As we wind down our family vacation, I wanted to share a tip for saving money when you’re traveling… While it’s always a good idea to book your accommodations well in advance, I also recommend double-checking rates shortly before you depart.
When hotels have excess capacity, they often discount rooms at the last minute to fill them up. In our case, we were able to save upwards of 30% by booking a new reservation and canceling the old one a few days before we left.
While we may have been able to get a price adjustment on our original reservation by asking for the new rate, re-booking online was easier. It took me about two minutes and I saved hundreds of dollars.
If you do this, just be sure you’re aware of the cancellation policy. Often times the lowest available rate at the time of your original booking is non-cancellable. In other cases, you may need to cancel a minimum of 24 or 72 hours in advance to avoid being charged for the first night.
Also note that this strategy doesn’t always work. In popular places or at peak travel times, there may not be any rooms left at the last minute. That’s why you should always make a primary reservation early in the planning process.
Good luck, and happy travels.