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Hotels and Resorts: Top 9 Travel Deals

I scoured the earth in search of the best vacation deals (Ok maybe not scoured, but I did some digging). There are some amazing travel deals out there so now is the time to book your winter getaway. Below are my top 9 Hot Deals. Some deals expire by the end of this month so if you see one you like, jump on it quick!

Southwest Vacations

Gourmet Inclusive® vacations: save up to 56% + up to $600 in instant credit and more in Mexico and the Caribbean.
Destinations: The Caribbean, Mexico
Travel Dates: 09/06/17 – 05/31/18
Booking Dates: 09/05/17 – 09/30/17

Funtastic Deals with Carnival Cruises From $299

Book by September 30th to get rates from just $299 on sailings through April 2019.

Sandals® Resorts: Up to 65% Off

Unlimited land and water sports including scuba* and golf**, plus tips, taxes and transfers included.
Destinations: Jamaica, Antigua, St. Lucia, Bahamas, Grenada, Barbados
Travel Dates: Now – 12/31/17
Booking Dates: Now – 09/30/17

Excellence Group Luxury Hotels and Resorts: Up to 47% off

Adults-Only Boutique All-Inclusive hotel
Destinations: Cancun
Travel Dates: 12/21/17 – 12/26/17
Booking Dates: Now – 10/15/17

Facilities:
109 suites, in 8 different categories
4 restaurants with no reservations, limitations and restrictions
4 bars and 1 lounge
3 swimming pools, including 1 beachfront
Blvgary amenities, Nespresso machines, in
room liquor selection and Jacuzzi available at every suite
35,000 sq. feet wellness center

Save$700 On Adventures by Disney Cruises & Save $700 on Select Staterooms for Adventures by Disney Danube River Cruise

On an Adventures by Disney Danube River Cruise, you can explore 8 destinations in 4 countries on an all-inclusive adventure through Europe.
Destinations: Europe
Travel Dates: Now-
Book By: 10/20/17

MGM Resorts

Limited Time Offer! Save up to 46% on select MGM Resorts Hotels
Destinations: Las Vegas
Travel Dates: Now – 04/30/18
Book By: 10/03/17

United Vacations

Exclusive $200 instant savings, bonus miles, and Bonus Cash to Hawaii
Destinations: Hawaii
Travel Dates: 01/01/18 – 05/31/18
Booking Dates: Now – 10/12/17

Club Med Winter Getaways from $1,649

Sale of Exclusive Savings with all-inclusive packages now starting at $1,649 per adult, per week with air included from Toronto or Montreal.
Destination: Selected Resorts
Travel Dates: Now-05/05/18
Book Dates: Now- 10/24/17

Funjet Vacations

Universal Orlando Resort™
Current Offer: 2 Days FREE with the purchase of a 3-Park, 2-Day Park-to-Park Ticket.*
Destinations: Orlando
Travel Dates: Now – 05/17/18
Booking Dates: Now – 11/30/17

Call your travel agent today to take advantage of these hot deals!

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Top 8 Download Worthy Travel Apps For 2017

When you’re on the go, your best friend and resource can be your phone.

As U.S. News blogger Joel Finman said it best, “In the age of smartphones, apps are like guiding stars: They can point you in the right direction.”

Downloading the right travel apps can enhance your travel experience by saving you time and money.

We’ve tried the latest travel apps to determine which tools are the most useful for planning a trip, getting around, finding friends, and saving money along the way.  Here are the top 8  travel apps you should download. All apps are available for Android and iOS and best of all, they’re free.

Grab

If you’ve ever experienced traveling on an empty stomach, then you’ll appreciate this app. Grab will let you view airport restaurant menus ahead of time, map them in the terminal. In some locations, you can order in advance and pick up your food on the way to the gate. No more waiting in lines!

Happy Cow

Traveling while vegan can be a challenge, especially if you’ve not familiar with the area. That’s where Happy Cow comes in to save the day.
With lists of vegan and vegetarian restaurants in nearly 10,500 cities worldwide, finding a suitable eatery nearby is easy. Each restaurant listing comes with a short description of the menu and user-generated reviews.

Roomer

If you’ve ever lost money on a prepaid nonrefundable hotel room, you’ll love Roomer.
Get deep discounts on hotel rooms from people who have had to cancel their trips. Likewise, if you’ve prepaid for a nonrefundable room, you can sell your reservation on the app.

Sidekix

Do you enjoy sightseeing and want to explore a new itinerary?
If you’re tired of walking the same route every day or ever wondered “what are the interesting things to do around me”? Then Sidekix is for you.
This urban route planner will help you find the best way to get around. Sidekix will choose the best walking directions based on your interests and preferences. Looking for a trendy cafe for a lunch on your way to an art gallery? The app is filled with reccommendations from locals.

