The Travel Professor
Join me on a journey across the broad spectrum of interesting travel topics. We’ll discuss destinations domestic and abroad, some familiar and some off the beaten path. We take a look at suppliers like cruise lines, air carriers and tour operators and find their bargains and special offerings. Got questions? Email

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Beating the nickel & dime game-next time

Traveling on business the other day I unexpectedly needed to spend a night at my destination. It was the weekend and my favorite travel agency was closed so I searched the Internet mega agencies,, and The results were as expected and the room rates quoted on various sites for the most part were identical.

However one problem with these monster websites is that not all hotels and other suppliers participate and list their rates and inventory. So I went to a few of budget brand “X” hotels websites found a rate that would not break my budget and booked it.

When I checked in the proprietor inquired if I stayed frequently stayed with them. In my mind you are always a frequent quest of the present establishment so I responded with a yes! She gave me a business card said to call them direct the next time to book a room and I’d save $11.00 off of the Internet rate. Based on the rate I paid for this stay that’s close to a 20% discount off the regular room rate for any future stays. Consider me a regular corporate road warrior with this chain. I’ve got to do some more research and see if this trend applies at other properties but I’m wagering that it does.

I’ll pick up the phone and call their front desk the next time I have to overnight in the region. Then I will have managed to play the system while beating the nickel and dime extra fees game and save my travel budget a few bucks.

Got travel questions? Email