HOW TO BOOK ACCOMMODATION AND SAVE
If you are like me, you will agree how hard it is to find a great hotel, in the right location for the right price. I sometimes find I waste too much time searching for the right accommodation that ticks all my requirements.
These are some of my go-to tricks of the trade, hope you find it useful, and it helps you find accommodation with ease.
(1) Cheapest Rate or Best Savings is when you travel offseason (avoid going in high season). Each Country/ City/ town has its busy tourist season, and if you avoid that, you are bound to get reasonable rates. Free upgrade, early check-in, late check out, etc. The other valuable insight in picking a hotel is to research for a hotel which is not part of a big chain or big company like Hilton.
Seach all different sights in one place to get the best deal.
(2) Location, Location, Location – this is critical. I would rather pay a little more and stay in the center of the city, town or where all the action is than spend extra money to cab or risk-taking public transport late at night. As a solo traveler been in the middle of all the action makes your stay more enjoyable and accessible.
(3) If you are visiting a big city like London, Paris, New York, etc. or busy town avoid staying on Friday and Saturday nights. These days are usually more expensive. My go-to is Sunday and Monday nights for big cities and try for an early check-in on Sunday so you can enjoy the whole day in the city.
(4) Stay longer in one place. One night usually costs too much. Two nights or more gets you a better deal. I recommend, apartment style accommodation for a more extended stay. Having cooking and laundry facilities helps with savings.
(5) When choosing to stay in a hotel, make sure you check out the dining and laundry options. Sometimes cafes and restaurants are too far to walk, or they are not open extended hours. When your body clock is on a different timetable, finding somewhere to eat when you are hungry can be very expensive.
Book with Booking com, they offer the biggest selection of properties that offer free cancellation, option to pay at check-in and accommodate other requirements you might need for your accommodation
(6) Check the details of hotel facilities and cancellation. Alway pick hotels which offer free cancellation, and if you haven’t then make sure your travel insurance includes hotel cancellation fees. Cheap accommodation can have expensive internet, car parking and in some cases extra cost for linen hire, etc. Also, Cheap accommodation can also mean lowering your standards to 3 or 2 stars in some case. Just keep that in mind. So you do not get disappointed.
(7) I always pick accommodation that offers 24-hour reception. Flights get delayed, unseen and the unknown happens all the time. There is nothing worse than traveling for hours, getting to your accommodation and the Reception is closed for the day. My first trip to Barcelona. My flight got delayed, the airport shuttle that was supposed to pick me left without me. I made my way from the airport to the hotel in a country using my broken Spanish. After been on a flight for 26 hours and spending two hours to get to the hotel, I was not happy to find the reception closed.
(8) The inside track for searching for accommodation online, turn off your cookies and delete your history. Websites store your search information, which means when you search the cookie starts giving information to all the accommodation providers.
(9) After you have booked your hotel, always email or call the hotel to confirm your dates, your arrival time and your contact details. Ask for any other information you need to know example, the reception hours, free upgrade or early check-in or late check out. etc
(10) When is the best time to book your accommodation? There is a lot of debate on this topic. In my experience, if you are using hotels who’s market is business customers, then last minute. If you are using hotels who’s market is holidaymakers or family, then I suggest as early as possible. If you are visiting a big city, then I recommend use hotels, you are a member of rewards like Accor Hotels rewards programmes.
#Travelquote: “Investment in travel is an investment in yourself.” ~ Matthew Karsten
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