Whether it’s a weekend away with a loved one or a tropical vacation with the family, hotels provide a home away from home for travellers to kick back and relax after a busy day exploring. Last year alone 88 percent of the nation took a holiday according to ABTA, and with that came plenty of hotel stays.
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While there are plenty of budget options to chose from these days, there are times when a little extra opulence goes a long way, but with that often comes an added price tag.
However, one hotel insider revealed to Express.co.uk that there are some savvy tips you can use to bag a bargain when booking your stay – though they may not be what you initially think.
From days of the week to payment methods, Pav Klair, Spa Relations Expert at SpaSeekers explains that there are some handy tricks holidaymakers often miss when planning their stay.
Be flexible about bookings
Some stays are more expensive than others, and this can often be determined by the days of the week you are choosing to stay in the hotel.
While some dates are simply unavoidable, if your plans are malleable, it could reduce costs.
“Feeling spontaneous? It pays to be flexible in terms of when you book your stay,” explains Pav.
“At SpaSeekers we release exclusive discount codes in the run up to special occasions such as Valentine’s Day, Mother’s Day and Christmas, and these are an easy way of saving some money on an impromptu last-minute getaway.”
Avoid certain days of the week
Similarly, there are certain days of the week which are worth avoiding if you’re looking to limit costs.
“It goes without saying that Friday and Saturday nights are usually our most expensive, so wherever you can try and stay mid-week,” advised Pav.
“The prices will be better, the facilities will be less busy and your stay will be overall more relaxing.”
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Don’t always trust price comparison sites
Though price comparison websites boast the ability to find the cheapest price for your chosen dates, it turns out this could be a case of smoke and mirrors.
Experts from MoneySavingExpert.com ran an investigation to determine whether popular hotel comparison website really could save traveller’s money, and they were shocked by what they found.
From their research, the experts concluded that these websites “sometimes show a price on their initial search results page that is LESS than what you’ll actually have to pay once taxes and resort fees are factored in.”
Guy Anker, Deputy Editor of MoneySavingExpert.com, commented: “Our investigation shows that ridiculously you simply can’t always trust the first figure you’re shown.
“It’s confusing for customers and makes doing a meaningful price comparison very hard.
“And as a result, many travellers may end up paying much more than they need to because they struggle to find the cheapest deal.
“This doesn’t mean you shouldn’t use these hotel brokers and comparison sites when booking a room – they may still work out cheapest overall and can narrow down the search for you. But it’s worth an extra click to be sure.”
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Be cautious about your payment method
Hotels often offer a variety of ways guests can pay for their room.
“The way and time you pay for your stay can have an effect on the amount you pay for a room,” says Pav.
The most common method is paying upfront, however, some hotels also allow guests to reserve the room and pay later. While the latter option can seem like a financial relief, especially if you have already pulled out a huge chunk in advance for flights or travel, however, it isn’t necessarily the most cost-effective option.
Pav explains: “Package rates are designed to appeal to a larger audience especially the pay in advance rates, as hotels are under more pressure on the day to fill, it helps them if they have a better indication of numbers for planning room allocations, housekeeping and numbers to cater for in restaurants.
“So, the biggest discount available on a room usually comes with a ‘pay in advance’ method.
“The next option is a ‘reserve now pay later’ rates which cost slightly more.”
Travellers who opt to pay at booking could reduce cost further down the line, meaning more spending money or extra pennies for the savings pot.
Consider opting for a breakfast included room
Many hotels offer the option of a room and breakfast included, though this is at a slightly increased rate.
Surprisingly, though, this could end up being a highly cost effective option.
Pav explains: “Room only options will always seem the cheapest but in terms of value for money the most expensive especially if you later choose to bolt on a breakfast and dinner.”
Guests feeling the effects of a rumbling tummy on in the morning could end up forking out more if they try to avoid breakfast when booking.
Pav continues: “Always book ahead. Prices can be as high as double the advance rate if you make a last minute decision.
“We’d advise to plan ahead and book on, or if not, ask the reception at your hotel to advise you of the best places to grab a bite to eat in the local area – they’re experts, so use them!
“It’s much cheaper to pay for a package that includes Dinner, Bed and Breakfast in advance as a last minute decision may result in a ‘if your name’s not on the list you are not coming in’ scenario as the restaurant may be fully booked – a bit of a nightmare if your hotel is out in the sticks, then your sleeping on an empty stomach or making do with a sandwich via room service.
“Not very romantic if your partner is with you!”
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