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  1. #1
    Atomic Punk
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    05.31.14 @ 08:17 PM
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    Default Axxman's Summer Travel Tips '07.

    It's that time of year again, for some reason some of you are going to hit the road for a little R&R. Managing a motel, I see the same stupid mistakes made over. So here's some tip to save you money and frustration:

    1. Hotels.com, Travelocity, Expedia and other third party reservations sites WILL NOT SAVE YOU MONEY!!!! Always check with the motel's direct website because they're ALWAYS cheaper. You're online anyway and a couple of extra minutes can save you up to $30. These sites are also more restrictive, they have draconian cancelation policies and often don't tell you that you've booked a smoking room. If there is a mistake you are screwed because the motel cannot change one of these reservations.

    2. Before you ask for AAA, Government/Military or other discounts, see what the best availible rate is online. Our motel chain offers 25% discounts online, but if you enter in AAA or others you will only get 10%. There are often special internet rates that you cannot get by booking over the phone.

    3. The Reservations Agent isn't there to save you money, neither is the person at the front desk. It's up to you to do your own homework on discounts because I'm not going to tell you about them (unless you're a regular guest and I like you).

    4. If you don't have a reservation, don't get be a jerk to the front desk guy. You are at his/her mercy. Some chains have competitions for the desk staff to see who can get the best rate or number of rooms (we don't). Anyway, copping an attitude because you saw some consumer report on the Today Show so now you're and expert won't fly. Your best hope is to play it straight, most front desk agents want to put people in their rooms so they'll work with you. Most front desk guys also don't want to check in someone who's a jackass either.

    5. Do your homework, find out what the rates are like at your destination. My motel is $60 to $100 dollars more than my counterpart in Sacramento, that percentage applies across the board in Monterey and Carmel. It's expensive here. Tonight (Saturday), my low price is $115 for a room with 1 queen sized bed. You do not want to stay at $50-a-night motel in this area. That you come here unaware of these facts is not my problem, if I can kill an hour learning about Kirksville MO, then you've got no excuse for being clueless.

    6. Trust your instincts, ask to see a room before you book one. If they say no, turn around and go somewhere else. If you don't like the outside you won't like the inside. save everyone a hassle and check your room out in advance.

    7. Google Maps, use them. Notice how damn close to the street the motel is? Cars make noise, motorcycles make MORE noise. It's not a big deal if you're on the 10 floor or above but if the place is two or three stories it's going to be a problem. Google Maps can also show you how far away you are from everything you want to see in the area.

    8. Make a packing list of all the stuff you are carrying. Everything. That way you don't forget something in one of my rooms. At least do a walk-through before you leave in the morning, especially if you've go kids. Stuff ends up in drawers and under the bed. Also, I have a huge collection of Cell Phone chargers and a couple of cell phones.

    9.If you've made a reservation online or over the phone, it's always a good idea to call the property direct to double-check your reservaton's details (# of beds, refridgerator, pool and so on). Most motels are happy (or don't mind) when you do this because if there is a problem we can work to fix it. If we cannot (say you are coming here durring a big event and we're sold out) you can then make other plans.

    10. If you or someone you are traveling with has special physical needs or has meds, you better damn sure get on the phone and double-check your accomidations. If you wait until you walk through the door you are asking for trouble. If we have advanced warning we can help you.

    11. Once you've checked into your room and the people next door are making too much noise or they're partying in the pool in front of your room...for crying out loud, pick up the phone and call the desk. We can't fix a problem if we don't know about it.

    12. A Motel is not a Hotel. Motels don't have room service and often don't have anybody awake in the office after 11:00pm.

    13. Determine when check-in and check-out times are in advance. Our check-in time is 2:00pm. Every month or so some moron shows up at 10:00am and needs to change for a wedding.

