Finding a comfortable, yet affordable, place to stay on your family vacation can be a challenge. The average price of a hotel room in the United States for one night is about $125, and it has been steadily rising for the last six years. However, that doesn't mean you have to resign yourself to paying top dollar. There are a number of ways you can save money on lodging costs.
1. Book early. Like the airlines, many hotels offer a certain number of rooms at an initial lower price to encourage vacationers to book in advance. When those rooms are taken, the price goes up. Often there are several tiers of prices, with the available nightly rate steadily increasing as the hotel fills up.
2. Check the hotel property's website. While travel agents and travel websites often have attractive hotel rates, sometimes the best rates can be found directly on the hotel's individual website. That's not the hotel chain's site, but the individual property's site, if they have one.
3. Be a joiner. If you travel frequently, becoming a member of AAA and/or AARP can save you money on your hotel accommodations. Both groups have negotiated extra savings for their members at thousands
4. Ask one last time. Despite all of your efforts to get a great hotel rate in advance, a lower rate is still possible when you check into the hotel, especially if the hotel isn't full. The front desk manager often has authorization to offer last minute lower rates that can't be had via your travel agent or via the toll-free number. It never hurts to ask one last time.
5. Consider a tour. If you think that tours are just buses full of older tourists, think again. Many tour operators and airline tour desks offer packages with hotel accommodations, car rental and sometimes sightseeing bundled at a much lower rate than you'd be able to buy each component separately.
6. Investigate the hotel's special packages. Most hotels put together special packages to entice vacationers to choose their property over their competitor's. These packages include things like breakfast or other meals, admission to area attractions or romantic extras like a bottle of Champagne or chocolate-dipped strawberries. Sometimes these rates offer a better value than the lowest available hotel rate. Plus, you're going to eat breakfast (or whatever meal is included) anyway.
Finding nice, comfortable and affordable accommodations for your family vacation doesn't have to be an impossible feat. Save money this season by starting early, checking the property's own website, asking about lower rates again and again, and checking tour rates. You may very well be surprised at how little you'll pay for quality lodging. For more information, contact a business such as Main Street Hotel.