Have you ever traveled to a new city and been overwhelmed by all the hotel choices? Wonder how you go about choosing a hotel or finding the best deals? Wonder why you are stuck in a noisy room by the elevator? Find out our tips for booking a hotel and requesting a hotel room that is best for your family.
ON THE PODCAST
00:30 – Talking about Tamara’s recent trip to Naples and Marco Island, FL
12:36 – Kim’s trip planning for Tokyo
20:24 – Evaluating hotels
21:50 – Comparing ratings
27:10 – Using points
31:30 – Resort fees
36:15 – Booking room
40:50 – Final tips
45:11 – Upcoming trips for Kim and Tamara
TIPS FOR BOOKING HOTELS
- If you are planning a trip to a country or location you have never been too. It is a great idea to look up the location and read what other people have to say about where they stayed. After reading a few blogs/posts about the area you will notice areas that are mentioned throughout. Blogs and Pinterest are great places to find travel information.
- Be sure to read the room descriptions, occupancy and bed carefully when you are booking in a different country. Terms you are used to hearing in the US are not going to be the same in some countries. Like a double room in the US is usually two double or queen beds, but somewhere else it may mean two twin beds.
- You may want to think about creating a spreadsheet of all of the hotels that you want to stay in for your trip. Add in the distances to each of the major places that you want to visit to help you decide on which one(s) will work best. You can also star these locations on a Google Map to get a visual picture of the places you want to visit and therefore the best neighborhoods to stay.
- In your spreadsheet or notes, you should also add in the size of the rooms to help narrow down your decision. When you are traveling as a family, having some more square feet to the room might just outweigh having to walk/ride a little farther to a destination.
- Be aware of hotel ratings. Make sure you are not just looking at the hotel sites rating but TripAdvisor or another booking site ratings. You should also read some of the more recent reviews as well. Give yourself a little more information about the rating rather than just the stars.
- If you are considering using your points for booking hotel stays, you really want to weigh the value of the points versus the price.
- Also consider if your points/credit have an expiration date and compare the value of using hotel program points versus credit card points. Does one include any perks such as free breakfast, upgrades, or resort credits. .
- Be aware of different resort fees that you could be charged for your stay. All of these little extra charges can add up quickly. Also account for state, city, and tourism taxes.
- When you are booking your room there is usually a place that you can add in notes for your booking. If you are a member of a loyalty program, you can also add these to your profile. You can also add in a preference to be close to an elevator, request a higher floor, or an allergy-free room.
- You should sign up for loyalty programs when they are offered. They don’t usually take more than an email and you can always unsubscribe later. By signing you you could get a better rate or get free wifi for your stay.
- Be careful when you are booking through a third party as you may not earn any rewards points with your booking.
MENTIONED ON THE PODCAST
FOLLOW US AND SPREAD THE WORD!
If you liked this show, please be sure to subscribe on iTunes, Stitcher, or Google Play and leave us a review! Have a question or comment? Send us an email at email@example.com. You can also follow our travels on Stuffed Suitcase and We3Travel, or follow the Vacation Mavens on Instagram, Facebook or Twitter. Thanks for listening!