How do you choose a hotel to stay at? Price? Location? Amenities?
Choosing the right hotel is an extremely important aspect of traveling.
And not all hotels are made alike.

It’s easy to jump on the internet and find the cheapest hotel available. But choosing the right hotel is far more complicated. Most travelers don’t fully understand the different categories of hotels and what they are getting for their money.

They may choose a four-star hotel on a discount website only to find out that they don’t get the complimentary breakfast that was included with a previous stay at a lesser rated hotel. We hope that we can shed some light on this mystery.

Let’s start with full service hotels. Examples of these hotels would be Hyatt Regency, a Hilton Doubletree, or a Marriott Renaissance. On average, you will pay more for these hotels, but if you manage to snag a discount, you should not expect a free breakfast. Typically, you can expect professional service, in-room dining, and a full service, ala-carte restaurant. You will get a classic and traditional hotel, that primarily caters to travelers who want that kind of experience.

Currently the largest category of hotels would be the select or limited service. These hotels often come at very discounted rates and include some amenities that you might not expect. Typically, a free breakfast is included daily with your stay. Additionally, you will usually find a refrigerator and a microwave in the room. Hotel companies have made major moves in this category in recent years. Due to the smaller staffing models for management team, front desk staff, and housekeeping, the hotel can offer more at a more affordable price to their guests. Hotels of this type include Hyatt Place, Microtel by Wyndham, and Hampton Inn.

While you may get more amenities at these hotels, sometimes it can be a gamble in staff service. You may want to check their ratings and reviews before you visit. During busy periods, these hotels see a lot of business and it takes a special staff to be able to manage the influx in business.

The final category is the extended stay variety of hotel. This type also falls within the select or limited category, but they tend to have more amenities in the guestroom that will benefit you during your stay. These hotels, such as the Residence Inn by Marriott or the Hawthorn Inn and Suites by Wyndham, afford you the luxuries of home. Most times, you will have a full refrigerator, a larger microwave, and stove top. You will also have pots and pans, silverware, and plates.

Something to know, before you go, is that these hotels often offer additional pricing discounts to guests who are staying longer periods of time. Feel free to ask them if staying an extra day or two will make a difference.

We have covered the most common types of hotels, but of course there are more. If you are traveling soon and have any questions, please feel free to reach out to Practical Insider Travelers Tips at

Until next time, be safe and happy traveling!

Jason Krysinski is a lifelong resident of Pennsylvania. He’s been in hotel management for 18 years. He’s passionate about writing, food, history, and travel. Writing for Pinpoint unifies all of his passions. He’s always looking to discover new and off the beaten path locations throughout the state. If you have any suggestions, email him at