As mentioned above, there are many factors that will guide and influence the final choice of hotel or resort you’ll wish to book for your holiday. We all have our preferred way of booking a hotel – some are more easy than others.
You can literally spend hours and even days looking in hotel directories and websites to see pictures and videos of hotel facilities and the descriptions of the amenities offered by each. Some amenities may be essential to you. If you’re travelling alone, the job is easier. But if you’re travelling with others, keeping everyone happy is not so obvious.
Regardless of the proposed methods listed below, one factor will be constant to all searches: your budget. There’s no point in looking at a two-week vacation in the Bahamas at a five-star all inclusive hotel if your budget is $1500 for 2 people!
METHOD 1 – WHAT MATTERS?
The first method consists in creating a list of criteria that will influence your decision to select a hotel. List all criteria, from all people travelling with you, in no particular order. Once this step is done, then comes the tough part.
Start organizing the list by putting the most important factors at the top of the list. Then assign a number to each factor. At this stage, make sure everyone agrees with the new ordered list. From the list, pick the most important item (your top priority) and start searching the web based on this priority. You have now started to narrow down the list of potential hotels. Then, using the second most important criterion, narrow down the list even more. Continue in this way using the third most important criterion on your list.
Finally, continue your search going through your list of criteria until you’re satisfied that you’ve found the most suitable accommodations for you and your travelling partners.
METHOD 2 – STARS AND PRICE
Choose a hotel website, then look up all hotels available at your destination. If the hotel location is not important to you, simply sort the hotel listing by star rating. Generally, the prices are well aligned with the number of stars, so the more star rating, the higher the prices. This method allows you to respect your budget fairly easily.
METHOD 3 – LOCATION
Most hotel websites have a map showing where the hotels are located. This is quite handy, as you can see where the hotel is in relation to the most popular activities. If the website does not provide this option, select the hotel address and use other website map services such as Google Maps or Bing Maps to see the hotel specific location.
It’s a good idea to determine first in which area you wish to be. That way, you will not lose time looking up hotels that are nowhere close to your preferred location or activities. The further you are from the points of interest, the more expensive it will be for you to get there.
METHOD 4 – I KNOW WHERE TO STAY
If you know the name of the hotel or resort where you’d like to stay, you can sort listings of hotels alphabetically or simply type the hotel name in the search template of the website.
Tips: Once you’ve found the hotel you want, use a hotel search engine to see what’s available and at what rate. Then, go to the hotel’s website to book directly — most hotels guarantee you the lowest rate when you book on their site, and will match a lower price found elsewhere.