How to travel for less

Is the high cost of travel preventing you from seeing the world? With some adjustments, the price of traveling abroad can be much cheaper than you can imagine.  One common practice among young backpackers and more experienced travelers alike is traveling the world on a small budget. There are so many diverse ways to cut down your spending without compromising your travel experience.

Many people find budget traveling preferable compared to luxury travel because of its way of bringing you closer to the local culture. Unlike hopping on a Mediterranean cruise ship or staying at a fancy resort, traveling cheaply and independently can put you in contact with the day-to-day activities of millions of people around the globe.

Below are some of the biggest ways to travel for less than you think and still having an amazing experience.

Location Matters

The simplest way to travel longer or more comfortably for very little cost is to travel some place where your money stretches further. In Western Europe, Five thousand dollars might allow you to backpack for few weeks but that is not enough to survive for months in Vietnam or Thailand.

Be aware of the parts of the world that offers the most for your money as you plan your trip. Think South East Asia instead of Australia, Central America instead of South America and Eastern Europe instead of Western Europe. The pricing in some parts of the world can differ by season, and then traveling during the off-season period can make an unaffordable site more obtainable.

Overnight Buses, Planes, and Trains

No matter where you are travelling to, one of your biggest costs implications would be transportation. There are a number of things you can try to do to keep these costs minimal. The first thing to do is to cut flight costs by booking when there is  low-demand  and making  use of a search aggregator like Kayak to discover diverse websites that offer the best airfare. You can also look at overland means of transportation like buses, boats, and trains, which unlike flying are less costly.

Since transportation costs consumes not just money, but also eats up time, plan an itinerary where you spend more time in each destination and move less. If you are always on the move, your costs implication will be higher and your trip more tedious than if you spend quality time in each place you go. Why not consider making a major city your focus and taking day trips from there.

Sleeping Cheap

Hostels are not terrifying murder dens forget the scary movies you may have watched. They’re actually superb, less expensive place to lay your head. Think of it as not just a place to stay, but as an instant social environment where you have direct access into new cultures. Other cheap options to expensive hotels include couch-surfing, renting a short-term apartment and house sitting.

If you’re traveling a country like Asia or Mexico with great street food  you’re in serious luck, as you can surely have an amazing food for less than a couple of dollars. If you are the type that street food is not an option, look for local fast food bakeries, chains, and small family owned restaurants. Another option is to pay a visit to the grocery store and select a picnic of local foods for your taste.

Cheap Entertainment

Some major tourist sites can cost a lot to enter (though some are worth it), there are also free and inexpensive ways to tour a new city. Talk to people, Wander aimlessly, try new foods and make new friends. Make time to explore local neighborhoods, relax in public parks, or you can poke around smaller churches and museum. Who knows what you might discover.

To learn more about inexpensive travel tips, follow our blog at www.hotelsetc.org

Disney World discounts and five more reasons to visit in 2017

Did you know that a travel membership club is a fast and easy way to find Disney World discounts to make your trip affordable? It’s true, and this is only the first of many reasons to visit Disney World in 2017. In fact, you can look up every website for hotels and resorts in the area or spend hours filtering through one of the many travel booking engines, but none of them will offer a facility to find Disney World discounts in the same way as a travel membership club.
That being said, here are five more reasons to visit Disney World in 2017:

Disney world discounts

1.Staggering variety of eateries

Planet Hollywood, Paddlefish, Wine Bar George and The Edison are all set to open their doors to Disney World this year. Although the variety of restaurants, café’s or places to eat is already staggering and a genuine reason to visit Disney World in 2017.

2.The World of Avatar (Pandora)

Also opening its doors this coming summer; the Animal Kingdom is set to be the home of this incredible attraction which will offer families a unique experience on the Avatar flight. Although the price-tag for a hotel is often higher during summer, these packages are often affordable with Disney World discounts. Once again, don’t forget to sign up with a travel club to receive these discounts.

3.Disneys Typhoon Water Park

This family themed water park is opening in spring and promises the very immersive story-line based on Captain Mary Oceaneer, a legendary treasure hunter. Not only does the story promise to entertain the kids but also the park itself, for Typhoon Water Peak will have an incredibly fun white water rafting experience.

4.Disney’s Wilderness Lodge

Another resort set to take Disney World by storm this year is Disney’s Wilderness Lodge which features a large sun deck and an inviting pool (Boulder Ridge Pool) which makes the appearance of an actual quarry. Featuring a world class restaurant, Geyser Point Bar, the pool itself is said to be the highlight of the resort, and you can find hotel and Disney World discounts for this new lodge on Hotels Etc.

