How to approach booking accomodation whilst in San Francisco – A Step By Step Guide

Staying in a hotel in San Francisco can be incredibly expensive, especially if travelling as a family with children. This can often mean that most of a person’s spending budget is spent on accommodation. This post aims to give you an insight into affordable places to stay whilst visiting San Francisco along with how to save money and make sure a booking is reliable.


Here are some steps you should go through:

  1. Start looking for accommodation at least 6 months beforehand – the earlier the better
  2. Agree on a price you are willing to spend per night and stick to it !!
  3. Always try and self cater

(Read my post – Why Self Cater in California as to why this is a must –

4. Be open to living outside of San Francisco.

There are many brilliant places to stay outside of San Francisco that are much cheaper than staying right in the central hub. In particular the Silicon Valley. Though living in the hub of San Francisco is always ideal as travel time is lowered considerably sometimes this is not always an option.

Tip: If you book at the right time and can find the right price Pacific Heights is an excellent place to stay. Being one of the better neighbourhoods of San Francisco it has great transport links and great places to eat.

What if I staying in Central San Francisco eats too much of my budget or there is no where left to stay?

If this is the case Palo Alto is your go to area. A town serving Stanford University it is pituresque and houses the likes of Mark Zuckerburg and Jawed Karim, co-founder of Youtube. With prices lower than in San Francisco Palo Alto is more feasible.

Read My Post:  What to do while staying or visiting the Silicon Valley (and surrounding areas)?        For more.

However if staying outside of Central San Francisco renting a car is nearly a must. Though San Francisco does have great transport links compared to other cities travelling by car saves a great deal of time. In a short holiday time is money.

5. Book through a reliable website which allows you to have flexibility through cancellation. Often plans can change free cancellation or cancellation with a small fee is extremely important. The best site I can recommend for both reliability and cancellation is Be sure to read review ratings and hotel policies carefully.

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6. If you do not wish to self cater or can not always opt for a breakfast included hotel or B&B. This ensures that there is no worry about the first meal of the day and the days adventure can start with no worry.

7. Look at hotel parking prices. Parking prices vary from hotel to hotel. Some provide free parking but might require reservations. Others require a fee.

8. If checking in late be sure to call the hotel the day before ore the morning of arrivals. Due to high demand rooms are often given away if a person does not arrive at a certain time or night or rooms may be changed. Making the hotel aware of late check-ins also means that if the hotels reception is closed at the time of arrival the hotel can make preparations for you to get to your room such as putting your room key in a specific place.




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