10 Pocket Tips for Booking a Cheapest Hotel Room Around the World
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When you’re traveling, one of the largest chunks of your budget will go toward accommodations. In many of the world’s top destinations, you’ll pay a pretty penny for a room—especially if you’re vacationing during peak tourist season or during a popular event. Hoteliers are wise to the ways of travelers and they usually increase rates when they know they can demand it. So what’s a budget traveler to do? There are many options: couchsurfing has been facilitated by the Internet and there are always hostels or, if you’re lucky enough, family and friends who might open their doors to you in far-flung places.
While all of those can be great options, sometimes you just have to bite the bullet and book a hotel room, whether it’s for amenities and comfort, or just for proximity to a location.
Benefits of Booking A Budget Hotel Room
There is no shame at getting a cheap hotel, especially one like a budget hotel hk, no matter what kind of trip or getaway you might be planning. Some people look down on the thought of having a cheap hotel and others flourish on it, but in this article, we are going to try to look at both sides of the coin regardless of the group you fall under.
Many inexpensive hotels are scattered around many towns, cities, and even villages around the world. Because of that, so many are geographically situated – and they are not just hostels. It is such a tremendous positive being able to catch a fast bus or walk into town because although you might have to make a few compromises along the way, you know at least that you are going to be on schedule for everything you’ve decided for your ride.
More extended stay
If a hotel is cheaper, like hotel sai ying pun mtr, you can stay longer than initially planned, meaning you could have a more extended trip. That is a good commodity and an excellent position to be in. The difference could be significant between that day or two, and it could encourage you to learn something you did not have before. That is pretty exciting, and that sort of ‘spontaneous’ feeling is something people do not get when they have saved up for six months just for a perceived five-star experience.
A cheap hotel means affordable dining and drink options, and nothing is wrong with that. The presumption is that ‘available’ means the food is not especially tasty, but we do not think that is the case in reality. If you have had a long, stressful day, so thinking about what you can and can not spend on your dinner is the last thing you want to do. While you are unlikely to be treated to a gourmet experience, that does not mean that the food is not filling or delicious.
Last Minute Booking
Whether it is a week or 12 hours before you leave, there are always cheap hotels to offer a last-minute option. Hell, people sometimes just show up at the site and have the opportunity to enjoy an affordable hotel.
Pleasant Surprise: As with anything in life, going into any given situation with low expectations will give rise to a pleasant surprise. Booking a budget hotel means its unlikely expectations will be sky-high. Most often than not, the standards of a tidy space and good wi-fi are all. You might anticipate a genuinely terrible experience in some instances.
Top 10 Best Tips for Booking a Cheapest Hotel Room
1. No Deal Is Final
Well, that may not be entirely true. Always be sure to check cancellation policies on the booking site deal and the hotel before attempting to pull a switcheroo—if you don’t, you could end up on the hook for more than you bargained for, and not in a good way.
If you do luck out and book a refundable or pay-later deal with a decent cancellation policy, you can check out Yapta.com and last-minute booking sites in order to ensure you’ve still got the best deal. There are also countless apps that will do the legwork for you; some of the best are Hotel Tonight and the Europe-only Blink. If you do stumble across a better deal before you take off on holiday, don’t be afraid to cancel your existing reservations and book at a better price-point. Unless you’ve locked in by paying a non-refundable fee or a deposit, or your cancellation policy will charge you even a percentage of the room, you are not obligated to hold your reservation if something better comes along. Just be sure to read the fine print!
2. Make An Early Booking
|Photo: iStock Photo|
One of the most common tips for getting cheap hotel rooms is to make an early booking. Hotel prices vary weekly, therefore, you can cut the best deal if you are making early reservations. Also, it helps with the cancellation and refund process, early booking gives you ample time to cancel the reservation a few days before the reserved date and get a full refund. You can also re-check the prices as your trip comes closer and revise the booking at a lower rate.