5.Epcot Food and Wine Festival

Due to popular and demand, the Epcot International Food and Wine Festival is returning in 2017. Featuring a wide selection of international dishes with an equally impressive lineup of craft stalls, the festival should be one of the true highlights of this year in Disney World. Although keep in mind, Epcot is not year round and is taking place for a record breaking 75 days during September, October and midway through November.

Yes, the lodges, attractions, restaurants and Disney World discounts are the ingredients needed for an unforgettable vacation and you can sign up for Disney World discounts here and start receiving the best deals and packages for your dream vacation in 2017.

5 Lesser known tourist attractions in Mexico

Chichen Iza and the white sands of Cancun are some of the most enticing reasons to visit Mexico. This is absolutely for good reason, they are remarkable experiences but then what about the equally as interesting and lesser known attractions in Mexico?

Here are 5 lesser known tourist attractions in Mexico

Copper Canyon/ Barrancas del Cobre

More than twice as large as the Grand Canyon, BArrancas del Cobre is composed of six notable canyons in the Sierra Madre Occidental. These canyons are formed by six rivers that drain the western part of Sierra Tarahumara. The canyon is habitat to more than twenty species of pine trees and over a hundred of oak trees. Covered in lush of greens and rarely seen cougars, Copper Canyon is indeed an adventurer’s definition of relaxation. This marvelous canyon houses indigenous people for centuries, making their lifestyle and culture preserved. You can explore it by hiking, horseback riding, biking or driving.

Attractions in Mexico

Morelia

Another colonial city, Morelia is a migration haven for Monarch butterflies. Aside from the colorful winged- insects, the state capital proudly presents its Indian ancestry through the majestic pink quarry stone colonial buildings.  The city is surrounded by different kinds of arts, from pottery, textiles, to furniture, and musical instruments. The city also features numerous historic sites like the Plaza de Armas, La Alhondiga, and other private ancestral mansions. Walking in the streets of Morelia will make you feel going through time travel centuries ago. If you are not fan of architecture, then visit the Orquidario of Morelia, a museum that houses over three thousand species of flowers, and inhale the flowery breeze.

San Miguel de Allende

Mexico is truly a home to numerous colonial cities. Another instragram worthy, San Miguel de Allende is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The hidden beauty of the Baroque/Neo- Classical colonial structures were discovered by foreign artists. Because of this, art and cultural institutes emerge. Many artists from various fields dwelled in the city and have left a part of them. An example will be the unfinished mural of Siqueiros. Painting or drawing is always seen around and street artists sell their works. If you are an avid fan of arts, this is a place to visit.

Mexico vacation

Ixtapan de la Sal

Very popular because of its thermal springs, Ixtapan de la Sal is destination for the Mexico locals. Ixtapan de la Sal was the greatest producer of salt during the pre- Historic times, hence the name. Its two rivers and the carbonated water of La Laguna de Verde, a spring that comes from the volcanic landscape is the main attraction and serves as public bath to the indigenous people. A number of hotels are present and most surround the thermal springs. It is also believed that these springs can heal various ailments.

Paras dela Fuente

It is known as the America’s oldest vineyards. The vineyards are the only attraction here but if you feel to be a daredevil, then visit the town’s bat caves located at Hotel Antigua Hacienda de Perote. Meet them before the sunset and hear the deafening flapping wings of thousands of bats. If you are not into the darkness, then visit the sacred volcano and the chapel of El Santo Madero which sits on top of the volcano, while viewing the city from above.

Check out Hotels Etc where you find vacation discounts for resorts near all of the above lesser known attractions in Mexico.

5 Lesser known but amazing resorts in Mexico

Have you ever taken a vacation and been pleasantly surprised or even amazed?

Everyone knows Mexico is a stunning destination and hugely popular but there are still some hidden gems which are lesser known that could be the perfect fit for your next vacation. Yes, it’s not all about the Hilton, Dreams or Iberostar.

