How To Dodge The Best Price Guarantee

How To Dodge The Best Price Guarantee is a question that you have no-doubt often asked yourself. You may well have spent hours and hours searching for various options on Online Travel Agents (OTAs) such as, search engines such as Kayak, or listing sites of the likes of Airbnb. You look at all the amenities the various options have to offer and try to dispassionately weigh up their benefits, whether they meet your needs or actually just fulfil some non-vital wants, and whether it all adds up to good value for money.

Having talked to all your friends and family to see what they suggest, and ploughed through dozens of Tripadvisor reviews, you finally make up your mind and decide to go ahead and book. Now, it jumps to your mind that you had noticed on that they offered the “Best Price Guarantee” – a guarantee that says that you won’t be able to book the same accommodation for a better rate online. Of course, you think to yourself, must be legally obliged to uphold this guarantee, and therefore no accommodation provider would try to dodge it – in the end, they’ve signed their life away to in the contract they signed when listing their accommodation there. And you’d be right to think so – absolutely right. However, the above reasoning still allows for you to go about obtaining a better rate – the “Best Price Guarantee” only guarantees that it’s the best price at the time you are looking to book, and it is only an online-price-matching feature.

So how do you go about making use of this knowledge to save yourself some hard-earned money? Clearly there are two options – the first one is not to bother looking in advance for accommodation and leave it up to luck to decide where you end up. This will mean you will almost always pay a lot less on a last-minute deal than you would have if booked in advance (most accommodation providers drop their prices unlike travel providers the closer you get to check-in date), however it could also leave you with a more limited range of options to chose from. If the area you need to find accommodation in is heavily booked on those nights, you may end up having a rather miserable stay… Well, you may be thinking that you’ve wasted your time reading this blog post as you haven’t found out anything new. If that’s the case, I apologize. However, unless you’re an accommodation guru, you’ll probably learn about a new technique to save money by reading on.

The second, less well-known fact, is that Online Travel Agents such as make a fortune every time you book through them. They withhold up to 18% of the value of the booking from the accommodation provider, and in many cases this does not include credit card processing fees, so your accommodation provider actually ends up paying around 20% for the lead and processing fees. So once you’ve made up your mind about where you want to stay, why not try checking with the accommodation provider directly what their best rate is? If you contact them via e-mail or over the phone, they may have a better deal in store for you. Instead of losing out on 20% of the value of the booking, they may be willing to give you a 10% discount if you book with them directly and you end up in a win-win situation. Plus, booking directly with them may also ensure a smoother booking and check-in process.

Next time you need to, keep the above two tips in mind, and let us know if they end up saving you a few quid.