5 Tips for Booking a Cheap Agoda Room #ttot #budgettravel #travelblog


Money is only a tool. It will take you wherever you wish, but it will not replace you as the driver. –Ayn Rand

Booking a cheap Agoda room

Accommodation costs are a big part of any travel budget, and the majority of us have no option but to pay for a place to rest our head at night.

With so much choice in the accommodation market, it can be hard to know which booking website to choose.

Just do a Google search for your preferred hotel, guesthouse or hostel, and you will see how many of them there are. On the front page alone, names such as Agoda, booking.com, Expedia, hotels.com and lastminute.com will routinely pop up alongside the accommodations official website.

Over the past few years travelling, I have used most of the popular accommodation & hotel booking websites out there.

For me the decision on who to choose is typically based on the following factors:

  • Website informationHow good is the quality of information? Without images and indication on if I’m booking a dorm, single, double or twin room, I will go to another site where the information presented clearly.
  • AvailabilityDo they have the room you want? There’s no point in trying to book the room if one website has no rooms available and yet their competitors have the same type of rooms to book.
  • PriceHow cheap is the room advertised? Price for most of us certainly plays a part.
  • Booking processHow easy is it to book the room? If I need to through a 20 step booking process, then chances are I will look for an easier way to reserve the room.
  • RewardsWhat do you get in return for your loyalty? If all the other factors are all the same, then earning some reward for your business can be a deciding factor.

I first used Agoda to reserve two rooms in the Sawasdee Hotel Sukhumvit Soi 8 back in 2011 because they met all of the above factors. Since my first experience, I have continued to use Agoda over and over again for my accommodation needs.

If you currently use Agoda or are considering using them in the future and looking to save some money by booking a cheap Agoda room, then I suggest using the five tips below:

5 Tips for Booking a Cheap Agoda Room #ttot #budgettravel #travelblog
Where it all started: Sawasdee Hotel Sukhumvit Soi 8 Bangkok

1) Use them

OK, this might sound like common sense, but you need actually to use Agoda to save money vs. booking directly. Why’s this?

Well, most hotel websites advertise the full RRP per night and not ‘I know the owner, best mate rates’.

I was waiting to check out of a hotel room in Taiwan a while back, and there was a 10-minute delay because a guest in front of me was complaining. While frantically waving his mobile phone screen at the receptionist, I managed to translate something along the lines of ‘the room is $20 a night cheaper on Agoda!!!’

Agoda is a business and like any business that deals in numbers, it will book the rooms at bulk wholesale prices. The hotel (or guesthouses) stance will be if Agoda wants to cut into their profit margin then they can.

Having used Agoda since 2011 there have only been two hotels I have managed to get cheaper by booking direct. Agoda rooms usually are the same price and more often than not cheaper than booking via the hotel’s website.

2) Book in advance

The main method I use to secure a big fat discount is by booking way in advance. I’m a fairly organised traveller and plan months ahead, so I take full advantage when I’m not Couchsurfing or Airbnbing and book a guesthouse or hotel.

In some cases, this has landed me early bird discounts of up to 70% off the listed price. At the very least I would expect 20% discount for booking more than three months ahead.

Doing a quick search for a room in Bangkok six months from now and I was able to come across these deals in a matter of seconds. If I explored in more detail, I’m willing to bet there will be better details to be snapped up.

If you search carefully you can sometimes even find a small discount by booking a few days before.

5 Tips for Booking a Cheap Agoda Room #ttot #budgettravel #travelblog
Agoda early bird discounts

3) Travel during low seasons

Granted this might not always be possible, but I find it’s best trying to avoid public holidays like Christmas, New Year’s Eve and so on. The simple reason is most hotels, hostels and guesthouse start to get full and increase prices. Also, many hotels will pay their staff a higher rate for public holidays and special events.

Even during events like football matches I have seen the price per night of nearby hotel rooms go up by as much as 50%.

It’s true that some countries don’t celebrate Christmas in the same way as Europe, the US and Australia/NZ. For example, I was in Cambodia during Xmas, and there was no price increase but yet in Sydney a few years before I saw room prices triple for Xmas Day and New Year’s Eve.

4) Be loyal

I have used many well known (and less well known) hotel booking websites. Although this can good for trial and error, helping to find which website best deals in a certain area or country, being a returning customer has its benefits too. Because now I can combine those reward points and use them for something.

Do you need Agoda reward points?

Well if you’re a frequent traveller then these points will soon start building up and you can exchange them for discounts, or even a free night off your next trip. Stick with one system and the points will go much further.

Last year alone I used my Agoda points to get over 2 weeks of free hotel stays.

I also have a Virgin Velocity account that is affiliated with Agoda, meaning I can earn points with Virgin if I choose and use them for flight upgrades.

5) Pay via a rewards credit card

I use a Virgin Velocity Amex card (no yearly fee and free to join) which means can I earn one frequent flyer mile per $1AUD spent. It might not sound much but combined with spending on flights and so on, the miles soon add up.