YOU WON’T HAVE TO SETTLE FOR SECOND BEST
What’s great about booking early, is you get the pick of it all. If there’s a specific villa or Sea-View Room you have your eye on, you’ll have a better chance than most of getting it. There’s nothing worse than turning up late to a party and finding out the buffets almost finished – it’s the same with your holiday. The sooner you book, the more hotels and rooms you have to choose from. You’ll have the pick of flights too, meaning you can travel on your preferred dates.
NO LAST-MINUTE RUSHING
Holidays are often the most exciting two-weeks of our year, and we want to make sure that the build up is as exciting as the holiday itself. Booking in advance means you can avoid any last-minute pressures – no one enjoys rushing around the shops last-minute to find that perfect beach outfit, we can vouch for that! There’s no pressure into booking a holiday that you only think’s ‘okay’ either. That simply won’t be an issue when you book in advance.
SMALLER DEPOSITS AND FREE KIDS PLACES
The full holiday cost is usually due 12 weeks before travel, so book with plenty of time to spare and you’ll be able to pay off a little each month, meaning that final balance won’t break the bank. Knowing it’s in your sights will make it so much easier to put those pennies away too; just think of those candle-lit dinners at sunset, the cocktails by the pool or the theme parks you’ll soon be enjoying.
Not only that, but it’s often the case that you can bag free kids’ places when you book early. Keep your eyes peeled for deals, as that’ll mean you’ll have even more spare cash to spend elsewhere!
3. Look for Unpublished Rates
Hotels don’t publish all of their rates. While booking sites and price aggregators can get you some pretty good deals, those deals are all based on published rates —which are rates given to the general public. Sometimes, though, the best deals are so-called hidden or “secret” rates, which are the rates that the hotels don’t want you to see. Hoteliers offer lower rates for rooms they don’t think they can sell, but they tend to keep that fact on the low-down so that they can still charge the price they want.
Taking advantage of unpublished rates can be tricky, since the information can be difficult to track down. A site like getaroom.com, which specializes in flash deals, will offer unpublished rates to customers who call a toll-free line. A word of caution though: make sure you trust the site you’re using. Many sites claim to offer great deals and secret rates; customers who book through them arrive only to find they either don’t have a room or are being charged a much higher rate. Take advantage of these deals—but don’t let yourself be taken advantage of!
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4. Join Hotel Rewards Program
|Photo: E&T Abroad|
This tip comes in handy when you are a frequent traveler or in the business of tourism. Most premium hotels offer loyalty programs where guests earn some extra points for every booking. Every point equals to a certain amount that will go off whenever you use that point. Apart from reservations, there are several other ways to earn these points like using the hotel’s credit card, facilities, affiliate programs, shopping from business partners’ portals, etc. All major players including Radisson, Hilton, Marriott, and others offer special discounts for their members and even offer discounts for independent, small hotels that fall within their network. It doesn’t part what kind of trip you are planning you cannot afford to skip checking out various loyalty programs.
If you like the more luxurious side of life when travelling (and why shouldn’t you?!) you may have come across hotel rewards programmes from some of the more lavish options out there. This can be a fantastic way to not only save some cash but also to help you feel like a true VIP as you arrive at your new destination.
For starters, some hotel chains reward their loyalty-program members with discounted rates to book a room when joining their program. In many cases, they require only a small number of stays before you earn the lower price which is extended only to members. Sometimes, those who join the loyalty program receive it immediately. And you might find the price for program members is less than anything you can find on third-party discount travel sites. Hilton, for example, has a guaranteed member discount, regardless of what tier you’ve reached in their loyalty program.
Members Might Get Free Cancellations
You might also want to join a hotel loyalty program if you find your travel plans frequently change post-booking. Securing a room through another discount site means you must adhere to their cancellation policies. And, sometimes, that means that you have to pay for a room even if you are delayed or your flight has been canceled due to unforeseen circumstances.
Checking into any hotel as a member of its loyalty program means you get a few bonuses to enjoy. For instance, if you typically have to pay for Wi-Fi, some hotels provide free access to their members. In addition, they might offer you a free drink, free breakfast, or another gift upon check-in. Typically there are perks most often at the beginning of program status tiers. However, as you move up in status, the perks and benefits grow and get better!
