4 Ways to Prevent Your Miles From Expiring

May 5, 2015 by · Leave a Comment 

Airlines are tightening their mileage programs, raising the rates, and setting expiration dates on unused miles. This has travelers looking for new ways to get additional miles, and to hang on to their old miles until they can finally reclaim them.

The Huffington Post recently addressed one of the frequent traveler’s most burning dilemmas: how do you keep your frequent flier miles from expiring?

English: Express by Holiday Inn, Inverness The...

Holiday Inn Express, Inverness, Scotland (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

First, it’s a good idea to keep track of your miles, especially if you’re using more than one loyalty program. The article suggests AwardWallet as a helpful tool. It not only keeps track of your miles, but also alerts you when something is about to expire.

HuffPo also notes that most programs simply require some form of activity every 18 to 24 months in order to keep your rewards on board. And in some cases, not much activity at all is required in order to count. You can often find partners that work with the airline or hotel and do something simple, such as ordering flowers, to keep your miles active.

Best of all, all the miles renew when you do this, not just certain miles as many people think.

Other options include using a hotel or airline website as a shopping portal for your online purchases.

You can even trade miles around using an online travel point exchange, such as points.com.

For instance, if you have 5,000 Holiday Inn Points and 20,000 Delta points, for around 10 percent of the points, you could transfer the Holiday Inn points to your Delta points account. This is very helpful if you have no upcoming plans to stay at a Holiday Inn.

It works almost like a co-op or a bank. The companies themselves aren’t working on these exchanges but simply allowing people to trade points via the points.com website. It’s a really handy way to keep at least some of your travel points alive.

What are you doing to keep your travel points from expiring? Share some of your best tips with us in the comments or on our Facebook page.

Travel Light, Travel Right with New Travelpro Maxlite Hardside Luggage Collection

April 29, 2015 by · Leave a Comment 

Durable, Super-Light Spinner Luggage Features a Stylish Hard-Shell Design

Travelpro has reached new innovative heights with its introduction of the Maxlite Hardside Collection, a breakthrough in hardside luggage durability, style and value. This amazingly lightweight 4-piece series consists of a Business Plus, 21″, 25″ and 29″ expandable hardside spinner models which feature a strong 100% polycarbonate hard shell for ultimate protection. The patented Contour Grip provides superior comfort and control to an 8-wheel spinner system that rolls effortlessly in any direction. The roomy main compartment expands 2″ to maximize space and packing flexibility.

“As the originator of Rollaboard luggage, Travelpro has always been a leader in the travel goods industry,” said Scott Applebee, Vice President of Marketing for the Travelpro family of brands. “The Maxlite Hardside Collection integrates our most recent innovations into hardside luggage design, making it stand out in the mind of the customer.”

Travelpro Maxlite Hardside Collection

Travelpro Maxlite Hardside Collection

This series is packed with extra touches, such as a telescoping aluminum, airline-grade handle which adds strength and stability and has stops at 38″ and an extra-tall 42.5″ to accommodate users of different heights. Durable crash protection is provided by protective side feet, molded wheel housings and built-in skid guards. High mileage travel is a breeze with high-performance wheels that are tested to the same standards as those of our more expensive collections. To secure the luggage contents, the Maxlite Hardside series utilizes high-tensile strength zipper pulls to fasten directly to the built-in TSA lock. Split construction allows for easy packing of clothes and contents within two full compartments which include a built-in mesh pocket handy for electronics, power cables and cords.

Travelpro offers business travelers a great option — the Maxlite 19″ Business-Plus Hardside Carry- On. Unique to this model, the Business-Plus has a full exterior pocket that opens for easy access to a business organizer for storing files, paperwork, a cell phone, pens, cables and more. Two padded sleeves conveniently store and protect both a laptop and a tablet.

Available in grape and black glossy shell colors, the Maxlite Hardside Collection is a bold fusion of fashion and functionality.

About Travelpro

For over 25 years, Travelpro International has prided itself on design innovation and durability in crafting the highest quality luggage for travelers worldwide. Since transforming the ease of modern day travel with The Original Rollaboard wheeled luggage, Travelpro has been the brand of choice for flight crews and frequent travelers on every continent. The company is dedicated to building a lifelong relationship with its customers by consistently meeting and exceeding their expectations. Travelpro was honored to once again be voted as the “World’s Best Luggage” by Premier Traveler Magazine in 2014.

