When you are going on a family vacation, making a hotel reservation is an important part of the planning process. However, it is all too easy to end up choosing a shabby hotel that overcharges you. Use the following tips to make sure that you choose a great hotel at a good rate.
To keep your packing to a minimum on a long trip to one destination, choose a hotel that offers a coin laundry facility. This way, you don’t have to pack as much, and when you are about halfway through your trip, you can wash and dry everything. When it’s almost time to go, repeat the process so you don’t get home with a bunch of dirty clothes.
Make sure you check with any organizations of which you are a member. Some organizations will receive discounts for different reasons from different hotels. A lot of people don’t use these discounts, and you may save 10% or even more. For extended stays, this can really add up. For a week of vacation time that adds up to an extra day!
Spend some time reading online reviews of hotels left by real customers before you make a reservation. These reviews are often your best source of information, since they are written by people who have actually stayed at the hotel. Be sure to pay attention to the most recent reviews, since the hotel may have already addressed older complaints.
Do you stay at a particular hotel chain fairly often? Consider signing up for their loyalty club. As long as it is free to do so, you really have nothing to lose. Giving the hotel your contact information could mean getting special perks that you can use the next time you stay there.
If you are interested in “going green” when traveling, try going to a “green” hotel. Start by looking for these hotels online. There are several organizations that let you search for these hotels easily like Green Hotels Association and Green Globe. They will have a comprehensive list of green hotels in different locations.
For members of AAA, hotels offer discounts that are exclusive to members. Many people are surprised to see hotel discounts included with their auto club membership. You can save more than five percent on hotels all over the country. This really adds up when you are staying for many nights.
Make location a top priority when it comes to searching for hotels. If you are going to be staying in a city and want to sight-see, it may not be wise to stay in a hotel 30 minutes away from all the action. Ask the hotel about attractions close by or look up their location on the Internet.
To keep your physical fitness going when you are on the road, when you check into a hotel, check out the fitness center. Even in gyms where you only see a treadmill or two and a set of dumbbells, you can still get in a bodyweight workout and a cardio routine. It may not be ideal, but it gets you through until you are back on your home turf.
Use Twitter to your advantage. Prior to booking your hotel, tweet the property and see if there are any discounts available. Social media is becoming more popular than ever, and hotels use this medium to get the word out about the specials they have out there. If you aren’t very familiar with tweeting, you can simply use the search function on Twitter.
Use social media to your advantage if you want to get fresh deals on hotel stays. Many hotels offer deals and freebies to people that “Like” their page. In addition, giving them praise on social media is a great way to snag an upgrade and/or a special rate that has not been advertised.
To avoid spending $2 or $3 each time you want a soda at a hotel, throw a six- or twelve-pack into the car when you head out on the road. For almost as much money as that one soda, you can have a dozen of them chilling on ice in the room, or in the mini-fridge.
Nothing can ruin a family vacation more quickly than a stay in a dirty, grimy hotel. You want your family to remember the good times about the trip, not the disgusting hotel room that you had to stay in. Remember the advice you have read here to make the right hotel reservation.