Why Booking Direct With Hotels Is Better For All (And Sometimes Cheaper)

We always suggest vacationers book direct with inns, hotels, resorts, motels and lodging properties to get the best deals and values on your vacation.

Why Online Travel Agents (OTAs) Cost you More

While online travel booking sites like, Expedia, Travelocity, Priceline, Travelzoo, Hotwire, TripAdvisor, Kayak, and, can be valuable tools, they certainly do not represent all of the lodging available in an area and do not necessarily offer the best hotel value for your vacation dollar. Customers need to be aware these online booking portals require hotels and inns to discount their rates significantly while charging the hotel 15 – 30% or more for bookings made through the booking engine.

In fact, most small inns and motels in Maine do not even work with many of these travel sites – they can’t afford to. This discounted, commission-based advertising, in effect, either reduces the hotel’s revenue, or costs buyers more money when hotels mark up their rates to accommodate for the commission charges. 

Sold Out – Not So!

Many travelers make the misguided assumption that these large travel portals are the only way to book a hotel room. Don’t assume that if there is no room availabile in a Bar Harbor hotel for July 4 weekend on a booking site that the town is sold out, for example. Those few hotels that do work with these travel sites often will not place all of their prime inventory on these sites when they know they can fill the rooms without it costing them 30% in commission.

Many Maine hotels and inns do not even participate in these discount travel sites at all, preferring to deal directly with their customers – no middle man, flash sale travel site or booking agents, and no fees or percentage commissions to be paid. Airlines have been promoting booking directly for years for this very reason. Southwest for example, does not work with any of these Agency Websites because of the extravagant commissions from booking engines.

Book Direct and for the Best Rates

Call it old school, but you get the real deal at a fair rate direct from the hotel’s website and usually with a friendly conversation or email exchange straight from the source – the place you want to stay for the dates you want. Simple and straight from the moose’s mouth, as we say here in Maine, or clutched from the lobster’s crusher claw – no funny business. Lodging Directory is not an online hotel booking system – there is no commission or booking fee to Maine vacationers, or the hotels listed here. The lodging properties you see on our Maine hotel guide have an annual subscription with us.

By not charging commission to our hotel subscribers, we are doing our part to support local Maine businesses and offer the best deals for Maine travelers. We feel it is always best to book direct with your innkeeper so you save money and get the exact dates and the best room or vacation package that suits your travel needs, not just the deal du jour the booking site is promoting.

Happy shopping for your Maine vacation – we appreciate you visiting Maine and booking directly at your favorite Hotel, Inn or Bed and Breakfast for a great Maine stay in Vacationland.

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