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If you are going on a vacation or trip of some sort and you are not able to stay with a friend or family, chances are you will need to book a hotel room. Hotel rooms can be a costly thing to add to the travel budget. The good news is there are a few things that you can do for saving on your hotel costs. Today I will be sharing with you a few things that may require a little research and effort from you, but it is worth it because it will help you to save a chunk of money when booking your hotels!
Tips for Saving on Hotels
Explore Your Options
The first thing I recommend is to consider your options! Don’t just look for one hotel and settle on that one immediately, explore your options, and try to find the most affordable option that still offers all of your wants and needs! You can use things such as TripAdvisor (my personal favorite) or Priceline.com; these websites allow you to input your information, including where you are going, and the length of your stay, and they will help you to find the best deal!
Sign Up for Rewards Programs
A lot of hotel chains offer a rewards program that allows you to earn points and rewards for staying in their hotels. Some rewards programs include Choice Hotel Rewards or Marriott Rewards. I would recommend signing up for these things even if you don’t necessarily intend to stay in them because then you are already signed up for if you visit them in the future!
Book in Advance
You will want to book your hotel as far in advance as you possibly can when it comes to booking for a vacation. The earlier you book, the more you will save. I mean, it only makes sense; if you wait to book until the last minute, there will be way less availability and less chance of you even getting a room, so they will charge you more to book a place for you.
Look for Coupons
There are coupons everywhere on the internet; be sure to search for coupons for your hotel definitely, or you can even look for packages that include extra attractions with your stay. I’m sure if you scour through the internet, you can find some coupons or discount codes for booking with that hotel!
When it comes to booking your hotel, you will want to consider where you choose to stay. For example, if you are going to a busy city such as Chicago or New York City, it is going to be significantly more expensive to stay in the city versus outside of the city. A lot of times, it is worth it to stay right outside of the town and drive in when you need to.
If you are going on a trip of some sort soon, be sure to consider these tips and tricks when it comes to booking your hotel! Savings, if even $10 a night, can add up quickly if one is going to be on the road for a week or more.
Here are some proven tips that can help you figure out How to Save Money Booking a Hotel:
Check On-Line, Then Call
The primary travel sites such as TripAdvisor (my personal favorite) or Hotels.com will list prices and availability for hotels. Be aware of two things: they may only have access to a limited number of rooms at a given hotel. If the website shows it is sold out, it may only be sold out to them. Also, that price is negotiated. After checking the price, call the hotel directly and ask if there is a better price for those dates.
Name All Organizations
Hotels often have bands of prices with better rates available for members of large companies, service clubs, labor unions, or political parties. Always ask for the Corporate Rate. If the desk or reservations clerk asks, start naming your affiliations.
Independents are Flexible
Chain hotels often have their rates set by their central office, so an individual franchise may not have flexibility. Independent hotels, however, do set their prices. During slower times, the traveler may well be able to negotiate a rate of 5-10% below what is advertised.
Check That Wallet
Hotels often have discounted prices for specific kinds of credit cards or members of groups like the AAA. Look at what cards there are filling up the side pockets of the wallet or purse, then ask.
Is Booking Ahead Cheaper?
It is always advisable to book reservations in advance. Do not assume that, for example, a Tuesday through Thursday travel time is a hotel’s slow period. It may be filled with business travelers. So do book ahead, but when doing so, ask if the rate agreed upon will be the same rate on check-in, and will the traveler get the price on check-in day it is lower? Then, if the answer is in the affirmative, ask for a confirmation email of that.
The same way as a fast-food restaurant will do a special order without advertising the service, so too do hotels often have exclusive amenities that they do not readily promote. Why? They are in the business of making money, and they also like to sell their services in the easiest way possible. Here are four tips that can either save money or up-grade the travel experience.
Four tips for real deals when at a hotel
Where is the Room?
One wants a hotel room for one purpose: a convenient, comfortable place to sleep. Being next to the ice machine, elevator, or hallway doors can lead to a night of disrupted sleep. A guest has every right to ask to be kept as far away from these noisy places as possible. And a bonus tip: the largest and quietest rooms in a hotel are usually in the corners. Ask if one is available.
If a hotel offers a price-included continental breakfast as well as a hot breakfast, ask if it is possible to get the hot breakfast included with the price of the room. Often, the answer is yes. The hotel has to put out a set amount of eggs, bacon, etc. anyway, so there is no real additional cost for it to accommodate a guest’s request. I look at TripAdvisor to see who has breakfast and who doesn’t. It saves me one extra stop and expense on my journey when I am looking at saving on hotels.
What Discounts are Available?
Besides always asking for the best possible rate, are there affiliated discounts? Often nearby restaurants, gyms, clubs, and amusement parks will offer substantial discounts upon display of a guest’s room key. Ask at the front desk what the hotel has to offer.
The Best Rate
The rate a guest is quoted upon making a reservation days, weeks, or months in advance is the rate predicted for the travel dates. Quite often, that rate has gone down by the time of check-in. Upon arrival, ask what ‘today’s rate’ is for the type of room reserved (e.g., A non-smoking Queen bedroom).
It is these sorts of little tips that can make travel a much more pleasant and cost-effective experience. Happy trails!
How to Get a Room Upgrade
One might think that all rooms in a hotel are relatively standard, save, of course, for hotels that have suites. Not so. For instance, rooms in a corner are usually slightly more extensive and may have more windows or a wrap-around balcony for an enhanced view. So how does one go about getting one for the same price as a standard room?
Ask for one
This may sound screamingly obvious, but travelers so often take whatever is given to them and never raise a question.
Answer the phone
Most properly run hotels will call a newly checked-in guest within 15 minutes of arrival to enquire if everything is satisfactory. It is entirely within one’s right to say, “I’m disappointed. I thought the room was larger from the photographs on your web site. Do you have anything a bit bigger?” Or perhaps ask for one with a desk, comfortable chair, larger TV, whatever! The goal is to move up to a corporate or business class room. The hotel does not want someone checking out immediately and risking losing revenue.
If the guest is a member of a large business, service club, or even the Auto Club, he or she may be entitled to a free upgrade. That also may be true for members of a hotel chain’s loyalty program.
Except, in small hotels, room assignments are usually made by computer in the order of arrival. If one does not check in until say there are only five vacant rooms left; there is not much the desk clerks can do about it.
Be specific as to needs
If a guest does not want to be by the ice machine, elevator, or hallway doors, speak up! And do ask if there are any corner rooms available. Hotels want to accommodate all reasonable requests because they want return visits and referrals.
You don’t have to follow all of our tips to find yourself saving on hotels, usually a combination of just a few of them will make a huge difference on the bottom line.
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