Traveling is an adventure and it is a way to see the world, but it can be expensive. Whether you are travelling for work or leisure, a budget is an important part of ensuring that you don’t break the bank.
Accommodation is the largest expense of any trip and it can easily make a vacation go over budget. This is why it is important to know where to find the best deals for hotels.
Finding a hotel that fits your needs and goals is important, but it is also worth making some compromises to get the best value for your money. There are several factors that will determine what type of accommodation you can stay in, including your travel style, location, and budget.
A good place to start looking for hotels in a particular city or destination is to check out travel websites that specialize in hotels and other forms of accommodation, like bed-and-breakfasts and Airbnb (entire property rentals). Some travel agents have special offers with specific properties and can be helpful for booking hotel rooms as well as other forms of accommodation.
Another great way to find cheap hotel rates is to contact a property directly by telephone rather than through a chain’s main toll-free phone line. This will give you the opportunity to negotiate discounts and ask about any specials or promotions that are available.
If you are a government employee, you may be entitled to government rates at many hotels. These are usually lower than normal corporate rates. Likewise, if you are a member of a union or association, you could be eligible for hotel discounts.
Some hotels will offer discounts to travelers who book a certain number of nights at the same time, or who pay by cash rather than credit card. The same goes for points collectors, or if you are a member of AARP or AAA.
Be sure to review the cancellation policy for each accommodation you choose. This will ensure you are protected if you are not able to keep your room or want to change your dates.
Getting an early bird rate can be a good way to save money on hotel stays, especially for business travelers. Some travel apps, such as Hopper, even alert you when fares go up or down so that you can lock in these deals before they are gone forever.
Avoid paying for dinner at a hotel, as this can add up quickly when traveling abroad and in some countries is not required.
For business travelers, it may be more cost-effective to use a hotel or B&B that is closer to the office than a hotel in the same neighborhood. You can also get a discount by booking at the same time as you are flying to your destination.
Some travelers like to stay in smaller and more intimate lodgings. Often these are more affordable than big hotels and can be found in many neighborhoods of major cities. They may not have the same amenities, but they can be a great way to get away from it all and enjoy the local culture without spending too much money on the experience.