Top 7 Tips for Getting the Best Rates on Hotels

Vacations can cost a lot of money, which might be discouraging to some. Still, a few tried-and-true hotel booking tricks can help you get the best price possible. With these tips, you’ll be spending less money on hotels and freeing up funds for other parts of your trip — or even the next one!

How to Get the Best Price on Your Next Hotel Stay


How to Get the Best Price for Your Next Hotel Stay


Compare Prices Online with Hotel Booking Sites

Thanks to the advent of the Internet, there are more ways than ever to compare prices directly. While you could check with each hotel’s website and compare them, you could also make use of sites such as, Kayak, Travel Ticker, or any of the countless others that will do that work for you. This way, you’ll be able to see hotels that offer similar experiences but at different price points, letting you make the most budget-conscious choice. You can search for specifics too, like a pet-friendly hotel or an indoor pool.


Call or Email the Hotel Directly

While comparison sites can offer great deals, the only real way to know that you’re getting the best deal is by contacting the hotel directly. Email will often work, but calling is a more immediate option. You can inquire if there are any special packages, deals, or discounts, and even consider mentioning the prices you’ve found for their rooms on comparison sites, in case they want to make a competing offer.


Consider Hotels that Don’t Appear on Major Search Sites

Just because a Mom & Pop hotel hasn’t invested in high search rankings, or possibly even a website, doesn’t mean they aren’t worth a look. In fact, these hotels tend to be cheaper since they’re not getting internet customers! Talk with family, friends, and locals; anyone who might be able to give you some good local hotel tips.

How to Get the Best Price on Your Next Hotel Stay


Search for Coupons Online

Coupon sites are an easy way to save money. Find one that’s applicable and reap the rewards! Groupon and LivingSocial are both great sites for finding coupons; just make sure that you read any fine print. Make sure you understand exactly what you’re purchasing and any limitations in place, such as a particular timeframe during which the coupon is valid or cancellation fees.


Don’t Forget to Check Sites like AirBnB

Airbnb and similar sites offer a huge number of listings of locally hosted homes and apartments available to rent for a time. The offerings are also wildly varied, so if you’re interested in staying somewhere other than your run-of-the-mill hotel, this is a great option. While these offerings tend to be cheaper, they often don’t come with the same commodities that a hotel stay would, and the policies of each listing are entirely up to the owners, so keep that in mind.


Visit in the Off-Season

Hotels are going to charge more when everyone wants to visit them; it’s just good business sense! Save yourself some money by traveling during the off-season. These rewards extend beyond just hotel prices; flights will often cost less in the off-season. You can count on mid-fall and mid-spring to be off-season as most people are busy with work or school and not taking much time off.


Look for Packages

Travel packages are liable to be very specific and may or may not fit your exact needs, but if you find one that’s workable, these packages tend to come with a sizable discount for bundling everything together! Try looking through tour sites for your particular area. Sometimes big destinations will have bundles that offer attractions, food, and lodging together.



Christy Woodrow is a travel photographer and professional blogger based in San Diego. She has been traveling around the world with her partner in crime, Scott, since 2006. Join them in their quest to find off-the-beaten-path destinations by signing up for weekly emails and following her on .

  • I like your comment about calling then hotel direct. I used to always book through online deal sites (like, but started to find I could get the same price by booking through the hotel. Then I would also get better cancelation policies and hotel rewards points. Now I use online sites to narrow down to my hotel of choice based on price and reviews, but then call the hotel to actually make the reservation.

  • Interesting tips, I usually find my hotel fares using few popular booking sites. I am going to apply these tips for my next trip planning and thanks for sharing.