Please visit the Travelpro website for a full list of the latest products and retail locations. You can also like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter at @Travelprointl.

How is Airbnb Changing the Travel Industry?

April 28, 2015 by · Leave a Comment 

You’ve no doubt heard of Airbnb, the online travel site that allows travelers to book stays in private homes and apartments, working directly with the hosts. It’s a fantastic way to get a good deal on a room, find a larger space to rent, and even meet local people while you’re traveling.

Many of the rental properties are actually private homes with rooms where travelers can interact with hosts on their own stomping grounds. You can also rent entire homes, cabins, or apartments for one night, or a few weeks.

You can chit chat with your host, eat a home cooked breakfast and get travel tips straight from the locals sitting across the table from you.

According to a recent segment on CBS News, Airbnb booked 37 million room nights last year.

Sansome & Lombard Streets in San Francisco

Sansome & Lombard Streets in San Francisco

“It’s not just a gamechanger, it’s a huge gamechanger,” said travel writer Peter Greenberg.

Airbnb is mainly a place for leisure travelers not business travelers, although if you wanted a little adventure, business travelers can partake as well.

In San Francisco, Greenberg noted, there are almost as many Airbnb available as there are hotel rooms.

And in a place like San Francisco, which is so expensive, looking for a homeowner with an affordable spare room is a fantastic option for tapped out travelers.

We even know someone who rented a room in Manhattan for $90 a night while nearby hotels were around $200. She even got free parking in front of the apartment building.

Another friend booked a small cabin in rural Idaho on a working goat farm, where she and her family were treated to ice cream made by the property owners and daily romps with goats.

We suspect that Airbnb is only going to grow and get bigger and better, especially as people are trying to stretch their travel dollars, as well as expand their horizons.

Have you ever stayed in a Airbnb property? What did you think? Would you do it again? Leave us a comment and let us know.

Photo credit: Brad Coy (Flickr, Creative Commons)

5 Hotel Scams You Need to Know About

April 23, 2015 by · Leave a Comment 

We’ve talked about hotel scams in the past, but it’s always good to review alarming information from the world around us.

We found a Yahoo Travel article on different travel scams that revealed some of our old favorites, as well as several new ones worth bringing to your attention.

When you’re staying at a hotel, the restaurant menu under the door is an old trick. Someone slides a menu under your door. You call and order takeout, and trustingly give out your credit card information. Except that’s no restaurant on the other end of the line. Instead, it’s a thief taking down your info and using your card information for nefarious purposes.

Bahasa Indonesia: Fasilitas WIFI Pusdiklat Dep...

Bahasa Indonesia: Fasilitas WIFI (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Beware of wifi skimming. This happens when a scammer sets up a “Free Wifi” hotspot for you to sign onto. Once you do, your passwords can easily be harvested by the scammer. Just resist the urge to sign on when you see free wifi.

It’s very easy to fake but if you know what to look for, you should be able to see the signs. Small things like a @ or % at the front of the wifi name, or Free_Hotel_Wifi mean you should avoid those like the plague.

A new (to us) scam we never thought of is the faked hotel views. For instance, before booking that expensive beach view hotel, check out the address on Google Street View and see if it really is close to the beach. With Google Street View, you really can see the view from the particular place you’re renting.

Another common scam is the fake front desk calls. They’ll tell you there’s something wrong with your credit card, and could you please give them the number again to confirm it. If you get that kind of call, go down to the front desk and make sure they actually did call you.

Have you ever been scammed? What’s the one people have tried on you? Leave a comment and let us know if there’s anything new we should watch out for.

Marriott Backs Down and Says it Won’t Block Wi-Fi… For Now

April 14, 2015 by · Leave a Comment 

After previously announcing in January that they were going to block hotel guests’ personal wifi devices at conferences, Marriott has backed down, after facing a great deal of blowback from consumer groups, frequent guests, Google, Microsoft, and the news media.

