Today Show: Hotel Secrets – Free Perks & Deep Discounts
Nilou Motamed, features director of Travel+Leisure magazine, had several pointers for viewers looking for cheaper travel. From which travel websites to go to, to when to book a hotel in New York City, to how to use Twitter to get a discount, she let travelers in on some of the best ways to navigate the world of hotel shopping.
Today Show: Orbitz Bundling
First, she suggested that people look to package deals, instead of booking hotels and flights separately. Nilou found that sites like Orbitz, Expedia, and Trevelocity all helped save as much as 20 percent on their bookings. In fact, Orbitz did their own research and it showed that year over year, people who used their service got an average of $500 back from bundling.
Today Show: Cheaper Travel Website Reviews
Second, with there being so many websites out there to help people find deals on travel, it can be hard to find the best ones. Motamed had several to suggest.
Travel Websites – Deal Angel Review
First up was Deal Angel. It not only aggregates deals from all over the internet – it shows a history of past prices for the hotels you are looking at.
Travel Websites – Tingo Review
Tingo, the second site she suggested, will refund the difference for any hotel price that goes down after you book your stay, removing the need to constantly monitor prices.
Travel Websites – Room77 Review
Finally, there was Room77, a website that pretty much does all the work for you. It pulls prices from over 200,000 hotels, shows you the prices, and gets in touch to provide the hotels with your preferences.
Today Show: Twitter Hotel Deals
Third, Nilou suggested that travelers go to social media to make yourself known to the hotels. Follow hotels on Twitter to watch for deals and tweet at them if you don’t see any – maybe they will let you in on one. Starwood Hotels (@StarwoodBuzz), for example, has a “Travel Tuesday” deal every week.
Today Show: Hotel Loyalty Rewards Benefits
Another suggestion from Nilou was loyalty. If you have a hotel that you prefer, stick with them. You will reap the benefits.
Today Show: Economy Hotels With Free Wi-Fi
Tip number five was to go for the economy hotels. With luxury hotels sticking you for a lot of extras like Wi-Fi, costs can sometimes add up pretty quick. 84 percent of high-end hotels charge you for Wi-Fi to the tune of $20-$25 a day. With economy hotels, that number plummets to eight percent. Not only do you get a less expensive hotel, you don’t get hit with a multitude of extra charges.
Today Show: Cheapest Times To Book Hotels in New York City
Finally, Nilou stressed that timing is everything – look for the best month of the year to book hotels in cities you like to travel to. New York City, for example, has lower hotel rates in July and August. Also, if you are looking to get an upgrade, check into the hotel later in the afternoon. By the end of the day, the hotel has a better inventory of what they have available and will be able to notify you of any openings.
Oh yeah–it doesn’t hurt to be nice to the person checking you in, either. They have a lot of power, if you know what I mean.