How this little-known trick saved me $50 on a 2-night hotel booking
This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. Terms apply to the offers listed on this page. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page.
There’s a straightforward trick that a lot of people overlook when they’re booking hotel rooms. While it only applies to bookings of two nights or longer, I’ve had it result in a cheaper rate 90% of the time. I’m referring to booking separate hotel nights. How does this work? It’s simple.
For more TPG news delivered each morning to your inbox, sign up for our daily newsletter.
How this works
The rate you pay for a hotel room varies depending on demand.
Sometimes that means which day of the week you’re booking. For example, pre-pandemic in most cities, rates were cheaper on weekends than weekdays because business travel occurred during the week, driving up room rates, while demand dropped off Friday through Sunday night. When I made a reservation that included both a weekend and weekday night, the hotel quoted the higher weekday price for the entire stay.
The same goes for room availability. If a hotel doesn’t have a standard room for an entire stay, you’ll only see availability for premium rooms for the entire stay.
By splitting up your reservation, you can take advantage of cheaper rates. And if you don’t mind switching rooms, you might save quite a bit by booking a standard-priced room for part of your stay and a premium-priced one for the remainder.
I’ve come across searches where a standard room was available for three out of the four nights I needed, with a remaining night being in a suite. When I searched for a four-night stay, the only room option I got was a suite, which cost significantly more.
In situations like these, I’ve either shortened my stay in order to book a reasonably-priced standard room or I’ve made two separate reservations — three nights in a standard room and one in a suite — so I could stay at the same hotel without shelling out extra cash for a suite on all four nights.
Related: Best hotel credit cards of 2021
How I saved $50 on a two-night stay
During a recent visit to New York, I needed a hotel for two nights. Hyatt’s 18 Manhattan properties ranged from $100 to $700 per night, but I really liked the location of the Hyatt Union Square. At $220 per night, it was priced relatively high compared to properties like the Hotel Bowery 50, where rooms start at around $119 a night.
Even though both nights were on a weekday, I decided to search for rooms on separate nights. It paid off because while the first night was priced higher at $238, the second one came in at just $149. Before taxes and fees, that amounted to $53 in total savings.
The best part is that it took maybe five minutes of extra effort to search and book two separate nights instead of one. It was easily worth the $53 discount.
The next time you’re searching for a room on a two-night stay or longer, give this trick a shot. It takes just a few extra minutes of work and can save you a significant amount of money. The only inconvenience is that if the front desk agent cannot merge your reservation, you might have to check in twice and get a new key.
I have a horrible habit of misplacing my keys anyway, so going to the lobby to get a replacement is nothing new. Plus, many hotels are now offering mobile keys and check-in, so you may not have to deal with this mild hassle after all.
Featured image by Ariana Arghandewal / The Points Guy
All screenshots courtesy of Hyatt.com
Welcome to The Points Guy!
Earn 50,000 bonus miles and 5,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $2,000 in purchases on your new card in your first three months of card membership. Plus, earn up to $100 back in statement credits for eligible purchases at U.S. restaurants with your card within the first 3 months of membership.
With Status Boost™, earn 10,000 Medallion Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $25,000 in purchases on your Card in a calendar year, up to two times per year getting you closer to Medallion Status. Earn 3X Miles on Delta purchases and purchases made directly with hotels, 2X Miles at restaurants and at U.S. supermarkets and earn 1X Mile on all other eligible purchases. Terms Apply.
- Earn 50,000 bonus miles and 5,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $2,000 in purchases on your new Card in your first 3 months.
- Plus, earn up to $100 back in statement credits for eligible purchases at US restaurants with your card within the first 3 months of membership.
- Accelerate your path to Medallion Status, with Status Boost®. Plus, in 2021 you can earn even more bonus Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) to help you reach Medallion Status.
- Earn 3X Miles on Delta purchases and purchases made directly with hotels.
- Earn 2X Miles at restaurants worldwide, including takeout and delivery and at U.S. supermarkets.
- Earn 1X Miles on all other eligible purchases.
- Receive a Domestic Main Cabin round-trip companion certificate each year upon renewal of your Card. *Payment of the government imposed taxes and fees of no more than $75 for roundtrip domestic flights (for itineraries with up to four flight segments) is required. Baggage charges and other restrictions apply. See terms and conditions for details.
- Enjoy your first checked bag free on Delta flights.
- Fee Credit for Global Entry or TSA Pre✓®.
- Enjoy an exclusive rate of $39 per person per visit to enter the Delta Sky Club® for you and up to two guests when traveling on a Delta flight.
- No Foreign Transaction Fees.
- $250 Annual Fee.
- Terms Apply.
- See Rates & Fees