Hotel Booking 101: Tips to securing the best hotel rooms

May 16, 2017

With so many hotel options, third-party booking sites and travel resources (both online and offline) out there, sifting through the overwhelming amount of information quickly becomes both migraine-inducing and time-consuming. And while there may not be a one-size-fits-all approach to finding the best hotel room, there are definitely some industry tips and expert tricks that can help in ensuring that whenever you book a hotel room, you’re guaranteed the best deal possible.

Do your research

Though tempting it may be simply to accept the first attractive offer you find, it’s always worth your while (and your wallet) to do your research. “When it comes to booking travels, and especially booking hotel stays, there’s still no substitute for extensive research,” says Jonathan Lechtman, owner and managing director of Travel Republic Africa, a bespoke luxury tour operator that specialises in travel in and around the African continent.

The travel and tourism expert further adds that “you don’t need to necessarily spend hours online trying to find the best deal out there; consulting with an established and reputable travel professional or company can do the same trick, and further provides access to insider information and industry portals and resources that you may not otherwise ever encounter.”

SEE ALSO: 15 essential travel tips and tricks to live by

Compare, compare, compare

It pays to compare. Though you may have your heart set on staying in a given hotel that you’ve seen promoted on Facebook, by merely going ahead and booking a stay without comparing other options in your chosen destination may leave you missing out on not only a great deal but also on a potentially unforgettable novel experience.

Because of the extremely competitive nature of the industry, hotels have to go the extra mile to distinguish themselves from their competitors, both in terms of their rates and their overall offerings. This means that comparing a variety of lodging options – from large international hotel groups to independent boutique inns – will give you a far better understanding of what’s available, and at what cost. Thanks to the Internet, it’s literally never been easier (or quicker) to access a myriad of quotes from a variety of different hotels in a single location.

Timing is crucial

“Many people outside of the industry aren’t fully aware that the time of year you book your hotel room can actually have a drastic effect on the final rate you receive,” says Lechtman. In order to secure the best deal, it is, therefore, advisable not only to check different hotel options, but also to be open to altering your travel dates, should the rates be a primary concern for you.

“It’s obviously understood that it’s generally cheaper to travel during off-peak seasons,” adds the Travel Republic Africa director. “But there can also often be extenuating circumstances, such as a major festival or event, that mean pushing your travel dates out by even a few days can result in major savings.”

SEE ALSO: Travel tips: How to sleep better in a hotel room