PROS / Expedia offers member-only discounts.
CONS / On average, this is one of the most expensive hotel booking services.
VERDICT / Expedia is a comprehensive travel booking site that offers discounts and a loyalty program to its members, so it's a good choice if you travel often. Expect to pay more if you book at its standard rates, though.
Expedia lets you book hotels, flights, rental cars, cruises and activities all from one website. This hotel booking service is easy to navigate without the ads that litter other hotel booking sites. It is pricier than most of the other hotel booking services we tested, though. If you don't take advantage of the member-only promotions and coupons, you can expect to pay up to 40 percent more for a hotel booking than you would with the cheapest hotel booking site we tested.
There are over 365,000 hotels on Expedia. To sort through them, you can organize your search by categories like lowest price, guest rating and hotel name. You can narrow these results further by selecting hotel class, price range, proximity to landmarks, amenities and accommodation type, like bed-and-breakfasts or condominiums.
All of your searches on Expedia stay in the My Scratchpad feature. This tool not only saves the name of the hotels you search, but prices and dates, and it tells you how many other Expedia users are viewing the hotel as you look at your scratchpad. This feature is especially useful for monitoring dream destinations or places you travel to frequently.
When you find a hotel that interests you, the hotel profile appears in a new tab in your browser. At the top of the page, you can view hotel images in small or large detail. The zoom option allows you to view the images in better detail without cluttering the profile page. Next to the hotel images, you can find Expedia and TripAdvisor ratings, nightly rates, and a map pinpointing the hotel.
The room availability section allows you to change the date, number of rooms, and number of children and adults without returning to the original search page. This section lists the max occupancy of the room, rates as they change over four days, and options like free cancellation, booking now or paying later, and no booking or card fees. For example, if you search for check-in on a Thursday, the information icon shows rates for Friday through Monday. This helps you plan accordingly and get the best rates for your stay with the hotel you want.
Expedia offers standard customer support. You can find help through the FAQs section and email forms, or you can call Expedia's support team. The FAQs section shows common queries about hotel, flight and rental car booking in a searchable format.
When looking for a hotel, flight or entire vacation online, Expedia is a good place to begin. You can book multiple reservations in one fell swoop. However, you may pay more with Expedia than you would with some of the best hotel booking services.