Tips for booking a hotel room

Booking a hotel room is not as easy as it seems. Quality and price are just two features that you should pay attention to; you will not feel very good to realize that you could find a better combination of features elsewhere and for less money. Getting burned with a hotel room is no doubt the worst thing that could happen not only because you will have to live there, but because the better deals are staring you right in the face,  and are probably the next hotel over. There are some easy but important steps to follow when booking a hotel room, they are listed below and they will definitely help you to avoid this situation.
The process requires a lot of patience and attention, that is why prepare to spend enough time to find the right place and the best hotel room which will satisfy your pocket and your needs. Maximize your efforts by taking advantage of internet travel sites, consumer reviews and travel agents.
Let’s start!
  1. There are a lot of commercial booking websites that offer great hotel deals. Some of the strongest in this area are Travelocity.com, Booking.com, Hotels.com, Orbitz.com, Expedia.com and others. But InterHDb.com offers you the possibility to compare rates from all the sites listed above and many others. But don’t hesitate to enter the hotel website itself for more details. You may find interesting information on their own websites which don't appear on commercial sites.
  2. If you decided to book a hotel room on a commercial website, inform yourself on their cancellation policy. Now, very many sites don’t charge steep cancellation fees any more (sometimes the entire cost of the booking). Nevertheless, you need to make sure that you can book on the site and cancel without a fee the hotel reservation if you have to.
  3. Sometimes hotels display on their websites outdated or wrong information and photos about their rooms, amenities, staff etc. That is why is very important to check out consumer review sites like TripAdvisor.com, which gathers and aggregates reviews of hotels by former patrons. On this site the reviews are organized by the type of stay (e.g., couples, business trip, young travelers, etc.) so that you can search for people most like yourself and see what they had to say about the hotel. Usually, people speak about all attributes in a hotel, so that you can make better decisions based upon them.
  4. Don't be too confident when it comes to deals that are too good to be true. If a hotel displays much lower prices than nearby hotels, you should check to make sure if the hotel wasn’t renovated for a long time or there's not another reason for the low price; maybe it is located in a high crime area or is very old and run down.
  5. If you have a target geographic area, do not be lazy to punch in the hotel address into maps.google.com. Here you can see where exactly the hotel is located, as well as all that surrounds it - stores, restaurants, tourist attractions etc. Also you can take advantage of Google's street view feature to see exactly what your hotel and surround area look like.
  6. When you have found the hotel for you, taking into consideration of the above tips, but you still have questions, don’t hesitate to contact the hotel and ask about your needs or concerns. For example, if you want breakfast in bed, you'll want to ask if they have such service. Or you want to know how big the pool is and whether they have a lifeguard on duty. Whatever your concerns, ask the concierge on the phone so you can book with confidence.
Once you're ready to book a hotel room, there are still a few more questions that you should confirm before committing and certain actions you should take to preemptively avoid hassles and headaches upon arrival.
  1. The cutoff date for cancelling your reservation with incurring a penalty; for most hotels it is 24-48 hours before arrival.
  2. Discounts offered by the hotel: senior discount, government discount, military, etc.
  3. Check-in and check-out times. Is better to  inform/prevent the hotel if you're going to be checking in very late, otherwise they may give your room to another.
  4. Extra fees that could be added to your hotel room's daily rate: resort fee, parking, etc.
  5. Be sure to request the type of room you want: noisy or not noisy, with sea/mountain/river/etc.  view or not, etc. Whatever your needs, communicate them clearly to the concierge.
  6. Instead debit cards, book your hotel with a credit cards which offer consumers far more protection in the event of fraud.
  7. Confirm your reservation by contacting the hotel in advance and if they they have met your special requests: a sea view hotel room for example. Also ask for written confirmation for your reservation.
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