I recently had the pleasure of speaking with Travel Expert, Lauren Powell who shared her favorite tips on getting the best summer travel deals without breaking the bank, all from the privacy of your own home. What could be better?!
Candace Rose: With summer break upon us, do you have any tips you'd like to share on planning the perfect summer vacation?
Lauren Powell: "Absolutely! There's a lot of ways you could save money, particularly if you go online, check out the deals on the internet. It's never too late to shop around but there are also some things you could do to prepare ahead of time. I always advise people to join frequent travel programs whether it's with the airline or hotel. I belong to Hilton Honors for example, which is the loyalty program for Hilton Worldwide Hotels and right now they're offering up to 40% off participating hotels through September 15th. That is quite a savings and you really don't even have to be a Hilton Honors member to get that deal. Anyone can get it, so there are good ways to save money if you look around."
Screen Shot: Hilton Honors Worldwide – Hhonors.com/thegreatgetaway
CR: Do you have any suggestions when it comes to looking for lodging?
LP: "Well, you know, again poke around and see who is offering deals. Go to the websites of the major hotel companies and see what's going on. This Hilton Honors deal is available at Hhonors.com/thegreatgetaway . You know another thing you've got to remember when you're traveling too is the packing list because packing, if you bring extra suitcases that can really add up in terms of the cost if you're flying, so you want to pack light but you want to pack essentials and of course during the summer we're traveling outside, so you want to bring along sunscreen. I also like to bring along mosquito repellent. If I'm camping or hiking I use Off! Deep Woods Dry which is long lasting, it's not sticky. If I'm going to the beach I use Off Clip-On which is head to toe protection for up to 12 hours and there's no spray involved. So, really think about what you want to bring so you can condense your packing."
Off! Deep Woods Dry – Amazon.com
CR: What are your tips for getting around unfamiliar surrounds when you travel?
LP: "Well, a couple of things – do your research in advance, so go to the websites of that destination, you also might want to try to find bargains at that destination. I like to go now to Groupon.com because they offer deals on great local experiences from 50-90% off so if you know you're going to go somewhere this summer, go to Groupon's site for that destination. You can find deals on everything from dining to skydiving to bicycle rentals and they also have a mobile app. The other thing that's really essential when you're on the road is having access to information via a smartphone. I've started using the Windows phone by Microsoft an I really like it for traveling because it has a super easy search function where you just hit a button and Bing comes up. You can either type in or say what it is you're looking for – whether it's a restaurant or a gas station and voila the results are all there including a map and it's also got a nice camera where you don't even have to unlock your phone to use it. Get your smartphone, it's a really good idea. This Windows phone is now available through all of the major cellular carriers."
Screen Shot: Groupon.com
Screen Shot: Windows Smartphone – Microsoft.com
CR: Where can we go for more information?
LP: "You can go to News2Know.com, where we'll have all sorts of information about summer travel."