During the past three years, I have traded miles earned on my reward credit cards for:

  • Various hotel room discounts
  • Free hotel room at a sold out Formula 1 weekend
  • Free flight from Manchester to Bangkok
  • Free return flight from Melbourne to Gold Coast
  • Free flight from Australia to New Zealand
  • Paid only taxes for a flight from Da Nang to Siem Reap

I take the stance that I’m paying for the accommodation so I might as well get a reward in return. Most importantly Agoda doesn’t charge any extra for American Express or credit card payments.

It also doesn’t have to be an Amex card or even Virgin Velocity, there are also Visa and Mastercard rewards cards with other banks.

Finally, double up

This is not only specific to using Agoda but for travelling in general; if you book a hotel room for one person then expect to pay more.

I’ve done my fair share of solo travelling and it’s great to have your own space. Somewhere to knuckle down and work on your blog, smash out some freelance work, or just simply catch up on some missed sleep.

The point is you can’t argue with mathematics and a $60 a night hotel room will become $30 a night if shared with a partner, friend or travel buddy (assuming they pay you!).

5 Tips for Booking a Cheap Agoda Room #budgettravel #agoda


  • Goflyla
    Posted August 28, 2018

    Thanks for sharing this informative blog! I really appreciate your tips for cheap hotels booking.

    But hotels can also be booked at low rates from Goflyla where people can find many travel and hotels booking websites. To get dscounts on Agoda use the Agoda discount code available at Goflyla and save always on your bookings.

  • Goflyla
    Posted August 21, 2018

    Really contains very useful information about how to save money on hotels booking.

    I want to tell you about one more which can also be used to book your travel accommodation. You can also book with Agoda via our site Goflyla. Here you will number of Agoda offers and other travelling partners of Goflyla who provides several discount coupons.

  • Chris M
    Posted February 6, 2018

    Been using Agoda for as long as you have and have been very happy with it. I loved getting credit to use toward hotel stays, until they changed it to rewards points. I also noticed I get an additional 7-8% off using their preferred Credit Card providers. So if you have Citibank, be sure to use the special designated site to get that extra discount.

    • Barry Sproston
      Posted February 6, 2018

      That’s great to hear Chris. Yes, I agree the old credit system was great and I’m not sure if I prefer the new rewards points system as much. Also thanks for sharing the info about the Citibank – I don’t have a credit card with them but will check it out.

  • Nelio
    Posted January 5, 2018

    Hi everyone,

    Please be careful with AGODA! They will lead you until the payment making you thinking that you are booking one thing but at the end you are booking less than what they promised!
    Recently I have make one reservation with a “BREAKFAST INCLUDED” filter active, I have selected the first option that appeared below that filter and at the end I DON’T have breakfast on my reservation! Printscreen of the option that I have choosen here: https://imgur.com/a/gL5Lb

    AGODA pathetic answer was “The part where you see ‘Breakfast included’ is just a filter that shows rooms that could have the breakfast included on it.”

    “filter is a higher-order function that processes a data structure (usually a list) in some order to produce a new data structure containing EXACTLY those elements of the original data structure for which a given predicate returns the boolean value true.” (filter definition on wikipedia)

    I will repeat the key word, EXACTLY.

    If a “BREAKFAST INCLUDED” filter is set it should retrieve EXACTLY all options which have…yes, you know it…it should retrieve EXACTLY all options which have “BREAKFAST INCLUDED”! But not on AGODA!

    This clearly shows the posture and the way AGODA conducts their business: bad faith.

    Run away from AGODA!

    Best regards!

    • Barry Sproston
      Posted January 5, 2018

      To be honest I’m surprised they just didn’t refund you for the breakfast. Seems like the right thing to do if you paid for it and it wasn’t included. I’m curious to hear what the hotel’s response was when you showed them the Agoda booking with breakfast included?

    • kingj0n
      Posted September 30, 2018

      You need to look at what’s included. It didn’t say or is included. But the same room with higher cost includes the breakfast if you showed more. It’s in the same spectrum. This is pretty common. You picked the room that didn’t include it. If you wanted it, you would have picked the room that clearly indicates that it includes it. You did no such thing.

      The filter did its job. However, it didn’t remove all the packages that didn’t include it. It showed rooms that did along with options to pick that same room with different prices. Like being able to cancel near the dates or paying cheap rates but cannot cancel and so on.

      Agoda did nothing wrong. It’s just you who picked that specific room that didn’t include breakfast.

  • pae radna bangkok
    Posted August 10, 2017

    Of course, what great tips, I will bookmark your website. All the Best!

  • hotel pattaya
    Posted June 13, 2017

    i love your blog and always like new things coming up from it.