The hotel giant was recently fined by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) for blocking wifi access in Nashville and their knuckles are apparently still stinging from the rap. They did file a petition to the FCC and do not plan to withdraw it, and have said they still wish to receive clarification on the rule.

English: Baltimore Marriott Waterfront Hotel

Baltimore Marriott Waterfront Hotel (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Marriott says that they put these blocks in place to protect against cyberthreats.

But despite the hotel chain’s thirst for security, they have backed down and promised not to jam guests’ signals while at their hotel chain.

The main reason they seem to be backing off due to a resounding amount of public criticism, coming in the form of public comments, negative new articles, and vows from guests not to spend another dime at Marriott.

This is the type of fury that can only be roused by someone attempting to take wireless devices away from the American consumer and Marriott seems to have seen its mistake.

“To set the record straight it has never been nor will it ever be Marriott’s policy to limit our guests’ ability to access the Internet by all available means, including through the use of personal Mi-Fi and/or Wi-Fi devices. . . To be clear, this matter does not involve in any way Wi-Fi access in hotel guest rooms or lobby spaces,” Marriott said in a recent statement after the controversy grew so big that the New York Times ran a scathing article about the incidents.

What do you think? How important are your wifi devices to you when you travel?

Bring This, Not That: Should You Take a Taxi, Hire a Car, or Drive to the Airport?

April 9, 2015 by · Leave a Comment 

When you’re going to the airport, what’s the most cost effective way of getting there and getting home again? Should you hire a cab or an Uber driver, or even a black town car? Or should you park your car in long-term parking?

In some cases, this really is a “six of one, half dozen of the other” scenario. So how do you figure out which is the better choice?

English: A checker taxi cab. Deutsch: Ein Chec...

A checker taxi cab. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I always prefer to hire a car to take me to the airport if we’re going on vacation. I’m already going to have to pay for parking if we drive our own car, which can really add up if it’s an extended stay. Out of pocket, the car service will be more than parking, but the convenience can outweigh a lot of things.

For one thing, I prefer a car service because being dropped off curb side saves on a lot of stress, especially if the whole family is going. So it’s always important to look for a car service that is decently priced, because prices can vary quite a bit.

Other considerations are the distance to the airport. How far away are you and what is the cost to get there by yourself in your car versus hiring a car or taxi? If you’re close to an airport, it’s a lot more economical to take a cab.

The airport pricing for parking varies. Finding a spot can be difficult if you’re at a busy airport, so you may need to valet park the car, which costs even more.

You can also consider park-and-flies, which are offsite parking services. You pay less, and a shuttle transports you to your terminal. They come by every half an hour, so you can stand on the curb at the airport (and the parking lot) and wait for them to make their return trip. This option is generally a lot less expensive than airport parking

Another option in larger cities is public transportation. In Florida, look for the Tri-Rail, which can get you from West Palm to Ft. Lauderdale airport to the Miami airport with great ease. You have to buy a ticket both ways but it’s a great option for extended stays and could be cheaper than a car service or a taxi.

It is more time consuming because it has more stops, however, so there’s the whole money-versus-time conundrum to figure out. But in terms of total dollars, the only thing cheaper is a friend who’s willing to help you out.

So how do you usually get to the airport? What’s your standard mode of transportation? Do you park and ride, take a cab, or even public transportation? Leave a comment and let us hear from you.

Travelpro and Atlantic Luggage Go the Extra Mile with the 2015 Mother’s Day Gift Guide

April 8, 2015 by · Leave a Comment 

Wow That Special Lady in Your Life with the Gift of Travel

Boca Raton, FL—Travelpro and Atlantic Luggage, purveyors of the finest travel luggage, are pleased to present their much-anticipated “2015 Mother’s Day Gift Guide.” Nothing can compare to your mom, wife, or other cherished mother figure in your life. That’s why we offer this unique guide which makes it easy to select the perfect gift for the woman who enjoys travel.

American Ultralite 3 CoverAll chosen to delight and enchant your special someone, these five stunning pieces will make you a real hero on May 10th this year. Start out by considering the Atlantic Ultra Lite 3 21″ Expandable Spinner for women on the go. Superb for those looking for lightweight luggage at an affordable price, this attractive option is made with water-repellent polyester fabric, high-mileage wheels that roll effortlessly, convenient exterior pockets and comfortable carry handles. Built to go the distance, it features expansion capabilities for extra packing and is available in colors she will adore – turquoise, purple and black.

