Tuesday, December 13, 2016

Top 5 booking websites I use to book hotels

"Since the Industrial Revolution, we've treated our world like it was a hotel room and
we were rock stars" ~ Blake Crouch

Hello readers.

Some of you readers have asked me where do I book my rooms for my travels.

This post hopefully answers that question for you guys. Just to inform you that for most of my travels to other continents, depending on  the safety issues involved I would take a tour. 

But for familiar south east asian destinations, I book my rooms on these websites and it starts from the bottom to the top:-

5. AirBnb

I have honestly only used this service once before. But that's because of my preference for hotels I think. I would rather have the 'inclusive of breakfast' and 'free wifi' things thrown in when I book for a place. But you would be surprised at how much these extras cost and thats why most rooms in AirBnb is cheaper than the hotels. Plus some owners now offer free wifi.  AirBnb does not currently partner with Shopback or Milkadeal cashback and that makes it less popular for me. If you want to know what I mean by cashback go to my earlier post on getting more value for the money you spend here. On the plus side, some really awesome but hidden getaways can be found only on AirBnb like the Twinkle Villa and this awesome Private Resort and we are only scratching the surface of Selangor here. It's therefore worth to surf and to give it a try. The very real and honest reviews from the users also help immensely in making your choice.

Expedia partners with Shopback and Milkadeal although you would have to check the rates on which sites offers you the most cashback. At the moment Shopback is offering 9% of the value of your booking while Milkadeal 6%. I used this site for my bookings in Melaka earlier this year. The plus side for expedia is you can opt to book flights as well so it kind of doubles as an all useful travel agent hahaha. If you click on the last minute deals icon on the site it tells you the lowest deal flights to certain destinations that you can book last minute and more flights plus hotels package at some really good prices. I have one quip about this site though, and that would be its annoying habit to change its prices to a slightly higher rate when you are ready to book after perusing for a while and would  like to  make payment. I would rather they stick to the prices they quote initially but it depends on your luck!

3. Agoda

It partners with both Shopback and Milkadeal usually at the same rate so thats a definite plus. It also has depending on the day some of the best value hotel rooms I have ever come across. The catch? Most of the greatest deals like really cheap ones must be paid up front in full and is non refundable so you must make sure that your travel plans are confirmed because cancelling is a no go. Certain deals also come with complimentary enrich miles points so you are getting a cashback + enrich miles which can both be redeemed later. Thats just super awesome! On top of that agoda has its own credit system which can be redeemed to offset against any later bookings, although you must reach certain amounts of credits before it can be used.

This website is currently moving fast up my favourites list. What I love about it? When you book 10 nights you get one night free equivalent to the average amount per night you have spent on the 10. So lets say you have a free night equivalent to RM250? book a hotel room at RM300 and pay only RM50 being the difference.  This site also partners with shopback and milkadeal so its cashback + free nights! 

I am a veteran on booking. I use this for almost all my hotel bookings as most hotels agree to not charge up front and I can opt to make payment only upon check in at the hotel. Most of the time I do not have to pay extra to get that, unlike Agoda where cancellation up to a certain date or paying only upon check in will result in you paying higher rates. It partners with both milkadeal and shopback, although it does not currently offer anything else as a bonus compared to the other websites above. That being said, as my family travel plans can change drastically I usually opt for this website for family bookings (we tend to book an average of 5 rooms per trip, phewwww). 

Tip : When you want to do bookings, open all these websites at once and compare the prices before deciding. Good luck and happy travels!

Much love from Airiel and I. 

Peace and love to everyone.

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