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Is it normal for NYC hotel prices to fluctuate?

Plymouth
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Is it normal for NYC hotel prices to fluctuate?

My husband and I will be coming to NYC in September 2013 for 6 nights.

We haven't booked yet though - we're waiting until the new year when we will have the last of our money saved, and can then book our flights and hotel at the same time.

After extensive research we finally found a hotel that ticked our boxes and was also within our somewhat tight budget ($150 a night), which was the Z Hotel in LIS.

I have checked again to see that rooms are still available - obviously that's a risk that we take whilst waiting to book - and there are still rooms for our dates. BUT - they have now gone up by quite a lot, taking us outside of our budget. (About $400 more expensive now total.) This is the case via both the hotel directly and booking.com, which is where I previously found the best price.

So - my question is - is this a normal thing to happen with NYC hotel prices do people know? Is it to do with the fact that we're coming up to Christmas or something? (Although I'm not sure why that would affect Sep next year!) Are the prices likely to drop again in the New Year?

Ireland
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for Belfast, Northern Ireland
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1. Re: Is it normal for NYC hotel prices to fluctuate?

Ive found a lot of the time, maybe all the time, that the hotels own site is the most expensive. Prices do fluctuate due to increased demand for a given period. You could try checking a few more sites to see what the score is there though. I always check at least 5 or 6 if i can.

County Galway...
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2. Re: Is it normal for NYC hotel prices to fluctuate?

Yes, last time in New York a price for hotel dropped $700 for 5 nights for one day luckily I booked it

Houston, Texas
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3. Re: Is it normal for NYC hotel prices to fluctuate?

September is always expensive for NY hotels. Lots going on, UN General Council, Fashion Week, start of nice fall weather, etc.

I suggest you book something now you can live with, but make sure it's cancellable so you can keep checking as it gets closer. If you don't have exact dates yet, you're at the mercy of the market.

NYC/Israel
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for Israel
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4. Re: Is it normal for NYC hotel prices to fluctuate?

Hotel prices fluctuate all over the world, same as plane ticket prices.

Aberdeen, United...
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5. Re: Is it normal for NYC hotel prices to fluctuate?

The US open is on at the beginning of Sept and LIC is close to Flushing Meadows.

I normally book a cancellable rate then check a few times, especially the last few weeks before your stay. Last year I saved a hundred GB pounds on a last minute check. It took five minutes to change it.

New York City, New...
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6. Re: Is it normal for NYC hotel prices to fluctuate?

If you are seeing the Z at $150 per night in september and you can cancel it with no penalty I would do it. I think that is a pretty good price for that property. Booking a room this far in advance that you can not cancel is always a risk no matter what price. So much can happen in that long of a time.

Plymouth
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7. Re: Is it normal for NYC hotel prices to fluctuate?

Thanks for the replies.

I know that September is one of the more expensive months for hotels, hence choosing one in LIS rather than Manhattan! Our dates are mid-late Sep so shouldn't be affected by the tennis.

I just don't understand why a good rate a month ago has gone up by so much now.

A question re cancellable rates (sorry if this sounds silly) - how do they work? Do you pay in advance and then get a refund if you cancel?

Edited: 16 December 2012, 21:22
Portland, Maine
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8. Re: Is it normal for NYC hotel prices to fluctuate?

First, I don't think the Z hotel is particularly well-situated for subway access.

With most non-cancellable reservations you just give them your credit card number. While some hotels charge, for example, one night's stay when you make the reservation, most do not. Instead, the reservation is cancelled with nothing billed to your card as long as you cancel before the hotel's deadline. Deadlines vary, but might be a day or two (or perhaps a week) before your intended stay.

Even those hotels that do charge one night when you make the reservation will refund it when you cancel, assuming it was a fully cancellable reservation.

The bottom line is you need to check the website of the hotel and see how their policies operate.

Plymouth
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9. Re: Is it normal for NYC hotel prices to fluctuate?

Thanks Auden. I've been able to find info on various websites about the cancellation deadlines, but nothing about whether anything is charged or not! Will hunt around for the info when we book.

Re the Z - I know it's not on top of the subway but they do have a free shuttle bus to and from Manhattan, so seemed like it would be fine.

Might be a moot point now if we have to find somewhere cheaper!

New York City, New...
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10. Re: Is it normal for NYC hotel prices to fluctuate?

Waiting around for a shuttle bus (what I actually have seen from them is a black car with the name of the hotel all over it) is not a good idea in this city especially when the hotel is in LIC-- there are some hotels over there that are very near the subway and it is a good lower cost option for those on a budget.