4 More Ways to Stay at Premium Hotels Without Paying a Premium

Photo (cc) by Grand Velas Riviera Maya

Have you seen one of those movies where the country bumpkin enters a fine restaurant and gets confused when the waiter wants to take his coat? That’s how I felt when I stayed at The Little Nell hotel in Aspen, Colo., last spring.

After finishing a bike ride, the doorman asked to take my bicycle, and I almost didn’t let him. As I discovered, this hotel features complimentary valet bicycle parking in addition to big-screen TVs and fireplaces in each room. So what’s a frugal guy like me doing in a five-star hotel that normally costs more than $365 a night, even in the offseason? Would you believe I paid $139 a night for this kind of luxury?

There are many ways to save money on a hotel, and Money Talks News founder Stacy Johnson nails some of the best ones in 8 Tips to Save at Any Hotel – Even the Nation’s Trendiest. But I’ve been able to come up with just a few more…

1. Discover group rates

I was in Aspen to participate in a bicycle ride, and the organizers had secured deep discounts at some local hotels. With the Little Nell being offered to me at just a few dollars more than lesser properties, my choice of a five-star hotel was easy.

Later, it occurred to me that anyone could have booked that rate, merely by citing the discount code that was posted on the website of the cycling event. Now I know how to search for local events that may offer some fantastic pre-negotiated hotel rates. (Obviously, you shouldn’t take a discounted room meant for members of an organization or event if you’re not eligible.)

2. Get free nights as a credit card sign-up bonus

Hyatt Hotels offers two free nights at any of its properties to customers who sign up for their credit card from Chase. This doesn’t sound impressive until your realize that those properties include the likes of the Park Hyatt in Paris – which can cost more than $1,300 a night!

That can certainly take the edge off of your cost of a nice stopover in the City of Lights. Other major hotel chains have similar offers for free nights or points when you apply for and receive their credit card.

3. Use credit card spending to earn hotel points

Most reward travel cards earn frequent-flier miles or points toward cash back or gift cards. While airlines have made awards harder to find and redeem, hotels have done the opposite. In fact, Starwood, Hilton, and Intercontinental Hotels will offer award stays at any hotel room they have available for sale.

On a recent trip to Italy, I was able to stay in at the Sheraton Four Points in downtown Milan for a mere 20,000 points I earned in Starwood Hotels’ program – saving hundreds of dollars.

4. Get status in a hotel program

If you’re able to receive and maintain status in one of the major hotel chains, you can often get an upgrade to a superior room. Many hotels offer rooms with views, upgraded amenities, or even suites to those with “status.”

You can receive this status by meeting a minimum number of paid stays each year. But many chains also award it to those who use their co-branded credit card. In Milan, we received an upgrade from a nice but small room to a two-bedroom suite, just because I held Starwood Gold status. The funny thing is, I can’t remember ever paying for a Starwood hotel. I just use their co-branded American Express card.

The only thing more satisfying that enjoying a stay in an ultra-luxury hotel is the knowledge that it cost very little to do so. Follow Stacy’s tips as well as a few of my own, and find out what kind of quirky amenities, like valet bicycle parking, you have been missing out on.

Disclosure: The information you read here is always objective. However, we sometimes receive compensation when you click links within our stories.

Read Next
Watch This: Organize Your Home With Dollar Tree Products
Watch This: Organize Your Home With Dollar Tree Products

Here’s how to organize every corner of your home using only items from a dollar store.

7 Reasons Not to Move When You Retire
7 Reasons Not to Move When You Retire

Sunny skies and warm breezes sound great. But in reality, you might be better off retiring closer to home.

How to Avoid Being Surprised by 7 Nasty Expenses
How to Avoid Being Surprised by 7 Nasty Expenses

Major expenses are difficult to predict, but there are ways to make sure you’re protected.

Never Buy These 19 Things Online
Never Buy These 19 Things Online

The internet has changed how we shop. But for some things, you’re still better off buying the old-fashioned way.