    14. Pay with a CREDIT CARD, not a DEBIT CARD. If you insist on cash, there's always a deposit and some places don't take cash at all. Thank a drug dealer, hooker or Tweaker for this, don't cop and attitude with the front desk.
    "Nothing is ever what it seems but everything is exactly what it is." - B. Banzai


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  2. #2
    Sinner's Swing!
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    Great post, Axxman. Whle many of those tips seem deceivingly commonsense, I'm sure they are far from being so.

    Also, is a debit card that has,say, a Visa card insignia the same as paying with a debit card? Is it still good policy not to pay with one of these?

  3. #3
    Atomic Punk TheresOnlyOneWay's Avatar
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    Thanks Axx, I'm gonna print this out.
    Sammy did the impossible. He made Van Halen better. Deal with it.
    Michael did the impossible. He made Van Halen better. Deal with it.
    --------------------------
    IAMA I am a stage hand for big mainstream artists. (self.IAmA)

    Q: who was the biggest douche that you have worked with?

    A: Eddie Van Halen hands down he threatened all the stage hands that if we wernt all pushed to the side when he got off stage that he would "bash our faces in"

    Now the new David-Lee-Roth-Van Halen album, “Tokyo Dome In Concert,” is available for purchase, and it’s super, super, super, super, super, super, crazy bad. - Doug Elfman

  4. #4
    Atomic Punk jimmy812's Avatar
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    Thanks, Axx. Good advice.
    2-time Fantasy Baseball Champion.

  5. #5
    Atomic Punk
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    05.31.14 @ 08:17 PM
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    Quote Originally Posted by Yesterdays View Post
    Great post, Axxman. Whle many of those tips seem deceivingly commonsense, I'm sure they are far from being so.

    Also, is a debit card that has,say, a Visa card insignia the same as paying with a debit card? Is it still good policy not to pay with one of these?
    No.

    A debit card uses money directly from your checking or savings account.

    A credit card does not.

    Hotels, Motels and rental car companies have what's called an "incidental amount" that is added to your stay. It's sort of like a security deposit, the property or service just assumes you are going to use the phone to make a phone call or use the in-house wireless internet.I don't know why they do this, it's stupid and unneeded today. Anyway, some people are on tight budgets and don't account for this and it can screw up your balance.

    The other common thing is that people will put the charge on their debit card and then pay cash in the morning. That charge was 'Authorized" at check in and the amount will be frozen by your bank from 5 to 10 days depending on their policies. It's great if you have a lot of money but if you don't you will bounce checks.

    Eventually these additional charges are dropped from your account, but it can take time. I had a $75 charge hang on my Visa from a rental car agency, for 30 days.
    "Nothing is ever what it seems but everything is exactly what it is." - B. Banzai


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  6. #6
    Baluchitherium Mikey Metalhead's Avatar
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    1. Hotels.com, Travelocity, Expedia and other third party reservations sites WILL NOT SAVE YOU MONEY!!!! Always check with the motel's direct website because they're ALWAYS cheaper. You're online anyway and a couple of extra minutes can save you up to $30. These sites are also more restrictive, they have draconian cancelation policies and often don't tell you that you've booked a smoking room. If there is a mistake you are screwed because the motel cannot change one of these reservations.


    This one will be intersting for my daughter this week. Her and her friends are taking a senior trip to Corpus... expedia got their room for $46 a night. The best the Hotel would do is $90 over the phone.
    Will be insteresting to see if they have any problems.
    I SURVIVED TEXAS LINKERS WEEKEND I, II, III, IV and VI and VII.barely made it to VIII time to slow down
    I musta had a broken middle finger for V
    http://www.youtube.com/user/daneph

  7. #7
    Atomic Punk
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    Here's a few more:

    15. Think about your vehicle. Many places have parking garages with low ceilings, so your jacked-up SUV may end up on the street. If this is a problem for you then it's YOUR JOB to check this out in advance.

    Also, some places may not offer parking at all. There's no law that says that they have to either.

    Some places that have parking will CHARGE you for this. This is an aditional charge.