Binaural

Stimulate your concentration, meditation or relaxation to alleviate jet lag with this app.
Binaural beats, or binaural tones, are repetitive sounds, that help induce relaxation, meditation, creativity and other desirable mental states. Cultures around the world have relied on binaural beats for centuries to create relaxed states of mind.

AirHelp

AirHelp helps travelers get paid for your canceled, delayed, or overbooked flights. The average reimbursement is more than $500 per claim, and the company takes a 25 percent cut.

Memrise

Learn about the language and culture of your destination with Memrise, named the best app of 2017. Choose from a variety of topics in more than 200 tongues. Gain insight on China’s ethnic groups and learn how to identify different kinds of spices in Polish.

SoloTraveller

Solo Traveller is great for meeting locals and serves as a platform for single female travelers to connect with other female travel companions nearby.

What’s your favorite travel app? Share it with us by commenting below!

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THANKS FOR READING MY BLOG!
If you’re a semi-expert traveler, why not get paid for it? Click here for details.
Looking for an innovative way to improve your business? Click here to learn more
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How to Plan Stress FreeTravel: Lodging and Transportation 3 of 5

Lodging and Transportation
Lodging and Transportation

When planning a vacation, it’s typical to spend a third of your travel budget on lodging. While some travelers spend more, it’s safe to say we all want lodging that’s clean (no bed bugs please), safe, has good customer service, and has amenities.

Searching for ideal lodging using DIY websites can will provide cheap deals, pictures and reviews, but there’s still no guarantee you’ll secure great lodging for a great price (I often wondered if I got the best price for my stay and 9 times out of 10, I didn’t! Darn you DIY sites).

Did you know you can get amazing deals on room rates if you called the hotel directly?

Hotels Deals

If you didn’t know this, don’t be alarmed because most travelers don’t. Hotels can offer the same deals if not better than the DIY sites. This is due to the commission hotels must pay vendors when travelers book through third parties (online, travel agent, etc.). Once you identify the hotel deals you’re interested in, call the hotels direct and ask about their discounts and special offers.

Now let’s talk about hotel chains and brands.

To cater to the wide spectrum of travelers, hotel chains have a variety of brands (the Marriott has Courtyard, Marriott Vacation Club, Spring Hills etc.).

The hotel industry understands travelers vary in preference, style and purpose so they create different brands to cater most traveler’s needs. Marriott’s Spring Hills Suites hotel caters to business travelers. They offer apartment style rooms with amenities like free hot breakfast, fridge and microwave, etc.

How does this information help you?

By understanding hotel brands, you can pick the hotel that best fit your needs. Also, having this knowledge could mean big savings.  Reserving a room during off peak times (hint: booking a room during the weekend at a hotel brand that caters to business travel) could mean big discounts.

Now, I’m going to share with you something that most people don’t think about until they come home from their trip and review their spending. This will save you a good amount of money, you’ll have more fun, and it’s almost a no brainer once you hear it.

Choose lodging near the attractions you’re seeking.

I have friends who booked lodging at a hotel 8 plus miles away from the departure port of their cruise ship. They chose the hotel to save money.
They didn’t take into consideration transportation costs and time. They also missed out on all the fun festivities the night before departure.
Once the cost of transportation was added, it actually cost more to book at their hotel versus staying at one a few blocks away.

Transportation

Transportation is another big ticket expense. Not only will you need a way to get to your destination, you’ll need a way to get around once you arrive. Some hotels offer transportation for a minimal fee and it’s convenient.

I’m a huge fan of using ride share services. It’s inexpensive, the drivers are often times personable, and they are likely to recommend great places to visit.

Air fare fluctuates in price, more so than hotels (of course, you know that).

Knowing when to book your flight for the best price is tricky and sometimes unpredictable. It mostly boils down to demand so paying attention to peak tourist seasons and watching prices will help you save on your flight. The more flexible your are with dates, times, number of stops, airport, and class service, the less expensive the airfare.   Reward programs and membership discounts are great ways to save on air fare.

Tip if you’re visiting a metro area.

Consider purchasing rail passes and other transportation passes a head of time as well. While planning a trip to New York, I purchased a weekend rail pass. It was the best purchase I made. I was free to roam and explore the city as I chose to.

 

Please feel free to ask questions or make comments regarding How To Plan Stress Free Travel.
THANKS FOR ALLOWING ME TO HELP YOU IMPROVE YOUR TRAVEL!
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