While online travel portals should be your first stop when it comes to research, don't pay for your holiday till you get there. The hotel sector, facing a crisis because of the economic slowdown and hurt by the recent Mumbai attacks, has started announcing 20-25% cuts in tariffs, but you can bag a far better deal if you bargain face to face. Given the number of cancellations that the hotels are facing, wrangling a room upgrade, at the very least, should be a piece of cake.
If the idea of travelling without a confirmed room reservation bothers you, try making a phone or e-mail reservation. Most hotels agree to book a room in your name without asking for credit card details. The good news is that Yatra.com, a travel portal, has launched a service that allows you to book a hotel by paying just 10% of the cost. The rest is payable at the time of checking in, provided you like what you see.
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