I'd need a flow diagram to explain this properly, but basically I open a hotel reviews site and look at the well-reviewed places. Inevitably they are unavailable for the dates I want so I continue down the list into middling. Press a button that opens 7 windows to check availability on various listings sites, most of which say unavailable and those that don't seem to have jumped from £90 a night to £145 a night (for example) which is getting pricey.
Continue down the list, find something good, realise it's not really in the city and more in the `greater area` (miles away). Find more good options which are all unavailable on the selected dates. Get fed up and use listing site directly to only show those that are available. Find something in a decent location for a decent price. Check back with reviews site to find several comments stating `dreadful`, `worst hotel I've stayed in` etc. Give up, cancel holiday.
Places being more expensive than I realise probably doesn't help, but yesterday I spent nearly three hours looking at this crap *without* finding anything suitable (a non-shit computer would help slightly).
Other people find this process annoying or am I just incompetent (or cheap)?