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Understand the difference between the varying rates you will encounter on your preferred booking tool

Navigating Different Types of Hotel Rates

Travelers often encounter a seemingly overwhelming list of options and rates, sometimes for the exact same room. When booking official travel, it is important to understand the difference between the varying rates you will encounter on your preferred booking tool. 

FedRooms Rate – The FedRooms rate applies to those hotels within the FedRooms program, and on average is the lowest rate among those available for government travelers. Analysis of FedRooms top 80 markets in May of 2019 found that FedRooms rates average $38.98 per night less than the hotel’s Best Available Rate, $10.61 per night less than the GOV rate and $19.00 per night less than per diem. In addition to FedRooms rates being competitive and at or below per diem,  FedRooms rate always ensures that there are no hidden fees, a 4:00pm or later cancellation policy on the day of arrival, no minimum stay requirements, guaranteed complimentary Wi-Fi and often other included amenities. 

Best Available Rate – The "Best Available Rate" (BAR) is the hotel’s standard rate for each room. The other rates you find on a hotel website or other third party sites are based on this rate, and restrictive refund and cancellation policies may apply. Cancellations are usually required to be made at least 24 hours in advance or more, depending on the brand.

GOV Rate – Many hotels offer a “GOV” rate to government and military travelers at their own discretion. These rates are not protected by the FedRooms rate guarantee to be at or below per diem and cancellation and refund penalties frequently apply. 

Advance Purchase– Some hotel websites and third-party booking sites may offer a “discounted” rate if you pre-pay the hotel room. These advance purchases offer few to no protections, and are usually non-refundable if your travel plans change for any reason. In our May analysis, we found that FedRooms rates average $88.76 less than the third-party booking site Trivago, including the site’s instant purchase rates.

Always be sure to book through your agency's approved booking channel, and select the FedRooms rate to ensure that you receive the best value and guaranteed rate, protecting you against last minute changes or cancellations.