We’ve already written about why we think it’s important to stay in a great location on a trip. Once we’ve chosen a location, we always check these three websites before booking lodging. Even if it’s a quick comparison, these sites together give us a really good picture of all lodging possibilities:
Booking.com claims to be the “World’s #1 Choice for Booking Accommodations,” and we believe it. Booking.com usually includes more options than other hotel search engines (Hotels.com, Expedia, etc.) This is particularly true for international travel. The “Map View” is great to help you see what lodging is available in your desired location.
Airbnb is probably the most popular rental-by-owner website and can really expand your lodging options. Instead of a small hotel room, you can often find private apartments, private houses, and many other options. We usually stick with options that have a high number of good reviews, and we have always had great experiences.
We love staying in Airbnb properties especially on longer trips. Unlike most hotel rooms, they will often have a kitchen to prepare food, laundry facilities, and other helpful amenities that can help us stretch our budget.
We consult TripAdvisor all the time because it usually has the highest number of reviews compared to other sites. User photos help us to see what a place will really be like.
TripAdvisor also includes properties, such as Bed and Breakfasts, that only book rooms through the property’s website, so it’s a good way to find out about unique places to stay that don’t show up on most search engines.
Once in a while we choose to use hotel points or reward nights on our trips, but more often we save our hotel points for weekend getaways near our home. We pay money for lodging on most trips so we can stay right where we want to be and have the amenities we want. We’ve found that with a little research we are almost always able to find lodging in great locations for a reasonable price.
What is one of your favorite places that you’ve stayed on a trip?