Tuesday, February 02, 2016

Revealing the Secrets of Secret Hotels!

I’ve been booking loads of hotels around Ireland lately as my husband’s new job requires a lot of travel. While using the usual booking sites to find the best rates and I’ve come across “Secret Hotels” on lastminute.ie. They’ll give you a description of the secret hotel and tell you it’s at a better rate, sometimes up to 45% off regular rates. But you won’t know the exact hotel until after you’ve booked. Well I’ve figured out the secret about secret hotels. Thus taking the mystery out of it before I click “book” so I can make an informed decision as to whether I’m making a great saving or not; I'm all about calling out travel 'bargains' that aren't bargains at all.

With a little detective work you’ll most likely find the name of the hotel. First thing to do is keep an eye on the url as sometimes the hotel name will pop up there. If it doesn’t Google is your friend, simply copy the description of the hotel and do a general google search. This either gives you the name of the hotel or narrows down your search significantly.

Ssssh.... it's a secret locaysh!

If you still have a couple of possibilities you can then use the description to triangulate using Google maps, for instance, they’ll usually tell you if it’s within walking distance of a landmark or near a certain restaurant. 

Eeeee - it's a mysteryyyyy

I was searching for a hotel in Belfast last week when I was offered a “Top Secret Hotel” Modern 4-Star Hotel In Belfast City Centre**** I Googled the description and came up with a handful of hotels so by method of deduction, I worked out that it’s the Clayton Hotel as they have a pool. There was only a Euro or so price difference between lastminute.ie and lastminute.com (UK site). I’d say this was just due to currency conversion.

Which hotel were we staying in here? WHO KNOWS?!

By going direct with the hotel getting their “best available rate room only” it was €223.39(£169.32) withlastminute.com as a secret hotel room only it was £135 (€178.11) so I made a saving of €45.28. My only reason for using the UK site to book was that I also Google searched for a promo code for lastminute.comand found one giving me a further £5 (€6.60) off but it would only work on the UK site and not the Irish site. I made a total saving of €51.88 for my husband’s 2 night stay.

I have to laugh though as I made the saving for my husband’s company not for us as it’s all on expenses. This budgeting and bargain hunting obsession I have is an illness!

Ahoo, where could this be?

Stone Travel Detective Work REVEALS...

Here are a few more hotels I have worked out using the steps above:

Trendy 4-Star City Centre Hotel with a Plush Spa**** Malmaison Birmingham

Historic 4-Star Hotel, with Contemporary Style, in the Centre of Belfast**** Malmaison Belfast

Iconic 5-Star Hotel in Southern Amsterdam***** Hilton Amsterdam

Modern 4-Star Hotel Near 3Arena**** Clayton Hotel, Cardiff Lane

Centrally Located 3-Star Hotel near Trinity College Dublin*** O’Callaghan Mont Clare

Great Hotel in the Heart of Dublin*** Maldron Hotel Pearse Street

Wonderful and Convenient 4-star Hotel near the River Liffey**** The Ashling Hotel

Lively Hotel Right in the Heart of Temple Bar*** Temple Bar Hotel

Have you ever booked a Secret Hotel? How was it?

No comments: