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International Exlibris Congress 2020


The rest of this page remains only as a record of what might have been.

In August 2020 The Bookplate Society is hosting the FISAE congress at the Royal National Hotel, Bloomsbury, in the middle of London. Its large Galleon Room, used for monthly book fairs, provides ample room for our congress.

The Royal National Hotel is easily reached by underground metro on the Piccadilly Line from Heathrow to Russell Square (23 stops). This 3-star hotel is very popular with groups. There are mostly standard twin-bed rooms, with own bath/shower, tv, wi-fi, tea/coffee maker.

There are very few rooms with double beds and only 20 single bedrooms, but some rooms have three beds. Try to arrange to share with a friend, because this will be much cheaper per person than being a single person in a twin-bed room.

VERY GOOD NEWS: Participants who booked and paid for their hotel accommodation early have had the benefit of SPECIAL CONGRESS RATES, fixed for 2020 without increase.These advantageous rates were due to end last year. However, in September 2019 your organisers paid £70,000 to the hotel, being monies received for room bookings. At the same time we also paid £4,500 as the non-refundable deposit required for booking the main meeting room. The hotel was pleased with this situation and agreed to extend the advantageous group rates for bedrooms.
So you may still book bedrooms at the above rates BUT SUBJECT TO AVAILABILITY. For each new booking from February 2020 we must individually book with the hotel. HOWEVER, the day will come, soon, when the hotel is full, so please make your plans and do not delay. If you book direct online with the hotel this will be at 2020 prices, and you will not get the better rates agreed for FISAE congress participants.

Booking in advance will avoid the worry of being at risk of unfavourable movements in currency exchange rates. We cannot guess how exchange rates will move during the present time of uncertainty about the UK/EU relationship.People who booked and paid early have had the benefit of better exchange rates.

1-, 2- & 3-bed rooms with TV, WiFi and tea & coffee-making facilities.

The special rates are for the room and Full English Breakfast (not just Continental Breakfast): single room £78 per night, 2-bed twin room £93 per night, 3-bed triple £116 per night. We have compared these rates with smaller hotels in London, with the local Premier Inn (very expensive!) and even with the Kings Cross Youth Hostel! Our conclusion is that this is the best offer! You should accept it and be pleased that everyone can be accommodated in the same place, which is a huge advantage.

The cost per person per night is £46.50 in a twin room and £38.67 in a 3-bed triple room. Please note that the cheap price for single persons at the County Hotel is no longer available because Imperial Hotels have sold it (but if you have booked for the County Hotel you are being upgraded to the Royal National AT NO EXTRA CHARGE).

This is a 4-day congress. Prague 2018 was a 5-day event, but four days should be sufficient for most people. However, you may choose to arrive one day early on the Tuesday and already meet those other participants who have also decided to come early. Or perhaps arrive on the weekend before the congress and attend the Sunday book fair, held monthly at the hotel, then spend time visiting London. Maybe stay in London after the congress. Or go travelling around Britain and come back for your last night before leaving for the airport. All your extra nights in the hotel will be at the SPECIAL CONGRESS RATES if you book these when there is availability.

The five hotels in the Imperial Hotels group are all located close to each other. Almost all the rooms have twin beds not double beds. If you particularly want a double bed, send us a separate email to request this, but the hotel makes no promises that rooms with double beds can be found for you.

CANCELLATION: Unable to come? If you notify us (and preferably also the hotel direct) that you cannot come you will receive a FULL REFUND of your accommodation cost, but
After this time there will be no refund - you must rely on your own travel insurance.

Another idea for those on a tight budget has been suggested by one of our participants from Greece who has decided to stay outside the centre, using the EasyHotel website. The rooms may be small or not well suited to older people, and travelling into Central London may be exhausting and take time (maybe 25-35 minutes by metro to the congress venue). Of course, there are many other ways to book rooms online.

A further thought is to stay with a host family, for example by booking with UKguests. You ought to be able to make a saving on hotel fees, but UKguests has a £40 booking charge, plus an extra £70 charge for any stay of less than seven days. You will share facilities, and the conditions and location may be rather variable. You may be lucky! We have no experience of using UKguests or any similar booking arrangement, so this is very much your decision. Make careful enquiries, and don't book if you have any doubts.

© The Bookplate Society 2020