Around the World in 80 Pairs of Shoes


February 8, 2014

Hotel Accommodation Travel Tips

If you are like me you are always looking to get the best value for money when it comes to hotel accommodation; there are so many things to consider when booking your accommodation like the location, quality and the price.  Over the last few years I have gotten some pretty great deals and upgrades so I thought I would share some of my hotel accommodation travel tips with you all.

Hotel Loyalty Programs

As easy as this seems, most travellers would prefer to save a few bucks here and there and sleep around (couldn’t resist the pun) rather than staying with just one hotel chain.  What they don’t realise is that they are missing out on some great extras and room upgrades. With so many great loyal hotel program options out there like IHG, Starwood Preferred Guest and Le Club Accor Hotels to just name a few but if you wish to sleep around then read my blog post on some great loyalty programs for the budget and luxury traveller where you can earn free accommodation by using the same website rather than staying at the same hotel chain.

Loyalty Points

Yep after joining that hotel loyalty program you can start earning points either through staying with the hotel or even through your credit card spend if it is linked to your loyalty program and if you have shoe addiction like myself your points will rack up quite quickly! We had 4 lovely nights at the Crowne Plaza in Seattle a few years ago for 80,000 points and we received an upgrade and also access to the lounge ALL FOR FREE! These points can be worth their weight in gold if you use them correctly, especially when booking luxury hotels BUT and there is always a BUT, points are getting slowly degraded in value by most of the loyalty programs so use them wisely.  The view from our room in Seattle

80 pairs of shoes view from crowne plaza seattle

Priority Club Credit Card

I’m not going to lie, I do love the IHG chain from their budget friendly Holiday Inn Express hotels right through to their luxury Intercontinental branded hotels. It made total sense for me to get an Priority Club Credit Card where my spend earns me points each month; hello free luxury hotel accommodation and what is even better if you spend over £10,000 in a year they then send you a lovely free night voucher which you can use at any hotel within the IHG group – yes we are heading to Amsterdam at the end of April for two free nights staying at the luxurious Amstel Hotel saving ourselves over €700; a no brainer people! Make sure you have your credit cards working for you! (Image) I can’t wait to stay here!


Amex Platinum Credit Card

Yes I have two credit cards and there is a reason for this, the Amex Platinum Credit Card offers you some fabulous hotel travel extras like Elite Status with the following hotel loyalty programs; Starwood, Accor and Carlson.  Oh and you also get airport lounge access and a dedicated Platinum Travel and Concierge Service. The £450 fee is expensive but the extras are worth it if you travel a lot; the instant “elite” status to some of the leading luxury hotel brands means there will be free room upgrades and the 30,000 Avios points will come in very handy when I book our BA Business Class flights to Hong Kong!

Book directly with the hotel

Say what! Yes I know you think you will get ripped off by paying direct but so many of the big chains are now offering better deals when booking direct through their websites rather than using the likes of Expedia and  IHG actually offer you your first night free if you can find the room cheaper elsewhere.  As the big hotel chains want you to book directly via them you will find free wifi and breakfast are now getting included in the room rates.

Not happy with the size of your room

Well they do say size does matter and if you are unhappy with the size of your room, have a polite conversation with the reception staff and ask how much an upgrade would be. Funnily enough you will be surprised that most will charge you only a small fee – we had a lovely upgrade to a suite for only €30 per night extra and they threw in free usage of the club lounge. It’s well worth asking the question if you can’t swing a cat in your current room!


Ambassador Club

While I haven’t strayed too often from the IHG group, I decided to use some of my points to join the IHG Ambassador Club which is a service that offers some great little extras like free upgrades, free wifi, welcome gift which is normally water, fruit or cakes (I do prefer the cake, just saying IHG!), a free weekend stay voucher and late check out till 4pm. If you made me pick one thing that I love most about the Ambassador Club it would be the late check out, fantastic if you are doing a city break and have an evening flight, you can go out and explore and then have a quick shower before catching your flight home; so much more relaxing!  Our lovely view from our suite at The Intercontinental Mark Hopkins in San Francisco where we used our free night voucher!


Club Lounges

Many of the luxury hotels have Club Lounges which get used a lot during the week by business travellers however on the weekend they can be a little empty meaning you could score a great deal. Just ask at reception if there is a Club Lounge and how much it would cost to use on your stay; normally breakfast, a light lunch, evening nibbles and drinks are offered free of charge in the Lounges so it could be a cheaper option for you if you don’t have breakfast included in your room rate.


What are your hotel accommodation tips?  How do you get more for you buck when booking accommodation?


P.S. I’m participating in the #SundayTraveler link up, please follow Chasing the Donkey for more information about the travel link up and lovely posts on Croatia!

P.S.S. You still have time to vote for me in the Skyscanner Bloscar Travel Blog Competition  

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