How To Cut Hotel Rates By Over 50% With Snaptravel (Seriously…)

Some links to products and partners on this website will earn an affiliate commission.

I want to start this article by making clear that the following isn’t something I’ve tried out properly yet. I’ve made some bookings for future dates, but haven’t actually stayed yet. Therefore, I can’t (yet) genuinely recommend ‘Snaptravel’, but I do think it’s something worth knowing about.

What’s the story?

I needed to book a hotel in Stratford-Upon-Avon for a few nights this summer. Cash rates were generally through the roof, so I decided to use Points. 30,000 Hilton Honors Points per night for the DoubleTree seemed reasonable enough, when the cash rates were between £150-£200+.

I booked one of the nights with the points I had available in my account, and before transferring a chunk of Amex Points over to Hilton for the rest, thought I’d have one more quick look on the various meta-booking sites like HotelsCombined.

After signing in, I spotted a rate with Snaptravel at the DoubleTree being advertised for just £60. That was suspiciously cheap compared to the lowest Hilton rate of ~£150. I’d not heard of Snaptravel before and the rate was refundable, so I thought I’d book it for blogging purposes, even it turned out to be a scam…

As far as I can tell from sites like TrustPilot etc, Snaptravel is completely legitimate, although does seem to receive some of the usual sort of complaints that many third-party online travel agencies suffer from. Until I stay for myself and the booking all works out fine, I shall refrain from making a recommendation.

The booking process is a bit weird, as you have to be sent a link via text or social media, but once you’re actually on the Snaptravel website, it works in the same way as most other booking sites.

I ended up booking a slightly more expensive rate, as I needed a twin room and the only availability was for a Deluxe Twin with breakfast. With a 10% discount code for signing up using a referral code (mine is 9N8P2L4 – enter in promo box before making a booking, if you’d like to use it), that worked out at £76.13 in total:

That’s roughly half what Hilton was charging direct, and I’d still get the equivalent of my Honors Diamond benefits (breakfast and upgraded room) included.

If you just booked the cheapest £60 room though, with the 10% discount, that could be brought down to £54 – a discount of ~65%! 

Good deal – but was it just a fluke?

That was my first thought too, so I started doing some more research.

  • Usually, Snaptravel’s rates were a little bit cheaper than booking direct – but not so much cheaper that it would outweigh the value of status benefits, cashback, and earning points that comes with booking direct. It’s also important to point out that you should search for the competing rates yourself – don’t just trust what Snaptravel says they are.
  • Sometimes, Snaptravel’s rates were more expensive than booking direct (or via other third-party sites).
  • Sometimes, Snaptravel’s rates were much cheaper than the rates I could find anywhere else online.

For example, here’s a night at ‘The Level’ at the Melia White House in London for £150 – a discount of more than 50% according to Snaptravel:

In reality, the discount isn’t quite that much, but it’s still massive. The cheapest rate for the same room I could find direct was £273:

The real discount is therefore ~45%, although you could knock that down a bit further by using a 10% referral code.

If £150 is still a bit on the expensive side, how does £89 for a London 5* hotel sound? You could book a room at Marriott’s Design Hotel, the Town Hall Hotel & Apartments, via Snaptravel, for exactly that:

On this occasion, the competing rate listed was accurate too when I checked the hotel’s own website:

Therefore, the ~45% discount is a genuine saving.

Bottom line

I saw plenty of similar examples too in other cities all over the world. On the face of it, Snaptravel looks like a fantastic addition to the ‘travel hacker’s toolkit’.

My only slight concern is that some of these rates are almost too good to be true, and I haven’t personally completed a stay yet.

If you have used Snaptravel before, please share your experience in the comments! I’ll write an updated post once I’ve stayed myself too, of course.


  1. Richard G says

    I’ve seen a lot of good prices with Snaptravel of late, but also an avalanche of bad reviews.

    Based on that I wouldn’t trust them as far as I could throw them.

    • Joe Deeney says

      I am genuinely intrigued to see how it works out. I think it will probably be one of those things where it is normally fine and the saving justifies the ‘risk’ for someone like me, but not something I’d use to book an important hotel stay for friends or family.

  2. Steve says

    They seem to crop up on a lot, with much cheaper rates than anywhere else, which distorts the results. However I’ve seen too many terrible reviews by people who swear never to use them again – for me there’s no point booking something, albeit at a good rate, if I cannot be even reasonably confident that there is actually a room waiting for me.

  3. Gerri says

    I would stay away from The Level at Melia White House, it is one of the most dishonest marketing gimmicks I can think of.

    You get a regular room in Melia White House (which would cost around £75) and access to the Level lounge which is just a large, cold and soulless waiting room.

    There are some low quality nibbles on offer but drinks can only be picked up from fridges at tightly restricted times. I think 2 hours a day. At other times there are actual padlocks on the fridges. They also offer some samples of food but these are tiny and need a toothpick. This facility closes around 10:00 pm but the staff would ensure you feel uncomfortable enough to leave earlier by starting their cleaning an hour before.

    In your example, paying £150 means you spend around £75 for limited access to drinks and some tiny tapas. For this amount you can have a nice dinner and if you like a feeling of a lounge, there is a large bar there which is usually empty. A cup of tea might be £5 but it is still a saving of £70.

    • Joe Deeney says

      Cheers for the heads-up on The Level. Although, I’d still rather pay £150 than the £270 Melia was charging direct I suppose!

  4. Andrew M says

    I used them to book a hotel in Abu Dhabi last year. The rate was very good and the cheapest available anywhere. The booking processes was a little odd, using FB Messenger if I remember correctly. That made me suspicious but I checked their reviews online and they were decent. The hotel say was perfectly smooth, without any issues, just the same as using any other OTA. I would use them again if the price was right.

    • Joe Deeney says

      Glad to hear you had a decent experience! I admit, I did find the whole text/social thing quite off-putting.

  5. IanM says

    the whole “can only book after we’ve send you a code” thing smells of something that is undefinable but definitely suspicious. At one level you are giving them access to a method of contact that isn’t required by any other booking company, and also that the booking is effectively hid behind such access feels like something is being obscured.

    I did see it crop up on a search, and it was the cheapest for a 7-night stay in greece, but I was not confident enough that it would be honoured that I decided to book elsewhere.

    They may think that making it feel exclusive/secretive is a positive marketing thing, but in fact many seasoned bookers will treat it suspiciously.

    • Joe Deeney says

      Yes, I think the idea is that it’s a way to offer the sort of ‘opaque’ rates that priceline etc offer, but actually telling you what the hotel is. As you say though, it does raise suspicions.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *