Getting the best hotel rates can feel difficult. There are several websites that are catered to people looking for a great steal, but which one is best? Is one website better than others? Is there something they’re not telling you? Turns out, there is. By following these tips, you'll be sure to get the best hotel rates.
Compare Prices Online
Comparing prices online might be one of the best ways you can get a great deal, but be careful of the website. Some websites fail to list all the fees involved with booking a hotel. Priceline is one of the best websites that tells you how much the fees are, but sometimes the only way to know exactly how much the final price will be is to call the hotel.
Call the Hotel Directly
Calling the hotel directly may give you better prices than a website could. They may have last minute cancellations they’re looking to fill. There are several different reasons a hotel may give you a cheaper price than the website listed, so call the hotel directly to know the total cost.
Chose Websites Wisely
Some websites you visit have a tendency to only give you their price, but that isn’t always the best. You want to visit websites that compare several different prices at once. Sites like Kayak, Hipmunk, and Trivago will compare numerous different prices at once. For example, Trivago will compare 277 or more booking sites at one click. Convenient, right?
If you don’t have an exact date in mind, check other dates around the same time. You might find it’s cheaper for you to stay an extra night. Something else to consider is the fact that hotels change the price of rooms based on whether or not they think the room will fill. This is why booking 24 hours in advance will yield better prices. Last minute booking can be scary, but you’ll get the rock bottom prices that you’re looking for. Websites like The Suitest will help choose what time is best for booking without risking your placement.
Search Hidden Discounts
Are you a member of AARP, AAA, or are you a part of a professional organization? If so, you might be entitled to some discounts through these clubs. To figure out if you qualify, you can call your club or organization and ask them if they offer any discounts or simply ask the hotel directly.
Using coupons is also an option by searching websites like hotels.com or Retailmenot. While they’re rarer than other types of coupons, a quick search could provide fantastic deals. Hotel websites have also been known to offer coupons or packages. If you like a particular chain, sign up for their e-newsletter for the latest info on discounts and packages.
If you need to book a hotel and a flight, you’ll find better prices by booking both at once. Most websites will give you deals on the more things you need to book. Generally, discounts are given if you’re booking a hotel, a flight, or a rental car. The price will dramatically drop, but don’t rent a car just to grab the discounts. It’ll end up costing you more in the long run.
Smaller hotels are also an option. You can find smaller hotels by inquiring with a chamber or commerce or even a travel guide. Many smaller hotels don’t want to spend money advertising through a website, so they save the money. Unfortunately, it makes them a little bit harder to find. Taking the time to look for them might yield a cheaper, better room.
If you’re looking at a long-term stay, consider renting an apartment or a house for the duration of your trip. It might seem odd, but booking an apartment or a home can save money for several reasons. If it’s a family vacation, finding enough rooms in a hotel can break the bank. Another way it saves money is by having a kitchen. You no longer have to go out to eat every night, which can definitely save some major cash. Definitely choose this option if you’re staying in a place for at least two weeks or more. A week's stay, though, might end up costing more.