  • Dean
    Posted May 1, 2017

    I have been communicating via email to a reputable resort overseas as I am about to book with them. But just before i made the confirmation, I made a last minute check to Agoda which indeed posted a price a lot cheaper than the hotel price. I told the hotel that I am booking through Agoda because of how cheaper it is. However, this is the reply I received from them: “sounds very weird that your will get a better rate since Agoda & other online booking engines don’t get any special rates nor are allowed to sell us under published rates. Please be aware also that other online travel agencies are advertising the rates without taxes and only adding them in the final phase before payment.”

    What do you think of this? Should I book with them or go through Agoda? They make it seem sound that Agoda is dodgy.


    • Barry Sproston
      Posted May 1, 2017

      Hi Dean,

      I will have to disagree with some of what the resort has said as I know for a fact the Agoda advertising base is 15%. So for bookings made through Agoda, they will take a 15% fee (sometimes more), and the resort will get the rest.

      Some establishments would rather not pay this charge and certainly prefer you to book directly through them.

      I’ve had a late night conversation with a guesthouse owner who hated doing business with booking websites but has no choice as it’s a regular source of new customers. Understandably for smaller family run guesthouses even a small reduction in profits can put a strain on things.

      Now the tax issue can be right, but it’s always stated before you book so there shouldn’t be any confusion. Sometimes rooms are advertised with tax and sometimes without. I’m looking on Agoda as we speak to book a hotel in India and all prices I’ve seen do include tax. So it depends on the country and area you plan on visiting

      Finally to answer your question, if you feel some loyalty towards the resort, want to help them out, then, by all means, book direct, and you will be sure all the money you spend will go to them.

      However, for me, I would more than likely book through Agoda and get the better rate. Then if a member of staff (or members) went above and beyond during my stay, I would tip them with the money saved. Only because some so called “luxury resorts” don’t pay their front line staff decent rates anyway.

      Hope this helps.

  • Helena
    Posted September 24, 2016

    I haven’t heard of Agoda but I am always on the look out for new and cheaper ways to book! Thanks for the tips.

    • Barry Sproston
      Posted September 30, 2016

      Sure Helena, give them a try and let me know how you get on….

  • Becki
    Posted September 21, 2016

    Thanks for the tips, I’m always looking for cheaper and easier ways of booking rooms and travelling in general! Never used agoda before but I’ll definitely check it out!

    • Barry Sproston
      Posted September 30, 2016

      No problem Becki. I’m sure you will find a bargain or two – I’ve been happy using Agoda for the past 5 years.

  • Vyjay
    Posted September 18, 2016

    I agree with you that it works out cheaper most times when we book hotels through Agoda or other aggregators. It also helps in getting great deals if you book ahead and also travel during the off season.

  • David
    Posted September 17, 2016

    Some great, straightforward tips here Barry. Would have to agree with a lot of it, and have been surprised how you really can often find cheaper prices online than booking directly with a hotel. #FeetDoTravel

    • Barry Sproston
      Posted September 30, 2016

      Cheers David. Even if the price is the same as booking direct, the reward points gained online always come in handy.

  • LISA
    Posted September 17, 2016

    Thanks for all the tips. Have never used this company but I stay at hotels, but you never know so good information to keep on hand.

    • Barry Sproston
      Posted September 30, 2016

      They are really good if you plan on travelling around Asia. I mostly use Agoda for the majority of my online bookings these days – the point system is handy for rewards off your next stay too.

  • Gutsygurltravel
    Posted September 17, 2016

    Thanks for sharing! These are some great tips.

  • Travel Lexx
    Posted September 16, 2016

    Thanks for the informative post, Barry. I have used Agoda in the past but I don’t tend to stay in hotels that often, generally choosing hostels. However, they have come in super useful when we were looking for accommodation in Bali and we got some great deals. Some great tips in here!

    • Barry Sproston
      Posted September 22, 2016

      No problem Lexx. If i’m travelling solo I normally stay in guesthouses or hostel booked through Agoda also. Hostelbookers are good too and I’ve used them in the past, but I prefer collecting my points through Agoda these days so I can redeem them for free nights.

  • Angie (FeetDoTravel)
    Posted September 16, 2016

    I have seen Agoda pop up on my search engine but never ended up using them, however I love your tips for booking cheap – I this idea very much 🙂 Thanks for sharing to helps us save money in the future!

    • Barry Sproston
      Posted September 22, 2016

      No problem Angie. I find in the UK the rates are OK but Agoda really does come into its own when booking places to stay in Asia.

  • Nazzar
    Posted September 7, 2016

    Great tips Barry. They will come I handy for my upcoming travels. Thanks for sharing!

  • Leath
    Posted August 15, 2016

    Thanks for sharing. I normally use booking.com but have been told Agoda has the best deals when travelling in Asia. Will have to give them a try and find out next time I’m in Thailand.

    • Barry Sproston
      Posted August 17, 2016

      No problem Leath. I’ve used both booking.com & Agoda on many occasions. I personally prefer Agoda for travelling around Asia but also use Airbnb and Couchsurfing – depends on the area and accommodation availability.

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