Happy Saturday friends, and hooray, it’s finally the weekend! Here’s a recap of what’s gone on at YMMV this week. From what we’ve written to what others wrote that we really liked and wanted to share, it’s all here, in one convenient place!
Happy Saturday, travel friends! This weekly list includes travel-related contests and sweepstakes we’ve found. Eligibility will vary and it’s up to you to determine if you’re eligible, as well as to enter. Good luck!
The hotel chains have spent a lot of money on marketing to try to get you to book a hotel room directly with them by using their website or app and have gone with the “carrot and stick” approach to achieve that goal. On one hand, they’ve gone out of their way to market special low “Member Exclusive Rates” that are only available to members of their loyalty program and “Best Rate Guarantees” that tell you if you find a cheaper rate after booking with them, they’ll match it and lower the rate even further. At the same time, the hotel chains penalize you for booking anywhere except directly with them. Some of these “sticks” are they don’t give you any recognition of your loyalty status or let you earn any points in their program when staying on externally booked stays. They’ll also only give perks like free WiFi if you’ve booked directly with them.
When I say you need to book direct with the hotel, I mean you use the hotel’s website, the hotel chain’s website, the smartphone app for the hotel chain, or by calling the hotel to make a reservation.
When I mention using an “external” website, that is basically everything else. Websites like Expedia, Travelocity, Orbitz, Hotels.com, Priceline, Hotels Tonight, Hotwire and Booking.com are just some of them. If you’re completing the booking anywhere but with the hotel, it’s an external website.
Hotel search engines like Trivago, Kayak and TripAdvisor show you prices directly from the hotel as well as from external sites, so it’s best to use something like that to see who has the cheapest price.
So, should you only book your hotel rooms directly with the hotel even if an external site is less expensive? Continue reading “Is It Worth The Extra Money To Book A Room Directly From The Hotel Website?”
I know that most people reading this are more into flying than cruising. So forgive me for oversimplifying, but for those who have never cruised before…when you stop at a specific island, or in a particular city, you have X amount of time and are warned to be back by whatever time. 5pm. 7pm. 10pm. Whatever they say. And just like when you’re on a plane, it’s game over once the cabin doors are closed, the same hold true for getting back onto your cruise ship.
Unfortunately, some cruisers recently found that out the hard way, which…happens. But it was the response of the ship’s crew that was kind of…questionable.
Sharon and I go to Texas a couple of time per year to visit Schlitterbahn water park in New Braunfels. As the Austin/San Antonio area has been growing significantly, prices of airfares and rental cars have also been increasing. Because of this, I’ll try to lock in a rental car as soon as I remember to. I do have a list of ways to book a cheap rental car, I’m now only doing one of those steps.
I go to www.AutoSlash.com
Just by putting in some information about my rental, I quickly receive an email back showing the best prices for my rental.
This one, the news didn’t look that good. Continue reading “180 Reasons You Should Use AutoSlash For Every Car Rental”