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Hotel walk ins....are they really cheaper and readily avail?

Melbourne, Australia
Level Contributor
2,588 posts
94 reviews
85 helpful votes
Hotel walk ins....are they really cheaper and readily avail?

Hi

My husband and I will be arriving in LA in 2 weeks time, and travelling a bit, with accomo booked in various players, ie 4 days, 2 days, 3 days etc etc

We will be in SF 20 april for 2 nights, then making our way down the coast (if we can with a detour)

I have done my research on this site and booked my accomodation direct, or with booking sites, and 95% of them are cancellable with 24-48 hours notice

My question is my husbands mate is over there at moment, went with a friend, they hired a car and flew by seats of pants, went from LA to SF to Vegas now back to LA. They didnt prebook any accomodation an he called us to say we should cancel, as he walks into places and hes paid approx $40-75 a night for top quality hotels. He isnt talking motels, he says good hotels, big chains, Sheraton, Marriott etc . In vegas he was at Ceasers and said it was $40 night for the room!!

Now he tells me there is no shortage of rooms, and he is there during spring break, but the walk in rates are nothing like what we pay to pre-book in Australia

He also told me to check http://www.losangeles.com sanfran.com (he did that from hotels before he left to get an idea of where to head too) and see for myself. However, when I log on from hear its coming up with rates close to what Ive paid, not what he is saying?

Anyone shed some light on this please? I wouldnt cancel all my accomodation, but some places are $300 a night ive booked and wondering if I should just wait and "wing it" when I arrive?

Does anyone think his experience is "accurate"!

Thanks

SoCal
Level Contributor
5,660 posts
14 reviews
8 helpful votes
1. Re: Hotel walk ins....are they really cheaper and readily avail?

Why don't you try price line at those low prices and see what you get? I know when we go places and need a place basically while "on the road" we always find something but not as cheap as you are saying. Spring Break takes place over the course of about 2 months, March and April. In Southern CA I believe most Spring Breaks have not started yet.

Yucaipa, California
Destination Expert
for Anaheim
Level Contributor
28,268 posts
3 reviews
9 helpful votes
2. Re: Hotel walk ins....are they really cheaper and readily avail?

If you are traveling witn children, don't try it. You may end up going from place to place which is a lot fir a kid to go through. If I were in your shoes I would prefer to keep the reservations and try to talk the general manager or on duty manager down. You can even try emailing them with a request for a lower rate (have something in mind). You may need to behave as if you are willing to go elsewhere, although you can cave in if they don't. Don't speak to just any staff member, go as high as you can and just say something like you hear they need to fill rooms. You should do it close to when you leave.

San Diego
Destination Expert
for San Diego
Level Contributor
74,526 posts
57 reviews
127 helpful votes
3. Re: Hotel walk ins....are they really cheaper and readily avail?

Today is April1, are you sure your friend is not playing an April Fool joke on you??? I have never heard of "walk in rates" for BIG hotels like Marriott and Sheraton at those low prices!!!

Las Vegas is the only place where you might find a great hotel room by just walking in but NOT in San Francisco or the rest of California.

You do NOT have to pay $300 per night for a room but finding them for $40 -$75 and NOT dinky motels, is pretty UNbelievable!!

4. Re: Hotel walk ins....are they really cheaper and readily avail?

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Fremont, California
Level Contributor
165,384 posts
8,351 reviews
4,262 helpful votes
5. Re: Hotel walk ins....are they really cheaper and readily avail?

We had some really bad weather last week - it is possible that some places were offering some deals due to the weather. Note: I got a couple of offers in my email to come for a few days in late March for a very good rate.

When you are traveling it will be a some what busy travel season. It is Easter Time for us here and many people are traveling; as such, rates will be higher and also people do travel to see extended family for the holidays.

With careful planning, you will usually find walk in rates higher than finding a good offer on the internet (i.e. hotel booking site, expedia, etc.).

Melbourne, Australia
Level Contributor
2,588 posts
94 reviews
85 helpful votes
6. Re: Hotel walk ins....are they really cheaper and readily avail?

hi all

thanks for your responses!

My husbands friend did tell me this about 4 or 5 days ago, I told him I didnt believe him and he told me it again today when he called!

He is known for "stretching the truth a little"!!

I had already done good research, and I know we are travelling at busier times being easter etc, and I researched and got the best rates for the places I wanted

I didnt think it was really valid, but I thought I would put it out there!!

I am at ease now!! lol

Berkeley, Ca.
Level Contributor
4,827 posts
61 reviews
159 helpful votes
7. Re: Hotel walk ins....are they really cheaper and readily avail?

I seem to remember advice that you might get offered better rates making a phone call on the same night rather than showing up at their doors. The idea was that if you show up at the hotel at night you're pretty much in need and less likely to walk away. In general, I'd want to have reservations in a California urban or resort area.

United States
Level Contributor
2,141 posts
13 reviews
35 helpful votes
8. Re: Hotel walk ins....are they really cheaper and readily avail?

If you walk into a hotel , they figure that you probably want to stay there rather than running all over town looking for a better rate. So they will probably quote you a better rate over the phone, hoping that you decide to come in. Walk-ins usually get higher rates. And the $40 rate at Caesars' Palace must have been for someone with a nice gambling history at the hotel.

Mid-April is not high season driving down the coast of California, you should have no trouble finding roadside accomodations, but would need to book ahead for Saturday nights.

Edited: 13 years ago
Santa Monica...
Destination Expert
for Los Angeles, Santa Monica, Mammoth Lakes
Level Contributor
37,775 posts
45 reviews
45 helpful votes
9. Re: Hotel walk ins....are they really cheaper and readily avail?

I, too, have booked hotels at the last minute by walking in - rather than drive - and it's top rate, no deals.

california
Level Contributor
11,773 posts
155 reviews
235 helpful votes
10. Re: Hotel walk ins....are they really cheaper and readily avail?

Mid week you may get some deals by calling ahead on the same day, but your friend is traveling during bad weather and low season. Your experience will be different than what is happening now.

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