After I paid off my $86,000 mortgage in two years, I began using some of my extra spending money to travel. Ok, a lot of my extra money.

But one of my 9 financial core values is to never pay more than I have to.


Today I want to take you step-by-step through my process of saving on hotel rooms when I choose not to book a mystery hotel.

As I’ve explained, those mystery hotels aren’t always a good deal.

Just for some background: I’m traveling to Washington, DC in early May and staying two nights, checking out on a Saturday.

So, are you ready to get started? Let’s save some money!


If you haven’t used, what are you waiting for? This website compares prices at all of the top travel websites.

Just type in your destination, dates, number of guests and click SEARCH.

For my trip, I found a 3.5 star hotel in the area where I want to be. Nearly all of the major travel sites had the same price, $109 a night.

I’m talking Priceline, Orbitz, and Travelocity. All the same price.

STOP! DON’T BOOK YETdontbookyet

This is where I believe most people figure they’re getting a good deal at $109 a night and book the room. We’re not finished saving money yet…




TopCashBack is one of my favorite shopping portals. All you have to do is shop with retailers through their links and you’ll get money back.

Here are some of the cash back deals offered through TopCashBack:

  • Priceline: 7%
  • Travelocity: 6%
  • 7%

**Terms of these offers change frequently.**

At the time of my booking, the highest cash back offer was 9% with This travel site also advertised the room for $109 a night.

I received my 9% cash back from TopCashBack through my PayPal account.

STOP! DON’T BOOK YET!dontbookyet

I know you’re getting excited. You’re about to save even more money on top of the $109 rate you found earlier. But there’s one more thing…



Before you book, locate the best rewards credit card for this purchase. For me, it’s the Barclaycard Arrival World MasterCard.

It offers 2.2% cash back towards travel purchases.

I simply made my purchase with through TopCashBack‘s link as I normally would and earned rewards with my credit card on top of that.

This card does come with an $89 annual fee, but it’s waived the first year.



By following these simple steps, I saved an additional $25 off my hotel reservation with just a few clicks of the mouse.

Want even more proof I got a good deal?

I have a family member who works for the company that owns the $109 a night hotel that I booked. The family and friends rate? $149 a night.

Do you have a strategy to save money on hotel bookings? Share it below.