Best Tips to Travel on a Budget
Come up with a plan
Travelling spontaneously is great, if you have the luxury of time and money to spare. But if you’re travelling on a budget, the first thing to do is come up with a plan. You don’t have need a tight, hour-by-hour itinerary, but you should at least have an idea of how long you’ll be spending in each city or country, and know the route that your epic adventure will take. Leaving less to chance means less unexpected spends; last-minute flights and accommodation are often far more expensive.
Travel out of season
Avoid trips during the school holidays, this is when the travel industry hikes up prices to take advantage of families who can only travel during these weeks. Research the best time to visit your intended destination, and then travel just before or after these dates. This is called the ‘shoulder season’, where you’ll still have a great trip but maybe the sun won’t shine quite as brightly (and, on the plus side, it won’t be quite as hot.) Hotels and airlines lower their prices to attract customers during this time.
Trade expensive hotel suites for dorm rooms in hostels. Sharing a room naturally divides the costs and communal bunk rooms offer the opportunity to meet people who might be keen to explore with you. Other great alternatives are websites like AirBnB and Couchsurfing, where you simply book a spare room in a local person’s house or apartment. It’ll halve the price and allow you an authentic snapshot of real life in the city. Consider your host your very own, personal tour guide, filled with insider-tips for the best eateries and tourist spots in that neighbourhood.
You could even stay with family or friends. Reach out to people you know or plan a trip to somewhere that a long-lost cousin or school friend now lives – this could take you to visit places you’d never have thought of before.
Make sure you bring everything you need so that you don’t have to shop while you’re away (apart from a few souvenirs). No matter where you’re heading, take at least one pair of long jeans, warm hoodie and waterproof jacket for unpredictable weather incidents. For some in-depth advice, check out our ‘Travel like a pro’ guide to packing for every kind of trip.
Book flights in advance…
Especially return flights; running out of money abroad without a guaranteed ticket home is never ideal. Airlines ‘release’ their flight seats up to a year in advance and the closer you get to your departure date, the more the prices increase, especially in the last month.
Be smart about how you fly
Opt to travel on a Tuesday. Midweek travel prices are lower as a premium is added to weekend flights and you’ll breeze through shorter queues at airport check-in desks and security. Fly economy too – there’s no need to upgrade, no matter how nice Business Class looks. The money you save on cheap seats can be spent on food or accommodation when you arrive. Low-cost, budget airlines are fine for short flights and regularly have cheap deals. If you’re planning a weekend trip try to pack light and use only hand luggage, saving yourself a bit of money on hold luggage.
5. Go in Blindfolded
This is not as bad as it might sound at first. Much noise has been made in the past little while about sites like Priceline.com and Hotwire.com. These sites allow you to pick a geographic area and a star-rating, so you know that you’ll at least be near your preferred destination and getting quality service you’re comfortable with. Other than that, the process is blind; you don’t know where you’re staying until your credit card bill reflects the charge.
With Priceline, you bid on the hotel room; Hotwire allows you to choose a discount rate. That means you can score some pretty sweet deals, but it also means that you’re taking a risk. While you won’t end up in a dive as long as you set your filters right, you are giving up control about where exactly you stay—and for some travelers, that is just not acceptable, no matter the price-point. If you’re more concerned about budget than whether you’re staying at a chain hotel or supporting a local business, getting an opaque deal can be your best bet for saving the most money.
6. Do Your Homework
One mistake that novice travelers often make is booking a room on the first site they visit or without checking back on later dates. That almost guarantees that you’re going to book at a higher price than you could. Don’t jump the gun; deal-hunting requires patience.
