Hotel and airfare rates are rising worldwide. Travelers searching for the best deals now have a new tool at their disposal for finding the best hotel prices. A new chrome extension called Travel Arrow gives travelers a peak behind the curtain when booking accommodations through Priceline Express Deals and Hotwire Hot Rates, allowing travelers to book hotels at up to 60% off. Travel Arrow is not associated or affiliated with either Priceline or Hotwire, but their extension works very well with both.
What Is It, And How Does It Work?
Travel Arrow is a chrome browser extension that works seamlessly when browsing Priceline Express Deals or Hotwire Hot Rates. Until now, travelers could only see the name of their hotel after completing their booking and making a non-refundable payment. The only information given was the star level, a generic hotel description, and a single room picture. This gave travelers enough information to have a general idea of the kind of accommodation they could expect. However, when paying a non-refundable booking fee, many travelers hesitate when they don’t know the exact hotel they are paying for.
By keeping the hotel hidden until the end, Express Deals and Hot Rates can offer hotels at nightly rates up to 60% off their standard pricing. Travelers with enough time and energy have been able to manually figure out which hotel they were considering by using the map outline, star rating, and single room picture to compare against hotels in the area. However, this can be extremely time-consuming, especially when considering multiple options. If only the process could be automated!
Enter Travel Arrow
To shed light on these ‘hidden’ deals, Travel Arrow released a beta version of their extension in late June this year. It was an immediate success, and the full release quickly followed on July 12th. The extension has over 3000 users, and there are plans to expand its capabilities beyond its Hotel Reveal feature, which is currently fully functional.
Using the feature is extremely easy. After installing the extension, travelers simply use Express Deals or Hot Rates as they usually would. When opening a potential accommodation option, Travel Arrow displays a popup in the corner showing the hotel’s name. Links to search for the property elsewhere will also appear to compare pricing. During our testing, we found that the extension could identify nearly every hotel on the first page of Express Deals when we searched for hotels in Las Vegas and Denver. The dates chosen were from September 13th to September 20th.
In the rare instances where the extension could not find the hidden hotel, it would still display a small popup saying, “Oops… We searched hard. Couldn’t find this hidden hotel.” However, for the majority of properties that it did work for, the savings were quite significant. Using the dates and cities referenced above as our test bed, we compared Express Deals and booking.com costs. Here are two examples we found:
Westgate Flamingo Bay Resort
Booking.com Price: $222 per night
Express Deal Price: $137 per night
Hyatt House Denver Lakewood Belmar
Booking.com Price: $174 per night
Express Deal Price: $119 per night
Travelers should always check prices on other booking sites. The Travel Arrow extension makes that easy by providing quick links to other booking options. However, the cases above show just how much can be saved by using Express Deals or Hot Rates. It should be noted, Las Vegas hotels charge additional fees that don’t always show up in the rate, which can be significant. For our comparison, we did not include these fees.
What The Future Holds
Travel Arrow is already a powerful extension that travelers can feel confident adding to their tool kit. However, they are planning to bring even more functionality to the table. In the future, Travel Arrow intends to add more features. Future plans include a tool that will display Southwest prices directly on Google Flights, a feature that converts Google Flights searches to Kayak and Skyscanner searches, and a Travel Arrow Miles program that will allow users to earn rewards to use for online shopping. As travel costs continue to rise, travelers must use every tool at their disposal. Knowing which booking platforms are cheapest, how to score free flights, and taking advantage of tools like Travel Arrow are all ways travelers can arm themselves against rising travel costs.
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This article originally appeared on TravelOffPath.com