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Sunrise from Viking Star, Monaco

IHG vs SPG Points Analysis

This article assumes the reader has basic familiarity with earning travel points, redeeming travel points, and analyzing category point bonuses. For basic information about frequent flyer point valuation, please read Determining the Value of Travel Points. Earning SPG Points Because of a strong recommendation from my favorite points guru, I shifted some spending and interest to the SPG program […]

8 Great Boca Resort Relaxed Luxury Features to Enjoy

8 Great Boca Resort Relaxed Luxury Features to Enjoy

In the mid 1920s, Addison Mizner, a preeminent architect of South Florida mansions, built what was then one of the most expensive and lavish properties in the world. Celebrities, wealthy, and upper class moguls considered Mizner’s retreat as “THEE” place to people watch and be seen. Imagine The Great Gatsby and the Roaring Twenties. [ OK, I am […]

virginia tech pond

Blacksburg Hotels and Unique Lodging Near Virginia Tech

After a few visits to Blacksburg, Virginia—my son is a student at Virginia Tech (which won the “most satisfied students” honor)—I have experienced a wide variety of Blacksburg hotels and lodging options. Blacksburg, Virginia, besides being the home of Virginia Tech, is a vibrant, small college town, nestled in an area of incredible natural beauty. The Blacksburg […]

New Orleans Hotel

5 Steps to Find Cheap Hotel Rates

Here are 5 steps I typically use to find cheap hotel rates. Some numbers are included from an actual stay to show how I saved over 50% for a stay at Country Inn & Suites in New Orleans: 5 Steps to Find Cheap Hotel Rates 1. Search on company website A friend suggested Country Inn & Suites for my trip to New […]

Hotel George food

8 Great Hotel Advantages (over Airbnb)

As an independent travel consumer advocate, I am not loyal to any one supplier or way of doing things. As a travel consumer, I seek value—certainly I have preferences and I recently published an article about Airbnb advantages. Here I flip the script and present hotel advantages, with some help from friends. 8 Great Hotel Advantages (over Airbnb) […]

Airbnb Montreal deck

8 Great Airbnb Advantages

In general, a vacation rental—whether a home, apartment, condo, boat, yurt, shared space, or other property—represent tremendous value for flexible, more adventurous travel consumers (when compared to hotels). While I have rented, and written about, vacation rentals for years, I am way overdue in discussing the biggest player in the game. Airbnb is not only the biggest […]

Sunrise at Waterfront Hotel, Jack London Square, Oakland, California

15 Hour Stopover in Oakland, California

On a recent trip to Kona Hawaii (from my home in Virginia), I opted to make an interim stopover. I arranged the itinerary to fly into San Francisco and leave from Oakland the next morning. This allowed us to arrived relatively fresh in Hawaii (in early afternoon, after one long six hour flight) rather than frazzled late […]