Update: Deal is dead. Hopefully if you saw this post this morning, you booked immediately like I suggested. It wasn’t too hard to spot that this deal was too good to last. Also hopefully, the bookings made are honored.

Expedia is running a promo. Use the following coupon codes for instant savings at payment:

  • $100 off nearly any hotel stay of 3+ nights using coupon code: DISCVR105
  • $150 off nearly any hotel stay of 4+ nights using coupon code: DISCVR151
  • $200 off nearly any hotel stay of 5+ nights using coupon code: DISCVR201

The only restrictions I can find:

  • Checkout must be August 31, 2015 or earlier.
  • You cannot get a free stay. The total minus the coupon must be at least $0.01. More on this below.
  • There is a list of excluded properties. The list is short when you consider the thousands of hotels bookable on Expedia worldwide. The list of excluded properties is a ton of Accor properties in France and Europe. All the properties I tested in several countries from other chains and non-chains worked.

I am going to use this sale to speculatively book a ton of 3, 4, and 5 night hotel stays that offer free cancellation at cheap hotels, so that all my nights are under $20.

I have already booked myself two 4-night stays at motels along the East Coast that I will probably need for March Madness. I’ll also make sure to book myself stays in Thailand, Egypt, and Europe for the rest of the summer.

How the Deal Works

I booked a four night stay in Charlotte. On the payment page, I clicked “Enter a coupon or promotion code” under “How would you like to pay?”

I entered the 4-night promo code.

Screen Shot 2015-02-10 at 11.09.25 AM

That brought the price from $215 to $65 or about $16 per night.

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When following my basketball team for March Madness, I always stay in these low-quality cheap motels, and this deal is perfect for hotels in the $50 price range because the percentage discount in humungous.

I also booked myself a four night stay the following weekend in Syracuse. I’m not sure we’ll make it to Syracuse, but I can cancel the reservation without penalty until a few days before the stay.

This stay came out to $53 for four nights, or about $13 per night.
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Important Trick If You Want to Book Yourself More than One Stay

I’ve already booked myself two stays. On the second, I got an error saying I had already used that coupon code from my account.

I opened a new Chrome Incognito browser window, didn’t sign in, and used a different credit card and email address for the reservation. I am not sure which of those steps were necessary, but I have a lot of email addresses and credit cards, so I will follow the same procedure going forward.

Interestingly the terms and conditions say you need to be signed in to use these coupons, but that isn’t currently true in practice.

How to Maximize the Promo?

I definitely think the best deal is to find hotels in the $40 to $60 per range, so you get them nearly free. When I think cheap hotels, I think Vegas midweek.

The only problem is that those hotels generally charge resort fees that you’ll have to pay at the hotel. Here’s Hooters Casino for five nights next month. You only have to pay $32 up front, $6 per night, after the $200 discount, but you will have to pay another $89, $18 per night, upon checkin.
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Another place with very cheap hotels is Southeast Asia. Look at this 3.5 star Bangkok hotel for $8 per night.

Screen Shot 2015-02-10 at 11.33.30 AMHow Cheap Can Your Hotel Be?

The cheapest hotels I could find were $6 per night. You can probably find better, but it’s very hard to get a free room because of how the coupon works.

Your total price (including taxes and fees) needs to exceed the coupon amount. But even then, the coupon only eliminates the base price, not the taxes and fees. For example, this hotel is $199 for five nights, which is less than the $200 coupon.

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That means that the coupon will be rejected.

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This hotel is $202 for 5 nights, $172 base + $30 taxes and fees. Using the $200 coupon only actually removes the $172 base price. You still pay the $6 per night in taxes and fees. Screen Shot 2015-02-10 at 11.44.35 AM

Book Now

This promo is set to last until 11:59 PM PT on March 15. But doesn’t it strike you as a bit overgenerous? Hotel rooms for under $10, worldwide, until the end of August, for as many stays as you like? I predict it ends early. Book now.

Which Card to Use?

Use your Barclaycard Arrival PlusTM World Elite MasterCard® to book the hotel stays. The card comes with 40,000 bonus miles after spending $3k in the first 90 days. Just meeting that minimum spending requirement means you’ll have 46,000 Arrival miles, which are worth more than $500 in free flights on any airline with no blackouts, any hotel stay, any car rental and more.
Book your hotel stays with the Arrival Plus then redeem Arrival miles to remove the charge.

Hat Tip Travel Summary

Editorial Disclaimer: The editorial content is not provided or commissioned by the credit card issuers. Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of the credit card issuers, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the credit card issuers.

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