Understanding the Factors That Affect Hotel Rates

Photo of author

By Jacob Maslow

If you regularly book hotel rooms, you may have realized that it can be surprising to see how prices fluctuate.

Some days, it seems like prices are at one point—and then on other days, it often seems like they’re completely different.

Why is this?

Why do hotel prices tend to fluctuate so much?

Well, as it turns out, there are a few different reasons for this.

Several different factors can affect hotel price points.

The good news is that once you understand these factors, you may be able to use your understanding as a tool to get better rates and deals.

So let’s dive into this topic and discuss some of the primary reasons for why hotel rooms tend to fluctuate in their pricing.

1. Location

If you’ve ever noticed that hotel rooms tend to get more expensive in certain areas, it’s probably because the location plays a big role.

The good news about knowing this is that you can save money on hotel rooms by booking them in locations that aren’t quite as ‘traffic heavy.’

The downside to this is that booking rooms in prime locations is probably going to cost you more.

Choosing a specific location can save you money on hotel rooms by selecting a neighborhood or area outside the city center or tourist areas.

Hotels in these areas often have lower rates while providing easy access to nearby attractions and amenities.

(Note: If the goal is to save some money on hotel rooms, check out this guide on how to get awesome discounts.)

2. Time of Year


Trying to book hotel rooms at high-traffic traveling times of the year will probably result in you paying more for those rooms—and the reasons for this are pretty easy to understand.

Simply put—renting a room around a holiday will probably cost more than during a normal part of the year.

And trying to get a room over the weekend might even be more expensive than getting a room in the middle of the week.

It all has to do with room availability and how in demand the rooms are during different times of the week, month, or year.

To book cheaper rooms at certain times of the year, consider traveling during the shoulder season just before or after peak season.

During this time, hotels may offer discounted rates to attract guests, and you may also find fewer crowds and better weather than during the peak season.


3. Room Type and Amenities


Fancier amenities are going to cost you more.

Getting a simple room with one bed is going to be cheaper, generally speaking, than getting a room that has two beds, a mini fridge, an in-room bar, and a hot tub.

The presidential suite will always cost more than the basic ground floor room.

The fancier stuff you get, the more it tends to cost,


4. Brand and Reputation


Some hotel brands cater to a customer base that wants more affordable rooms—while other hotels brand themselves as luxury hotels and charge a premium for their accommodations.

If you want to save some cash on a hotel, opt for a budget brand instead of a luxury brand.

This will often yield pretty significant savings.


5. Supply and Demand


During times of the year when hotel rooms are in higher demand, you will tend to pay more for them.

One thing to note is that this is also true for hotels in specific areas.

For example, in high-traffic areas where hotel rooms are constantly booked, you’re probably looking at a situation where you’ll pay more.

This can cause the rates to fluctuate.


Now you know many of the most crucial factors affecting hotel room prices.

The great news about these pricing factors is that you can use them to plan and get the best rates possible.

The downside to it is that, sometimes, it may just be unavoidable to get cheaper rooms in certain situations.

This is all part of planning your travel itinerary strategically and in advance.


Images Courtesy of DepositPhotos