The Ultimate Hotel Guide to Finding the Lowest Room Rate

This article compares hotel booking websites to answer your most burning question if there is a website that can help us book the lowest available hotel room.

It’s a burning question because it’s often time-consuming to find the best price for a hotel room as each hotel booking website claims to offer the best deal. In fact, “members only deals”, “secret prices” and “last-minute deals” are also a marketing gimmick used to attract clients.

In addition, the Internet is full of “top ten lists of best hotel websites” and “expert opinions”, which shows that each of us has our own opinion of what works for us.

Under these circumstances, if you were to use only two hotel price comparison websites, Hotelscombined and Trivago, you don’t need to search anywhere else. Here is why:

• Hotel comparison websites such as Hotelscombined.com have the ability to compare and display price information from hundreds of hotel booking websites.

• Due to the deep data-extraction ability, hotel comparison websites enable you to view “members only” prices and “secret deals” posted on individual websites.

If everything that I said is true, my research shows that:

Using a hotel comparison website, it’s common to save more than 30% on your room rate.

In fact, you can easily find room availability for more than 40% of hotels in major cities, which are otherwise not available on your favorite hotel booking website.

In this blog post:

• I will explain how it’s possible to get any kind of hotel deal using only two websites.

• I will provide a price comparison of a hotel aggregator (Hotelscombined and Trivago) with leading websites (Expedia, Booking.com) helping you understand the huge cost savings and many other advantages of a hotel price comparison website.

• I will explain why members only deals”, “secret prices” and “last-minute deals” are a marketing gimmick. Even if there are such deals, hotel price comparison websites are able to display these using deep search.

• I will explain why Hotelscombined is my favorite website, and why you can use it as the only source of information.

Why Use a Hotel Price Comparison Website such as Hotelscombined.com & Trivago?

Before answering the question, let’s start by understanding the three main kinds of hotel booking websites. These are:

• Hotel’s Official Website: Hilton.com and Marriott.com are examples of these websites.

• Online Hotel Booking Agency: These types of websites sell hotels, only. Booking.com and Hotels.com are examples of these websites.

• Online Travel Agency: These websites sell travel-related products such as hotel, airline, and car rentals. Expedia and Priceline.com are examples of these websites.

Sometimes, these online travel agencies also compare hotel, airline and car rental instead of selling their own products. Kayak is an example of such an online travel agency.

The diagram shows how a price comparison website is able to collect and filter hotel price information from a variety of travel portals.

As shown above, a hotel price comparison website display prices from these three types of hotel booking websites so that we can view the price feed in one place.

The most significant advantage of using a hotel aggregator is the potential saving we can get. For instance, the following snapshot shows price variations in a hotel room for a single night among various hotel booking websites. For multiple nights, these savings can be in hundreds of dollars.

Why I highly recommend using Hotelscombined or Trivago is because they are the only two leading hotel comparison websites that exclusively focus on comparing hotel rooms.

Interestingly, it may not make a huge difference if you use Hotelscombined.com or Trivago to find the best deal because these two hotel aggregators are evenly matched. Hotelscombined.com is owned by Booking Holdings and Trivago is owned by Expedia Group.

You also get almost every kind of hotel deal because almost 80% of the popular hotels booking websites are owned by either Booking Holdings or Expedia Group. The majority of other independent websites such as hotels.com and Amoma also partner with these hotel aggregators.

As a result, you get better results and other advantages that are discussed below:

Comparison with Independent Hotel Booking Websites and Online Travel Agencies (Booking.com & Expedia)

You will enjoy the following benefits when using a hotel comparison portal instead of using a major hotel booking website:

Significant Savings

I compared prices of 5-star hotels on Hotelscombined with the price of same hotels on Expedia and Booking.com

For selected dates in April, 55 five-star hotels in Singapore city; 14 five-star hotels in Las Vegas; 36 4-star hotels in Orlando; and 44 five-star hotels in Prague, were selected for the purpose.

