How long in advance to book a hotel? Here are 10 tips to save!

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Martí Micolau

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Il hotel stay together with the flight, it represents one of the expenses that have the greatest impact on the budget of a holiday, be it short or long. THE Costi then they are always higher if you decide to stay overnight especially in high season, during holidays or weekends.

Despite what happened in the past, hotels today have mostly abandoned fixed price lists and adopted policies similar to those of airlines. For this room prices are dynamic and also change several times in the day based on the occupancy of the rooms. In some ways it is a positive novelty that allows you to take advantage of discounts and promotions, but sometimes it reveals itself a double-edged sword. In fact, it sometimes happens to book a room in a hotel and then the next day to note with disappointment that in the same structure there are lower rates or that an excellent offer on the internet is actually no longer valid at the time of our booking. Therefore when it is convenient to book in a hotel?


  1. Better to book well in advance or last minute?
  2. What is best not to do
  3. 10 Tips to save
  4. User questions and comments

Better to book well in advance or last minute?

Let's immediately make a necessary premise: there is no real rule. Sometimes, let's face it, it's just a matter of luck, others of strategy. Depending on the type of hotel (annual, luxury, economic, in the city, by the sea, etc.) there are "good" times and others less than to book a room. Let's go through them together.

Early booking

At the beginning of the year or before the season, each hotel decides its own price list and generally also establishes a discount percentage for those who book in advance (early booking), i.e. within a fixed date or within a certain period of time from check-in. in (for example 30 days before). In some cases booking in this way is revealed a winning choice, but in many others for nothing and you risk paying more than a last minute. This happens simply because, based on the trend of bookings, the hotel can decide in itinere to further lower its rates and to propose new offers. Don't despair though: there are some "basic" rules. Traveling in low season, staying midweek, staying overnight for 3 or more days are all excellent ways to save, even by booking in advance.

Last minute

Last minute offers can be a good solution. As with airlines, what remains unsold represents a loss of earnings, so the policy used is "better to sell cheap than not to sell at all". It happens, therefore, that if a hotel ends up with a series of empty rooms, it posts on the internet very discounted rates compared to the list price to be able to occupy the last rooms. This seemingly profitable hotel strategy is actually very stressful. In fact, if this exception becomes the rule, customers will know about it. From that moment on they will always begin to wait for the last day to make their reservation, thus generating several organizational problems for the structure.

Moreover, if the customer gets used to paying a ridiculously low price, he will never pay more for the same type of room. Not to mention the loyal customers who certainly would not take well the fact of always having to pay more than the last minute. For this reason, only some hotels lend themselves to playing this game or only implement it on certain occasions. For which be very careful, also because sometimes everything turns out to be a gigantic soap bubble. Many establishments play the card of "we only have one room available" to push the customer to confirm their reservation, but in reality they have more than one empty room and take advantage of the customer's need to find accommodation as soon as possible. Furthermore, by booking at the last minute you also risk not finding more availability, especially during the holidays or if there are particular events scheduled. Having said all this, do your calculations well and don't be fooled by offers "decoy".

What is best not to do

Remember: it always is It is not recommended to seek accommodation once you have already reached your destination. First of all, you will avoid wasting precious time shooting in an unknown location where you will probably find it hard to find your way around. In this way, you will only take time away from your vacation or stay, instead of dedicating it to visiting an attraction, enjoying a coffee break or simply relaxing after your trip.

10 Tips to save

  1. Use a Search Engine that allows you to compare prices presented on the various booking portals. This way you will visualize the best offer for you.
  2. Once you have found the offer that interests you, before booking it is always best to contact the hotel (by phone or e-mail). This action will help you not only to find much more information, but also because you will probably be able to get further savings. In fact, often to publish their rates on the appropriate portals, hotels have to pay a commission when booking. Therefore, it sometimes happens that to entice customers to book immediately, the structures deduct this commission from the price. They make the customer believe that they have applied a small discount and everyone is happier: satisfied customer and room occupied (and paid).
  3. Once you have contacted the hotel and if the above mentioned point 2 does not occur, you can always ask for a discount. Obviously, be polite and remember that reception staff are not always authorized to change rates, so ask to speak directly to the manager or his direct subordinate.
  4. Many accommodation portals, including the giant, offer points accumulation systems, which allow customers to access special discounts.
  5. A good alternative to save is to buy packages that include flight + hotel. They generally offer better prices than single rates.
  6. When you are about to book you do a lot pay attention to the type of room. Often the offers shown may be different on the various hotel booking sites even though they are the same room. It may happen, for example, that a room indicated as a "suite" is classified as a "deluxe" room on another site. Check it well directly on the hotel page to make sure you get your chosen room type. Keep your eyes peeled up too what is included in the price: breakfast and Wi-Fi can make a difference.
  7. Beware of special scheduled events in the chosen location. Maybe you are not aware of it and you may therefore find yourself having to pay higher rates for this. A quick Google search could save you a lot quickly and easily.
  8. Contrary to what is often thought, There is by no means an international system for what concerns the awarding of stars to hotels. You can never be sure that a 5-star hotel in Nepal will have the same amenities as one with the same stars in Norway. The best thing to do, therefore, is to rely on the judgment of other guests who have stayed before you. A few more minutes of research can save you a number of regrets.
  9. Sunday is the day with fewer customers, so look for offers that include it.
  10. Some hotel chains offer discounted or free nights based on specific internal programs created for their customers.

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