Here are 5 lesser known resorts for your next vacation in Mexico

Lesser known resorts in Mexico

Grand Velas Riviera Nayarit (Puerto Vallarta, Riviera Nayarit)

Riviera Nayarit is still under the radar— as of now. Before everyone learns about this 200- mile stretch of coastline tucked in between the historic port of San Blas in Nayarit and Banderas Bay in Nuevo Vallarta, you must visit it as soon as possible. It is surrounded by various golf clubs, including the first golf course in Banderas Bay, Flamingos Golf Club, which is only 20 minutes away from Grand Velas. Other activities to enjoy are surfing in Suyalita, visiting the down town of Puerto Vallarta for its art galleries and markets, and merely exploring the sea through canopy tour, deep- sea fishing and pirate ship tours. Whatever your interest is will surely be served. Grand Velas, on the other hand received recognitions as Best Romantic Hotel/ Resort Mexico, Best Spa and Wellness Hotel, and Best Luxury Hotels categories from Travvy Awards Dream Vacation for 2016, which guarantees an excellent vacation.

Rancho Encantado Eco- resort and Spa (Bacalar, Quintana Roo)

If you are seeking for a peaceful escapade, you must visit the Laguna Bacalar. It is famous for Lake Bacalar, also known as Lake of Seven Colors, because of water’s gemlike beauty. Laguna Bacalar offers serenity for its Yucatan small village feel and absence of jam packed tourists. The Fortress de San Felipe Bacalar, located in the center of town, represents one of Maya’s bastions before the Spaniards came and features a small modern museum. You can do kayaking in the lake, dancing in the city square at night, and walking in the jungle. If these still do not please you, check out the Mayan ruins surrounding the town. Stay at Rancho Encantado and it will do you a favor by touring you in the Lake of Seven Colors.

Fiesta Americana Hotels and Resorts (Progreso, Yucatan)

Just four miles away from the Gulf of Mexico, Progreso is a popular cruise ship destination. Cruise passengers have a chance to visit the nearby city of Merida, which features historic feel, and variety of shops to purchase local products. Also, take a sip of the local licorice flavored drink, Xtabentun.  Stay at Fiesta Americana Hotel, located at Merida, 30 minutes away from Progreso. The hotel is surrounded by various destinations for scuba diving and snorkeling activities, hot springs, gastronomic experiences, historical sites, and more.

Las Gaviotas Resort (La Paz, Baja California Sur)

Indeed, as the name implies, La Paz brings peace to the visitors. Go deep into the Aquarium of the World, Sea of Cortez and see the grey whales migrating from Alaska, and other lovely creatures of this biologically rich body of water. Devour on the freshly caught seafood that can be enjoyed by the seaside promenade. If you want to learn more about the history of La Paz, visit the Regional Anthropology and History Museum of South Baja California. The museum nestles a collection of fossils dated 60 million years ago, as well as cave painting and engraved rocks that depicted natives’ everyday lives. Stay at Las Gaviotas Resort to view the ocean front in each room’s wide terrace.

Hotels Etc

Hotel Puerta Calakmul (Campeche State, Mexico)

Home to the Historic Fortified City of Campeche by UNESCO in 1999, Campeche is filled with architectural and historical treasures. Historic buildings are restored making it to be instagram worthy. On the other hand, stay at Hotel Puerta Calakmul for a biodiversity feel. If you want to appreciate Mother Nature, take a walk in the jungles where the hotel is enveloped, meet the jaguars, or just watch how the birds fly freely. Take a dive into the hotel’s pool in a sweaty afternoon after a wilderness encounter.

You should check out Hotels Etc for huge discounts on all of the above resorts in Mexico to help you save on your next vacation.

10 Travel hacks to help you choose the right vacation

Vacations are fun but lets be honest, they are not always enjoyable to plan and often this can be for the fact that there are so many options. That said, maybe you just have no idea where to start? In that case you’ have come to the right places because we know exactly how to help you better decide on where to choose for that all important vacation.

Here are 10 travel hacks for your next vacation:

vacation

 

1.Ask the question why
What is it about a vacation that gets you excited, are you thinking about how nice it will be to sit on an isolated beach? Don’t choose Cancun, it’s too busy. Choosing a destination begins with questions about why you are going, do you want to chill, take outdoor adventures, explore cultures or get a tan?

2.Try lesser known places

Anytime you see somewhere nice, just remember there is always a place just down the road which is lesser know, just as beautiful and possibly even more interesting for the fact that there are less tourists.

3.Don’t be afraid to go alone
Says it all. There are times when your friends cannot go on vacation with you and it’s a terrible thing, but you deserve to be happy, you have the right and deserve a vacation. Yes, we give you permission to go alone.

travel hack
4.Popular vacation destinations are popular for a reason
Forget about number 2 on this list, popular places are popular for a reason. Cancun has stunning beaches, Costa Rica is great for outdoor activities and Aruba has many options for road tripping. Just because they are popular does not mean you wont have an amazing time too.

