The challenging aspect is arranging a hotel after you’ve looked around for airfare and a rental car. It can seem an onerous chore, even if you’ve frequently made hotel reservations. Selecting a hotel search engine is the first thing you should do. Some of my favorites are listed here: Hotel search on Hotels.com and Google. Since these hospitality search tools are so similar, it is unlikely that the variations will mean much to a newbie. We favor Google’s hotel search for its ease; we prefer Hotels.com to earn rewards.
One of the critical distinctions between flights and hotels is how far in advance to book. It is typically true that you should book your flights as early as possible according to conventional knowledge. However, the reverse is true when booking hotels: You’ll frequently pay less if you book close to your departure date. This suggestion can be difficult for people who like to have everything planned out beforehand. Booking long in advance can always give you peace of mind. But keep in mind that if you don’t, you receive better deals.
What should you do if your plans need to be changed, are in flux, or need to be ready for the unexpected? This leads us to the following point. Most hotels often enable you to amend or cancel your reservation without incurring a fee up to one day before check-in; changes made less than 24 hours before check-in may result in charges. Some hotels automatically provide this flexibility for all reservations, while others might not.
By participating in hotel loyalty programs or even via third parties like Hotels.com, frequent travelers can accrue points and rewards. Similar to a coffee punch card, these incentives could provide free stays. With these applications, there are only a few things that beginners need to remember. Some prizes and points lose their value after a year or two. For instance, Hilton Honors points expire after a year of inactivity. Booking hotels can be a large, confusing mess, and part of it is. However, being familiar with the fundamentals of hotel booking might offer you the assurance you need to step up your travel preparation.