Last January, I woke up in beautiful Prague, Czech Republic. I rolled over, indulged in free breakfast, and headed out for a day of sightseeing.
I was amazed with the architecture and obsessed with the cuisine – and my jaw dropped when I learned how inexpensive it was to stay in a 4-star hotel and see the sights abroad.
Whenever I travel, I’m met with the question: “How can you afford to do that!?”
Well for me, it’s easy since I am of royal decent and am siting on a pile of gold as I type this.
From lemonade stands to working the fries at McDonalds, I’ve been working for as long as I can remember – I know how to stretch a dollar and live a life filled with beautiful experiences for less.
On past trips to Europe, I enjoyed the surprise of what I might find within a hostel. Since my college days are far behind me, I now enjoy the small luxuries like a bed that is mold and bed-bug free. Since learning how to stay in 4 and 5 star hotels for the price of a hostel – I haven’t looked back.
When looking for accommodations, use Hotwire.com. Hotwire allows you to book luxury hotels at a discounted rate. Many of these hotels don’t want to advertise lower rates in fear of diluting their brand.
For this reason, you are unable to see which hotel you will stay at until you book. With Hotwire, you pick the price, location, and star quality and after booking receive an email with the location. I’ve done this in cities all around the world – Buenos Aires, Washington DC, Portland, Madrid and more.
Here’s how it works. Right now I am planning trips to Rome, Budapest, and Tel Aviv. Traveling to Budapest next month, I typed my criteria into the search bar.
The search will bring up a variety of options. For $34 per night, you can stay in a 4-star hotel in the Inner City – right next to many of the national museums. Not only is that a great location, but a great price. If you’re traveling with a friendly, simply cut that number in half.
Now let’s do the math…
$34 x 30 days = $1020 for one month hotel rent
The ideal situation is to travel with a friend so you can cut this number in half. In this scenario, you can live for an entire month in a hotel for $510 dollars! In a major city like NYC, this is 1/3 of what you’d pay.
Looking for something cheaper?
Drop down a star. For $24 per night you can stay in a 3-star hotel like Crown Plaza or Double Tree.
Let’s do the math here:
$24 x 30 days = $720
Divide that by two if you’re with a friend and you’re paying $360 for rent to live in a hotel!
This means someone will make your bed everyday. You’ll have all the toiletries your heart desires, and often times free breakfast saving you even more.
The above is just one example for my upcoming trip to Budapest.
A quick 5 minute scan of Hotwire, I found these deals:
Bucarest, Romania : $34
Sofia, Bulgaria: $34
Kiev, Ukraine: $20
Santiago de Compostela, Spain $34
Depending on the day you look and which weeks you’re looking for, you can find a variety of deals. Still too expensive? Book an AirBnb to cut costs even more.
You’ll get to meet someone from the city you’re staying in and even get to watch them make dinner…
So the question now is – who wants to come?
Arianna O’Dell is a digital marketer with a passion for coffee, travel, and digital media. Her work has been featured on her mother’s refrigerator and on blogs worldwide.
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