Skift Take

HotelTonight's marketing team likes to play up spontaneity as a prime booking motivator, but this data suggests that users are in need of reasonably priced rooms without the bells and whistles.

Necessity, not spontaneity, might be the real reason that last-minute hotel booking apps and features have grown so quickly.

Last-minute hotel booking app HotelTonight released data on its customers’ booking preference this week and revealed that “solid” hotels, described as “comfortable, reliable with all the gotta-have-em amenities” are the most booked on the app. The “solid” hotel category accounts for 39 percent of all bookings.

Nearly as popular and accounting for 37 percent of bookings are hotels that fit in the “hip” and “luxe” categories. However, subsequent booking habits suggests that function rather than adventure still drive bookings.

The least booked categories of hotels, accounting for 24 percent of bookings, are “basic,” described as  “modest with limited extras,” as well as less frequent categories “charming” or “crashpad.”

InterContinental’s Hotel Indigo and Marriott’s Courtyard Times Square West are two examples of “solid” New York City hotels available on the HotelTonight app.

The Refinery is considered “hip” and a Hilton Garden Inn is labeled “basic.”

Last-Minute Booking Habits

Customers also aren’t looking to splurge on their last-minute rooms.

They instead opt for a more moderate choice with $99 being the most booked U.S. rate for weekend and weeknight hotel stays. There are rooms available for as low as $50 a night in the “basic” category.

The average time-of-day a customer books their stay on HotelTonight is 3:00pm and the average booker is just 8 miles away.

Further suggesting that HotelTonight helps those in need as much, if not more, than those looking for an adventure, is data that shows room prices jump during the beginning of the week due to business travel demand.

Tuesdays and Wednesdays are the most expensive days to book while Sundays are the cheapest.

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Tags: booking, hoteltonight, last-minute

Photo credit: HotelTonight organizes its inventory into categories like the "Hip" one seen in this image. HotelTonight

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