I recently read this article in USA Today, and was intrigued with how confusing the different rates are.  In some cases, the writer found that the hotel Web site offered the best deals, while in other cases third-party Web sites had the best deal.  Here are a few tips to getting the best rate possible on your hotel stay, whether you are looking to stay at a budget hotel, a luxury hotel, or something in between!

  • Compare, compare, compare…. look at multiple sites, and check the terms and fees!  The USA Today article found that not every fee was comparable across different sites.
  • Use every discount available to you – from AAA to company discounts, and other discount programs such as Members Hotel Network you should explore all options.
  • Check out package promotions available on hotel Web sites.  This year especially, hotels are offering packages that provide great discounts and include things like discounted lift tickets, meals, and show tickets.
  • Call the hotel directly to see if they can offer a better price than those offered by third-parties.  Since hotels often have to pay those third-parties a percentage of sales, they may be able to get you a better deal directly.  I once had a hotel lower a price to 35% of the original price once I quoted a hotels.com rate.

Good luck stretching your vacation dollars this holiday season!

Disclosure: Members Hotel Network provided me with a free membership (value $5) for purposes of reviewing their service.