People ask me how I travel as often as I do, and the answer is simple. I don’t go all out for luxury when I travel, and I try to be flexible with the time that I can go.
Some of these tips you may already know, but hopefully some of them will help you out!
1. If it’s at all possible, book your hotel stay during the week. In many cases you’ll find that hotels will discount a week night by almost half!
2. Try to book during the off season. When there are crowds in an area, you will pay more because there are less rooms available, and the hotels know that they will most likely sell out. If you can book in the off season you will save more per night.
3. If a hotel has a rewards program, join it! It’s free, and you rack up points, just like a store loyalty card, which will give you discounts, or even free nights! Many of the hotel chains own several brands, so the discounts are carried to all of their hotels.
4. The longer you can stay the lower your per night rate will be. ( In some cases.)
5. If you are a AAA member you can often times get at least a 10% discount. Many other programs are often discounted, as are military and service personnel. It doesn’t hurt to ask!
6. Join email newsletters, such as www.Airfarewatchdog.com, www.TripAdvisor.com, www.groupon.com, www.livingsocial.com, www.travelzoo.com or even the hotel of your choice. When they have sales or deep discounts you will be notified right away, and can take advantage of the deals.
7. Being flexible with your area helps too. If you want to stay in a big city, try looking for hotels that are on the border of the city and cut costs. If you are planning a beach vacation, stay during the week, and head somewhere else less expensive for the weekend.
8. Save by booking on travel discount sites: www.hotwire.com, www.hotels.com, www.priceline.com, www.expedia.com, www.kyak.com and countless others. Make sure you check all the discount sites before booking, and if you find a hotel that you like, check their actual website to see if the price is cheaper. Sometimes it is, and most times it is not. I have actually walked into a hotel upon arriving and asked them their rates. When they told me something outrageous, I already knew the discount site was cheaper, so I told her I’d be right back. I went to my car and booked the room on the discount site. Not only did I get a much cheaper rate, I also got a suite with a hot tub in the room!!!
9. Skip the hotel and opt for AirBnB instead! If you have never used the site, you are in for a treat. Airbnb is a site where homeowners rent out their spaces to you. You can choose if you’d like a room, or your own private home or apartment. I’ve found that this site is much more personalized than a hotel and the hosts are typically very awesome as well. I love this site so much I’m going to write a post all about my experiences. For now, to check it out for yourself, use my link and we could both earn some travel money… which is why we’re all here right??? Airbnb will credit both of our accounts with a $35 credit for future travel, when you sign up for your first trip. http://www.airbnb.com/c/bfontaine48
10. My all time favorite and most awesome money saving tip is an easy one. This is where the flexibility comes in… If you can wait until the day of your trip, try the Priceline negotiator. I have landed rooms in Hilton hotels for under $50 per night, on a weekend. Now, the only thing with the negotiator is that you MUST have absolute flexibility. You will not know what the hotel is where you are staying, but you name your own price and star level. Once you enter the info, if your bid is accepted, you will get the details of where you are staying, and the name. Before you put in your bid, you can see the basic details of what will be in the hotel. I have won several hotels and ended up with suites doing this on the day of my stay. Now, with that being said, this option doesn’t always work in your favor. If it’s peak season, and you try booking a room on the day of arrival, you will pay ALOT, and the negotiator will not work. Follow the tips above in conjunction with this and you are good to go.
Happy Travels!!! Let me know where you end up with the best deals using these tips!!! 😀