Stretch your summer travel dollars with Travel Mom

July 20, 2010 10:41:19 AM PDT
We've hit summer's midpoint and many people are planning to hit the road by Labor Day weekend. Most are looking to stretch their travel dollar with perks and freebies, like travel agents sometimes enjoy. The Travel Mom Emily Kaufman is here to offer some advice for making the travel less pricey and more enjoyable for everyone:

TIP ONE: USE A CREDIT CARD with TRAVEL PARTNER
If you use a credit card, consider going with one that is teamed up with a travel partner. Many credit card companies have joined forces with hotels and airlines so you can earn rewards for making purchases you make every day. Just be sure you are with a card and travel partner that you will actually use.

"I just moved my daughter into college and charged everything to do with it on a Priority Club Select Visa that gives me travel points at eight different hotel brands and now I have enough points to go back and visit her free," Emily says.

TIP TWO: BE LOYAL!
Be loyal! Hotel chains, airlines, cruise lines and rental car companies all reward their loyal customers by making travel easier and giving them lots of bonuses, the Travel Mom explains. There are many ways to benefit including free upgrades, dedicated reservations phone numbers, priority seating and reservations, preferred check in, private security lines, special events and much more.

TIP THREE: FOLLOW BIG EVENTS
Consider visiting a destination that recently hosted a big event. The city will be freshly renovated with plenty of hotel space and abundant deals, Emily points out. Anaheim hosted the All-Star Game last week. Vancouver hosted the Winter Olympics and South Africa just wrapped up the World Cup.

TIP FOUR: LOOK FOR HOTELS WITH PACKAGE DEALS
If you are planning to attend a sporting event, theatrical performance or theme park, find a hotel that is offering package deals to the attraction. Often times, there is a discounted room rate, price-breaks on tickets, free shuttles and even special entrances to theme parks or shopping areas on the hotel property, The Travel Mom adds.

For instance, If you're staying at Holiday Inn Club Vacations at Orange Lake Resort, just minutes from Walt Disney World, you can plan your theme park experience in advance by visiting one of their tickets & transportation desks. Here, you can save a few dollars off what you'd pay at the gate to Universal Orlando, Sea World, Busch Gardens, dinner theatres and more, and make arrangements for group transportation to the theme parks.

They also have an on-site Disney Planning Center, where Disney's own Cast Members who will assist you with the purchase of tickets. The Disney Planning Center also gives guests personalized itinerary planning for theme park dining and dinner shows, plus special event tickets like Mickey's Not-So-Scary Halloween Party & Mickey's Very Merry Christmas Party. www.hiclubvacations.com

For more tips and deals, visit www.thetravelmom.com


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