Once you have an idea of where you want to stay, narrow your hotel choices to about 10 properties. Your best bet is to visit price aggregators such as Hipmunk, Trivago and Kayak.com. These sites search multiple booking sites and list the best deals based on your filter preferences, which saves you time in searching and comparing each and every individual booking site. With Hipmunk, their site features vacation rentals along with hotels (the only American website to do so) and their “ecstasy” filter works wonders for getting you a balance between luxury and pricing. The site also has a mapping feature, which can show you where the best food and nightlife are in the city, and how close various properties are to those hotspots. Trivago has the largest database, searching over 200 booking sites, and Kayak.com allows you to check multiple hotels at once.
7. Take a Geography Lesson
What do you like to do while on vacation? If you’re hoping to catch a play or a concert, then you’re probably going to look for an entertainment district in your holiday city. If you’d rather hit the beach or maybe play a round of golf, you’re going to want to look for hotels that are nearer to the activities you enjoy. Food is also an important consideration; do you really want to drive or take transit just to grab lunch? Checking out where you want to go, what you want to do and which hotels are closest to where you want to be is always an excellent move.
You’ll like also want to look at the hotel “landscape.” What kind of properties does your holiday destination have on offer? If there are several different types, such as budget hotel options, luxury hotels and all-inclusive resorts, look for where different property types tend to cluster. If you’re traveling on a budget, you probably don’t want to book where all the swankiest hotels are located, since the businesses around them are likely to be high-end and pricey too.
8. Break Up The Stay With More Than One Booking
|Photo: Hotel Link Solutions|
It may seem that a four-day four-night stay in one hotel may have the same price, but, the reality may differ at times. If that happens, you can always make multiple reservations linking the dates of your stay. Most likely the hotel will give you the same room and hand over a fresh key at the reception as you move from one reservation to another. Another option is to narrow down to two or three hotels and see if breaking up the stay in two different hotels can bring down the total cost. If the first hotel has some event and doesn’t have occupancy for later dates, you can find another hotel with a matching or lesser price and shift there. Many travelers and bloggers use this tip to book cheap hotels.
9. Pick Up New Hotels
Every new business try hard to win new customers and initiate a lasting relationship with them. They do this by offering handsome discounts to first customers or offering higher loyalty points to those returning after their first stay. Just search for New Hotels in your destination on Google and you will find a list of new hospitality centers coming up in your destination. If you are not comfortable with a new brand, you can always look for newly acquired properties by major players like Hilton, Four Seasons or Marriott and you will find reasonable prices for first bookings in those properties.
10. Try Last Minute Bookings
If you are an impulsive traveler or someone who often needs to travel with last-minute notices, you can leverage last minute booking deals on travel platforms. Several travel agents, portals, hotels, and airlines offer amazing deals for last-minute bookings. There are many portals like Lastminute, Trivago, Priceline, Hotwire, Orbitz and One Night that excel in offering last-minute deals on both flight tickets and hotel bookings.
Pros of last minute booking
If you’re the spur-of-the-moment sort, one of the best things about booking your vacation last minute is the excitement of not knowing where you’re going until the very last second. Summer in the Alps, weekend getaway to Toronto or a two-week excursion through Central America – why not? Because last minute deals are so often hit or miss, you could end up in a vacation destination you normally wouldn’t have thought of, had there not been a good last minute deal.
Plus, there is the addition of not having to stress about planning, organizing and researching your trip if you’re the laid-back type that prefers to go with the flow.
Another advantage is the potential for savings. The biggest savings can be found in accommodation, as many hotels tend to slash their prices the closer you get to the arrival date. Better to sell those empty rooms at a much lower discounted price than to not sell them at all.
Finding a cheap last minute flight is a little trickier compared to accommodation, since prices typically go up the closer you get to the departure date due to the increased demand of the flight. As we’ll discuss below, there are some ways to make finding last minute flights easier, and if you do manage to snag a discounted airfare, you could end up saving quite a bit of money.
How to find last minute deals
There is no secret formula to finding cheap last minute fares. There are however several ways you can improve your chances of scoring low fares, whether you are booking last minute or well in advance. As a general rule, be flexible. Often the less popular routes such as early morning and red eye flights are cheaper, so be open to the possibility of flying at a somewhat less desirable time.
