Book Day Use Hotels Online
This is something that came up in the ToP Facebook Group a week or two ago and it is one of the more underrated travel hacks in my opinion. It can come in clutch when you have a longer layover before, or during, an international itinerary. It can also help if you are stranded by an airline at the airport for several hours because of a mechanical delay etc. From the conversation in the group it seemed like a lot of people weren't aware that you could book a hotel on a day rate so I figured it was worth covering. This option is often offered by hotels to travelers or business people at a reduced rate versus booking overnight. I had always called the hotels near the airport or in a city center to inquire about their day use rate in the past. That was before my friend Han Chicago showed me the way to something better. Here is how you book day use hotels online, at least for some of them.
What Is A Hotel Day Rate?
A hotel day rate, or day use room, is when you get a room for around half a day. These rooms are usually good from earlier in the morning until 6PM. It is the perfect option if you have a long layover or a late afternoon / evening flight. No one wants to lie down on a dirty airport floor or try to push some lounge chairs together to catch some much needed sleep while traveling. And nothing will ever beat a bed for quality rest, yes I am looking at you sleep pods.
The hotels offer these day use rooms at a reduced rate. It usually comes with a 30% – 50% discount compared to whatever the current overnight rates are. It is a nice savings and avoids paying the full price to only use the room for a fraction of the time. My guess is that the hotels will likely flip these rooms in the evening for any travelers that are getting in late. They get to double dip the room and you get a place to crash at a discounted rate. A true win, win if I do say so myself.
My Experience Booking Day Use Hotels
Every time I have booked these in the past I have just called the front desk of hotels and inquired about their day rate. Some will offer it while others will not. I did this at the Hyatt Regency Boston Harbor when we had an all day layover on the way to Dublin. It ended up working out perfectly for us to relax and grab a quick nap before enjoying our Aer Lingus flight over the pond. Sometimes it is worth it just to shower and drop your stuff while you explore the city center.
That was the way I had always done it, that is until my buddy Han found a better way, and that way is called DayUse.com.
What Is Dayuse.com?
It looks like Dayuse is an OTA type of site, think Expedia or Priceline, that works with hotels offering up day rate reservations. It makes it so you can quickly, and easily, search an area for day rate rentals. If you are like me, and avoid picking up the phone as much as possible, then this is a great option. I doubt that this site is all inclusive for day rate hotels but it is a great place to start your search. If you find something that works then you are all set, if not, then you can get to cold calling.
It works just like any other hotel search. You plug in the city, or airport, and the date you are looking for. They then populate hotel options in the area. Over a couple of searches I did it looks like many come in at the $75 – $150 range for the day use rate.
The cool thing about this is Dayuse says you can cancel the hotel for free up to the last minute. So no penalties if you change your mind and you pay nothing up front. The hotel collects the money when you stay there so the site is a true middle man. Han said the system was super easy to use and he had no trouble on his recent stay in Frankfurt.
Potential Downsides When You Book Day Use Hotels Online
What is not clear is if you would get any status perks etc. when booking through Dayuse. My thinking is not, since it works like an OTA and they take a cut for the booking from the hotel. But, I don't know that you get many perks if booking day use rooms direct either.
If I remember correctly, and it was several years ago, the Hyatt acknowledged my status at check in and offered some waters and a room with a better view. Not that any of that mattered for a place to crash for a bit. I am unclear if I got any elite night credits for that stay or not though. My guess would be no, but I can not say for sure. Even if I didn't back then things may have changed for the better now.
That is because all of the hotel chains pushed those work day rentals during the pandemic and offered elite night credits for the bookings. I am unsure if that stuck around or dropped off once they started getting record rates coming out of the pandemic. If someone has firsthand knowledge on this please let me know.
One thing is for sure, if you booked direct you would earn the bonus points on the stay from the loyalty program. That is something that could sway things for you.
Always Check The Points Rate Too
While I personally would probably use Dayuse, even if forgoing some bonus points, for the mental bandwidth it saves I will say that you should still check the points options in the area too. If there is a category 1 or 2 hotel it may be cheaper to book a full night on points. That is what we did when we were stranded in Atlanta for 6 hours by Southwest a few years back. I booked a Hyatt Place near the airport for 5,000 points and we just crashed there for a few hours. I doubt even a day use hotel rate could have beat that.
How To Book Day Use Hotels Online: ToP Thoughts
Hopefully some of you found this option of booking day rates for hotels online useful. I am sure some will prefer to continue to take the extra steps and book direct to earn their bonus points and potential elite night credits. I on the other hand will save the time and energy and likely go with Dayuse going forward, after checking for points options first of course. A big thanks to Han for sharing this with me and giving it a go on his current trip. Let me know what your thoughts are on this option over in the ToP Facebook Group.