Thursday, July 18, 2013

Travel Season!

Is upon us.  This year we are staying local and within the U.S.  That being said there are some new and not so new ways to book your stays.

AirBnb - this is a website devoted to renting homes or apartments to guests through a third party.  Instead of a hotel, this is an alternative.  I will be doing an AirBnb this September in NYC which I am hoping will be fun and stress free.  And maybe I will feel like a New Yorker rather than a tourista!

Tripadvisor - I don't go anywhere without scouring this site.  Up and down and sideways.  Always read the poor reviews and work my way up, then make a decision.  I have been burned but rarely.  Among the lifetime top three b&b's/hotels I have chosen worldwide has been through this side.  I love it!

Craigslist - This site can be scary but for the most part, I have bought and sold on it  for years without any issues.  Now we are renting a house through it.  Here is hoping it works.

Hotel Booking - When I book a hotel, I do my research through the hotel site/Travelocity, etc./ and Hotels.com.  Check in multiple times for the best price.  Prices change constantly, and sometimes, the last minute deals are the best.  Don't hesitate to call the hotel directly either. I have noted in Kennebunkport, some hotels have 'walk in' rates.  Meaning that if you physically walk in at 4:00 p.m. on a Saturday night you get a healthy discount.  Love that.  Not that it works every time.  Flexibility is key.

Cars - I go straight to Budget cars website and search.  Renting cars outside the airport is literally half the price.  Taxes be gone!  Take a cab to your destination and rent a car locally.  Don't walk in though.  Call ahead.

AARP, AAA, etc.  Always ask for this discount.  Most times you can get a better rate through the hotels specials, but always ask anyway.

Just think all that money we save can go to shopping and eating!

Some tips for International traveling.  Don't know about you, but I am WAAAAAYYYY past the point of saving money for being uncomfortable.  If you will be traveling to three different countries with three different currencies, please bring some local dinero with you. Nothing worse than having to search for an ATM in for e.g. Russia! (can't read) to save an exchange rate.  Same goes for cab to hotel.  Have the hotel send a car to pick you up at train station, whatever.  There is no price difference.  Promise.  In these cases, usually time (and energy/stress) matters, not a few dollars.

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