Hotel Prices Over Time: The Cheapest Time to Book a Hotel

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New research has revealed that the average hotel room in the UK gets £3.30 cheaper for every week you book in advance - and that booking just four weeks in advance can save upwards of 15% on your stay.

The data - collected by Vouchercloud and looking at 30 hotels across the ten most populated UK cities over three different dates - revealed just how much money can be saved.

With Travelodge, Premier Inn and Holiday Inn locations included in the study - 10 of each from each city included - the research also shows that early bookings at Travelodge are especially lucrative, while Holiday Inn prices vary a little less when booking in advance.


How much do you save by booking hotels in advance?


The Cities Where You Can Save on Advance Hotel Bookings

Rather unsurprisingly, the capital cities of the UK are where the biggest savings can be made when booking in advance. 

If you’re jetting off to Edinburgh, getting organised and securing a hotel booking could be well worth your while. For every week you book in advance in the Scottish capital, savings of 4.33% can be made every week with the biggest price hikes happening over the last month where you could save yourself on average £18.77 per week.

When booking London hotels, advance bookings can help you pocket, on average, £5.04 for each week you book in advance. 

If you’re looking for a last minute UK city break, the cities where you can afford to leave your booking until the last minute are Liverpool, Glasgow, and Manchester where weekly savings are £1.21, £1.70 and £1.96 respectively.

Weeks Before Booking Average Hotel Cost Percentage Total Saved
1 £108.62 -
2 £100.29 7.67%
3 £94.26

13.22%

4 £90.95 16.27%
5 £87.37 19.56%
6 £86.38 20.48%

How much you save booking early with Travelodge, PremierInn and Holiday Inn

Advance Hotel Booking Savings by Hotel Chain

When it comes to which hotel chain will save you the most money when booking in advance, week-by-week you could save on average £4 a week by booking in advance at Holiday Inn with an average night's stay costing £115.68 and weekly hikes of £8.02 on average happening in the month before your stay.

Whilst Holiday Inn's savings aren't to be sniffed at, Travelodge offers the best value for money with an average stay costing £63.64 per night and weekly savings of £3.11 when booking in advance. For each week in the month running up to your stay, you can pocket just over £6 each week. 

The smallest gains of the three hotel chains are made at Premier Inn, where an average night's stay costs £69.54. For each week you book in advance, £2.78 can be saved and in the final month leading up to your stay £3.65 can be saved each week.

Weeks before booking Travelodge Average Cost Percentage Total Saved Premier Inn Average Cost Percentage Total Saved Holiday Inn Average Cost Percentage Total Saved
1 £92   £91   £142  
2 £84 8.62% £86 5.45% £130 8.49%
3 £78 15.60% £84 8.49% £121 14.72%
4 £74 19.53% £80 11.97% £118 16.89%
5 £69 25.13% £77 16% £116 18.25%
6 £68 26.50% £72 20.8% £119 16.37%

Chris Johnson, head of Operations at Vouchercloud, commented:

“Going really in depth into the numbers and collecting a lot of data allowed us to find the peaks and troughs in hotel pricing, and the results are really interesting for consumers.

“It’s comforting to know that booking early does indeed save you money, and putting a number to it really helps. When you can show how steeply prices fall when you manage to book two weeks in advance, it’s clear that preparation is everything!”

If you're curious as to whether or not an airbnb or a hotel would be cheaper when you're booking, you can also check out our guide to airbnb vs hotel prices.


The Data

Hotel price data was collected from the ten most central Travelodge, Premier Inn and Holiday Inn locations in each of the country’s most populous cities: London, Edinburgh, Manchester, Birmingham, Liverpool, Glasgow, Oxford, Bristol, Cambridge and Brighton.

Prices were collected for a standard double room - or the cheapest equivalent room available - when booking 1-16 weeks in advance of three separate dates across 2017/2018. Averaging data from three separate dates ensured any seasonal, monthly, weekly and daily price fluctuations were avoided.

On the day data wasn’t available - the vast majority of hotels are booked out on the day. Our estimate was extrapolated from the collected data.