As a savvy hotel deal hunter, you must have seen lots of advertisements like “Save 25% or more”, “Get up to 60% off”, etc. from various travel booking sites, including our partner vendors – Expedia, Hotels.com, Priceline, Agoda and Booking.com. It is true that those travel agencies can save you money, if you don’t shop around at all. The savings that we are talking about here are an extra 5-40% on the top of whatever the savings our partners can bring to you.
Hotel rates are very dynamic. Hotels with similar conditions in the same area may have very different prices each night. If you need to stay in a city for several days, you should consider splitting your stay over several places. There are several benefits of “hotel hopping”. First, you may save a significant amount of money by staying at the right hotel at the right night. The higher the average hotel nightly rate, the more you may save. Second, you may experience different hotel designs and services. Sometimes your ideal hotel doesn’t have vacancy for multiple days in a row. Booking nights separately allows you to stay at that hotel in the days when it is available. Last, you have a chance to earn more rewards points if the hotel calculates points by number of stays instead of number of nights. If you don’t have much luggage and spend most of your time outside the hotel anyway, it is worth to check multiple hotels.
Multiple bookings at the same hotel
We understand that it could be a big hassle packing your stuff, moving to another hotel and going through the check-in process again. Even at the same hotel, you can still save money by booking different nights separately. You may say that even in the same hotel, you don’t want to move from room to room and check-out/check-in every day. But you don’t need to. When you check in the first time, just inform the front desk that you have multiple bookings and would like to stay in the same room. In most cases they will merge your bookings immediately. Even if the front desk doesn’t know how to do it on computer, they can communicate with their colleagues and facilitate your requirement. After all, moving you to a different room does nothing beneficial to the hotel.
How it works
Isn’t the rate per night you get from a hotel or a booking site the average rate of multiple nights? Unfortunately, that’s not true in many cases. Some hotels just charge you the highest nightly rate for each day you stay with them. So should we always book each night individually? That’s not the best way either. Some hotels and booking sites do offer a discount for multiple-night bookings. In addition, the hotel may tell you no vacancy when you try to book a single night. But if you book three nights in a row, including the night with “no vacancy”, you will get booked like a breeze.
In fact, it is already not a secret that you can save money by booking nights separately. Many smart travelers have used such a strategy for year. But are they really able to get all the rates and figure out the best solution manually? Let’s say you need a lodging for 10 days and will use an online booking site to check rates. You can book each single night separately. It means that you need to check the booking site 10 times to get the price at each night. Alternatively, you can book two nights together. To get all rates with two nights together, you need to check the site additional 9 times (night 1 and night 2 together, night 2 and night 3 together, and so on). To get the rates of 3 nights together, you need to check the booking site 8 times. So on and so forth. To get all possible rate combinations, you have to check the booking site 10 + 9 + 8 + 7 + 6 + 5 + 4 + 3 + 2 + 1 = 55 times. But that’s just rate combinations, the real solution is a combination of 10 nights with any of the above rate combinations. Sometimes you do want to check multiple different hotels. Number of combinations will grow exponentially. Very quickly you will have thousands of possibilities to test. Even if you are really a genius and eventually work out the answer, you will find the original rates have changed when you are ready to click the booking button. Do you want to start from the beginning again?
The good news is that FindOptimal can do all of the above for you in several seconds. All you need to do is to define the date range and select all hotel candidates. FindOptimal will retrieve all the rates, create all the combinations and calculate the best solution for you. Furthermore, you can limit the number of hotel switching to a certain number, set up your own switching cost, and request the hotels not too far from each other. All those constraints will be respected during the optimization.
How does it work? Here is the simple multi-night stay optimization process.