With lodging prices in New York at record levels and nudging upward (averaging $243 in 2005), the biggest hurdle is getting a rate that leaves enough cash for a show, a nice dinner or a day of sightseeing. Even at exorbitant prices, New York hotels book up quickly; the occupancy level was 85 percent last year.

There is hope: Some 5,000 new hotel rooms will be added in the New York market this year, and many of them come from moderately priced brands including Holiday Inn Express and Comfort Inn.

Even at upscale hotels, bargains are possible. You just have to know where, when and how to hunt.

Get the full story at the Miami Herald