Thursday, June 21, 2018

Hotel Deal App Review: FreeHotelCoupons, EaseMyTrip, Groupon

Booking a hotel should be pretty easy. But depending on your budget and your tastes, it can get pretty complicated.

Here's my dilemma. I'm looking for a Los Angeles hotel central enough to the city, Universal Studios Hollywood and Santa Monica Pier/ Venice Beach area. I found a couple of cheaper hotels and motels outside of the city, but let's just say that they looked every bit of their 2.5 or less Star ratings. If it were a nicer place then I wouldn't mind the driving distance but to layer a poor quality rating (out of TEN!!), drive time, paying for parking (!!) and what appeared to be small, murky rooms with no space for luggage makes for one unhappy traveler.

Sometimes budget is nice- but sometimes budget just means crappy.

Budget for hostel in central locale= cool.
Budget for cheap motel in outskirts= serial killer dump spot.

So, I decided to try out a few apps I had installed just to see how far I could get.

Behold: my research to better ease your possible trips!

Free Hotel Coupons:


So this app's title is about coupons. I was thinking it was something more akin to hotels.com or Ebates or something that gives rewards or like one of those retail me not things that are just giant coupon databases for your actual spending.


This app, well, this app title is a liar.

First it prompts you to pick your destination and date. Then the takes you to the second step of..... picking your destination and date. Then you finally get somewhere.

Only all it does it basically take you to a compiled list of hotels brought to you by Trip Adviser. One or two hotel options may not have the owl icon next to them, but basically it's Trip Adviser. No coupons. No deals that you couldn't find anywhere else. That's it. That's all it is. It's Trip Adviser hotels. So you may as ell go to the Ta app o site because at least then you can get money back on Ebates.
There's no good here, it's all bad.
No need to install this app.
Deleting.

Ease My trip:

I'm sure this app is fine or just like all the other ones lately with no actual secret deals. I can't tell. It's all in Rupees. I knew something was up with it when all of the major Indian cities were the first thing shown. Too bad it's not mentioned in the app description before you install it.

So, fine, if you're in India. Tough to translate accurately if you're used to USD.

Deleting this one, also. But not salty about it.

Groupon

No introduction necessary, I'm sure. For some reason I always remember the Groupon exists for mini vacations like trips to Cancun for 4 nights and things, but it didn't occur to me until a few weeks ago to look for hotel deals alone. So, in planning for the trip, that's what I did for our weekend trip to Las Vegas following our stay in Cali.

And it worked well. I found a super cool looking hotel on the Strip for two nights for their discounted, "not yet booked to capacity so toss these deals out there" fares! But hey, 66% off per night AND free buffet voucher for each night- sounds good! So, thanks to Groupon and Ebates I found a swell deal and will get getting money back in August so far to the tune of about $66 from booking two nights at the hotel, train and bus excursion.

So, lesson learned; sometimes it's better to just go with what's easy, and what you've used before.  Granted I've never booked a hotel on Groupon before, it seems to be ok!

So, there are three tips so far about Hotel Deal searches. I know there are countless websites like Hotels.com that offer a free night and deals, but at least for our Vegas stay- Groupon had a better price by about $100 difference plus food vouchers.

Are there any specialty apps that you use that I haven't mentioned before? I'd love to keep my research going.

Until then, Be kind to one another! See you on the Strip!

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