Did you know that luxury hotels do not offer the best deals on their own websites?
You’re probably paying extra for breakfast, room service,
spa treatments and upgraded rooms.
Others are paying the same as you, or less
and getting all these extras for free!
I have teamed up with Classic Travel to provide exclusive benefits to my readers.
Classic Travel are headquartered in Madison Avenue,
New York and have been serving clients since 1982.
It is without a doubt one of the most well established and highly regarded travel agencies on the planet.
I’ve used them for my personal luxury hotel bookings for years.
How to get the best deal on luxury hotels?
Luxury hotels give extra benefits out as an incentive to top tier travel agents.
They want access to the millions of dollars in guest spending that these luxury travel agents control.
It’s the same reason why shops accept Amex even though American Express charges them big fees.
The customer base is so valuable that hotels will pay to access it.
If you book with a top tier luxury travel agent you will have a variety of complimentary benefits passed on to you.
What are the free benefits?
You are charged the Best Flexible Rate (fully refundable) as offered directly by the hotels but you ALSO get:
$100 Hotel Credit*
I generally look for the largest pricing gap between two rooms.
Book the cheaper one and get the more expensive one.
Early check-in / Late check-out
(Subject to availability)
*$100 hotel credit: Some properties will limit use to certain parts of the hotel e.g. spa or restaurant. Some properties will offer a unique local experience, airport transfer or set meal in lieu of this benefit. †Room upgrades: some properties offer a confirmed upgrade at the time of booking, some offer this within 24h of booking, others only confirm the upgrade if space is available during check-in.
How to stay in luxury hotels for free?
So far I’ve described extra that you get by paying the same price offered directly on hotel websites.
It gets better though…
Luxury hotels never want their advertised room rates to drop below a certain level because it’s bad for their reputation.
However they do discount their rooms in another way:
They frequently run hidden promotions through top tier travel agents which give you the 3rd, 4th or 5th night free.
This is on top of all the other complimentary extras!
Your full stay might not be 100% free but the free nights give you a very significant discount on your booking.
|5th night free||4th night Free||3rd night Free|
|Discount||20% off||25% off||33% off|
Which hotels offer these benefits?
Most luxury hotel chains offer these benefits to luxury travel agencies, under their own special branding:
Four Seasons Preferred Partner
Shangri-La Luxury Circle
Belmond Bellini Club
Marriott STARS / Marriott Luminous
Jumeirah Passport to Luxury
Any luxury hotels not covered above (Aman, for example) will participate in the global benefit program that covers all luxury hotels:
NOTE: Some lower tier agencies will only have access to Virtuoso and not the hotel’s own branded booking channel.
Make no mistake, hotels prioritise their own special booking channel first.
If you book a Four Seasons Preferred Partner Rate online, you will get better treatment than somebody who only booked Virtuoso
(and they of course will get better treatment than somebody booking directly on FourSeasons.com).
What’s the catch?
Most luxury travel agencies put up barriers to stop guests booking with them and taking advantage of the best offers.
❌ Not accepting customers that spend less than $10k per year in bookings
❌ Requiring back and forth emails to book hotels, meaning that rates change before you have a chance to book
❌ Adding a ‘service fee’ on each booking, which eats into your benefits.
How is this different?
Almost every other luxury agency needs you to call or email for a quote (which can take days to receive).
✅ With Classic Travel, all prices are shown instantly online
✅ It takes 10 seconds to register yourself with just a name and email address.
✅ There is no booking fee
What about my hotel points and status?
Bookings made via any of the preferred booking programs count as DIRECT HOTEL BOOKINGS
✅ Your hotel status will be recognised (and will stack with the standard booking beneftis)
✅ Your hotel stay will earn points as usual
How do I book luxury hotel deals?
STEP 1 : Create a free account (this requires only a name and email address and takes around 10 seconds to complete).
STEP 2 : Search for the hotel you want and book one of the rates with a GOLD COLOURED TOP.
These are the preferential rates available only to the clients of luxury travel agencies (that’s you!).
The GREY rate is the standard Best Available Rate. This is what is offered directly by the hotel on their own website. It is what the general public will end up paying.
The GOLD rate is the same price but comes with a world of extra benefits. Available to you by clicking below.