I love an app that lets me save on spontaneous shopping sprees and last minute weekend getaways. Because, really, you don’t have to be super-organized to save – you just have to be super-savvy (and remember to charge your phone). So I was really excited to discover Hotel Tonight, an Android, iPhone, iPad, iPod app that lets you book hotel rooms the day you need them, at the last minute, when hotels are dying to give them away. The good? You could save well over a hundred dollars a night off standard booking fees. The bad? You’ve got to be a bit of an impromptu risk-taker.
Here’s the great thing about Hotel Tonight – it thoroughly, yet succinctly profiles each hotel it lists in its database – and those listings are deliberately slim, to assure users only book rooms in hotels that are, for the most part, decent and drama free. You’ll only get a limited number of hotels from which to choose in any one city you search, so the pickings are slim but more secure. Here were yesterday’s options in Philadelphia:
Hotel Tonight uses its own rating system that shuns stars in favor of categorical adjectives that are meant to give you more practical information about any potential booking.
I’ll take a “Ballin'” room, please!
I love how Hotel Tonight gives me more information, more readily than I’d find it on most actual hotels’ websites (or even in the hotel rooms themselves). You can easily reference check-in/check-out times, Internet access info, room dimensions and amenities, parking and pet policies, plus, most important, all the deets on food.
So, what’s all the fine print say? Just like the name implies, you can only book a room on a day-of basis, from noon through 2 AM the day you need it. But, the cool thing is that you can book for more than one night (each hotel listing will specify how many additional nights you can book with your day-of reservation). You can’t pick your room either, but any room you book through Hotel Tonight will be able to accommodate at least two, sleeping adults. All your booking receipts stay organized within the Hotel Tonight app, too, so you shouldn’t have any issues keeping it all together.
How do you sign up? Download the free app and either create an account or log-in with Facebook (the later option makes everything so much easier). When you sign up, you’ll be given the option to invite friends via Twitter, Facebook, or text. If your friends join using your promo code, they’ll automatically receive a $25 credit toward one of their future bookings. And when one of your referrals books his or her first room, you’ll get a $25 dollar credit for yourself.
Have you used Hotel Tonight? What kind of deal did you get? Did you book a Ballin’ room? Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org!