Hipmunk’s Best Hotels in Miami, FL
Planning Your Miami Visit
If you’re on the hunt for the best hotel deals in popular Miami neighborhoods, consider visiting during the slow season. Although Miami is a popular destination year-round, it does tend to see a decrease in visitors around summer. Unfortunately, this coincides with Atlantic hurricane season, so it’s definitely more of a risk to plan a huge vacation from June to November.
If you are nervous about booking an unfamiliar hotel, consider large companies like Marriott. Prices tend to be pretty stable and they have a large representation in Miami, across all their brands. You might find a Courtyard for a significantly better rate in a different neighborhood and you can trust it’s still a good hotel.
Where to Stay in Miami
Depending on what you are hoping to see and do in Miami, you can stay in a variety of neighborhoods. Some of the most popular neighborhoods include Downtown Miami, South Beach, Miami Beach, and Coconut Grove.
Downtown Miami is ideal if you want to be close to Miami’s financial and commercial centers, or are attending a convention. Several cheap hotels in Miami’s downtown area provide direct access to popular attractions like the James L. Knight International Center and Port of Miami. Check out Downtown Miami hotels like Courtyard by Marriott Miami Downtown, Miami River Inn, EPIC Global Suites, Aloft Miami – Brickell, and River Park Inn Suites.
Hotels in the South Beach area are definitely pricey, but when you compare the rates against a hostel in the same area, it’s only a few dollars more to book a private hotel room. Properties like Island House, Red South Beach, South Beach Plaza Hotel, The Penguin Hotel, and Hotel Chelsea are cheaper hotels in Miami’s South Beach.
Luxury Hotels for Less in Miami
With so many attractions and neighborhoods, you can spend weeks exploring Miami and only scratch the surface. Some of the most popular reasons people travel to Miami include its famous beaches, high-end shopping, the city’s culinary scene, business conferences, and annual events. Luxury hotels dot the shoreline of every high-end spot of Miami, so what is the secret for scoring one of these hotels for less?
One of the best deals in town is the Hyatt Regency Downtown Miami. A luxury business hotel, it’s centrally located and offers what you’ve come to expect from the Hyatt brand. Other tips include boutique, nonchain properties. Miami is filled with art deco and trendy small properties like the Mayfair Hotel Spa in Coconut Grove or South Beach’s Dream South Beach.
If your dates are flexible or you’re willing to book last minute, put in a hotel bid with Priceline. Many luxury hotels wind up with standing inventory and Priceline’s Name Your Own Price system can result in savings of 35 percent or more off published hotel rates.
Getting to and From Miami International Airport and Miami Airport Hotels
Many hotels in Miami offer complimentary shuttle service to and from Miami International Airport. Be sure to read details when doing a hotel search to factor in the need to rent a car or rely on public transportation. Some hotels have hefty overnight parking rates that can make a cheap hotel on par with some luxury hotels.
With Miami’s public transportation system, many people find they enjoy getting around Miami without worrying about traffic and parking charges associated with renting a vehicle. Miami’s public transportation system includes the Metrorail, Metrobuses, and a really cool Metromover that shuttles people around the Downtown Miami area at no cost. If you prefer private transportation, Miami International Airport has reliable taxi services, and Super Shuttle serves MIA as well.
If you prefer to stay near the Miami International Airport, there are plenty of cheap hotels nearby. If you have an early morning flight, consider booking the on-site Miami International Hotel Airport located on the departures level of Concourse E. Cheap hotels near Miami International Airport include Days Inn Miami Airport North and La Quinta Inn Miami Airport North. More upscale but still budget-friendly hotels near MIA include Embassy Suites Miami International, Sofitel Miami, Hilton Miami Airport, and Hilton Garden Inn Miami Airport.
Hostels in Miami
While there isn’t a huge selection of hostels in the Greater Miami area, there are a couple of options. Check out Bikini Hostel in South Beach to be right in the Miami Beach action. Check room types carefully as some days it is the same price for a private en suite as a nine-bed dorm.
Another hostel is the Miami Paradise Hostel in Downtown Miami. Often called MPD Bed Breakfast, this property is near the beach and minutes away from the Port of Miami and Little Haiti. Prepare meals in the communal kitchen to save more money and take advantage of amenities like free Wi-Fi.
Airbnb and Private Rentals in Miami
If you prefer private lodging and vacation home rentals, Miami has a huge selection of private homes and apartments available for short-term use. Not surprisingly, the prices range from just over what you would pay for a South Beach shared hostel to a penthouse significantly higher than luxury hotels brands like the Mandarin Oriental. With private Airbnb home rentals, you definitely need to be flexible with your dates in order to find the best deals. Don’t skip over the most popular neighborhoods and beaches, as those areas are filled with vacation rentals.
Helpful Resources for Planning Your Miami Visit
If you are unsure what you want to do on your Miami vacation, start by visiting Miami’s official visitor and tourism website. Once you have a better idea on what you want to see and do, you can narrow down which Miami neighborhoods interest you most.
Utilize travel-planning sites like Hipmunk for hotel and flight comparisons. If you are flying domestically, do a search of flight prices to both MIA and Fort Lauderdale airports, as FLL is not that far away from Greater Miami. American Airlines maintains a hub at MIA so look for the best selection of flights and connections with Oneworld alliance carriers.
If you are planning to rent a car, check Priceline to compare rental car deals. Check whether the rates are cheaper if you rent at the airport or from an off-site location. If airport locations have a glut of sitting vehicles, it’s not uncommon to snag a really cheap deal from Priceline. Just don’t forget that airport locations have additional fees and taxes automatically tacked on.
Look at the Miami International website for a detailed explanation of the various types of public transportation available, along with helpful maps and diagrams.
Consider VIP organized tours and excursions through premier tour services like Viator. If you prefer to explore on your own, look online to purchase the Go Miami Card. This all-inclusive attractions pass includes free admission to 33 of Miami’s best attractions, insider perks, and shopping discounts. Purchase a one-day, two-day, three-day, or five-day pass, or you can build your own customized pass, saving money on attractions of your choice.