Hotwire “Hot Rate” hotels can be a great deal and save you a lot of money. The problem is that this feature does not let you know which hotel you will be getting. I will show you how to figure out exactly which hotel you will get with Hotwire.
First, why does this even matter? Well, sometimes the VacationFam is looking for a specific amenity. We often like going to hotels with indoor pools during the cold Colorado winters. However, we have been to enough bargain hotels and motels to know that not all indoor pools are created equal. Some are downright scary! So, when we pick a hotel we want to know that the pool is in good shape, has a hot tub, and doesn’t look too… how do I say this… “murdery.”
Lots of hotels offer free breakfast, but the quality of your morning meal might be drastically different. When we visit Colorado Springs we like to stay at The Academy Hotel because it has one of the best hotel breakfast buffets I’ve ever seen at a price point around $100 a night. They serve multiple warm options; bacon, sausage, and even have a made-to-order omelette station (don’t forget to tip). On the other hand, we’ve ended up at several motels across the country where the free breakfast has been a bowl of apples and boxes of the day old donuts on discount from Dunkin’ (I’m looking at you Trail’s End Motel in Wisconsin Dells). Gross!
Using Hotwire’s “Hot Rate” hotels can save you up to $30 a night over any other available travel site, but the caveat is that they hide the identity of the hotel until you book. Lucky for us they provide enough small details that you can uncover which room you will get before booking if you follow these simple steps.
Step 1. Search for a Hot Rate Hotel
Enter your details into the booking section of Hotwire.com. Make sure you include all of the members in your party, as sometimes hotels will charge differently if you have kids included in the room. Then click “Find a hotel.” In milliseconds, you will have a list of your hotels and some great Hot Rate hotels.
Step 2. Select Your Hot Rate Hotel
A 4.5 star hotel in the center of Denver for $61 off the best price you can find on any other travel site is a real deal. On top of that, it has an Expedia ranking of 4.5/5. However, which hotel is it?
Step 3. Show “What Hotel Will I Get?”
In the example above the 3.5 star all-suites hotel guarantees that it could either be the DoubleTree by Hilton, the Cambria Suites Denver, or Woolley’s Classic Suites. A quick glance at the Hot Rate listing showing that the Expedia score is 4.6/5 already narrows down the options to Cambria or Woolley’s because Hotwire lists DoubleTree at 4.0+ which means that its rating is between 4.0 and 4.4
Step 4. Go to Expedia and Look for Review Number
Based on the details that provided, the selected hotel has 989 Expedia reviews (scroll up for a refresher). If I do a search for the Woolley’s Classic Suites on Expedia I can see that there are 3,738 reviews. This is WAY more than 998 reviews. Based on that I now know that the Hot Rate hotel that I will get is Cambria Suites Denver. At this point, I can check out the hotel with confidence that I will be staying my night there. This will allow me to make an informed decision before I lock in and also give me an opportunity to make sure if the Hot Rate provides the lowest available price.
That’s how the VacationFam uses Hotwire “Hot Rate” hotels to save money. Have you ever booked a “Hot Rate” reservation? How was it? Let us know in the comments below. We will be staying at accommodations we got this way in just over a week in Dallas. We will let you know how it goes.