Booking a hotel can be a tricky experience, especially if you are not familiar with the area you will be staying in. You could also end paying a lot more than you intended to, thanks to hidden fees. So here are some tips to help you find the perfect hotel at a price that is right for you.
To keep your drinking water clean in a hotel room, rinse out your drinking glasses, even if there is a paper cover or a plastic wrapping around it. Dust and debris from the plastic can settle in the glass, leading to an unpleasant first sip. Taking the time to rinse it out will make your experience better.
When traveling with a pet, your choices of hotels will be limited. Once you find a hotel that is pet friendly, find out what the policies are with regard to pets. Most hotels charge an extra fee for pets, and they may have designated areas in which to walk your pet. Be sure you know the particulars ahead of time to avoid potential problems later.
One way to save money when traveling is to search for a hotel that offers a free continental breakfast. This can save you a lot of money if you are staying for a week. Many of the top hotel chains offer large continental breakfasts consisting of breakfast meats, pastries and drinks.
Read the reviews before choosing hotels that look less than top notch. Sure there are lots of hotels that don’t look like the Four Seasons, and there are many that are plenty clean to stay in. There are others though that can be very dirty inside. Reading reviews can help you steer clear of the poorer lot of hotels out there.
When traveling with children, be sure the hotels you choose offer features the kids will enjoy. A playground on site is very helpful. A pool with plenty of shallow area and/or a kiddie pool will provide great play time. Also check to see if the hotel you are interested in offers a child care service.
Visit several online travel websites and compare hotel room prices. These online travel websites do not always offer the same price for hotel rooms at a specific location. By choosing two or three different online travel websites, you can assure you are getting the best deal possible. Also, booking close to your travel date will usually net you a better price.
When traveling with small children, try to choose a hotel that caters to them. Most hotels offer cribs. Some have playgrounds and/or pools to help keep your kids entertained. Some even offer or children’s programs during the day or babysitters at night. Many hotels do not charge extra for children under a certain age to stay in the same room with their parents.
If you don’t have your heart set on a certain hotel, try using a website like Hotels.com. These types of sites let you put in bids and then return a list of hotels in your price range. The only drawback is that they may not reveal which hotel you have booked until after you have committed to staying there.
Sign on to Facebook and find the page of the hotel you are staying at. Write a little message on their page, and see if the staff responds. You never know, they may offer you a special perk! If nothing else, keep up with what is happening on the page in case any specials are announced.
There are websites available that offer you an instant discount if the hotel you have booked decreases in price before your stay. You may end up with a good amount of money back in your pocket. The best thing about this type of site is that the opposite does not apply. If the rates increase, you will only have to pay the amount you were originally quoted.
Stay safe and secure in a hotel. Travelers to hotels are often robbed even when they are inside the room. Use every lock the hotel provides, including the handle lock, chain and deadbolt. Hotels are a magnet for shady characters looking to exploit people who are traveling with a lot of money and valuables.
If you plan to use the telephone provided in your hotel room, know what to expect as far as charges. Some hotels offer free local calls, but others charge for each call. In addition to any long distance charges, the hotel usually adds an extra fee. Use your cell phone to make calls from your hotel room when possible.
Never ask for the minibar to be removed from your hotel room. You may think this is a great way to ensure that you don’t partake of the minibar; however, most hotels charge for this service. Instead, if you may be tempted to drink alcoholic beverages, purchase your favorite beverage at a package store.
Save money by using the hotel restaurant instead of ordering room service. It is fast becoming common practice for hotels to add service charges to food ordered in the room. These fees can add as much as 20% to the bill. Just use the restaurant. You need to get out of that stuffy room anyway.
It is often a good idea to book rooms with brand new hotels, just open for business. Newer establishments are often eager to please their customers. Their first customers are the ones who will spread good word of mouth about the hotel. Savvy travelers realize this and stay at newer places.
When you have are trying to decide between two hotels, go online and see what the reviews say. Look for reviews that ring true and give actual descriptions of what was good or bad about the hotel. The reviews may also include realistic pictures of the hotel that won’t be featured on the picture perfect hotel website.
As you already know, finding the perfect hotel can take a bit of planning and research. But you will find that using the tips above will make it so much easier and can save you a significant amount of money. So keep these tips in mind and start planning your next hotel stay.