Hotel Hacks To Save Money – Top Tips For A Cheaper Stay

Staying in a hotel can be the most rewarding experience – you don’t need to cook, clean up, make the bed, worry about the cost of heating or electricity, and you are actively encouraged to leave the bathroom towels on the floor when you leave! A hotel stay can give you a sense of childlike glee, a very adult appreciation of luxury, and a desire to stretch the benefits out for as long as you can, because reality (and the day job) will come crashing in all too soon! 

Those are the benefits, but what about the cost? That’s what we’re here for, with some handy tips for cutting costs on that well-deserved break, from the moment you’re set to click that “book” button! Read on!

Source: Pintrest

How To Save Money When You Book

Loyalty Status

Join a brand hotel’s loyalty program to get future discounts on your stays, and stick with one travel site to qualify for loyalty rewards and greater discounts. As an example, offers a three-stage “genius” loyalty status, with increasing discounts based on how often you book through them. Plus, the majority of hotels on offer free cancellation and don’t ask for upfront payment.

Source: ddi-dev

Mobile App Discounts

Use the mobile app instead of desktop to potentially save more than 10% on hotel bookings. Mobile bookings often come with exclusive discounts- another fact which applies to just look for the green badge stating its a  “mobile-only price” for savings of 22% or more compared to desktop booking!

Book Refundable Stays

If you’ve found something you like but you’re not 100% happy with it (or you have a feeling prices might be about to go up), book it and keep shopping. You’ll either find exactly what you’re looking for (or better) and you can cancel your first option for free, or you won’t but your first booking will be secure and you can make a great holiday out of your first stay option!

Source: affordablecorporatesuites

Cashback Sites

Use cashback sites like TopCashback and Quidco to earn money back on hotel bookings- the more expensive your stay is (pricier rooms or longer visits), the more valuable this advice will be for you! Search for the website you want to book through (say or on the cashback affiliate site, follow the link, and book the hotel. How much money you get (which you’ll receive after your stay) depends on the time of year and the offer. There’s no catch – the incentive for these companies is to reach a broader user base with these cashback platforms; it’s for us to reap the benefits! 

We recommend you always compare the cost of booking directly vs booking through a cashback site before you click confirm, just to be sure you’re getting the best deal!

Join Comparison Sites Reward Programs

Many hotel comparison sites offer reward programs which give you discounts or free nights. Being a part of these programs can lead to significant savings, especially if you’re a frequent traveler.

Source: stayhotels

Be Flexible With Dates

If you can, opt for mid-week stays during off-peak periods to avoid premium weekend rates or that pesky “two-night minimum” thing. Flexibility on dates may get you discounted prices or even some additional perks, like free dinner! In the same vein, stay in business hotels during weekends when business activities are typically lower. Business hotels often reduce their rates on weekends, as most business-related stays occur from Monday to Friday. In particular, this strategy will help you take advantage of lower rates during weekend trips to larger cities.

Prepay For Your Stay

Prepaid hotel rates, although nonrefundable, can offer significant cost savings for those whose plans are fixed and who are unafraid of last-minute changes (or those who have “Cancel for Any Reason” travel insurance)! You lose flexibility but prepaid rates can well reduce the overall cost of a hotel stay.

Source: themotleyfool

Look For Last-Minute Deals

If you get a sudden hankering for a night or two away, or your plans open up, last-minute deals on same-day travel can be a god-send. Websites like can be useful for finding such deals – hotels would rather fill a room for the night than have it go empty, so feel free to take advantage!

Ask For Hotel Vouchers As Gifts

Ask friends and family to give you a hotel voucher as a gift on your next birthday or for Christmas. Who needs more luxury soap when you can have a “free” luxury bath in a hotel instead?!

Source: andermax

Book During Sale Periods

Take advantage of hotel sales around Black Friday, on Travel Deal Tuesday (November 28), and at the beginning of the year, to get discounts or additional nights at no extra cost.

Secret Deals Websites

Explore websites like Secret Escapes for big discounts on stays at luxury hotels, ideal for those with a flexible itinerary. These sites often feature exclusive deals for members, and it’s free to join.

