Thursday, April 27, 2017

How to Stay at 5 Star Hotels for 2 Star Prices {And Know The Hotel Name}

Ever since I was little I’ve always loved staying in hotels. I would grab the glasses, ice bucket, and notepad and pretend I was a waitress delivering food and drinks to my mom and dad. As an adult, I’m more intrigued by the crisp sheets, skin care products in the bathroom, and a housekeeper to keep the room somewhat in order. My kids have also developed the same love for hotels, especially if there’s a pool and an extra bouncy bed for jumping.

And while my love for hotel staying runs strong, it's not just any hotel I love. While I’ve stayed in my fair share of crappy hotels (hello work budgets), something about a fancy hotel with a grand lobby, high floors, and a killer view makes my heart go pitter-patter. For some people it’s fancy shoes, purses, or makeup, but for me, bring on the luxury hotel!

If you’ve read any of my posts or follow me on Instagram, you might be wondering how a gal who likes thrifting and saving money is going to spend $400 a night for a hotel room. Well I’m not. I don’t pay even close to that. With a little bit of time and a few simple tips and tricks, you can actually stay in 4 and 5 star hotels at 2 star prices. Here’s how I do it.

Step One. Click on over to Hotwire. Select hotels and then enter the city where you'll be staying. One thing that I really like about Hotwire is that you can also enter a landmark that you want to stay close to (e.g. White House). Once it brings up the list of hotels, use the star rating filter at the top to search by 4 or 5 star hotels.

Step Two. Leaving your Hotwire tab open, visit Better Bidding in a new tab. Click on hotel lists, then Hotwire. 

Choose the state you will be staying in from the drop down menu.

On the next page you'll see a black box that basically explains there's no guarantees on the exact hotel, blah, blah. I have used this site several times (St. Louis, Chicago, New York) and I've been able to correctly identify the hotel each time, but there's always that small risk. It's still worth it to me to use Hotwire since I'm saving so much money, even if it's not the exact hotel I thought I was booking. Click the Hotwire link to access the list of hotels. 

Once you click on the link it will open a new tab to the Hotwire site. CLOSE OUT of this tab. You do not need to re-enter your information since you already have your information entered in the other tab. On the Better Bidding website you may be prompted to pick a region depending on how big the city is. 

Next, choose the zone in which you want to stay and then a list of hotel names will appear.

Step Three. Compare the hotel descriptions listed on the Better Bidding site to the hotels listed in Hotwire. You can also go the hotel's website directly to read about amenities, etc to help you narrow down the hotel a little further. 

Step Four. Once you feel confident in the hotel, hold your breath and make your purchase. And remember, no matter what hotel it is, you're still saving TONS of money.

Other tips:
-I like to choose hotels that are 90% recommended or above
-Make sure to read through the amenities listed on Hotwire. For me, staying at a pool is a must when I'm traveling with my children.
-I find I save the most money when I book ~ 2 weeks out from my stay. I won't lie, for someone who is Type A this does give me a little bit of anxiety to wait so close, but there is always plenty of options, especially if you're staying in a bigger city where there's lot of hotels. This is also the time frame I find the rooms to have the greatest discount.
-When booking on Hotwire you do not get to select a bed preference, but don't worry. Once I make my purchase, I call the hotel directly and request whatever beds we need. You can also choose 3 adults when first entering your dates of stay, which would most likely guarantee 2 beds.

This post was not sponsored, I just love a good deal and want you to score one too.
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