Most of us are always looking forward to getting very good hotel rates, both during business and holiday travels. The problem is, how do you actually get affordable accommodation without compromising on quality and comfort?
Travelers in every part of the globe – America, Europe, Africa, Asia and Australia – are in search of best hotel deals. Everybody wants to save on travel expenditure. This no wonder makes it a bit difficult to find the real budget hotel deal. And every hospitality facility claims to have the best offer. So how do you identify the real offers?
Here are four ideas on how to find cheap hotel deals and save great during your trips:
Local travel websites
Big travel websites like Hotels.com, Expedia, Agoda and likes, are what most travelers seek first when looking for best deals. Their vast details on hotels on almost part of the globe, is indeed very important on getting what you want.
But what most people forget is that local travel websites are most likely to have more budget hotels that these big travel sites. Searching for popular travel sites in your destination is something that may save you great deal of cash.
Unlike the global travel giant sites, local ones provide details of even the very budget end hotels. There, you are more likely to find very affordable rooms and yet very decent for your vacation/business trip..
If you really need to find a good deal, then you have to starting looking for one early enough. This allows time to find variety of accommodation facilities, be it hotels, bed and breakfast or even apartments. You then compare their offers, and their services and facilities and then choose the one that well fits you.
In case you have very urgent trip; then it may be advisable to find last minutes travel sites and see their offers. But the earlier you plan your travel the better.
Going to stay for long in hotel or traveling in groups? If yes, then it’s more likely if you ask for a discount, you will be offered one. But be sure to ask for it before making reservations. Some hotels also do offer special offers for particular people. For instance, some Nairobi hotels have lower rates for UN staff. If you work with some of big humanitarian organizations, ask if the hotel have special rates for staff.
Where possible, you should properly plan for the period you intend to travel, bearing in mind peak seasons. If you are traveling on weekends, it might be good idea to stay for business hotel, where rates are likely to be lower than in vacation resorts. Similarly, you can stay in holiday lodges during business days, and save on room budget.
Planning to take vacation in low tourists’ season might save your money, besides making your trip hassle free. For instance, Mombasa Hotels in Kenya do double or even triple their room rates during the peak seasons. And the sheer number of visitors looking for hotels makes it even hard to find hotel, when planning for last minutes trips.
During any tour to any destination, two things make up the bulk of your expenses: travel and accommodations. Therefore to eke out any savings from the trip you will have to invest a lot of time and effort on finding cheap hotel rates to keep your expenses low and your smiles up.
While looking for cheap hotel rates, keep the following tips in mind.
1. Location is everything – Hotel rates vary from place to place depending on its location. You will have to ask yourself if where your balance lies: convenience or price. Most convenient locations in any city will have hotels sporting rates in the upwards range in any market.
Some less accessible areas will offer lesser rates. However, you will have to decide for yourself whether the inconvenience is worth the price. If you are pretty familiar with the area you are traveling to, then locations with lesser rates in less accessible or attractive locations will be less of an issue for you.
However, if you are traveling to an area for the first time, you will have to think twice about staying at a location that is a little inconvenient.
2. Schedule is also everything – The basic law of supply and demands states that the more the demand, the more expensive the item will be. The same is true for hotel rates, if demand for a travel destination is high, then you are bound to spend more money.
So if you are planning to stay away from home, try to make your hotel reservations for off-peak seasons. Hotel rates during peak season can be as much as three times more than regular rates. This alone is reason enough to look to reserve during off-peak seasons.
3. Amenities – Some hotels are pricier because they offer amenities that, while great for those looking for extravagance, are useless to some travelers. If you can live without some of these amenities, then you could consider looking for hotels that are cheaper because they do not offer these amenities.
4. Negotiate – Most front desk personnel are personable and can give good advice on getting better rates at their hotels. Negotiate with them to get good discounts for your stay.
If you are staying for more than a week, then you might want to ask if they offer lower rates for longer stays. Also ask if they have special promos during the period of your stay that you can take advantage of.
5. Search online – Comparing rates, amenities, and location is easier nowadays because of the power of the internet. The internet makes searching for good rates on good hotels easy and painless.
The good thing about internet hotel hunting is that most hotel search websites show prices for rooms, amenities, location, and best of all, user reviews of the hotel itself. This will give you a better idea of what to expect when checking in with a hotel for the first time.
6. The power of a Travel Agent – Travel agents have good contacts among hotel chains and can get discounts on reservations thus made. If you choose to have a travel agent help you get a good hotel, then make sure that the service fee you pay them does not make going through an agent more expensive then making the reservation yourself.