Try searching for flights that depart on a week day rather than the more popular weekend flights. You could save a lot of money by simply adjusting the time frame of your flights. Sometimes it’s also worth a shot to fly on a holiday such as Christmas Day for example rather than a few days before or after the holiday.
The Best Websites For You To Find Cheap Hotel Rooms
HotelsCombined is easy to work with above all else. All you need to do is input where you want to stay, the dates for your trip, and the number of rooms you need, be it for adults or children. This is great if you've managed to find a travel buddy to go with you.
Interestingly, you can choose from a wide range of options in regard to your stay, instead of just the city you’re staying in. If you have one chain of hotels which you prefer, you can input by their name, or you can input specific addresses or landmarks if there’s something specific that you’re trying to visit.
From there, HotelsCombined scours the internet for the best deals on hotels. What’s great here is just how much control you have over what type of results you get back.
The process behind Trivago is pretty straightforward. You input your location, date range, and the number of rooms that you’re looking for. From there, Trivago takes you to a screen showing you the best deals that it was able to find for you.
This process is snappy and responsive, which makes Trivago feel great if you’re looking for a quick peek into what might be available.
There are some filters available here as well, though nothing particularly expansive. You can search by price, property type, and a couple more. If you’re looking for something at all specific, you may run into some trouble, however.
The most telling feature about this page is the map, however. Other aggregators such as HotelsCombined also feature this map, though for some it’s hidden behind buttons or menus. With Trivago, it’s displayed prominently.
Booking.com functions much like an aggregator in that you input your desired location, travel dates, and the room size that you need, and the site returns results for you to consider.
The filters that Booking.com has available are solid, with a wide range of options from price, booking type, ratings, location, and many more.
Booking.com even tells you when your travel dates don’t line up particularly well with availability, and offers you different times to travel that it thinks would help you find better availability or pricing. This is super useful if you’re working on a more flexible plan and looking to save some more money.
While all entries on this list have allowed you to book flights, activities, and more alongside your hotel bookings, Tripadvisor is the one that focuses most on it. This is great if you couldn't find any free city guides and recommended itineraries.
This is apparent when you first come to use the site, as you’ll find that all Tripadvisor asks for is the location of your trip. Once you select the hotels tab, you’ll see a more familiar interface.
There are a lot of filters that you can look through here, with various deals, amenities, and more being included as well as the standard price and location options. You can search using the map as well if you want, though you’ll have to select this option manually.
Best feature: A good selection of well-located places to stay, with some of the best hotel prices around.
Agoda began as a hotel booking site with a focus on Asia, and that focus remains apparent on the home page, where properties in Malaysia, Thailand, and other Eastern destinations get prominent real estate. But now that Agoda has come to the U.S., it delivers a hotel search experience that matches some of the best hotel sites on this list.
There are even instances when Agoda had better hotel deals than its competition, including one hotel search result in which the total booking cost was more than $200 less than the same hotel on Priceline (with a coupon code). Don’t expect that sort of result every time, but it shows that Agoda, like all the rest of these hotel booking sites, is well worth checking for the best hotel.
Best feature: Trivago’s mix of hotel sites searched is strong, and includes hotel sites that travelers may not have otherwise known about, which could result in finding some of the best hotel deals out there.
Another aggregate hotel booking site, Trivago did surface that low price coupon found on Agoda. However, it did not lead with that price, choosing instead to prominently display a higher price from Booking.com in large, green text. Odd. The lower-priced Agoda deal was listed second in the hotel search results, displayed in small gray text along with several others. In fact, Trivago found multiple hotel deals lower than that Booking.com price, but none received top billing for some reason. This happened in several other cases too, where the lead price ended up higher than best hotel prices that Trivago could find.
It is always possible to travel on a budget, especially when you know all the tips and tricks to do that. Booking a cheap hotel room can help you a great deal saving your money during your trip.
Those tips above will be your useful guide in seeking a budget hotel room at last minutes, but it also depends on your experience and knowledge to make your right choices.
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