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Unlike Irene, Hurricane Sandy Hotels Offer Pretty Fair Rates

October 30, 2012 at 5:34 PM | by | ()

InterContinental Times Square reports availability and computers in every room to keep you connected!

More Hurricane Sandy reports continue to pardon the pun, flood in, concerning people losing power and being forced to evacuate their homes. We’ve learned that many made their way in to cities rather remain in suburban and rural areas. Why?Better chances of having power thanks to hotel generators or getting it restored quicker at friends homes in a cosmopolitan area than in their own environments.

Last year, we were disheartened to discover that hotels had taken advantage of Hurricane Irene upheaval and raised their rates for those who needed to stay put a while longer before they could leave town. There was this eyebrow raising $999 deal in Brooklyn that made us fall over.

This year, a quick call around to NYC hotels, those around airports, and random properties around the country with stranded guests show they have a conscious this time around, and have even thrown in some specials to boot. A win-win it seems.

Here’s what we’ve heard so far (and note: we recommend calling the hotel directly in this case.

Just in case you packed in a hurry

Kimpton NYC hotels are offering 20% Best Available Rate for all available rooms through Wednesday. For example, their 70 Park property near Grand Central Station, still has rooms for $220 a night. Use rate code "SANDY" when booking. Plus, for arrivals of 10/29-10/31, they will waive any fees for reservations made online or via phone.

Even as far away as Hawaii (which experienced tsunami-related issues this past weekend) is sharing the spirit of Aloha to holidaying guests not able to get back to the mainland just yet.

Aqua Hotels & Resorts will not charge any cancellation or no show fees through November 1, and is also offering a 15% discount on best available rates for travelers. The discount is available at 20 participating hotels for check-in through November 1. Rates start at $76 at Ewa Hotel Waikiki, Pagoda Hotel and White Sands Hotel on Oahu, $76 at Kauai Sands Hotel, $93 at Maui Beach Hotel and $135 at Hotel Molokai. For reservations, call Aqua at 808-924-6543 or toll free at 1-866-406-2782.

As of yesterday, these rates were available at the following properties:

InterContinental Times Square $379
Indigo Brooklyn $299
Indigo Chelsea $399
Marriott Marquis $499
Eventi $349
Ace Hotel $249
W New York Lexington$469
W Times Square$399
Doubletree Metropolitan $309
Hilton Garden Inn Times Square $299
Bryant Park Hotel $395

FYI: If you're able to finesse your air reservations and fly out of Stewart-Newburgh (SWF), less than two hours from Grand Central Terminal, the hotel deals there are a damn sight better than in the city. However, when we called for rates for today and tomorrow, the Hampton Inn in Middletown, NY (15 minutes from SWF) refused to give us rates as they said their "system was unavailable" though power outages had not been reported in the area yet. But chains like these offer perks like free breakfast, WiFi, evening snacks, and more. Plus, they often have rates that can be booked through a corporate system, have less penalty issues, and the likelihood of price gauging lessens.

Hilton Garden Inn, Newburgh $169
Hampton Inn, Newburgh $164
Courtyard by Marriott, Newburgh $169

Note: All Hyatt’s, including the Grand Hyatt Grand Central, Hyatt 48Lex and Andaz Fifth Ave are sold out (Andaz Wall Street is closed).

While we wouldn’t say that these rates are crazy--although stay tuned for an upcoming report on just that topic—it'll not doubt hurt the budget traveler who hadn’t planned on spending extra nights in one of world's most expensive cities.

Additional reporting by Alex Schechter

[Photo:HotelChatter/Hilton Hotels]

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