The results are displayed in the attached Google Spreadsheet; however, the following is a summary of the results, which many of you will find interesting:

“LAS VEGAS – 5 out of 14 hotels in Las Vegas offered saving of more than 20%; whereas, 9 hotels offered savings of more than 10%”.

“SINGAPORE – 10 out of 55 hotels in Singapore offered saving of more than 20%; whereas, 5 hotels offered savings of more than 30%”.

“ORLANDO – 9 out of 36 hotels in Orlando offered a saving of more than 30%; whereas, 14 hotels offered savings of more than 10%”.

“PRAGUE – 10 out of 44 hotels in Prague offered a saving of more than 20%; whereas, 29 hotels offered savings of more than 10%”.

In fact, this example is just a small depiction of what you can achieve using a hotel aggregator like Hotelscombined and Trivago.

More Hotel Choices

If you think that the above statistics are interesting, it may surprise you that my primary reason for using a hotel aggregator is to get more hotel options.

Looking at the above stats, you may be surprised to know that 10 out of 36 popular hotels in Orlando weren’t even available to book on Expedia or Booking.com. In contrast, you could book these hotels at one of the websites displayed by a hotel comparison website.

Such famed resorts as Disney’s Port Orleans, Disney’s’ Saratoga Springs, Disney’s Old Key West Resort and Disney’s Port Orleans Resort, were not available at popular hotel websites such as Expedia and Booking.com.

In fact, it’s not uncommon to find a lack of available rooms for popular hotels if you are using just one or two websites.

Take a look at the following two snapshots of Walt Disney World official hotels and hotels in the premier area surrounding Epcot Center at Walt Disney, Orlando, United States.

The first snap is from the website of Booking.com hotel maps showing only two available properties, marked by blue pins.

A screenshot of available Walt Disney hotels in Orlando near the famous Epcot Center

In contrast, the second snap from Hotelscombined.com displays a variety of available properties consisting of the majority of official Walt Disney resorts and hotels that are bookable using other websites.

A screenshot of available Walt Disney hotels in Orlando near the famous Epcot Center (Hotelscombined.com)

Greater Choice of Room Rates

A hotel comparison website will allow you to find a variety of rooms with different terms.

Following is a screenshot that I have truncated from the actual page of Hotelscombined to illustrate my point. The image shows the total price of a hotel room at a resort in Ibiza, Spain for seven nights.

The image shows prices and terms of room booking across different travel websites.

If you were looking to book a room at this hotel, Amoma offers a great choice that also includes breakfast. In contrast, Hotels.com is a better choice if you require a room with breakfast and free cancellation.

In fact, Otel is another option if you wanted a guaranteed room with a single king-size bed (double room). Overall, using a hotel comparison website, you’re able to get a wider choice of room rates.

Amoma – Lowest Rate with Breakfast;

Otel.com – Lowest Rate with Guaranteed Bed Type;

Hotels.com – Lowest Rate with Breakfast and Free Cancellation.

Last-Minute Deals, Member’s Only Pricings, and Secret Deals – MARKETING GIMMICKS

If you think that member-only pricing, special-prices and last-minute deals available by signing-in or creating an account on hotel booking websites may give you an edge, you better think again.

Most of the “member only” deals, displayed on individual websites such as Expedia, Travelocity, and Hotels.com, are also available elsewhere. Look at the following “member only” deal from Travelocity website. The price quoted for the hotel on Travelocity website is $221, which seems better than other websites.

In reality, if you are willing to use a hotel price comparison website, there are plenty of websites that may be selling the same room at a better price without marketing the price as a “member only” deal.

Following is a snapshot from Trivago, a hotel comparison website, displaying the price of the same hotel on the same date from other websites across the Internet. According to Trivago, the lowest price is $185, which is almost 16% lower than the Travelocity “member only” price.

Trivago website showing cheaper prices than the ‘member only’ pricing

It’s apparent from the above sample that ‘member only’ pricing is mostly a psychological tactic to attract and retain customers.

