**This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of IHG Hotels. All opinions are my own.

Booking a hotel should be straightforward, but there are so many variables to consider. Some people focus on price while others may care more about location. Plus, hotels now offer so many additional amenities that may appeal to you, so you’ll want to make sure you choose the right hotel whenever you travel.

To help you decide on what’s important to you when picking a hotel, I’ve partnered with IHG and I’m giving away 75,000 IHG Rewards Club Points. The contest details are below, but before you book your next hotel stay, here are some things to consider.

What to look for when booking a hotel

Price

Let’s be honest, the price of a hotel is typically the number one concern for travellers. Many people prefer to spend as little as possible on accommodations which is understandable, but you often get what you pay for. The cost of hotels varies quite a bit depending on location, brand, season, and more. If you’re flexible, you can definitely find something within your price range. Now, if you’re willing to spend just a little more, you can often find a hotel without sacrificing too much.

Location

After price, most people consider the location of a hotel as their top priority. As you can imagine, a hotel in a popular tourist area will typically be more expensive than say a property that’s located just outside of the main areas. I’m not saying you need to stay in the suburbs to get a reasonably priced hotel, but it’s always worth looking at places that are near transit lines since it’ll still be easy to get around. That being said, if you want to be in the heart of everything, it may very well be worth splurging on a hotel that’s close to everything.

Free breakfast

I have to admit, getting free breakfast at a hotel is something I love. I’m not talking about a room rate that includes breakfast, I mean free breakfast for all guests. The Holiday Inn Express® brand has just rolled out their new Express Start® Breakfast Bar in Canada which features more than 30 items to choose from. Hot and fresh options available to you include pancakes made to order (at the push of a button), freshly cooked bacon, eggs and sausage; and healthy alternatives, such as hard-boiled eggs, turkey sausage and fresh fruit. To help celebrate this new breakfast bar which is available at 100+ Holiday Inn Express hotels in Canada, hockey greats Doug Gilmour and Guy Carbonneau faced off to create their ultimate breakfast. You can watch their challenge unfold here.

Fitness amenities

For a lot of people, having the right fitness amenities can make a huge difference during their stay. A small gym in the hotel will help people remain active while a pool could be a great way to relax at the end of the day for others. Heck, some families and even individuals make the pool their number one priority since it can keep the kids entertained or they could get some wicked pictures for Instagram.

Business amenities

As a freelancer, having access to business amenities such as free Wi-Fi and a business center where I can print documents have become much more important. It’s crazy to think some hotels still charge for Wi-Fi, but it happens. People may think having access to a printer isn’t important but wait until you check in for a flight and find out they only accept printed boarding passes. Yes, you can get it at the airport, but if you’re travelling with carry-on luggage only, you’ll want to have everything ready before you arrive, so you don’t have to deal with any lines.

Loyalty points

The ability to earn loyalty points has become more important over the years. Just about every major hotel chain has its own loyalty program where guests can earn points. These points are valuable since they can be used to redeem free nights later. Many people try to stick with one hotel chain since they’ll accumulate points quicker. It’s also worth noting that these programs also have different status tiers depending on the number of nights you stay which is why many people are loyal to a certain brand. Although the ability to earn points is important, you need to look at all the above factors when choosing a hotel. Keep in mind that you can still earn different points when staying at any hotel by using one of the best travel credit cards in Canada.

Contest: Win 75,000 IHG Rewards Club points!

Share what your favourite breakfast item is in the comments for a chance to win 75,000 IHG Rewards Club Points (worth up to a 2-night stay depending on time, location, and availability). If you sign up for my mailing list (scroll up to the top right of this page), you’ll get one additional entry! Ensure you comment by May 9, 2019, the winner will be announced on May 13, 2019.

Contest terms & conditions:

  • Open to Canadians only
  • Contest ends May 9, 2019
  • Winner must have an IHG Rewards Club account
  • Sign up for a free IHG Rewards Club account here