Ever since I was a kid I was brought up to be frugal and to save and budget money. * Disclaimer: I am not a financial planner.
If you're looking to save money on your next trip, it's important that you start early. There are a few things you can do to find great hotel deals:
- Search for deals on travel sites like Expedia and Hotels.com
- Search for deals on travel blogs like TripAdvisor and The Points Guy.
- Search for deals on travel forums like Reddit's r/travel subreddit or FlyerTalk forums.
- Search for deals on social media—keeping an eye out for any mentions of hotels or airlines offering discounts or freebies as part of special promotions or rewards programs is always helpful!
Be flexible on travel day
If you're flexible on your travel day, you can save a lot of money. Hotels often have discounted rates for travelers who book during the week or on holidays. For example, if you're traveling to a city near a major holiday like Thanksgiving or Christmas, the hotel may offer discounts to travelers willing to travel early or later in the month (when fewer people are looking for accommodations). Or if your plans are flexible enough that you can wait until after New Year's Day, you might find an even better rate than what was available during peak season.
Additionally, if your work schedule allows it and there's not a major convention going on in town during that time period—and especially if there's one at another hotel nearby—you may be able to get cheaper rates by staying somewhere off-site instead.
Check the online travel agencies
If you'd like to save some serious cash on a hotel, try looking at the online travel agencies. These sites are great for booking flights and car rentals and even cruises. They may also have deals on tours and excursions that would be hard to find elsewhere.
You can search through multiple hotels at once using these sites, which makes them great for comparison shopping if there are several locations or types of accommodations available that meet your criteria.
Check the hotel's website
- Last-minute deals. If you're flexible about when you want to travel and the hotel doesn't fill up, it may offer discounts for last-minute bookings.
- Discounts for loyalty members. Some hotels offer discounts to members of loyalty programs like Marriott Rewards or Hilton Honors.
- Discounts for members of an organization you belong to. Some groups have negotiated special rates with certain hotels; check if your company belongs to one that does (or if they've been able to negotiate a deal!).
- Discounts for members of an organization your friend belongs to. This can go back all the way through your friends' friends' networks as well—maybe someone you know knows someone who's connected with a hotel chain? This makes me think of some kind of weird "six degrees" game where we try finding our way back through all these people until we finally find the person who can get us cheap rooms on vacation...
Ask for free upgrades and perks.
If you're looking for a discount on your next hotel stay, start by asking if there are any specials available. You can also ask if they have any upgrades or perks available to guests. Many hotels will give their loyalty members a discount on their bill, so be sure to sign up for any loyalty programs the hotel offers ahead of time.
If you're really looking to save money on your next trip, ask about deals and discounts that are offered during different times of year. Maybe there's an extended stay sale going on in January or February, but not much else going on in March—and since most vacations happen during spring break or summertime, this would be an ideal time to book!
Don't forget about points and rewards.
- Points and rewards. When you're booking a hotel, don't forget to look into loyalty programs. Many hotels have their own rewards program that allows you to earn points or miles in exchange for staying at their properties. You can use these points or miles to stay at another property in the future, or cash them out and get a discount on your next stay—either way, it's free money!
- Loyalty cards. Most credit card companies offer some sort of loyalty program where if you use their card enough times (and spend enough money), they'll give you some kind of reward—which could be as simple as discounted hotel rooms or free nights at certain properties around the world! Keep an eye out for promotions from credit card companies that help boost your savings on travel costs like this one from Chase Ultimate Rewards®
Look for secret deals.
While many hotels offer discounts and deals, you can often find secret deals that aren't advertised. Here are some tips for finding these kinds of deals:
- Look for special travel deals. Many hotel chains have websites devoted to their best travel offers, such as groupon and hoteltonight. If you're traveling with a group or family, you may be able to get a discount on the room rate or other amenities when you book all the rooms at once. For example, if there's an event in town that lots of people are going to attend—like a big concert or sporting event—you might be able to score a great deal by booking your hotel through one of these sites beforehand! Just make sure any additional charges don't outweigh whatever discount they're offering before committing yourself fully.
- Search social media platforms like Facebook or Instagram for secret deals from local businesses (such as restaurants). You could also try searching hashtags related specifically
There are plenty of ways to get a deal on your room
- Be flexible on your travel day. The best deals are often available if you're willing to travel at non-peak times—but that's not always feasible for everyone.
- Check the online travel agencies: Trivago, Hotwire, and other aggregator sites can be a way to find deals on hotel rooms across the country. You'll often find better rates than what you'd see from individual hotels as well as additional perks like free breakfast or spa vouchers.
- Check the hotel's website: Many hotels have special deals for first-time visitors or loyalty members (like Marriott Rewards or Starwood Preferred Guest). Searching directly on their websites is another way to find discounts that aren't advertised anywhere else—and it can also help you avoid booking through third-party sites since many of them charge booking fees that could make up for any savings elsewhere in your trip budget!
- Ask for free upgrades and perks: When I book my trips I usually ask about any complimentary upgrades they might offer (like an executive suite) because sometimes these are really nice and worth asking about! They don't necessarily always work but there's no harm in trying right?? Also remember that some hotels will give out welcome gifts like wine bottles if you ask nicely enough!
We’ve explored a number of ways to save money on your hotel stay, but hopefully we’ve given you some ideas that will make it easier. We know that sometimes it can feel like an uphill battle to find a good deal on hotels because there is so much competition out there and everyone wants the best price possible, but don’t give up! There are plenty of ways to get great rates on your room if you just keep trying until something works out for you.
This article is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge. Content is for informational or entertainment purposes only and does not substitute for personal counsel or professional advice in business, financial, legal, or technical matters.
© 2022 Shanon Sandquist