How To Save Money While Booking A Good Hotel
Booking that ideal place of stay during a vacation is by no means an easy task. With so many hotels mushrooming up everyday, it is almost impossible to find out the best one, with the perfect deal and ideal location. A place of stay can also make or break your vacation. Getting a bad deal or not finding a good place to stay is arguably the worst because you not only have to live there but also you get to know there are better deals in the vicinity just staring at you.
To avoid these situations, NomadLawyer is putting forth some tips which may help you booking your ideal place of stay
Read Before Booking
To book a hotel room with the best chance of satisfying your wallet and your needs, you’ll spend almost all of your time searching for the right place. To maximize these efforts you should take advantage of internet travel sites, consumer reviews, and travel agents.
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Most hotel bookings are now done online. It allows us to identify the best deals and also compare prices. Some recommended websites are Booking.com, Agoda.comExpedia.com, Expedia.com
Be sure to shop around sites for the best deal and don’t forget to visit the hotel website itself. Individual hotel websites often have deals that don’t appear on commercial sites. Also, reviews on Googlerviews.com, TripAdvisor and many blog posts also help.
Before proceeding with any booking online please make sure to read the cancellation policy. Nowadays, most of the hotels have stopped charging exorbitant cancellation charges. Sometimes calling directly to the hotel also helps.
Read the Reviews:
Reviews can act as a guide and as an eye opener. Check out consumer review sites like TripAdvisor.com, which gathers and aggregates reviews of hotels by former patrons. TripAdvisor.com is a good resource because it organizes reviews by the type of stay (e.g., couples, business trip, young travelers, etc.) so that you can search for people most like yourself and see what they had to say about the hotel. Often, the reviews will speak to whatever attributes you’re looking for in a hotel and you can make better decisions based upon them.
Get the best deal and don’t fall for any malafide ads:
If a deal seems substantially lower than surrounding hotels, check to make sure the hotel isn’t being renovated or there’s not another reason for the low price (e.g., it’s in a high crime area or is very old and run down).
Look up the location:
If you have a target geographic area, punch in the address into Google maps. You can zoom in to see exactly where it is as well as the surrounding area (the map will tell you surrounding stores, restaurants, etc.), and you can take advantage of Google’s street view feature to see exactly what your hotel and surrounding area look like.
Once you’ve targeted a hotel or whittled your list to several hotels, be sure to call them and ask about your needs or concerns. For example, if you want to make a lot of phone calls, you’ll want to ask if they have free local calling and how much they charge for long distance calls. Or you want to know how big the pool is and whether they have a lifeguard on duty. Whatever your concerns, ask the concierge on the phone so you can book with confidence.
Contact a travel agent for exotic or remote destinations:
If your trip involves a more exotic or remote location, you should probably consult a travel agent who knows the area, the culture, and the businesses in the area. Travel agents can be very useful in avoiding the pitfalls that come with booking exotic travel online.
Booking and Arrival:
Once you’re ready to book a hotel room, there are still a few more questions that you should confirm before committing and certain actions you should take to preemptively avoid hassles and headaches upon arrival.
- Check for these before. Before committing to book your room, find out:
- The amount of the deposit.
- The cutoff date for cancelling your reservation will incur a penalty (for most hotels it is 24-48 hours before arrival, or else you will be charged the first night’s stay on your credit card).
- Any discounts the hotel offers (senior discount, government discount, military, etc.)
- Check-in and check-out times. If you’re going to be checking in very late, be sure to inform them so they don’t give your room to another patron. Hotels have a custom of overbooking rooms, and have been known to bump very late arriving guests.
- If they charge any extra fees for your stay (resort fee, parking, etc.)
- Request the type of room. When you make the reservation, be sure to request the type of room you want. For example, if noise is an issue, you’ll want to be placed away from elevators, ice machines, and in a room not facing the street. If it’s a resort and they have a nightclub at the pool, you’ll want to be on a side not facing the pool. Whatever your needs, communicate them clearly to the concierge.
- Book with a credit card. Book your hotel with a credit card rather than a debit card. Credit cards offer consumers far more protection in the event of fraud. If there is a fraudulent transaction, you’ll only be booked for a specific fee and the credit card will fight the wrongdoer on your behalf. With a debit card, however, you will likely have to fight the entire charge on your own.
- Confirm the reservation. Call the hotel a few weeks before your stay to confirm they have your reservation and to confirm they have your special requests (e.g., smoke free room, beach facing etc etc.
- Get it in writing. Ask for written confirmation for all reservations. Almost all hotels will send you an email confirmation of your reservation or will fax you confirmation if you don’t have email access. Be sure to bring a copy of your reservation when checking in, just in case the hotel loses you in their system.
Hope this blog helps in booking your next hotel and if you have any query do write to us [email protected]