According to one school of thought about budget travel, hotel deals are the best way to save money on your holidays. Another school of thought suggests that if you’re going to spend big money, you should spend it on the place you lay your head. We subscribe to a combination of the two schools of thought – consider the kind of vacation you want to have and then make your hotel and lodging decisions based on those. Whether you prefer luxury lodgings bare bones hostel-style living, though, you can always find ways to save money with sweet hotel deals and bargain lodging tips. These suggestions can help you score great hotel deals when you travel for vacation or business.
Luxury Hotel Savings
Love the luxury of top-of-the-line travel? If one of the biggest perks of your vacation is being able to stay in luxurious digs, keep your eyes peeled for special deals newspapers, magazines and your favorite travel websites. You can often score big savings on luxury rooms in major tourist destinations if you’re willing to book during off-peak season – or mid-week. The reason? Luxury hotels have little trouble filling their executive and honeymoon suites on weekends and holidays – but they often have vacant rooms during the week and in the off-season. If you know when to book, you can score significant savings on your hotel rooms.
Book at the Last Minute
It used to be that you had to book your hotel rooms as much as 90 days in advance of your trip, but more and more travelers are waiting to book their room the same day. Same-day bookings often offer the best prices because the hotels are eager to fill those rooms. A number of websites and mobile apps can help you find rooms to book on the go, including the Expedia.com mobile app and the Priceline mobile app. Don’t limit yourself to nationally known websites. HotelTonight specifically lists rooms that are available after noon on the day you want to book a room.
Of course, you need to use good sense here. Last-minute bookings will get you good deals during slow seasons and off-peak times. Don’t expect to score hot hotel deals by booking at the last minute during peak season – like Spring Break in Florida or Acapulco.
Know What’s Going on in the World
Hotels drop their prices when demand for rooms falls, so keeping your ear to the ground concerning world events – and local happenings – can help you score cheap hotel rooms. If you wanted to see London, for example, but the Jubilee and Olympics festivities weren’t important to you, you’d have found discounted hotel rooms in London in the wake of the Jubilee celebrations. Look especially at cities that have had a surge in hotel construction for major events and festivals. Once the event has passed, hoteliers still have to fill those rooms, so they’ll reduce prices to attract visitors.
Look for All in One Vacation Deals
All in one vacation deals like cruises and club resort vacations, can be among the most cost-savvy options for lodging and activities. Consider those especially if you’re planning to visit a major tourist area, where dining, lodging and shopping prices can be off the charts if you try to go it a la carte.
Sign Up for Coupon Sites and Flash Sales
Coupon and social living sites are great places to find discounts on hotel rooms. Sign up for Groupon and LivingSocial, or the flash sale provider Jetsetter, to get sweet deals delivered to your inbox.
Don’t Rule Out Travel Agents
DIY travel may be the latest fashion, but travel agents can still score deals and packages that the general public can’t access. Shop around a bit for travel agents that book flights and hotel rooms online and check out their tours and package deals. Sometimes the extra perks you get working with a travel agent make the premium price you pay more than worth it.