Over past few weeks I have received a lot of requests for good stay options at various locations from friends and family. Form houseboat rentals to beach villa and I have been looking for the best deal possible fro them. Yes I know I am the best friend ever, and they are awesome people so I love doing something special for them.
To make it easier for all of you to find and book hotels in a way that would help you save some good money, I decided to do this post which will cover two of my favorite sites to book hotels on. There are a few affiliate links in the post below, which means if you do book anything from here I will get a small percentage of your transaction. Be clear, you will definitely not be charged extra, more often than not you will get a free credits.
These days we are not booking our stays beforehand because we love couch surfing and also because we don’t mind walking around looking for a cheaper accommodation, or a place that will suit our requirements. We also do not have to take care of a kid and usually stay in a backpacker to low budget accommodations which usually do not require bookings. It might sound cool to arrive at a new place with out bookings and just roughing it out, believe me it can turn on you as it did for us in Bijapur. We recommend that you book your accommodation for first night at least.
Hotels.com is an international site which offers a great incentive to book. If you book 10 nights with them you get one free night. This is not the only benefit of the site, let me tell you more about it. This is one of the transactions we were looking at but the plans fell through we are now working these days and travelling later.
|The Start Page|
We were looking for a place to stay in Goa for 4 days and 3 nights along with two other couples. Logging on to the site I fill in the form telling them where I want to stay and for how long. On the next page with search results I get an option to select the amenities I want and the search results are them filtered to suit my preference.
|Quite a few search results|
Once satisfied with my choice on hotel I juts go one and pay the amount and voila I got myself a booking. Now this is almost similar to most of the other booking sites but In terms of filters I have found Hotels.com to be the most accurate.
|Selecting my filters|
|A property we liked (we do not endorse them)|
|Room options and Details.|
You need to take care that as far as possible you book the hotels with the purple moon next to it and the room you are booking should show collect. Once I go through the booking and my hotel stay is complete these nights will be credited to my account, contributing to the 10 night quota for my free night stay.
This is where my friends come into play since i need to book 3 nights each for each couple, I can collect a total of 9 nights simply buy booking the hotel in 3 transactions, which will be credited the same way. If you are a frequent traveler or you travel with your family or friends you should have no problem racking up those nights and then you can use them to stay at a place you choose.
Another thing I like and the reason why I prefer the site over likes of Goibibo is because the prices are quite competitive. Recently the discount being offered on other sites have been dwindling. Most of the discounts now come with a minimum qualifying expense and put a cap on how much discount you might get. I used to think that the prices would be way higher but since this has not much to do with money and a lot to do with no. of nights rewards remains equal if I book a 600 Rs night or 6000 Rs night.
These make most sense if you are traveling in Europe or any of the other expensive countries since you will spend a good amount which will help you get a good place to stay when you come back to India. They also have this last minute deal which we have never tried. So if you are looking for a place to stay today or tomorrow look it up. In case you do let us know how it went.
I know what you are thinking, I stay cheap now and then stay expensive on my free night. That is not how it works your free night is the average of all the nights you have bought. So in case your office lets book you stays you might want to route them all through Hotels.com.
Do not forget to sign up for loyalty points of your hotel group be it SPG or Hyatt or any other, everything from your stay to food will help you get another free night from the loyalty points.
This is what they say about the free night.
Our loyalty program, Welcome Rewards, is for guests aged 18+ who signed up with a valid email address. When you book and stay 10 nights at eligible hotels, you’ll get 1 night free to redeem at another. We work out the average value of all the 10 nights you’ve collected and give it back to you as a free night. You just pay taxes and fees. And if you choose a room that costs more, you pay the difference. You can’t collect or redeem nights when you pay using a discount coupon or if you’re making a package booking.