5. Think closer to home
We offer the best hotel discounts to our members and more than ever, we are seeing North Americans choosing to stay in the US instead of venturing down south. So get signed up and start looking closer to home.

6. Be open minded about the destination
Even if you never even heard of the place, that should not matter. The best vacations are sometimes the ones where you least expect it to happen and anyway, travel is supposed to be about new experiences. Step out of the bubble, experience somewhere new.

7. Think outside the box
Travel destinations are sometimes expensive but don’t be put off. Check out our hotel discounts and vacation offers but also consider alternative transport to where you are going other than flights. Train, bus, car…..

8. Make a decision
Now that you know where you want to go, stop procrastinating and get it booked. The longer you wait, the higher the price will go and before you know it, you can no longer afford the dream vacation.

vacation
9. Find a better deal elsewhere

Having checked out our website, we don’t mind you shopping around because we know that you will come back to us for the best deal. Don’t pay more than you should, join us and find the best vacation discounts online.

10. Ask for advice
After all, this is what we are here for; to help you. Ask us on Facebook, by email or phone, we want to help you and we want you to keep coming back to us for the best hotel discounts and more.

Wondering what you can expect on a Cruise Vacation?

How about a cruise ship for your next vacation? Never thought about it or maybe unsure of what’s involved? Okay, let s take you through a little bit about cruising, cruise life and what you can expect in general:

What type of ship should you choose?

There are literally hundreds of cruise ships, all of different sizes, age groups and quality. Be thing to do is decide whether you want a ship which is a little more lively or quiet and then book based on the most affordable cruise you can find. Then again, some ships are “all-in-one”, for example, the Royal Caribbean have some smaller cruise ships which are ideal for most age groups (such as the Vision of the Seas) which has less than 2500 passengers.

What food and drink is included?

Down to the basics. Food on cruise ships is notoriously good with many five star chefs on board cooking up some incredible dishes. There are usually two main seatings during the day, breakfast and dinner, and these can usually be had at 8am or a slightly earlier time should you decide. Same goes for the evenings, although most people who take to activities from the port when docked, will be best to have their dinner at the latest time available.

There are also a number of different restaurants on board every cruise ship, meaning you can dine in a different spot each night so long as you make a reservation – Sushi, tempura, steak or buffet – there is an endless choice.

Drinks are sometimes included in the price of the cruise but usually not. You can pay for them as you go or if you are smart, you will purchase a “Drinks plan” that will more than cover whatever drinks you want for the duration of the trip while also being quite affordable. For example, you could buy a drinks plan for $40 and drink as much or as little as you like for the entire day. Wine, beer, spirits, soda, you name it, they’ll have it.

vacation

Activities on a Cruise Ship

There is usually so much to do on a cruise ship that you need to decide between certain activities, but this is obviously a bonus rather than a complaint. Here are just a few things to do on a cruise:

Tour the Ship itself

This is mostly overlooked by tourists but is often the most fascinating thing to do on a cruise vacation. Visit the kitchen, meet the chefs, see the sleeping quarters, the captains deck and much more. A tour of the cruise ship can be an amazing insight and highly entertaining.

Learn to cook

Guess what? These highly skilled chefs will often offer the opportunity for you to learn how to cook. Sometimes they do the preparation work so you need only mix the ingredients and do other fun stuff, but ultimately, you can learn some neat tricks and tips on board from some of the worlds most famous chefs and all for no extra cost.

Spa and Royal treatment

Visit the spa and float away into a zen like state. What better way to get away from it all with a massage, pedicure, manicure and more in the middle of the ocean. The crew are always highly skilled and attentive while you can also be sure of some truly breathtaking scenery.

Night Entertainment

Just when you thought it couldn’t get any better, night entertainment is completely free and rivals any Broadway show. In fact, many of these entertainers are straight from Broadway…and so are the shows themselves.

Still wondering for reasons to take a cruise for your next vacation? Okay, check out Hotels Etc and see the hugely discounted rates they offer on what is already a very affordable vacation.

Vacation with a savings – Hotels Etc.

Planning your summer vacation can be very time consuming when searching for the best vacation savings. This is why travel clubs are making a strong comeback.

Source: Vacation with a savings – Hotels Etc.