I've got it done though, so I thought today I would share some tips with you for getting hotels booked. It doesn't sound like a hard thing to do, but believe me there's plenty of places you can go wrong. I know because I've gone wrong at almost every place possible, and even a few where it was impossible. So in the spirit of helping you avoid screwing things up to the level I'm capable of, here are my tips for getting your hotel booked:
#1 - Book the hotel in the city you're headed to.Times Square for $79. Nobody ever asks if you're actually going to New York when you tell them about the deal you got, they just congratulate you on your find.
#2 - Book refundable ratesThis is especially important if you're going to book hotels in cities that you're not going to. I am very much a "grass is always greener" kind of guy, and I'm sure that the next great hotel deal will show up in my e-mail the second I book a non-refundable rate. It's gotten to the point where Lori won't even ask which hotel we're staying in until the day before because she knows it might still change. I'm not actually that bad, although I will confess to downloading the Hotel Tonight app on my phone, and some of those "tonight only" deals look pretty good.
#3 - Look for promotionsRadisson Big Night promotion where if you stay one night in a Radisson hotel (avg. price in Florida of about $100) they give you enough points for a free night anywhere else in the world (avg. price in Paris of about €350) and they have three brands you can do this with. Fortunately the Radissons in Florida are fairly nice, but I'm pretty sure I could convince Lori to stay just about anywhere if it meant a free night in Paris. Of course, I have no trip to Paris planned, and we'll probably end up using the points somewhere else, but let's keep that between us. Besides, it's possible that one day I'll be looking for a flight to Portland and I'll find a great deal to Paris. Might as well have the points ready just in case.
#4 - Have a budget in mind
#5 - Consider the amenitiesoff to university. When that happens, I'll be left at home with Lori explaining why ten years ago I booked the hotel with the lazy river instead of the one next to the Disney Character Warehouse. I don't need that kind of grief in my golden years.
This post is a part of Travel Tips Tuesday at Suitcases and Sippycups and Walkingon Travels. If you didn't get here from there, you should go check it out. There's people there who can give you some actual tips on how to book hotels when traveling. Although when they tell you they spent a week at that all-inclusive resort, make sure they don't mean in their van.