Source: affordablecorporatesuites

Direct Booking Negotiation

Message the hotel or Airbnb directly to inquire about direct bookings, or give the hotel’s sales department a call. They might have a better deal for you if you’re willing to book direct with them rather than through intermediaries (saving them the platform fees). Of course, you have to be smart about it – evaluate the risks, and either contact them off-platform, or choose your words carefully if you’re chatting through Airbnb (they can block messages if they think you’re trying to book outside the platform!). 

An alternative is to look on the property’s website directly (if it has one), and compare rates with the booking platforms’ offers. If it’s cheaper- book direct!

Source: Hilton

Book With An Online Travel Agent

Online travel agencies (OTAs) like Hotel Tonight or Priceline can provide last-minute bargain deals. Hotels use such sites to sell excess inventory without affecting their reputation, offering up empty rooms without revealing their names. The risk is that you won’t know which hotel you’re staying in until after payment (meaning you may not always get the best room), though you can sometimes work out which hotel it is by looking at the photo and searching and comparing online.

Take Advantage Of New Hotel Openings

Consider staying at newly opened hotels during their introductory period, when discounted rates are usually offered to build reputation and reviews. In most cases, these will be small, boutique (not brand) hotels. Have a look through Suitcase, Vogue and Condé Nast for ideas.

Source: Hilton

Compare Room Rates On Different Sites

Hotel companies often offer a best rate guarantee, promising a reward if guests find the same room on the same dates at a lower rate elsewhere. The reward can include a percentage refund or bonus points. This best rate guarantee is really useful if you’re heading to a more expensive destination, like New York.

Source: wordsofvikram

Sign Up For A Hotel-Affiliated Credit Card

Signing up for a hotel-affiliated credit card based on your preferred brand can lead to significant savings on future stays. Such cards offer bonus points which can go toward covering room rates and often come with elite status perks. Good examples are the Hilton Honors American Express Aspire Card (providing top-tier Diamond status) and the IHG® One Rewards Premier Credit Card (which gives you Platinum Elite status). Perks such as free breakfast, club lounge access, late checkout, and welcome amenities contribute to additional savings for you to enjoy during the hotel stay.

Make Your Own Breakfast

Some hotels include the cost of ‘free’ breakfasts in their main booking price. To save money, consider skipping hotels that offer free breakfast and instead buy your own food from nearby grocery stores or markets. This allows you to have breakfast at a lower cost and gives you the flexibility to choose what best gets you going of a morning!

Source: affordablecorporatesuites

Warning: Watch Out For Hidden Fees!

Many hotels have add-on fees to make themselves some extra cash, including ‘resort fees’, ‘peak season tourism charges’, early check in fees, late check out fees, a parking fee, a suitcase storage fee, fees for bringing kids or pets, fees for using the spa, fees for extra towels… and just about anything else you can imagine. We recommend you take a bit of extra time to be sure what you’re getting for your payment, so you can click “book” feeling confident you’re not going to get a nasty surprise on check out!

The Takeaway

Whether you want a cheaper stay from the get go, a free extra night, or perks like breakfast or club lounge access, our tips will help you get them! It may take some extra time in the searching and comparing, but the savings can end up in the triple figures, so what’s not to like? The only thing you need to do is set aside that research time and decide what you’re going to do with all that extra cash you just saved on your next stay away!

More Useful Tips For Travelers

Why not check out Traxplorio’s guide to the best private campgrounds in Florida, ideal for those of you looking to elevate their camping experience? Or maybe you want to head to Boise for some wine tasting and seasonal ice-skating? Check out our recommendations for fun things to do in Boise (and we’ve also got some great advice for ice skaters heading to San Francisco and Orlando this winter, too!).

If it’s some rejuvenation you’re seeking after that hotel booking trial, why not treat yourself to a hot springs soak? Traxplorio has recommendations for hot springs in most states – here’s a taster, with the best commercial mineral water resorts in California. Enjoy – you deserve it!


While we at Traxplorio do our very best to give you the most up-to-date information, we always recommend you do your own research before you travel to a particular area or visit a specific destination, and check conditions with relevant official authorities. Thanks for understanding, and enjoy your adventure!

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