Trip Planning ( LIVE and LEARN)

I am one of those people who lives for vacations. It’s not that I don’t like my everyday life, but I really enjoy having something on my calendar to look forward to. As soon as my trip is over I am ready to start looking to book my next adventure. Besides having something to look forward to it gives me time to research and decide exactly what I want to do while I am on my vacation, I also like to make sure I can get the best deal possible and the most out of my time and money when I am there.

I have been the designated family trip planner our whole married life and I have learned a few things over the years the hard way,  or what I like to call, the LIVE AND LEARN way 😦 so I thought I would share some of these with you to keep you from making some of the same mistakes.

Make sure when booking your hotel you are booking it for the right days. This seems like a no brainer, right?  Well one year I was booking a room in Puerto Rico for the day before a cruise and for the day after our cruise. That particular year the month before dates landed on the same days. For example lets say it was Friday the 13th in January as well as February. So By accident I booked our first night’s hotel stay for a whole month before we even arrived. When we went to check in the hotel clerk says sorry this date has already passed! What?! Yep the Friday the month before was the exact date as the Friday we were going and I messed up the months somehow! We ended up having to paying for the room again and it was more than double what we had paid online for the month before. We were very lucky they even had a Vacant Room for us!… LIVE and LEARN!

Make sure you double-check the AM and PM on your flights. We have had a few quick weekend trips planned that I somehow didn’t notice it was PM instead of AM and we missed a full day of our vacation!  I know it sounds super hard to mess up but when you are a bargain shopper sometimes the best deals pop up and you don’t notice the details as much as you should because of what a good deal it is! I have also accidentally booked flights where my seats were not assigned to us beforehand which isn’t a big deal but  you may end up not getting to sit next to each other. That almost happened to us on a flight to Hawaii but luckily they were able to switch things around for us. This has happened a couple of times but luckily for us it hasn’t been too big of an issue, in fact the last time this happened to us we got upgraded to business class so that mistake actually paid off for us! But I would hate to have a long flight without being able to sit by husband, I mean I’m pretty sure the stranger next to me would be pretty bugged by me passed out with my head on their shoulder with my mouth wide open! LOL

Be Careful when using Priceline! When everything else is jacked up in price because it is last-minute you can do a Name you Own price on Priceline and hope one of the places will accept your offer. This has worked out great most of the time but you need to be careful. When you use Priceline’s Name Your Own Price, you have to put in what star rating  you are willing to stay in, what area you are willing to stay in and what price range. Then you put your credit card info in and if a hotel accepts your price they will charge your card and then tell you where you are staying. Well back a LONG time ago I tried this when we were taking the kids to California. I must have made my area bigger than I thought and didn’t pay much attention because my offer got accepted and I received an Email that my Compton hotel was confirmed! I of course was not about to take my young family to Compton so I had to eat the price of that hotel and pay for a different one in a safer part of LA. Another huge LIVE and LEARN moment.

You would think after all these mistakes Doug would be in charge of the bookings from now on, but Nope, he still trusts me to book all of our trips so you better believe I am always checking, and double checking things before I make my final purchase.  I Hope by sharing these you can learn from all my stupid mistakes and avoid your own LIVE AND LEARN moments!





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