Internet Travel

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Internet Travel
Internet Travel
Istanbul
Mary Green
The How to’s of Researching and
Booking Travel via the Internet
• Security
• Hotels/Resorts
– Passwords
– Using credit cards to book
travel on the internet
• Websites
– Airfare alerts
– Last Minute Deals
– Updates of travel
opportunities
– Sites
– Research
– Satisfaction
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Cruises
Houses to Rent
Weather
Map Services
Camping
Handout
– Favorites
Security
• Passwords
– Initial login to the internet, I use a unique
password that is not used for anything else
• Combination of letters and numbers (6-8)
• (On-line banking, I use another unique password
different from all other passwords)
• NEVER have the system remember your password
• NEVER have a site you order things from
remember your credit card number
Booking Travel
• Using credit cards to book travel
– Use one credit card to book your travel
• Pros
– If someone should hack into the system, only one card is
in jeopardy
– Use a credit card that doesn’t have a large limit
– Don’t use a credit card that you use to do your everyday
business, this card usually has a larger limit
– Virtually all major credit cards have limited liability
against fraudulent use
• Cons
– May not get the bonus points of your primary card
Keep a printout of your
confirmations
• Be sure to keep a printout of your internet
reservations
– Some hotels you pay for up front and some
when you arrive
• Helps me remember if they should ask for payment
and I have already paid
• Hotel will still ask for a credit card imprint for any
extras you may charge, i.e. phone, movies
– May be necessary to show paperwork in case
of discrepancy
• Airline story - Maine
Air Alert Website
• Airfare alerts
– Airfare Watchdog
• Free service, you subscribe to
– Set up parameters
» What airports you are interested in seeing updates for i.e.
SMF (Sacramento), can set up more than one
» How often do you want the updates
» Daily, Frequently or Weekly
• Sign up for FREE fare alerts from your city
Airfarewatchdog.com is the only airfare alert and
comparison site that includes fares on *all* airlines,
including Southwest, Skybus, Allegiant, and JetBlue. If
you're relying on any other source, you're not getting the
full airfare picture.
These are the menu choices on
Airfarewatchdog.com
Click on any one of these menu
choices to learn more about air
travel
Next two slides are sample
airfares from Sacramento
including domestic and
international
Airfare Deals
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Fares from a City
Fares to a City
Top 50 Fares
Fare Alerts
Airfares from Sacramento (SMF)
US Domestic Airfares
Price
To
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$278rt
Albany, NY (ALB)
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$318rt
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$214rt
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$278rt
Details
DU 330 day travel period, No min
stay (Delta)
Chicago, Il (MDW)
DU One-way for half the rt fare.
No min. stay (Southwest)
Las Vegas, NV (LAS)
DU nonstop flt. One-way for half
the rt fare. No min stay.
(Southwest)
New York City, NY (LGA) DU 330 day travel, No min stay.
(Frontier, Midwest Airlines)
» D = Domestic
» U = Unadvertised (could disappear)
International Airfares from
Sacramento
• Amsterdam, Netherlands $878 RT * Sat. night min.
stay, Includes all taxes (UA)
• Auckland, New Zealand $876 RT * No min. stay,
Nonstop flights, Includes all taxes, Early fall travel (NZ)
Beijing, China $866 RT * Sat. night min. stay, Includes
all taxes, Fall travel (AC)
• Birmingham, UK $667 RT * Includes all taxes (UA)
Copenhagen, Denmark $800 RT * Includes all taxes
(DL)
• Edinburgh, UK $645 RT * Includes all taxes (UA)
Glasgow, UK $645 RT * Includes all taxes (UA)
• Ho Chi Minh City, Viet Nam $929 RT * Sat. night min.
