Google Hotel Search has more functionality than any other booking engine out there. The robust features can help you find a hotel in the perfect location, compare prices across hotel booking engines, book hard-to-find hotels, let you know when the best time to go is, suggest activities, map out nearby transportation, and provide you with easy-to-access traveler reviews. It’s the best of every hotel booking engine you’ve ever used. Want to know how to get the most out of it? These tips can help.
Where is Google Hotels?
First off, to find Google Hotels, head over to Google.com/travel. If you’re booking a flight, you can coordinate your dates easily between Google Flights and Google Hotels.
Map and Location Features
One of the best things about Google Hotel Search is the map feature. What’s unique about Google’s map feature compared with those on other hotel booking engines is it includes data from every source out there, including Google Maps. Hotels that are not listed on the most popular booking engines will show up in Google Hotels.
You’ll also be able to see nearby restaurants, shopping, landmarks, things to do, how close your hotel is to public transportation, and more.
Stay Exactly Where You Want
Using the map feature, you can find a hotel exactly where you want to stay. If your goal is to find a hotel right on the beach, it’s super easy to switch over to the map feature and find hotels on the sand. If you want to stay near restaurants and other entertainment, you can see those using Google’s map feature. If you need to book a hotel near a university for a graduation, you’ll be able to get the most convenient ones using the map feature.
Find Unique Hotels
Because Google hotels pulls data from so many sources, you’ll be able to find smaller or unique hotels that aren’t easily found on every search engine out there. If you’re searching for a hotel in another country, for example, they may not appear in one of the major booking engines from your country of origin. If you use Google Hotels, you can find these unique hotels and then see what booking engine they do use. Finding a local source for booking your hotel could also potentially save you some serious dough. In the search below, there are unique hotels listed right on the island of France’s famous Mont Saint-Michel.
Find Nearby Things to Do
If you’re looking for things to do, you’ll find a long list of suggestions in the location bar. Google ranks these based on other travelers’ reviews, so picking from this list is an easy way to find activities you’ll enjoy.
Distance From the Airport and Public Transportation
Another helpful feature in the location tab is the listed airports. It’s helpful to know how far the hotel is from the airport. Google takes it a step further with the information on transit stops. Under this tab, you’ll find out exactly how far you are from a bus or train stop. If you’re taking a vacation where you’re planning to use public transportation, it’s helpful to have a hotel near a stop.
When to Visit
The link When to Visit provides some valuable insights about the dates you’re planning to go. There’s some great information about the climate, popularity, and prices in this section.
If we’re thinking of visiting Moab in May, we can see the weather is pleasant, but we should expect crowds and higher prices.
Related: How to Dramatically Slash Your Hotel Costs With These Priceline Tricks
Speaking of prices, one of the best things about Google Hotels is the price comparison chart. You can see exactly what each booking engine is charging.
The links will take you right to the website.
There’s also an option where you can select to see prices with taxes and fees included so you’re not surprised when you go to book.
In the overview, there’s a section where you can see the hotel’s price range for any given period of time.
This graph shows us the price we’re paying is typical. However, we can still find a lower price.
What You’ll Pay
You can get a pretty good idea of what you’ll pay with the data Google compiles. When you click on the text link, What you’ll pay, you’ll see the average price broken down by star rating.
If these prices seem too high for your budget, you can find other dates where the prices aren’t so steep using the calendar feature.
Price Compare Using the Calendar Feature
One of the best ways to find a deal on a hotel is to use the calendar feature, which you’ll find under the prices tab when you click on the dates.
The incredible thing about this calendar is the amount of data being compiled into one place to show you the lowest prices. The prices found here are from dozens of booking engines. You can quickly see which nights are priced nearly $100 less than the ones we’ve selected.
Track hotel prices
Much like Google Flights, Google Hotels has the ability to track prices for you. If Google already has your profile, you just need to slide the button to turn on alerts. If the price goes down, you’ll get an email. Nice, huh?
Google Hotels shows you reviews from every major booking engine out there, including their own.
What’s neat about these reviews is they are searchable. If you’re looking for a particular amenity or have a specific worry, there’s a search bar that can help you find exactly what you’re looking for.
You can even sort reviews. If you want to see the best, the worst, or the most helpful reviews, there’s a tool to help you do it. You can also find out why certain reviewers were dissatisfied with the hotel.
Traveler vs. Hotel Photos
Google Hotels also allows you to quickly see photos from both the property and from visitors. If you want to see what a hotel looks like from the perspective of a traveler, you can filter the photos to only include those from visitors.
You’ll also be able to see some vacation rentals listed alongside the hotels. The vacation rentals you’ll be able to see include travel partners of Google, such as:
- Rentals United
Though Airbnb is absent from this list, you’ll notice many property owners list their rentals on multiple sites, so you're probably still seeing a pretty comprehensive list.
There’s also a handy filter for popular amenities travelers look for in a vacation rental.
It’s different from the hotel filter and includes options travelers are looking for, such as: free wi-fi, fitness center, air conditioning, kid-friendly, pet-friendly, crib, pool, hot tub, fireplace, grill and patio/deck.