- Know The Market - The web-based price predictor feature on The Suitest forecasts how room prices are expected to fluctuate for the next month - use it to find the right time to buy in any market. Then cross-check with Deal Angel and Bing's Hotel Rate Indicator - both of them compare quoted rates with a hotel's average cost, telling you which deals are really worthwhile.
- Stay Notified - Sign up for e-mail notification from Yapata, and the booking site will alert you if room prices go down; if you make a reservation with Tingo, they will track your rate and refund you if a cheaper one pops up.
- Book Blind - You can save up to 60% with mystery booking pioneer Hotwire and Travelocity's Top Secret Deals. The trade off is that they don not tell you where you are staying until you have paid. For that, turn to Bidgoggles and HotelDealsRevealed which can help you figure out what property might be behind the curtain. Better yet, Guestmob offers similar discounts if you let it choose one of four predetermined hotels for you (all in the same part of town).
- Try Your Luck - Priceline's Name Your Price has an auction tool which lets you propose a rate to properties that you are considering. Equally worthwhile is BackBid which allows you to submit the details of an existing, refundable reservation, and similar hotels will try to outdo one another on savings. You can also try to win big with Roomer. Like Stub Hub for hotels, it is a resale marketplace for nonrefundable bookings - sold here at rock bottom prices.
- Procrastinate - Same-day booking apps such as HotelTonight (free iOS) and BookingTonight.com (free, Android, iOS) yield up to 70% off regular rates, if you are willing to wait until the last minute. Due to its popularity, there usually is plenty of inventory to choose from daily. A tip here is that the deepest discounts surface on Sundays, Mondays, Thursdays, and right after holidays.
Travel + Leisure March 2014