The "Carlton Suite" at the Ritz-Carlton in Tokyo
The "Carlton Suite" at the Ritz-Carlton in Tokyo - 
Listen To The Story


Scott Jagow: Hotel prices in U.S. cities really went up this year. Business travelers took a lot of trips. And foreign tourists came over to take advantage of the weak dollar. But now that it's the holidays, both those groups are going home. So it might be a good time to book your vacation. Jill Barshay explains.

Jill Barshay: The last thing executives want to do during the winter holidays is go on another business trip.

Vivian Deuschl is a vice president of Ritz-Carlton hotels:

Vivian Deuschl: About the middle of December, you see a tremendous drop-off. Normally you could shoot a cannon through the lobby of most hotels in January.

Deuschl says the Ritz is slashing prices in its business hotels. Even in cities like New York, which attract holiday vacationers, too. Shop around and you can get more than 50 percent off a room.

Deuschl: Right now is probably the most significant time when demand is down and the inventory is large. And a savvy traveler can negotiate, you know, a really excellent experience. They can stay at a Ritz-Carlton, they can upgrade their experience where they might have stayed in a moderate-priced hotel.

Don't expect rock-bottom prices for luxury. Central Park's Essex hotel is almost half off, but it's still $400 a night.

In New York, I'm Jill Barshay for Marketplace.