stay, Includes all taxes, Early fall travel (BR)
Other Sites for Air Travel
• Some of my favorite sites
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Air Gorilla
Kayak
Travelocity
Travelers Net
Check the web site for the airline you are interested in
flying – they usually don’t charge fees but most times
their rate is higher
• I check several sites before making my
purchase, there are differences, sometimes as
little as $20 to as much as $100, watch the fees
to make sure you are getting the best deal
Booking International Air
• International Airfares
– Traveling to one place and back from another
• happens with cruises frequently
– If you let the cruise line book your air then you don’t get seat
selections and you don’t find out what your connections are until
usually 30 days from departure
• If you want to go early or stay over at the end of your trip the cruise line will
charge you an extra fee
• Seat Guru
– Most leg room in coach
– Which airlines recline the most
– What are the undesirable seats
• Try to put together my own itinerary, if possible
– Airline Consolidator
• Specializes in discount international airline tickets
– You tell them what seats you want and what airline
» You have already checked and know these seats are available
» Compare with the price you were able to put together and then make your choice
» Longer lead times get you the seat you want and best price
» Window/aisle story
Last Minute Travel Deals
• For people who can travel with little notice
– Vacations to Go
• Resort/Air packages
– Last Minute Cruise
• Sometimes as much as 50-70% off
Weekly Updates of Travel
Opportunities
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Top 20 Deals from Travelzoo.com – sample listing
– Free subscription
$1699 -- Australia & New Zealand 5-Star Vacation, Save $1600
http://www.travelzoo.com/top20/74328170-813205
Source: Down Under Answers
$99 -- Palm Springs 4-Diamond Resort w/Credit, 60% OFF
http://www.travelzoo.com/top20/74328170-813469
Source: Miramonte Resort & Spa
$499 -- Caribbean All-Inclusive Weeklong Vacation incl. Air
http://www.travelzoo.com/top20/74328170-815792
Source: CheapCaribbean.com
$189 & up -- Nonstop: Fly to Hawaii from Northern California
http://www.travelzoo.com/top20/74328170-816091
Source: Alaska Airlines ** this is a one way fare
Hotels/Resorts
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Hotwire
– Site tells you rate, how many stars but not the hotel name
until AFTER you make and pay for your reservation
– Seattle story
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Expedia
– Use this site the most, excellent search criteria possible
• Example – free parking – SF, free wifi, laundry, RV parking etc.
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Travelocity Vacations
– Maui airfare deal
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Pleasant Holidays/Apple Vacation
Condos in Hawaii
– Kauai Story
– Maui story – repeat customer discount
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Ask for the web price if dealing direct with hotel
Cozumel
Researching a Hotel
• Package deals sometimes make a hotel seem
like the best one…..check
• Look up hotel independently of the package deal
to see additional information on amenities,
ratings, etc.
• Use Trip Advisor to see reviews of vacations,
hotels, resorts and travel packages
– Trip Advisor is where you can put your comments in
on hotels and resorts
What to do if you aren’t satisfied
• Speak with desk personnel right away and ask
to have the situation remedied
• Ask for the Manager if desk personnel don’t
have the authority to make the decisions you
need made to fix the problem
• Remind Management that you booked your
travel via the internet and you know how and
where to post your comments, be they positive
or negative
– Personal story - Cozumel
Trip Advisor
• Additional uses for Trip Advisor
– Trips
• Research restaurant reviews for the area you are traveling to
– Thai Restaurant
– Best deals on Happy hours (Maui example)
– Prices
– Cruises (for when you are on your own)
– Find out where NOT to eat ….important
• Research “Things to Do” for the area you are going to
– Top Ten Site Seeing activities
» Usually pick a couple depending on how long we are
going to be in town
• Cruises
Monte Carlo
Cruises
• Things to consider before selecting a cruise line
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Price (booking early saves up to 50 – 75%)
Select a room mid ship
Type of room – inside, ocean view, balcony
Attire
Excursions, food, activities on ship
• Cruise Brothers
– Alaska cruise story
• Cru Con
– Site has many cruise package deals
• Oceania Cruises (America’s Vacation Center)
– Smaller ships (684 passengers)
– Promotions include some with free airfare and 2/1 prices
• Ask if you book your own airfare how much of a credit you would get
Houses to Rent
• VRBO and Home Away
Maui
– Vacation Rentals by Owner (all over the world)
• Used several times at Bodega Bay, Russian River, Dillon Beach,
Lake Tahoe, Maui, Kauai, Maine
• Descriptions and pictures have proved to be accurate
• Disadvantage: this is an individuals vacation home and owner
usually not local to provide assistance if needed but they usually
have emergency numbers to call if maintenance is needed
– Maid service is usually not included
• Usually cheaper than the management run rentals
• Bodega Bay and Beyond
– Management company that handles homes in Sonoma Coast
area
• Advantage: if you need service they have the manpower to assist
• They do the clean-up and linens
• Enter “Maui Rentals” for example
Evergreen Club
This is a Bed & Breakfast Home-stay Club for people over 50
• Membership single $60/year or dual $75/year (note first
year membership is half off). (Dual membership can be two
people if you don’t travel with the same person)
• 2500 members in US & Canada (some international)
• Stay is usually limited to 3 days but special arrangements
can be made
• You make reservations with the owner of the house, they
will be there to greet you, provide either a continental
breakfast or a full breakfast (on-line and paper directory)
• Gratuity is $10/day one person, $15/day for two people
• When you join you indicate what type of bedroom
availability you have as well as other factors, for example
• Q bed, private bath or shared, continental breakfast or
full breakfast, pets y/n, no smoking, stairs etc.
