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I listen to Clark Howard on radio and he had a tip on making motel reservations while out on the road, Here it is:

"Never, ever show up in a lobby of a motel and ask for their best rates.
Clark's advice is ALWAYS use a phone to call the motel for prices, even if your parked 10 feet from the main entrance.
Then after their quote you a rate, always tell them that's to high."

His reason is once they get you face to face they can charge you the top rates because very few people will walk out and try someplace else.

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Or even better - stop at a rest area and pick up the Comic book size list of motels with coupons. They always beat AAA , AARP, and other discounts.
Most (but not all) exclude weekends though.
 

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Agree with Gramps:agree: But a phone call gives you a good basis to work off of.
 

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We generally stop late afternoon and call the ChoiceHotels reservation number. By then we know what town we can make it to. The operators have always been more than helpful with looking up the hotel immenities for us and we seem to always get pretty good prices. Making reservations early doesn't work well for us as we seem to get diverted from our plan during the days we are out.
However if we are going to a specific area and know there is some kind of event planned there I do make prior arrangements. I go nervous and made reservations for the Texas Hill Country area for the last weekend in March because of the bike rally's and flower sniffers will be out in force.
We try to stay in Comfort Inns, they seem to be consistant and priced from $55-$85 depending on location. We've been averaging just under $65 per night on our stays. Hot tub and free breakfast included.
 

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I'm the idiot that sometimes payed the full price when was late and I was tired. Last year my daughter and I were touring eastern West Virginia and we were hungry and tired in later afternoon as we had started early. Just south of Elkins, we noticed a nice big brand spanking new hotel at the top of the hill above US219. It may have been its first day of business. The parking lot was practically empty and this place was a nice and big place. They told me a price of well over 100 dollars a night for a basic no-smoke room. I tipped my hat and went back out to the bike where my daughter used my gps and her phone/computer to access either Priceline or Travelocity to shop around and secured a suite at the same place we were parked for less than 30% of the price I was just given! We drove to a nearby bar-steakhouse to wet our whistles and fill our tummies before catching a movie and going back. The same receptoinist recognized us and said. "Oh, your back!" I said, "Yes, I have a reservaton...." I have been told you get your best deals of you schedule in advance. I did not knkow about coupons at travel stops, I will check that out too. I hardley ever know where I will be staying in advance - live 'n learn -- or pay through the nose!

prs
 
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good post. Some good things to try in the future. I find it hard to make reservations in advance most times, but I'm sure it's worth the hassle.
 

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We just use AAA. No need for coupons, games, or anything. We have found that that the AAA rate is almost always the same rate as the "special rates". Plus, they are under contract to honor the AAA advertised rate.

We did a walk-in once using the AAA card. Went to our room and double checked the rate on the laptop and found that they were charging us $25 more than the AAA rate. I went to the front desk and they adjusted it.
 

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Let me tell ALL of you something about hotels and your favorite internet rate jockeys, priceline,travelocity,hotwire,cheap hotels dot com ETC....

These guys negotiate a rate with us hotels guys on rooms that can be sold at a discount,lets say the rack rate in my hotel is $129.00, we give them a rate of say 45.00 for a room per night, they in turn sell it to you John Q. Public for 65.00, they exclaim to you that we just got you 50% off, well maybe they did but if you had done your research, found that priceline or hotwire rate and then called the hotel and told them what it was ANY good GM would have taken your $65.00 offer and pocketed the whole 65.00 bucks for himself and not given priceline anything, I HATE these guys but the public has been led to believe that they are on your side. Now the reasoning behind giving them the rooms at the reduce rate is that they are acting like a travel agent and the mark up is thier commision, your best bet is CALL the hotel you want to stay at and speak to the front office manager, they can negotiate with you most of the time, if there is a big event in town forget it, everyone makes makes "hay while the sun shines" plan your route, plan your stops, stay with reputable chains, do your homework, NOT ALL HOTEL PEOPLE ARE BAD.
 

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We just use AAA. No need for coupons, games, or anything. We have found that that the AAA rate is almost always the same rate as the "special rates". Plus, they are under contract to honor the AAA advertised rate.

We did a walk-in once using the AAA card. Went to our room and double checked the rate on the laptop and found that they were charging us $25 more than the AAA rate. I went to the front desk and they adjusted it.
Time and time again I have beat AAA and AARP in Ohio, Kentucky, Indiana, Tennessee and West Virgina using the coupons from the books are rest areas. By the way, AAA and AARP rates are generally the same.
 

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Good post.

I've beat the motel prices with the coupons books in the past.

I might try the computer shopping in the future. I got a very small PC for traveling on the bike or car.
 