The Atlantic Solstice 20″ Expandable Hardside Spinner is another gift that will never steer you wrong. Celebrated for its lightweight durability and bright palette of colors – bubble gum pink, orange sherbet, blueberry and grape – this collection stands out from the crowd with Dual-Wheel Spinners that roll smoother, perform better and offer more features for a great price. Outfitted with multiple pockets to help organize items and make travel fun, the sturdy hard shell is stylishly textured and resistant to scratching. Sleek and fashionable enough to make any mother happy, this hardside spinner is a winner by any measure.

Maxlite Hardside Business SpinnerWhat could be better than the gift than a Travelpro Maxlite 19″ Business Plus Hardside Spinner, the ultimate in hardside luggage? This amazingly lightweight piece has a strong 100% polycarbonate hard shell for ultimate protection plus the patented Contour Grip to ensure effortless maneuverability. Featuring 2″ of expansion capacity, this model offers a dual wheel spinner system, integrated TSA lock for added security and an exterior pocket that opens for easy access to a fully-integrated business organizer for storing files, paperwork, cell phone, pens, cables and more. With padded sleeves to conveniently hold both a laptop and tablet, this versatile Maxlite is a true breakthrough in durability, style and value — perfect for a business trip.

The Travelpro Crew Executive Choice Women’s Business Tote is designed for today’s business and frequent travelers. Part of a premium collection that has garnered stellar reviews, this piece integrates fine leather accents and durable fabrics with Travelpro’s outstanding craftsmanship. The attention to detail, style and functional efficiency are a reflection of Travelpro’s commitment to business travelers worldwide. It makes a bold statement with features that include a removable padded sleeve for laptops, along with a separate built-in tablet pocket and business organizer plus a removable cord pouch that provides efficient storage for business essentials and power cables. An RFID-blocking pocket keeps credit cards and passports hidden to protect against loss and identity theft.

Part of the Travelpro Crew 10 collection, the Rolling Tote is a one-of-a-kind piece for the mobile worker. Ideal for short business trips or daily treks to the office, the Crew 10 Rolling Tote has a patented PowerScope Extension Handle to reduce wobble and shear-resistant zipper heads for effortless open and closing of the tote. The Rolling Tote includes a padded laptop sleeve, a business organizer and an area to store files and clothing. It is a Mother’s Day gift that will be cherished for years to come.

“This year’s Gift Guide offers a variety of choices sure to please every lady on your list,” said Scott Applebee, Vice President of Marketing for the Travelpro and Atlantic family of brands. “As always, our products are backed up with substantial warranties that reflect our high quality standards.”

About Atlantic Luggage

Since 1919, the Atlantic brand has been synonymous with affordable, value-added and lightweight luggage. As a market leader in the lightweight luggage segment, from cleverly designed uprights and spinners to trendy and smart garment bags and totes, all Atlantic-branded luggage comprises superior quality and durability. Whether for business or recreation, travel is more pleasurable with Atlantic luggage, part of the Travelpro family of products. Please visit the Atlantic Luggage website for a full list of the latest products and retail locations.

About Travelpro

For over 25 years, Travelpro International has prided itself on design innovation and durability in crafting the highest quality luggage for travelers worldwide. Since transforming the ease of modern day travel with The Original Rollaboard wheeled luggage, Travelpro has been the brand of choice for flight crews and frequent travelers worldwide. Travelpro is dedicated to building a lifelong relationship with its customers by consistently understanding and exceeding their needs. Travelpro was honored to once again be voted as the “World’s Best Luggage” by Premier Traveler Magazine in 2014.

Please visit the Travelpro website for a full list of the latest products and retail locations. You can also like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter at @Travelprointl.

4 Tips to Buy Luggage That Lasts

March 26, 2015 by · Leave a Comment 

If you travel more than once every few years, even once a year, you’ll want to get luggage you can return to again and again. If you’re a frequent traveler, visiting the airport or train station more than four times a year, you need luggage that’s going to be with you for the long haul.