Want a Healthy Retirement? Turn This Device Off
Want a Healthy Retirement? Turn This Device Off

A common behavior becomes increasingly dangerous for those who are 50 or older.

View this page without ads

Help us produce more money-saving articles and videos by subscribing to a membership.

Get Started

Most Popular
9 Things You’ll Never See at Costco Again
9 Things You’ll Never See at Costco Again

The warehouse store offers an enormous selection, but these products aren’t coming back.

11 Things Retirees Should Always Buy at Costco
11 Things Retirees Should Always Buy at Costco

This leader in bulk shopping is a great place to find discounts in the fixed-income years.

Over 50? The CDC Says You Need These 4 Vaccines
Over 50? The CDC Says You Need These 4 Vaccines

Fall is the time to schedule vaccines that can keep you healthy — and even save your life.

11 Senior Discounts for Anyone Age 55 or Older
11 Senior Discounts for Anyone Age 55 or Older

There is no need to wait until you’re 65 to take advantage of so-called “senior” discounts.

11 Household Items That Go Bad — or Become Dangerous
11 Household Items That Go Bad — or Become Dangerous

When you get the impulse to stockpile these everyday items, pay close attention to their expiration dates.

8 Things You Can Get for Free at Pharmacies
8 Things You Can Get for Free at Pharmacies

In this age of higher-priced drugs and complex health care systems, a trip to the pharmacy can spark worry. Freebies sure do help.

These Are the 4 Best Medicare Advantage Plans for 2020
These Are the 4 Best Medicare Advantage Plans for 2020

Medicare Advantage customers themselves rate these plans highest.

7 Ways to Boost Your Credit Score Fast
7 Ways to Boost Your Credit Score Fast

Your financial security might soon depend upon the strength of your credit score.

The 10 Most Commonly Stolen Vehicles in America
The 10 Most Commonly Stolen Vehicles in America

A new model parks atop the list of vehicles that thieves love to pilfer.

19 High-Paying Jobs You Can Get With a 2-Year Degree
19 High-Paying Jobs You Can Get With a 2-Year Degree

These jobs pay more than the typical job in the U.S. — and no bachelor’s degree is required.

5 Ways to Get Amazon Prime for Free
5 Ways to Get Amazon Prime for Free

Hesitant to drop $119 a year on an Amazon Prime membership? Here’s how to get it for free.

10 Reasons Why You Should Actually Retire at 62
10 Reasons Why You Should Actually Retire at 62

If you can, here are several good reasons to retire earlier than we’re told to.

3 Ways to Get Microsoft Office for Free
3 Ways to Get Microsoft Office for Free

With a little ingenuity, you can cut Office costs to zero.

26 States That Do Not Tax Social Security Income
26 States That Do Not Tax Social Security Income

These states won’t tax any of your Social Security income — and in some cases, other types of retirement income.

14 Things That Are ‘Free’ With Medicare
14 Things That Are ‘Free’ With Medicare

These services could save you money and help prevent costly health problems.

5 Keys to Making Your Car Last for 200,000 Miles
5 Keys to Making Your Car Last for 200,000 Miles

Pushing your car to 200,000 miles — and beyond — can save you piles of cash. Here’s how to get there.

5 Things That Make Life More Meaningful for Retirees
5 Things That Make Life More Meaningful for Retirees

Retirees agree: These are the things that give them purpose and fulfillment in their golden years.

10 Things You Should Never Do With Bleach
10 Things You Should Never Do With Bleach

Does the pandemic have you reaching for bleach more than ever before? Learn the ins and outs of using this powerful disinfectant.

15 Amazon Purchases That We Are Loving Right Now
15 Amazon Purchases That We Are Loving Right Now

These practical products make everyday life a little easier.

View More Articles

View this page without ads

Help us produce more money-saving articles and videos by subscribing to a membership.

Get Started

Add a Comment

Our Policy: We welcome relevant and respectful comments in order to foster healthy and informative discussions. All other comments may be removed. Comments with links are automatically held for moderation.