Let’s be real, it’s easy to overspend when you’re on vacation. When you’re taking a break from the “real world,” money is almost always the last thing you worry about. However, you don’t want to return home to a depleted bank account or unwanted debt either. Instead of getting rid of stress on your vacation, overspending just adds more of it.
One of the areas where people tend to bust their travel budget is lodging. Hotels can exhaust travel funds faster than shopping. But before you cancel your next planned trip, here’s how to save money on hotels while traveling.
Stick to Your Budget
One of the surefire ways to save money on hotels is to stick to your budget. Before going on vacation, you must determine how much money you’re willing to spend on the trip. Allocate a budget for the expenses you’re anticipating.
These expenses include your lodging and the comforts and conveniences you want out of it. For example, if you find out that your budget can only afford a small room, don’t bother trying to upgrade to a bigger one or even a suite. Stick to what you can afford.
Buy Someone Else’s Booking
Some travelers have already paid or reserved their accommodation but end up having to cancel their vacation. Instead of incurring cancellation charges, these vacationers sell their unwanted reservations at websites like Cancelon and RoomerTravel.
If you’re meticulous enough, you’re going to come across a deal that matches your travel requirements. Of course, these deals cost much less than the actual rates, so you save money on hotels here, too.
Join Rewards Programs
The majority of hotels have a rewards program, especially the hotel chains. These rewards accumulate points for every dollar you spend, whether you book in that hotel, dine at its restaurant, or shop with its partner companies. Once you accrue points, you’ll earn hotel discounts.
For example, MGM Resorts International has its M Life Rewards which can help you save money on hotels, not just on MGM properties, but also with its partner hotels worldwide.
You can also save money on hotels when you use hotel booking websites like Hotels.com. But if you can be more creative, you will score an even better hotel deal. Before going on a trip, go online, and search for coupons for your destination to unlock deals and discounts.
The merger of coupon rivals Groupon and Living Social has paved the way to an even larger market of daily deals for consumers and these include hotel deals. If you diligently visit these sites, you will discover the best deals on hotels in the areas that you plan to visit.
Take Advantage of Credit Card Offers
Watch for credit cards affiliated with hotel rewards programs. When you use the card for purchases, you earn points that will eventually lead to a free stay at the hotel. In some instances, the credit card earns double points when used in that particular hotel.
Choice Hotels offers a Visa credit card that can save money on hotels. This credit card has a rewards program that offers a free stay of up to four nights depending on your total amount spent and also accumulates points that lead to more free lodging and discounts.
I know it’s not easy but nothing in this world is free, right? If you want to save money on hotels during your next vacation, you have to put in some work. Do your research and plan accordingly. Believe me, you will be surprised at how much you will save.