So how do you choose the luggage that’s going to give you what you need? The first step is to assess the kind of traveling you’re going to do the most frequently.

Tpro Bold 2 Group Photo - Blue

Our new Tpro Bold 2 line.

If you’re traveling for business, you probably want a carry-on size, usually because you’re only going to be in one location for a few days at a time. But if you’re traveling with your family, especially a family with small children, you probably want a large piece of luggage that can accommodate the whole clan to some extent.

Choose luggage based on the size and durability based on your total usage, not just your next trip. Disposable luggage can end up being more expensive than a single piece of high-quality luggage due to the fact that you might have to continually replace it.

You should also check out the warranty information of the piece you’re considering. That will give you an idea of whether the company stands behind their work, and how much protection you have if your bag starts shredding after just a couple months.

It’s also not a bad idea to stay with a well-known brand when buying your luggage. Luggage takes a beating, as travel is never easy, especially if you check your bags at the airport. Look at the value of your chosen bag, not just the price. Don’t compare the cheapest, flimsiest piece of luggage from one line to the best-in-show piece from another line. It’s like comparing apples to sports cars.

Crew 10 Computer Bag

Crew 10 Computer Bag

Assess the various features the luggage has. Check that the moving parts are high quality and durable. Look at the handles, wheels, and zippers, to see if they look durable or flimsy. Also check out the interior of the suitcase and make sure it looks like it will serve your needs as you travel. A good luggage manufacturer will have tested these things already, to determine whether they meet their high standards.

Finally, visit a specialized travel goods store, which will allow you to test the luggage extensively. The staff are very knowledgeable about travel and luggage, unlike some department stores. The travel goods stores also get feedback from frequent travelers, so they know what actually works.

If you’re not sure of what bag to get, it could be worth paying the travel goods store a visit, because they’ll understand what you need and can help you figure out which bag you should get.

How do you assess your own luggage purchases? Do you look for anything in particular, or visit a particular kind of store? Leave a comment below or post something on our Facebook page, and let us hear from you.

Turkish Airlines to Improve Passenger Experience Even More

March 24, 2015 by · Leave a Comment 

A new airport is being built in Istanbul, Turkey over the next five years, with Turkish Airlines slated to be the “flagship tenant.” In this new space, Turkish Airlines plans to use cutting edge technology and personal hospitality to create a better passenger experience for their customers.

Turkish Airlines already takes great pride in offering comfortable spaces for travelers to relax in, so this should be interesting for those people who like to travel in comfort. The airline focuses on showing passengers a great degree of civility and hospitality, especially in their pay-to-enter lounges.

In the paying lounges, they’ve rolled out push notifications alerting passengers to gate changes, flight changes, and even nearby sales. This is already being tried out in airports in Istanbul and has apparently been a hit because Turkish Airlines announced last spring that they intend to make this a permanent feature.

Another great program that Turkish Airlines is rolling out is free tours of Istanbul to travelers on a layover of six hours or more. That way, travelers don’t have to waste a huge chunk of their time sitting around the airport, but can also feel more secure that they’ll get back to the airport on time since the tours are sponsored by an airline.

These types of pampering are about improving the travelers’ experiences and making things a little more convenient, even as travel seems to be more hectic and uncomfortable in this day and age.

Perks like this may eventually make their way to the U.S. If you’re in any major city in America, say New York or Miami, wouldn’t you be interested in a brief tour of that city during a long layover? We’re also interested in seeing push notifications for travelers, as well as a few other creature comforts at our airports.

We’ll look forward to seeing some of these improvements arrive here in the U.S. too.

Travelpro Announces “Win a Trip to Las Vegas” Sweepstakes in Celebration of Sony Pictures’ Upcoming Motion Picture Comedy, “Paul Blart: Mall Cop 2″

March 20, 2015 by · Leave a Comment 

Travelpro, the original inventor of Rollaboard luggage and a leader in innovative, high-quality luggage design, is proud to announce its “Win A Trip to Las Vegas Sweepstakes” in celebration of the upcoming Sony Pictures’ motion picture comedy “Paul Blart: Mall Cop 2,” in theaters April 17, 2015.

