Industry Update
Press Release 3 April 2017

People in the U.S. can Travel Like a King, Without the Royal Price Tag

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DALLAS -- With® traveling like royalty wasn't hard for U.S. vacationers in 2016. According to their latest Hotel Price Index™ (HPI®), there was a range of popular European and Asian cities with average prices hovering between $150-200 per night on, while Austin's 5-star average fell massively from $533 to $278 with new 4-star inventory creating competition. Even though some luxury hotels remained pricey for American travelers, the 4-star and 3-star categories proved to be more affordable and just as accommodating, with a huge range of domestic, Asian, European and other international cities offering rates under $150 per night.


Star rating category for $150 or less per night:

  • In the 5-star category on, there were three beautiful destinations available for $150 or less: Bangkok, Ho Chi Minh City and Istanbul.
  • There was a much wider choice at the 4-star level with 30 destinations, including eight U.S. favorites such as Las Vegas, Salt Lake City and Tucson. Europe and Asia each had eight destinations in this category, including many of the regular crowd-pleasers, such as Beijing, Berlin, Madrid, Phuket and Prague. Latin America had four representatives at this level, including Buenos Aires and Mexico City. Dubai and Melbourne completed this group.
  • Many U.S. cities were among the 48 destinations in the 3-star category, stretching from Orlando, Florida to Portland, Oregon. Canada made its first appearance with Montreal, Niagara Falls, Toronto and Vancouver. Perennial and typically expensive favorites, London and Paris had 3-star averages under $150. Cancun and other Mexican resorts rounded out the list.

The star rating that was purchased by U.S. travellers on for $150 a night or less on average in selected cities in 2016

Hotel star ratings explained

There is no universal star rating system. Each country has its own and, in some cases such as the UK, more than one. This means that travelers should be aware of a possible disparity of standards and facilities when booking rooms with the same star ratings in different countries.

Checking out guest reviews is another way of judging the standard of a hotel. has more than 25 million verified guest reviews from people who have actually stayed in the hotels and their opinions can really help you make up your mind as to whether you have found the best fit to have the most rewarding travel experience possible.

What's a star worth?

Looking for a budget weekend away, just for a change, or a luxury break for that special occasion? Then check out the price by star rating information shown here to see how to stretch your budget that little bit further. For instance, if value is more important than location, 5-star accommodation in many destinations off the beaten track can be booked for the same amount as lower star categories in more familiar locations. Want an upgrade? Moving up a star rating may not cost as much as you think. And alternatively, going down a star could save quite a bit in some cases, especially if the amenities provided by that extra star are not vital to your stay.

Pro traveller tip: look for hotels with guest ratings much higher than their star ratings for superb value.

Living the luxury life

  • The sum of $448 separated the highest and lowest averages paid for a single night in 5-star hotels across the world's most popular cities for U.S. travelers. Reykjavik topped the list at $572 a night. U.S. cities occupied five places in the top 10 highest 5-star prices paid, with Anaheim, Charlotte and Honolulu near the top.
  • The lowest 5-star averages were recorded in Istanbul, Bangkok and Ho Chi Minh City. For the price of just one night in Reykjavik, U.S. travelers could have enjoyed four nights in a 5-star hotel in the Thai or Turkish capitals. The lowest U.S. 5-star rate was recorded in Las Vegas at $232.

Top 10 lowest averages paid by U.S. travelers per night for 5-star hotels in 2016

Value and choice in 4-stars

  • There were 33 destinations with 4-star averages of less than $150 a night, with Istanbul, Bangkok and Ho Chi Minh City all forming the lowest three once again.
  • Five U.S. cities including Albuquerque, Oklahoma City and Jacksonville were also part of this group.

Luxury for less

Prices fell in multiple U.S. cities for domestic travelers staying in 4-star and 5-star accommodation in 2016 for a variety of economic and industry marketing reasons.

  • Greater competition amongst the top-end hotels in Austin helped its 5-star rate to fall substantially.
  • Istanbul was hit by political and security instability during the year, which deterred many visitors, and average prices fell accordingly in both categories.
  • There was a similar situation with Paris as visitor numbers to the French capital dropped significantly.
  • Milan was host to the World Expo in 2015, welcoming more than 20 million visitors, and much of the drop in its 4-star average can be explained by prices returning to more customary levels in 2016.
  • Most hotels in Dubai are in the 4- and 5-star categories but an increase in supply helped to lower rates paid by U.S. customers.
  • Travelers paid less in general to stay in London in 2016, helped by lower occupancy rates and the fall in value of the Pound Sterling, following the Brexit vote in June.

Destinations with the largest price decreases in 2016 (compared to 2015) for U.S. travelers staying at 4 and 5-star hotels

About (or™) is the most rewarding way to book a place to stay. We really love travel and we know you do too. That's why we make it really easy to book with us. With hundreds of thousands of places to stay around the world and 90 local websites in 41 languages, has it all. So, whether you're looking for value in Vegas, treehouses in Thailand or villas with views, it's all just a click away. And with our "Reward-winning" loyalty program you earn free* nights while you sleep…what could be better? Booking just got smarter too. With over 25 million real guest reviews and an app so easy to use that it's been downloaded 70 million times, you can be sure to find the perfect place for you.

*Exclusions apply. Reward night worth average price of previous 10. Taxes/fees payable on each Reward Night redeemed. A $5 fee is charged on each Reward Night redeemed, unless redeemed on the app. See T&Cs

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Taylor L Cole
APR - North America
Phone: 469) 335-8442
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