- Always review your hotel bill before paying to see if there are any pricing errors.
- I was charged a daily $30 hotel valet fee by mistake during a recent hotel stay.
- I was able to keep $120 in my pocket by reviewing my bill and catching the error.
An accidental overcharge can impact your vacation budget -- and your wallet.
Hotel costs can add up quickly no matter what destination you're visiting. If you plan to stay several nights during your travels, you'll want to make sure you include plenty of money in your vacation budget to afford a comfortable hotel. With a budget in place, you can find the right hotel that fits your needs without emptying your wallet.
It's good practice to review all charges before making a hotel reservation, but you should also review your bill before checking out after you complete your stay. If you don't, you may end up paying more than you planned. Mistakes happen, and a quick review could save you money charged in error. Find out how taking the time to review my hotel bill saved me $120 on a recent trip.
Verify hotel pricing in advance
Before booking a hotel for your next vacation, you'll want to review the hotel's pricing. While most hotels have a set nightly rate, they may also have other hidden hotel fees that can make your vacation a lot more expensive.
For example, it's not uncommon for hotels to charge a daily resort fee to cover operational expenses for their amenities. If you miss this charge before booking your stay, you may be surprised when your bill arrives.
Check to see if there are any other additional fees as you look at hotel options. Some hotels are more transparent about their pricing than others. You can get a great hotel room and stay within your set vacation budget allowance if you're mindful.
Check your bill at checkout
It's also good practice to review your bill after completing your stay. While it takes time to do, it could save you money. I recently traveled to Charleston, South Carolina, and already knew what my hotel stay would cost.
While initiating the self-checkout process, I noticed that the total charge was higher than it should have been. I reviewed the price breakdown by night and noticed the hotel had automatically charged a $30 daily hotel valet fee. Since I didn't bring a car on this trip, I knew this was a mistake that needed to be corrected.
I went to the front desk to check out manually and talk to a staff member. Once I mentioned that I didn't have a car, the staff member quickly removed the extra charges, and my bill was altered to the original price I anticipated.
It didn't make sense to pay for a service that I wasn't using. Taking a moment to review my bill helped me keep that $120 in my bank account.
You can avoid wasting money
Every little bit of wasted money can impact your financial situation. Don't rush to pay a bill without first reviewing it.
While $30 isn't a ton of money, unexpected fees or fees charged by error can add up. You should make sure that your hotel bill (and all bills) are correct before you pay them. I know I'm happy to not have wasted $120.
Are you looking for ways to improve your financial situation? Check out these personal finance resources for more ways to make smart money moves.
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