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We usually try to locate a Comfort Inn, although the price has been drifting closer to the $85.00/nt mark, they are consistently clean and have the free breakfast. We stopped at an Econo-Lodge ans asked about the AAA/AARP discount and the guy told us that the AAA was contracted at 10% and AARP at 5%. It's the only place we were quoted two different prices

Good thread and lots of good info~thanks for posting it


(I always pick up those little books and read them after we check in-DUH!)
 

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I had never attempted to negotiate a better rate in my life at a motel. I asked the price and paid it or moved on.
I took a road trip a couple of months ago with a buddy and was amazed. Walked in and asked the price, he laughed and said come on give me the price you charge your regulars. Three nights in a row this got them all to drop from 20 to 30 bucks just like that. But he wasn't done, then he would say can't you do just a little better then that? Do you have some dinner coupons or something you could throw in? 2 out of the 3 gave us coupons from behind the desk. One was for a free appetizer in their dining room the other was $10 off at local sports bar. 2 of them came down another $10 on the price. I was amazed, in all three nights we paid about two thirds of the first price quoted. We also used both of the coupons. I have been a sucker for 40 years and didn't know it until that trip.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
One more thing............
I can't speak for all you riders here, but it always gets me nervous when paying over $100.00 a night in any motel just to sleep........................:x :oops: :evil:
 

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One more thing............
I can't speak for all you riders here, but it always gets me nervous when paying over $100.00 a night in any motel just to sleep........................:x :oops: :evil:
have to admit i have paid the hi prices more times than i should have but sometimes the situation is just unavoidable

i have had pretty good luck using Check INN card
http://www.checkinncard.com/indexa.cfm?C=4825&B=CID&A=7739
someone else posted the link last year so i signed up, some great deals out there
 

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I always like to book ahead on each day of a trip. One of the first things I do when I get into my room is get out the laptop, start up Mapsource and figure out where I'll be the next day. Find a hotel either through Mapsource or on the internet, check out their home page (gotta have free internet and continental breakfast), then get their local (front desk) number. I use my cell phone to call them directly, and usually get a pretty good deal. I would NEVER use a third-party 1-800 number, as most likely the rate is going to be higher. Last thing to do is plot a route to the hotel and load it into the GPS, so that we can just enjoy the ride next day and not have to worry about finding a hotel. This works very well for me, and is one of the main reasons I take the laptop along on trips. Ya just gotta love technology!
 

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Let me tell ALL of you something about hotels and your favorite internet rate jockeys, priceline,travelocity,hotwire,cheap hotels dot com ETC....

These guys negotiate a rate with us hotels guys on rooms that can be sold at a discount,lets say the rack rate in my hotel is $129.00, we give them a rate of say 45.00 for a room per night, they in turn sell it to you John Q. Public for 65.00, they exclaim to you that we just got you 50% off, well maybe they did but if you had done your research, found that priceline or hotwire rate and then called the hotel and told them what it was ANY good GM would have taken your $65.00 offer and pocketed the whole 65.00 bucks for himself and not given priceline anything, I HATE these guys but the public has been led to believe that they are on your side. Now the reasoning behind giving them the rooms at the reduce rate is that they are acting like a travel agent and the mark up is thier commision, your best bet is CALL the hotel you want to stay at and speak to the front office manager, they can negotiate with you most of the time, if there is a big event in town forget it, everyone makes makes "hay while the sun shines" plan your route, plan your stops, stay with reputable chains, do your homework, NOT ALL HOTEL PEOPLE ARE BAD.
This is my experience as well.
 

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I listen to Clark Howard on radio and he had a tip on making motel reservations while out on the road, Here it is:

"Never, ever show up in a lobby of a motel and ask for their best rates.
Clark's advice is ALWAYS use a phone to call the motel for prices, even if your parked 10 feet from the main entrance.
Then after their quote you a rate, always tell them that's to high."

His reason is once they get you face to face they can charge you the top rates because very few people will walk out and try someplace else.

What'a Think??
Try LaQuinta. I’ve sat in the parking lot of the establishment; check the rate for that location. I even used their Wi-Fi. I then went in and was quoted 20 to 30 dollars higher. I just mention what I saw on their site and they adjust the price every time.
 

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the coupon things at rest or truck stops are always dump hotels, and high priced

without a reservation, you are at their mercy, walking in''but you can haggle idf the lot looks empty, alwasy play the , for that price i can stay at the hol;iday inn, routine, it does work

also, get the rate first, and then pull out the aaa, or aarp card

they will work it in on you if you bring it out right away

priceline, hotwire, etc can get you a room in minutes in a decent sized town

in smaller towns, i use whyndam rewards to get the best rate over the phone, at days, super 8, travel lodge, etc
 
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