Paul Blart 2 photoThe Sweepstakes winner and a guest will fly roundtrip and stay at the Forbes Travel Guide Five-Star Wynn Las Vegas resort. In addition, the winner will experience Le Rêve –The Dream, the aquatic and aerial theatrical production named Best Show in Las Vegas for four consecutive years, presented exclusively at Wynn Las Vegas. Additionally, the winner will receive two pieces of Travelpro luggage. Look for Travelpro luggage in the movie and at retailers nationwide and online.

One trip for two (2) to Las Vegas includes:

  • Roundtrip airfare for two (2) to Las Vegas, Nevada
  • Three (3) night stay in a Wynn Deluxe Resort room
  • 2 premium tickets to Le Rêve –The Dream
  • 2 carry-on size Travelpro luggage
  • $200 spending cash

The sweepstakes runs from March 20 through May 1. To enter, simply register at www.travelpro.com/mallcop-sweepstakes. Visit this same site to view the complete sweepstakes official rules. No purchase is required to enter the sweepstakes. Void where prohibited.

About Travelpro

For over 25 years, Travelpro International has prided itself on design innovation and durability in crafting the highest quality luggage for travelers worldwide. Since transforming the ease of modern day travel with The Original Rollaboard wheeled luggage, Travelpro has been the brand of choice for flight crews and frequent travelers worldwide. Travelpro is dedicated to building a lifelong relationship with its customers by consistently understanding and exceeding their needs. Travelpro was honored to once again be voted as the “World’s Best Luggage” by Premier Traveler Magazine in 2014.

Please visit the Travelpro website for a full list of the latest products and retail locations. You can also like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter at @Travelprointl.

About “Paul Blart: Mall Cop 2″

After six years of keeping our malls safe, Paul Blart has earned a well-deserved vacation. He heads to Vegas with his teenage daughter before she heads off to college. But safety never takes a holiday and when duty calls, Blart answers. Directed by Andy Fickman. Produced by Todd Garner, Kevin James, Adam Sandler and Jack Giarraputo. Written by Kevin James & Nick Bakay.

About Sony Pictures

Sony Pictures Entertainment (SPE) is a subsidiary of Sony Entertainment Inc., a subsidiary of Tokyo-based Sony Corporation. SPE’s global operations encompass motion picture production, acquisition and distribution; television production, acquisition and distribution; television networks; digital content creation and distribution; operation of studio facilities; and development of new entertainment products, services and technologies. For additional information, go to www.sonypictures.com.

About Wynn Las Vegas

Wynn and Encore Las Vegas are two luxury hotel and casino resorts on the Las Vegas Strip. The iconic travel destinations are operated by international resort developer Wynn Resorts, recipient of more Forbes Travel Guide Five Star Awards than any other independent hotel company in the world. Wynn Las Vegas opened on April 28, 2005 and has been recognized as the best resort in Nevada on Condé Nast Traveler’s “Gold List” for six consecutive years. The resort features 2,714 lavish guest rooms and suites, more than 111,000 square feet of state-of-the-art casino space, 14 casual and fine dining restaurants, a spa and salon and an on-site Ferrari and Maserati dealership and 18-hole golf course. Wynn Las Vegas is home to Le Rêve – The Dream, the aquatic and aerial theatrical experience named Best Show in Las Vegas for four consecutive years, and Steve Wynn’s ShowStoppers, a production with 35 singers and dancers and a full 31-piece on-stage orchestra composed of quintessential numbers from some of the most celebrated composers and lyricists to ever grace American theater stages. Encore, an expansion of Wynn Las Vegas, opened on Dec. 22, 2008. Featuring an additional 2,034 all-suite accommodations, a 72,000-square-foot casino, five restaurants and a spa and salon, Encore is located adjacent to Wynn Las Vegas. Combined, the two resorts boast four distinct nightlife and day club experiences, approximately 283,000 square feet of meeting space and 98,000 square feet of retail space. For more information on Wynn and Encore Las Vegas, visit www.wynnpressroom.com, follow on Twitter and Instagram at @WynnLasVegas and www.facebook.com/wynnlasvegas.

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