How to find cheap luxury hotels (and pay 3-star prices)

From 5 star beach resorts in Mexico to hidden boutique suites with a rooftop hot-tub, it feels great to travel in luxury! We’ve put together a simple guide for how to find cheap luxury hotels. Stay in the comfort of a 4 or 5-star hotel for 3-star prices and enjoy a holiday of a lifetime for less.

1. Book as part of a package holiday

Sometimes you can bag an awesome luxury hotel deal by booking as part of a package. Travel agents reserve hotels in bulk to get a better deal and this can be passed on to the customer.

For example, a quick search on shows a luxury hotel in Cancun for £920 per person, including flights (7 nights).

Booking flights and hotels separately, the total cost per person is £1240, so you’re saving £600 for the trip (2 people) by booking as part of a package.

Always check the price of booking the hotel and flights separately yourself using our guide here, to ensure you’re getting the best deal.

The best package deals can be found by scanning websites such as Holidaypirates and SecretEscapes and grabbing a last minute offer – just remember to read the hotel reviews.

2. Use luxury travel deal finding websites

Cheap luxury hotels deals - Shows Holiday Pirates screenshot

As eluded to above, special offers and money saving travel websites can be the best way to find cheap luxury hotels for a fraction of the usual price. You have to be more flexible with where you’re going as there are a limited number of deals/destinations but as long as you look at hotel reviews before booking, you’ll be completely fine taking up one of these deals.

Here are some of our favourite sites to find last minute cheap hotels worldwide:

> Secretescapes

> Holiday Pirates

> Groupon

> My Holiday Guru

Find out more about last minute travel deals in our post here.

3. Visit South-East Asia

Visit South East Asia - How to find cheap luxury hotels

Asia is a paradise for cheap luxury hotels and excellent service. Relax in a white sand beach resort in Thailand or admire the view from a skyscraper hotel in Malaysia. With so many exotic and cultural destinations to choose from, Asia continues to attract record numbers of holidaymakers every year. Once you pay for the flights, which indeed can be quite expensive, hotels and living costs are very cheap.

For less than the cost of a Travel Lodge in London, you can stay in top of the range Mandarin Oriental and Shangri-La hotels. 4-5 star hotels can be up to 70% cheaper than the same hotel chain/brand in the west.

Other cheap areas of the world to holiday (once you’ve bought the flights) include:

  • Central america
  • Certain parts of South America
  • Eastern Europe

4. Contact the hotel directly and negotiate a price

Shows a hotel reception desk - How to find cheap luxury hotels

Online hotel booking sites receive a commission from hotels for every sale they make. Due to this, the hotel would much prefer you to book direct as they receive the full cost of the booking.

Contacting the hotel directly by email or phone (which you can find on the official hotel website) and negotiating a cheaper price is well worth a try. Big name hotel chains may not comply due to company policies but smaller independent and boutique hotels are more inclined to give you a good deal. Any discount they give you is likely still less than what one of their partner sides would have invoiced them in commission. As a bonus, you’re also supporting local businesses and helping to better support the hotel you’re staying in!

5. How to get a complimentary room upgrade

Discount luxury hotels - Shows hotel suite bed

This may sound silly but the best way of catching a hotel room upgrade, or any holiday upgrade for that matter, is simply just to ask. If you contact the hotel before you arrive and let them know you’re visiting for a special occasion such as an anniversary or birthday (even if you’re not) and tell them anything they can do can make it extra special, chances are they’ll accommodate you in some way.

The hotel wants their guests to be happy. Happy guests means good online reviews, recommendations to family and friends and ultimately more business for them.

Using this tactic, we’ve secured countless free upgrades, bottles of wine, complimentary show tickets and other perks, simply because we asked. Try it out for yourself!

6. Visit out of season and be flexible on dates

4 and 5 star hotels can be a third of the price when they’re not busy and it’s out of season. They reduce prices to attract a wider audience and you can take advantage of this.

Wherever you’re travelling to, summer is usually the peak and more expensive time to travel, alongside bank holidays such as Easter and Christmas and school holidays.

Of course, it all depends on where you’re going. The above applies to Europe but will be different if you’re travelling further afield to the likes of South East Asia or Australia, where seasonality is completely different. Check the weather and prices for different months to find cheaper deals.

7. Take advantage of discounts and cashback

Discount luxury hotels - Shows promo codes on

As with everything we recommend when booking a holiday, you should always search for discount codes and cashback offers before pressing ‘continue’ at the checkout. For details on how to find these discounts, check out ‘Ultimate hotel booking guide’ here.

8. Take advantage of business travel rewards

How to find cheap luxury hotels - Shows a suite interior

If you travel often for work and the company covers your cost, make sure you reap the rewards and other perks that come with business travel. Booking hotels using your own loyalty scheme and claiming air miles for all flights goes a long way to boost your rewards earnings. Simply activate your own membership scheme and pay using a company card or claiming the money back.

You can also pay for work expenses using a benefits credit card such as the American Express Gold Card or British Airways Air Miles card. These credit cards accrue various benefits every time you spend money. You can then claim the money back through your company with the usual process.

Once you’ve accrued free hotel stays and plenty of air miles, redeem them for your own personal trips and enjoy cheap luxury hotels for less. In our experience, most companies have no problem with you earning membership rewards on business travel but check with them if you’re unsure.

9. Stay outside of the main tourist areas

Shows a scenic view of the mountains from a hotel

An often overlooked tip for how to find cheap luxury hotels is choosing a location that’s a little further from the action. City centres and the main beach resorts often come with a significant price increase compared to luxury hotels outside of town. If you’re prepared to travel a little further to get to the main attractions, staying in a luxury hotel outside of town can be a lot cheaper. You might not even mind if you plan on spending lots of time in the hotel anyway! It’ll likely have all the facilities you need! City financial districts, smaller towns a few miles away and countryside options can all be more affordable locations to stay.

10. Book your hotel stay for a week-day

Shows a hotel pool with palm tress

In the majority of destinations, Friday – Sunday-night stays are significantly more expensive as most travellers opt to arrive for the weekend. Booking a cheap luxury hotel stay on a week-night is almost always cheaper. We find that Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday are the cheapest nights to stay on average, with Saturday being the most expensive. Use this to your advantage and experience a luxury hotel for the fraction of what you’d pay on a weekend!

Thanks for reading our tips for how to find cheap luxury hotels! Staying in a deluxe room packed full of facilities will no doubt improve your holiday and there are some very cool accommodation options, especially if you’re travelling to cheaper parts of the world. Keep our suggestions in mind when booking your next luxury holiday and pay a lot less than you usually would for 5 star service!


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