How to Stay in Santa Fe without Breaking Your Budget

November 21, 2014 Updated: April 23, 2016

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Santa Fe, the capital of New Mexico, is a wonderful city to visit. One of the oldest cities in America, it combines history, a unique architectural and design style, and a thriving art community, not to mention a diverse collection of tasty eateries. However, staying in Santa Fe can get expensive if you’re not careful. Fortunately, there are many ways to save money, even on deluxe Santa Fe Hipmunk hotels like the Hotel St. Francis, if you know where to look.

How to Save Money on Santa Fe Hotels

1. Be a joiner. You don’t have to be a frequent, corporate traveler to save money using hotel chains’ frequent traveler program. Even casual, vacation travelers will eventually rack up enough points for a free or discounted stay.  Maximize your benefits by concentrating on just one chain. In Santa Fe, that means staying at Hilton, Hyatt, or Marriott properties.

2. Book in advance. Contrary to popular belief, most of the best rates for hotels in Santa Fe on Hipmunk go to those who reserve their rooms well in advance. Like airline seats, many hotels allot a certain number of rooms to be sold at the lowest price. When those rooms are taken, the price goes up.

3. Be flexible. Being rigid on what days you’ll be staying at a Santa Fe hotel can cost you extra money. Being flexible allows you to take advantage of lower prices that may be available on days close to when you’d planned to travel.

4. Stay outside of downtown. If you’ll be driving or renting a car in Santa Fe, you can save money by staying outside of the popular downtown sightseeing area, near the Palace of the Governors and the Georgia O’Keefe Museum. Hotels near the Santa Fe airport on Hipmunk are generally less expensive than those in the center of town.

5. Travel off-season. In-season and off-season prices can vary dramatically in Santa Fe, by as much as 30 percent. Traveling to New Mexico during November through March can save you a bundle. Plus, the city’s 300 days of sunshine each year makes even wintertime enjoyable. Winter is also ski season in northern New Mexico. When you visit during this time of year, you can ski Taos or one of the other nearby ski resorts.

6. Opt for an independent hotel. Independent hotels in Santa Fe can be less expensive than their corporate cousins. After all, they don’t have all that national advertising and corporate marketing staff to support. Although such hotels may have fewer “big hotel” amenities, by staying at an independent hotel, you’ll be supporting the local economy, and you’ll have hosts who can offer you suggestions on things to see in town and where to have dinner.

What do you do to save money on hotels when you travel? Share your favorite Santa Fe money-saving tips with our readers by leaving a comment below.