When it comes to booking hotels, I tend to stick with the same company that I’ve used time and time again. That is until last year when a trip to Dublin found me searching high and low for any affordable accommodation during a particularly busy weekend in the city. Finally using a comparison site for finding a hotel, I found my travel organisation transformed so I’m always on the look out now for new sites to try out. I was recently invited by the owners of a new price comparison site called Prontohotel.com, to put it through it’s paces and see if it stands up to my needs. Here’s how I got on.
Prontohotel.com isn’t simply a comparison site for hotels – It is a comparison site for comparison sites for hotels! I have to say, I was really impressed with the landing page. Not only was it cleanly laid out but it also had some great features on the page too. I really like the use of both the Weekly Picks and Popular Destinations which are great if you’re in need of a break but unsure where to go. There are substantially more hotels for Rome, but with the company based there that’s understandable.
Clicking across the top tabs, I thought the Destinations option was particularly impressive. It did show a focus on European countries but as I delved into the site, I found many hotels in countries far across the globe. There is also the option of simply looking at the best deals that the site offers which makes the site perfect if you’re looking to book simply on price.
With my previous frantic search for Dublin hotels still a recent memory, I used this as my base to test the site. The search function gave me a list of ‘Dublins’ that seem as though they’re programmed by popularity. Once I’d selected the date in June I was looking for last year, the site took literally seconds to come up with a comprehensive list of hotels for me to look through.
Organised first by popularity, I then had then choice to rearrange by price, distance, star rating and name. Each hotel had a rating from the website itself and it showed you a breakdown of each price comparison website’s prices, highlighting the best deal available which I thought was a great feature.
When clicking through to a chosen hotel, the page opens up nicely to the range of rates available from each site and for what size of room that’s on offer. Prices are listed alphabetically by website and within this, by price. Personally, I would find it easier if it were listed by price, from lowest to highest but that’s just personal preference. I do, however, like that it goes straight to pricing rates, with the option of looking at the hotel’s overview, a handy map and reviews from other users. A feature I would definitely appreciate if I was booking is showing which hotels are located nearby.
Once I’d chosen a hotel and deal, clicking on the ‘Book Now’ button took me directly through to the comparison site i’d chosen for my deal. I have to say it wasn’t quite what I was expecting to happen but that doesn’t mean it’s a bad thing! Far from it. After a short wait, you’ll find all the information imputed into the comparison site you’ve chosen leaving you simply with the task of paying.
Prontohotel.com is an interesting new way to search around online for the best hotel deal without having to spend too much time doing so. The recommendation and featured destinations pages really impressed me and I can certainly see them helping an indecisive traveller to choose a destination. The fact that the searches are really fast was especially pleasing to my impatient self and I was glad to see that the site lived up to it’s ‘Pronto’ claim! By bringing together some great comparison sites, Prontohotel.com does have a wide reach and wide range of hotels available. For European travel, its scope is perfect, though I did find that when I searched for more obscure destinations further afield, there was less or no choice available. In searching for less popular destinations, I also discovered that there’s no simple way of getting back to the homepage from your search. This meant that every time I wanted to search for something new, I had to skip back via my browser which wasn’t ideal. I’d also prefer the pricing to be arranged from cheapest downwards rather than by comparison site but that’s personal preference. That aside, I did find the site to be intuitive and informative too overall, giving inspiration as well as value. For quick and simple hotel booking, Prontohotel.com would definitely make my life much easier.
This review was sponsored by ProntoHotel.com and was conducted as an independent test. The views expressed here are my own.