolia desire to earn a few dollars quickly while showing you a fake smile and claiming they have achieved something that in truth they have not…
5. Test them – Do they seem to become aggressive? Tricky?: Tell them that you are traveling with another company – do they try to steal you or brainwash you (prior and during your stay – do they aggressively attack the company or organization that you are traveling with?) or even threaten to kick you out of their guesthouse if you don’t purchase their guesthouse’s travel packages (after you arrive)?
Wolves in Sheep’s Clothing – Take it from us Sheep Dogs “Be Aware”
Yes, these are just only a few matters that you should be aware of when considering to procure local accommodations prior to even arriving in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia. These are real issues that many local companies face when a few unethical guesthouses have dominated the market in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia and have branched out to become unethical “tour operators” too. Don’t be surprised if you are hounded and even sometimes bullied into buying their tour services (guesthouse and tours) at the train station and at their guesthouse upon arrival. If you have already booked tour services from a different company than the guesthouse you are staying at – DON’T TELL THEM THAT! Countless travelers have reported being “Kicked Out” of their guesthouse after mentioning that they already have booked tours with other companies and organizations; be frank and kind – just tell them “its really my personal business and not yours but I may consider your offers if you leave me alone” or something of that nature if you desire to keep your accommodations at an unethical guesthouse.
You are an Investor; Money, Time and Emotions – Choose Your Ulaanbaatar Guesthouse Wisely
GER to GER recommends that you check the above carefully – nothing worse than investing time, money and emotions to have it wasted upon arrival by some unethical businesses. In addition, try considering guesthouse accommodations that are not “tour operators” in disguise but rather certified humanitarian organizations where your money goes to supporting their important works.
Guesthouse Tour Operators in Ulaanbaatar vs Guesthouse Humanitarians
At GER to GER we prefer to use organizations like the Lotus Guesthouse for our Solo and Independent Travelers where the money generated goes towards supporting children’s orphanages in Mongolia. Such ethical Guesthouses provide travelers a means to rest without being bombarded, harassed and bullied by unethical guesthouses that operate their own tours in Mongolia.
Unethical Guesthouses in Mongolia vs Standard Hotels
Its tough for even someone like ourselves that are social economic developers not to support Small and Medium Enterprises (SME) in Ulaanbaatar i.e. guesthouses but what can we do? Even if GER to GER wishes to support the local guesthouses our primary objective is to support all our rural communities throughout Mongolia first. After years and years of trying to cooperate and collaborate with the local guesthouses taking into consideration that the situation has not improved – I do recommend travelers to consider Ulaanbaatar’s broad range of hotels throughout the city. Lets say that a humanitarian guesthouse is completely booked and there is not rooms available – don’t worry and please “do not consider” booking with some unethical guesthouses when there are plenty of other options available.
GER to GER Pro-Active Accommodation Solutions for Travelers
In the near future, GER to GER will be provided booking services for cheap to mid-range alternatives via our website rather than supporting unethical guesthouses in Ulaanbaatar Mongolia.
Nonetheless, we will continue to monitor and evaluate the situation this 2015 travel season. If this situation continues with a handful of guesthouses behaving poorly and continually trying to negatively influence travelers and other businesses alike, we shall initiate a “blacklist” and promote it globally.