Here is another snapshot from Hotelscombined.com website offering price comparison. If you were using SnapTravel or Amoma to book this hotel, their “secret prices” may seem attractive until you compare them with other websites.

In this instance, hotels.com is offering a much lower rate for two nights.

In a nutshell, it means that “members only deals”, “secret prices” and “last-minute deals” are just a huge marketing gimmick. Even if there are such deals, hotel price comparison websites are able to display these using deep search.

Do hotel booking websites lie?

By promoting “members only pricings”, hotel booking websites are not lying to us. In fact, all they are suggesting is that there are special prices on their portal if you become one of their members by signing into their portals. They never claim that the “member only pricings” are the lowest across the Internet.

Why Hotelscombined.com is arguably the best website on the Internet to book a hotel?

Initially, I said if you were to use only two websites, Hotelscombined and Trivago, you can get almost every hotel deal on the Internet. However, you can select any one of these as your source of information because my experience suggests that both of them offer similar results.

As for me, I mostly use Hotelscombined as my only source of information due to three important reasons:

  • Accurate Price Feed
  • Similar prices to Trivago
  • Exceptional customer service

Accurate Price Feed

Regarding price feeds on Hotelscombined; my experience suggests that it offers one of the most accurate price feeds for any hotel comparison portal, anywhere on the Internet. As with other websites such as Trivago, price feeds are many times inaccurate due to consistently changing hotel rates.

I want to concentrate on selecting a hotel, and the hotel room, instead of fiddling with the wrong price feeds.

Similar Prices as Trivago

I am comfortable using only one website because there is seldom a difference in the lowest price using Hotelscombined and Trivago.

Even if Hotelscombined and Trivago use websites that are not available on the other hotel aggregator, it rarely makes a difference. The tit-for-tat competition among websites helps create a price balance. This lack of significant price difference is reflected in my research, here.

Exceptional Customer Service

To distinguish themselves in the hotel industry, both Trivago and Hotelscombined have started to offer customer service. The customer service helps consumers sort out their booking problems if they have used the hotel aggregator to book a hotel.

Traditionally, hotel aggregators such as Trivago and Hotelscombined did not offer customer service because these websites only display hotel prices. After finding a great price, customers would go to the individual booking websites such as Booking.com, Expedia.com, and Hotels.com to book hotels.

Now, Trivago and Hotelscombined offer customer service allowing visitors, who use their websites, to call their customer service phone numbers to resolve booking problems.

In simple words, it means that if you see a great price on Hotelscombined, and then book a hotel on Booking.com after clicking on the relevant links, you can also ask Hotelscombined customer service to resolve booking problems.

Booking a hotel after going through Hotelscombined is just like a personal concierge, which is at your disposal besides the booking you made from the actual hotel website such as Agoda, Booking.com or Hotels.com, etc.

While both Trivago and Hotelscombined offer such services, Hotelscombined is my preferred choice due to its rock-solid reputation in the industry.

The friendly customer service at Hotelscombined is very well-known to resolve issues and help. In fact, the stellar reputation of the website is confirmed by independent reviews at TrustPilot. In fact, Booking Holdings has bought the company due to its stellar reputation.

I am not the only one to make such statements; in fact, travel experts such as Robert Kaufmann, Frommers (Smarter Travel), Marcus Herbert, Santorini Dave, John Widmer, and World Travel Awards all have recommended hotelscombined.com

I may be getting off-track here and acting more like a marketing agent; therefore, I will leave it to you to make an assessment …

Before I let you go, please bear in mind that some of the links in this article are affiliate links and if you go through them to make a purchase, I will earn a commission. I try my best to remain unbiased and do a lot of research before recommending a product. However, the decision is yours whether you want to visit these websites using the links provided on this page or not.

Irrespective of your decision, I will definitely love to hear from you and hope to get any useful information that can help improve this article. Cheers!

2 thoughts on “The Ultimate Hotel Guide to Finding the Lowest Room Rate”

  1. Pingback: Airbnb vs Hotel: Which is better? - MY CUP OF TRAVEL

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