    16. At check-out, take a second to read your bill. Some properties add charges and then count on you to not double check. The most common is the "Spa Fee" or "Gym Charge", which can be $20 or more, if you didn't use the spa or gym then tell them to remove that charge.

    17. Large Hotel chains actually have a policy of over-booking rooms **cough**Hilton**cough**, so you could very well arrive and find that you have no room. Some places have a time-limit for which you must check-in by or you lose your room. Check Tripadvisor.com and see what people are saying. They key is communication, if you can't get a straight answer from your destination then don't book with them.

    18. Read the fine print. Weather you're on line or checking in, take the time to read what you're agreeing to.

    19. Get a pre-paid phone card OR a pre-paid cell phone. Most motels don't charge for 800 numbers. If you have to use the in-room phone check on the charges in advance. You can get nailed for anything between .80 cents to $3 per minute OR MORE, depending on where you are calling to.

    This is another reason to check your bill. Sometimes you can get phone charges adjusted off, depending in the circumstances. We charge $1.50 for a non-connect, it's the way our screwy system works. We usually adjust this off before the guest checks out but not always. Also, if you are traveling with toddlers, in 2007, they've probably never seen an old-school phone except at daycare. So they'll often think it's a toy and dial South Africa, you might have to pay for that.

    20. If you have kids, keep track of their electronic gadgets. I can't tell you how many times people have accused our house-keeping staff of stealing their cell-phone, i-Pod, PSP or Nintendo DS (because our house-keepers are Mexican so naturally some people assume that they're also theives), only to find it in the car seat or realize that their kid lost it at the Aquarium.

    21. Bring your own damned towels for the pool. You might be charged at some places and the fact is that you are wasting water and energy. Buy some beach towels at Target for cheap and dry them out in your room or in the back of your hot car.

    22. Google Maps is your friend. AAA is a BETTER friend. AAA gives you free maps and guide books with your membership.

    23. Learn to read a map. This is my pet peeve. Maps are availible with as much detail as you think you need. Practice by getting a map of your home town and then use it to figure out where you are and how to get to where you usually go. This is something that I even do before a major road trip, just as a refresher. You wouldn't believe how many phone calls that I get from San Jose or San Francisco airport from guests asking directions to Monterey. Honestly, it's not my job.

    24. If you are not going to learn to read a map then spend the extra money on a car with GPS or buy your own GPS. I have a revelation for you, most people who work in gas stations either don't speak English any more or don't live in the immediate area so even if they do speak the language they don't know their way around town. It's not their fault you want cheaper gas so don't take it out on them because YOU are lost.
    "Nothing is ever what it seems but everything is exactly what it is." - B. Banzai


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  8. #8
    Baluchitherium loveevhsince79's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Axxman300 View Post



    21. Bring your own damned towels for the pool. You might be charged at some places and the fact is that you are wasting water and energy. Buy some beach towels at Target for cheap and dry them out in your room or in the back of your hot car.
    Axx - Lots of good advice but sorry, there is no way in hell I'm going on vacation that I have saved for all year and then have to worry about bringing towels for the pool. If I wanted to bring my own towels, I would just go camping instead. As a mom doing lots of laundry all year long and will have enough to do when I return home with the suitcases full of dirty clothes, I'm not worrying about the towels. Now I will reuse the towels provided just as I do at home by hanging them on the racks to dry but no way I'm bringing my own. And honestly, what is the difference in me washing the towels or the hotel/motel washing them?
    Last edited by loveevhsince79; 06.17.07 at 09:11 PM.

  9. #9
    Atomic Punk
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    The towel thing is usually no big deal. The thing I've noticed is that the number of people who come in just expecting towels for the pool has increased since 2002. You get towels in your room for personal use, for some reason the towels that we provide in the room are no longer enough.

    I don't know why.

    We always had our own towels with us because there were often times where we'd stop at a lake, river or stream and wade or swim. I'm just trying to save you money or aggravation.
    "Nothing is ever what it seems but everything is exactly what it is." - B. Banzai


    My Blog:

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