The Single Best Way to Save on a Hotel Room
Originally published by Travel + Leisure
Technology is changing how we travel more every day. But even as it does, there are some things that are still best done the old-fashioned way.
For example? Getting the best deal on a hotel room.
Despite countless apps and search engines, nothing will guarantee the cheapest price on a hotel room like calling the hotel directly and asking. But before making the phone call, there are a few important things to know.
Do your research before the call. Earlier this year, airfare prediction app Hopper released an update that will also predict the best time to book a hotel room. Or, search your preferred travel search engine to find online and advertised prices for the property you're looking to book.
Once it’s time to call a hotel and confirm pricing, not just any listed phone number will do. For those booking at a chain hotel, don’t call the general 1-800 number on a hotel’s booking site. Customer service agents generally have a set script and rates which they must follow. Instead, call a location directly and speak with hotel staff.
Once you're on the phone, speaking in hotel lingo could increase your chances being taken seriously. When speaking to hotel staff, ask to confirm the “cheapest nonrefundable rate” for your stay instead of asking for the “best deal.”
After doing some research online, call the hotel with a list of nightly rates available online. Hotels often pay commissions of up to 30 percent to be included in online booking site. If negotiating a deal, mention a price 20 percent lower than what’s found online.
Even if the hotel is unable to offer a discount, staff can still guarantee that you’re paying the lowest price for your room.