Everyone is entitled to their moments of snobbery and pickiness, and some of us choose to use those moments in regards to booking hotels. It’s not a big deal to everyone, but it’s a big deal to millions of travelers. If you’re staying away from the comforts of your own home – and paying to do that – you want to stay somewhere just as nice, if not nicer, than your home. That’s just the way it is for some people, and that means hotel pickiness and snobbery will commence.
For some, choosing a location in which you can park outside your room and access your room from the parking lot is a no-no. If it doesn’t have valet, room service, a spa, a resort-style pool and a concierge willing to help with any and everything, it’s not worth it (for some, not all; we know some people just don’t care). If you’re one of those people who refuse to stay anywhere that’s not as high-end as possible when you travel, you’re going to love knowing that you can book gorgeous rooms for park-outside-your-room prices and lack nothing on your next vacation.
Additionally, if you’re someone who is certain that you can’t afford a nice hotel room when you travel, think again. You can, and we can tell you how you can book cheap rooms at hotels and resorts that are anything but cheap and low-rent.
Bid on Your Rooms
It’s scary to pay for a room at a hotel you can’t personally choose, but we have you covered. When you choose to bid on a room on a site such as Priceline, you get to choose the kind of hotel in which you want to stay, which does eliminate the need to worry. For example, if you want to stay at a four-star resort, you get to choose to bid on rooms that are located only in four-star resorts – and you even get to choose the neighborhood you want so that you only bid on rooms in that area. If you want five-star rooms, choose that selection to narrow the hotels on which you’re bidding.
You might not know what you’re getting, whether it’s going to be the Four Seasons, the Ritz or even the Peninsula, but you will know that whatever your bid, you’ll end up with one of those. And you can save approximately 60% on those rooms, making them cheaper than you ever thought possible.
Ask for an Upgrade
You know you can get cheap hotels by asking for an upgrade, right? Here’s how it works; you can pay the regular price for the room you want to book at the hotel you want to book, and then ask for an upgrade that makes your room seem cheap compared to the price that it would be. For example, you can pay the regular rate and then show up asking for an upgrade. The key, however, is to negotiate for the upgrade so you’re not paying for it.
Ask a manager if they have any upgrades available and then ask if you can have one because it’s a special occasion. This usually works. If you check in directly at check-in time, you might get an upgrade because your room is not yet available and the hotel has no choice but to upgrade you at no cost to a nicer room. Call ahead and ask if you can get a room with a better view, a nicer size or whatever other upgrades you want. You don’t have to pay for these things, and it makes the regular price of the hotel you’re already paying seem so much less expensive.
Booking hotels with rewards points makes them really cheap. You can use your hotel reward points, your airline reward points or your credit card rewards points to make this possible. For example, if you have free nights because you stayed a certain number of nights this year on your reward program at a hotel, use them. It’s cheap and you get all kinds of perks, such as free coffee and other amenities when you stay.
Another great way to use your rewards is to combine them to drop the price a bit. You might not have enough points for a long stay, but you might have enough for one or two nights of your trip. Use them anyway and then pay the regular rate the rest of the nights. It makes the average nightly rate you’re paying seem very cheap in comparison.
Forget the Details
Cheap hotels and the Four Seasons do not go together often in one sentence, and sometimes it pays to remember that. For example, you must remember that in order to stay in certain hotels at a price you can afford, you might have to forgo a few amenities. For example, perhaps you’re headed to Hawaii and you want to stay at the Four Seasons, but you can’t afford to spend $1000 a night on a room that overlooks the ocean. Instead, don’t go looking for a cheaper hotel with a view. Just pay the $400 a night it costs to look out your window over the parking lot. Sure, it’s less romantic and it’s not quite what you wanted when you went to Hawaii.
But you know you’re getting a gorgeous room, perfectly wonderful extras included with a hotel of this nature, and you’re going to enjoy your vacation. How often do you stare out the room in your hotel rather than actually heading outside to enjoy the view in person, anyway?
Furthermore, you might just get lucky enough to score a free upgrade when you check in, and that makes you the winner. If you’re planning on traveling during the off-season, we highly recommend you book the cheapest room at a luxe hotel and then ask for a free upgrade. It’s pretty likely you’ll get it, and you’ll have the ability to be the person who paid $400 for a parking lot view and ended up with a balcony over the ocean. That makes you way cooler than the guy who spent $1000 for a balcony over the ocean.