Rental Cars
• Cheap Rental Cars
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I check here first to get a baseline for what a rental car for a
specific area costs
This site lists all the major rental agencies for a quick
comparison
• Priceline
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This site you bid for the rental car
• I start at least 50% off what I see on Cheap Rental Cars as
the lowest rate for the size of car I want
• You indicate what size of car you want, timeframe and place
a bid
• If it is accepted, you will find out what rental agency has
accepted your offer
• If your offer isn’t accepted you need to wait 24 hours to
make another bid, I bid my way up carefully
• You can’t cancel once your offer is accepted so make sure
you fill in the information correctly!
Rental Cars
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Hotwire
• Sometimes I can get good deals using Hotwire but
you need to start watching early.
Look at local rental agencies
• Do a search using “rental cars Maui” for example
• Maui story – saved $400 on a monthly rental
Weather
• Weather.com
– You enter the zip code or name of US or
International city
• 36 hour forecast
• 10 days forecast
• Or click on Averages and get the high/low temps
for the year and the monthly rainfall
– Use with caution, these are just averages
– I use this site to check and see what time of
year to travel to various areas within and
outside the US
Mt. St Helens
Camping Reservations
• Reserve America Campground
– Site has most private, state and some federal
campgrounds listed
– Six week camping trip
• Put in query of where you want to go in
case you don’t find what you want…
– Exp: Yellowstone campgrounds
Internet Map Services
• Map services (listed in order of PC World rating)
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Maps
Ask City
Yahoo Map – I use this one second most
Maps Google
MapQuest – I use this one the most
Run map services to see how far from airport to hotel (plus to
know how to get to hotel in rental car or by taxi) Seattle story/
Barcelona story
– Run to see how far from hotel to planned sightseeing
– Exercise good judgment when using any map service by
reviewing maps to make sure the route makes sense
– MapQuest will let you have several stops along the way (used to
double check the GPS
Favorites
• Save your travel sites to your favorites
icon
– Label file so you can easily find them from
your other favorites
Kenya
Victoria
Maine
Zanzibar
Sardenia
Moscow
Mike’s beer in Rhodes, Greece
Seattle
Hualtuco
The End
Favorite Websites
Air Fare Info • www.watchdogfarealerts.com (airfare deal alerts)
• www.Cheaptickets.com (tickets)
• www.kayak.com (research)
• www.travelocity.com (tickets)
• www.seatguru.com (research)
• www.airgorilla.com (tickets)
• www.travelersnet.com (tickets)
• www.farebuzz.com (flight consolidator)
Hotels • www.expedia.com (hotels mostly)
• www.travelzoo.com (travel deal alerts)
• www.hotels.com
Cruises
• www.crucon.com (package deals)
• www.AVCtravel.com (oceania)
• www.cruisebrothers.com
Rental Homes
• www.vrbo.com (renting from homeowner)
• www.homeaway.com (renting from homeowner)
• www.evergreenclub.com (B&B homestays club)
Rental Cars
• www.priceline.com (buy or bid, hotel, cars, flights)
• www.cheaprentalcars.com
• www.hotwire.com (cars, hotels, flights)
Camping
• www.reserveamerica.com (state & some private)
• www.recreation.gov (federal sites)
Research Tools
• www.TripAdvisor.com (research)
• www.weather.com (research)
Maps
• www.mapquest.com (printable trip maps)