5 mistakes you are making while booking a hotel

by Female Abroad

It's likely that you will end up paying significantly more for your trip if you think you can obtain the best hotel rate by waiting for a last-minute offer. This is only one of the top five mistakes you are probably making while booking your trips. According to a report from TripAdvisor, the best time to book a hotel depends upon the place you want to visit. This of course makes obvious sense now that they state it. Low, Shoulder, and High Seasons vary from location to location so while booking a hotel in November for Canada may be low season, it would be high season in Australia. Here are a few other mistakes you are probably making while booking a hotel.

  1. Waiting last minute to book
    If you are headed to a place for a specific event, reason, or your dates are not flexible then leaving things to the last minute could make trying to find accommodations extremely impossible or the prices will be ridiculious.
    I once at a family of an Olympian decide a week before the Rio Olympics that they actually were going to go but they wanted to work with me because they could not find anything online. Of course the flights were all booked up and I was able to find them one hotel room but it was a simple bed in what looked to be a closet and it would have been over 600 Euro a night (found it though a European company). They were pretty upset that they were unable to go.
    There are also some cities that do not have a ton of hotel rooms like Berlin so if you do not book ahead, you may risk running into the same issue. Whereas cities like Paris or Istanbul have a surplus of rooms so leaving it to the last minute may actually work in your favour.

  2. Booking full pre-pay, non-refundable rates too early
    Sure, you know that you are 100% going on that trip but rates may still drop so if you are looking at rates 9+ months out and grab a fully locked in rate, you lose the chance of changing it if prices drop.
    There are also certain places like Asia or the Middle East where looking a couple months out can save you an average of 40% as per TripAdvisor.

  3. Not keeping an eye on prices
    If you can then book a hotel room and keep an eye on prices, sign up for hotel emails as well as their social media channels. As soon as you see a deal that is better than you currently have, book it! As per the TripAdvisor report you can expect 7 months out for Moscow and Barcelona being the sweet spot with deal / pricing dropping as much as 55%.

  4. Trying to get a deal for a Summer Vacation in the Caribbean
    Looking at the TripAdvisor report, if you want to head to a Caribbean island for a summer vacation, the most you might save is 7% so if you find a place you like, just grab it.

  5. Booking too far out in Expensive Cities
    World class cities (London, New York, Milan, Paris, etc) usually have a ton of hotels and according to the TripAdvisor report if you wait until 30-60 days before your trip to book a hotel room, you could save as much as 25% on your hotel reservation.

For me, when we decide on a trip and hotels release their prices (usually one year in advanced) I will do my research and make a couple bookings at hotels that I like. I make sure that I can cancel the hotels however and then I wait. I check prices usually once a month to see if the hotels have dropped or if there are any others in the area with a better deal / value than what I currently have and make my adjustments. I have stayed at five diamond hotels for less than U$ 200 per night, including breakfast because of this. It takes some work but in the end a few minutes each month can totally be worth it!