Using Ratepunk to Save on Hotel Prices

Using Ratepunk is an excellent way to ensure you book a hotel room at the best price. In another blog post, I’ve discussed how to save money by not using Booking.com to reserve a hotel room.

If you read my blog, you know there are a thousand ways to spend less by planning your travel expenses well in advance and using all the tools that the internet provides for free.

Today, I want to talk about how to use Ratepunk, a Google Chrome extension that helps compare hotel room prices and purchase from the portal where the same room costs less.

Using Ratepunk: Preliminary Operations

First, you need to use the “Google Chrome” browser: this extension only works with this browser. So, if you aren’t already using it, download the most popular internet browsing browser and start using it.

Installing the Extension

The second step to using Ratepunk is installing the extension. What is a Chrome extension? It’s a simple concept: a small program that works with Google Chrome and allows you to utilize its options while browsing the internet with the browser.

Installing the extension is very easy: just go to the Ratepunk site and click on the “install now” button at the top left. In a few steps, the extension will be operational, and you can start using Rate Punk to find the best price for your hotel stay.

Using Ratepunk

Now, all you need to do is continue browsing using your favorite portal to look for your accommodation. When you have selected the date, place, and hotel where you want to stay, Ratepunk will start scanning all the other portals where the same room is listed and show you all the price alternatives in ascending order, starting from the lowest.

At this point, you can choose the most convenient price and purchase the room from the portal that offers the best conditions.

Can more be done?

Using Ratepunk to find the most convenient rate (among those on the portals) is a great way to purchase the same room at the best price, but if you really want to maximize your skills as an “independent traveler,” follow this last piece of advice: keeping in mind, or perhaps with the Google Chrome page open with the Ratepunk pop-up in view, open a new tab and search directly for the hotel (or the tourist facility or B&B).

Remember that tourism professionals (like all facilities selling accommodations) are advertisers on the sales portals (Online Travel Agency) that earn their commission every time a tourist purchases an accommodation through their pages. So, if you really want to secure the best possible price, you should

  • contact the facility directly (via email or, even better, by calling)
  • express your intention to stay and request the price for the dates you are interested in
  • compare the price offered by the facility with the best price you found using Ratepunk

If the price is lower, you can proceed with the purchase. If they ask for a higher price, you can point out that on site X (here you name the portal offering the room at the lower price), you found the room for sale at a lower price.

At this point, the tourism entrepreneur will have to offer you a lower price; otherwise, you will proceed to look for another possible accommodation.

Direct or indirect booking? Which is the better option?

If you want to save the most on the price of a hotel room (or any type of tourist accommodation), the procedure I’ve just described is the best, and if you were smart to use Ratepunk, you can be sure that the price you pay is the lowest possible.

Direct booking is certainly the cheapest but not the one that offers the most guarantees (odd, isn’t it?).

What happens is that the tourism entrepreneur (the hotel, the B&B) does not offer the same guarantees that the OTAs do.

In case of overbooking (all rooms occupied and none free for you), they cannot solve the situation as easily, quickly, and without additional costs as the OTAs do.

Also, if, once you arrive at the hotel, the room is not as advertised (or up to your expectations), the entrepreneur cannot (and will not) find you an alternative accommodation solution.

OTAs, on the other hand, will immediately find you another room (possibly of a higher category) at no additional cost!

OTAs (like Booking) manage thousands of facilities and have no problem finding a solution in case of service failures or customer dissatisfaction.

Moreover, they don’t care where you will sleep in the end because, in one way or another, their profit is assured.

Lastly, OTAs have a “brand” to protect and a huge “turnover,” so they do not hesitate to find the best solution (even if they lose some money) just to not disappoint their customer.

The private manager, however, has every interest in keeping you in their facility. A dissatisfied customer who does not want to stay in the proposed accommodation is a missed profit.

Moreover, they do not have the structured organization that OTAs have (call centers, other facilities to turn to, and a lot of budget to draw on in case of dissatisfaction).

At the end of 2022, Ratepunk introduced a feature that allows you to accumulate credits (in the form of discounts to be spent on future bookings) every time you make a reservation using the portal.

The founder of Ratepunk, Justin Albertynas, sent us a message to announce this new feature in advance:

By the end of 2022, it also launched a CASHBACK system. “It’s a FREE REWARDS PROGRAM, where our users can create a personal RatePunk CASHBACK account and earn money by… spending it on hotels.” Its working principle is simple: you install RatePunk, create your account & with every booking, get rewarded with coins. Every user will get 10 free coins just for joining the RatePunk cashback. When a benchmark of 100 coins is reached, the $10 cashback can be redeemed. “This upgrade will allow our users to earn money by using a free tool, and that’s something the travel industry hasn’t seen before.”

Using Ratepunk

Using Ratepunk and following the advice on this blog will help you organize your trips independently, but a new powerful tool is on the way that, for example, will help you choose where to stay with more confidence (even by contacting the manager directly) and acquiring all the necessary information to choose your accommodation: triplannerr.com

A new tool is coming:

Using Ratepunk

This new tool is based on altruism and the free and spontaneous sharing of information. Whenever you travel, you gather valuable information for those who want to replicate your experience. This information, which you will probably never use again, is essential for those who want to independently organize a trip similar to yours.

Triplannerr allows you to share your travel stories and information with a community that, in return, offers you the information you’ll need for your next trip!

Using Ratepunk: Conclusions

Using Ratepunk to find the best price offered by OTAs is a great way to ensure you’re booking accommodation at the lowest price.

Booking through an OTA is the safest way to have guarantees.

Purchasing directly from the manager of the tourist facility is the way to get the best price but with the risk of having hard-to-solve problems upon arrival.

The compromise between the greater guarantees of OTAs and the best price of private negotiation is in the human relationship.

Contacting the facility directly should not just be a simple exchange of emails but the beginning of a relationship of mutual trust that will solidify during the stay.

A phone call is better, or, if possible, a visit or word of mouth, or reviews from trusted people.

triplannerr

If you’re reading this blog, you’re an adventurous traveler, and I want to invite you to experience something unique. We are forming a Community of Travelers who will exclusively try out the new digital platform we’ve created to organize and plan trips and vacations entirely autonomously, avoiding all forms of intermediation.

“We believe that the free and spontaneous sharing of information is the key to making ‘traveling’ a habit achievable by everyone.”

When you return from a trip, you possess valuable information: Hotels, Restaurants, Tour Guides, the experiences you’ve had! These are pieces of information you will never use again, but they are indispensable for someone who wants to take a journey similar to yours.

If you’ve lived an unforgettable experience, you’ve brought home all the information necessary to replicate it! So, why not share it?

Why not leave other travelers the information you’ve gathered on the spot or during your experience?

This way, others can save time (and money) and live travel experiences based on your stories. We want to create a database of information available to everyone.

Join the project, and you too can find the information needed to plan your next trip with the help of the community!

We are creating a digital platform where you can find (and exchange) all the necessary information to plan and organize trips and vacations completely autonomously!

All this thanks to the “principle of sharing” and the solidarity among travelers who share information collected during their travel experiences.

If you want to participate in the final phase of the development of this new digital platform and become a Beta Tester (for free) by sending feedback, suggestions, and new ideas…

This post is also available in: Italian

0 replies

Leave a Reply

Want to join the discussion?
Feel free to contribute!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *