I am a fan of free and easy travelling. I enjoy planning my own itinerary; booking my own hotels and rail transport and everything else that is needed to go on a free and easy trip. It also means I need to decide how I want to make the booking and through which channel or website. Lots of work to be done; lots of research to be done, nevertheless, I enjoy it.
Let’s examine on one of the components which is online hotel booking site. There are many online hotel booking websites available; which to choose and how to choose are the basic questions which we need to answer.
There are many ways which we may deploy. We can read the online reviews written by bloggers and travellers. We may ask friends for their experiences and opinions. Finally, we have to test it out by trying it out ourselves.
For me, I start by comparing the prices for my choice hotels. I usually will choose the booking sites with the best deal. At times, it may be due to the availability of rooms for my choice hotel on the online hotel booking sites. These methods do come with some risks which I encountered recently when I used one of the booking site which I never used previously.
In this blog entry, the focus is on the best online hotel booking site and the worst booking site.
The best online booking site, in my opinion through my experience has to go to Booking.com. I would rate their service 9.5 out of 10, simply almost perfect.
In what way have Booking.com done differently to differentiate themselves from their competitors.
I am impressed with their response time. It is almost instantaneously after I sent them a query or a request to make a change. This standard of response time is beyond my expectation. Booking.com will not only reply through email but they will give you a call to confirm the change. I am sure they have a very lean and efficient process in place.
Next, Booking.com has 24 hours enquiry phone numbers for users to dial. This feature is very convenient.
Followed by, Booking.com has a very good website design which allow user to make changes to their booking by themselves easily. Most importantly, it is simple to use.
One of the service or rather the process which I am surprise that they have is the duplicate booking check. I made two bookings with the same hotel with similiar periods, one has a check-in date a few days later than the other as due to some reasons I could not confirm the departure date. Booking.com sent me an email to alert me about the two similar bookings, in case I booked accidentally. I was surprised and at the same time impressed with the process they have put in place.
Booking.com has lots of hotels to choose from, ranging from budget accomodation to five star luxury hotel, catering to different budget and needs.
One experience that is not so good was somehow, one of my booking for a hotel in London was locked by the hotel and I could not make changed via the websites. I need to request my change through the hotel. This was the result for Booking.com not getting a perfect score.
The worst is Lateroom.com. I have a pretty bad experience. Lateroom.com confirmed my booking when the accommodation owner, by the way was a lady, has not confirmed the booking with Lateroom.com. My booking was not confirmed as Lateroom.com had provided the accommodation owner an incorrect credit card information. She had emailed Lateroom.com with a few reminder and there was no reply from Lateroom.com therefore my room booking could not be secured. As I was not informed, I only found out when I arrived at the accommodation on the day of my check-in date. Luckily she was very kind to help me to arrange for a room at another accommodation. Otherwise, it could have been a nightmare and my trip would have been upset. My rating for Lateroom.com is 1 out of 10.
Which other online hotel reservation website which you have good or bad experience, do share with me in the comment.