Hotel perks without the overnight stay

flickr/ Horia Varlan/ MGN

If you have ever had a long layover, you know how nice it would be to just take a break at a local hotel between flights. Even in your own hometown, how relaxing would it be to enjoy some of the amazing resorts without having to stay the night? It is becoming easier to do both of those things and more with what is called day-stays, or micro-stays at popular hotels around the world.

Lounging by the pool or getting special treatment at the spa, even sneaking in a meal at your favorite resort, you don’t have to leave town to feel like you are on vacation anymore thanks to a growing new trend in travel.

“Day or micro-stays are becoming more and more popular as hotels are catching on to the idea that they can make extra revenue by basically monetizing vacant rooms during the day,” explained Anne Banas with SmarterTravel.

Dana Zucker knows all about this option. She has booked day-stays at hotels at home and on the road.

“They would have a day package and it would give use of the facilities. You could use the infinity pool use all the scheduled classes that they have whether they have yoga, trapeze class that day,” said Zucker.

Other travelers like the option of actually getting a room just for a few hours while they are passing through.

“I did it for instance in London. I was flying through Heathrow. We arrived at 7 in the morning. We checked in, we had a shower, we had a meal in the restaurant. We relaxed, went back, had a power nap for a couple hours and then left and went back to the airport and caught our flight out, but it really broke up the trip nicely rather than sitting in a busy airport six or seven hours,” said Barak Hirschowitz, with the International Luxury Hotel Association.

Luxury resorts are leading the charge on this growing trend. Day-stays or micro-stays are offered by smaller, independent hotels, too.

“If you need to use the business facilities, or you can send a fax, or you want to lie at the pool, or you want to eat at the restaurant, use the spa, all these types of things would be available to you just as they are to guests of the hotel,” explained Hirschowitz.

You can call the hotel directly to find out about their day-stay availability, or use a growing number of online websites.

“There are some great web sites out there now like Day Use and Between 9 and 5 that can help you book these hourly rates at hotels conveniently and effortlessly,” said Banas.

Dana Zucker has done both to arrange her stays. She suggests you compare rates, though. For her family, paying the day-rate for four people sometimes costs more than actually booking a room for the night, or certain perks might be off limits. When it works, she considers it a win-win for everyone.

“It was a good deal for them and a good deal for you, as well,” she said.

The rate for the stay varies based on the hotel and the location.  Zucker often uses day stays when she’s staying at a home rental or Airbnb location that might be more conveniently located than the resort with the perks she enjoys during a day stay.

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