Looking to take my family to San Diego on vacation---
1. Kathy H
Check out the prices online at sites such as http://www.hotels.com.
Select a few hotels. Visit their websites. Compare prices. Call the hotels that you are interested in. Tell them that you are looking for the best rate you can find. Tell them of any discounts you might qualify for. I often get the best rates on calling and I know that it's the best deal because I've checked them out before calling.
Learn more about San Diego hotels and things to do while on vacation in San Diego at http://www.sandiego-romantics.com
2. Peggy Sue
Things like Priceline, Travelocity, Expedia or Craigslist should help. It depends on what areas you're looking for a hotel in, too and how picky you are. There's an area in central San Diego known as "Hotel Circle" off the 8-freeway which is basically the closest area to all parts of SD (hence "central") and it has basic hotels and nice hotels. I'd go with the travel websites first, though.
3. Larry G
I agree with Kathy. It is my belief that you can get the best rooms and best price by contacting the Hotels directly, especially in this economy. My lone experience with Orbitz ( I think ) was that even though the price was O.K., I got one of the lesser rooms. One that they didn't even want to sell on their website. But like Kathy said do your homework first.