Special Discount Success,
Cashing-in, Opportunistic, Obvious
and Obtainable, Travel Brokering,
Investment, Negotiating
GREAT Results
A ‘How To’ Guide
To Getting The Best Deals
When Traveling Last Minute
It is impossible to travel faster than the speed of light,
and certainly not desirable, as one's hat keeps blowing off.
Woody Allen (1935 - )
A ‘How To’ Guide To Getting The Best Deals When Traveling Last Minute
Foreword and Introduction
ƒ Why this guide came to be
ƒ The S.C.O.O.T.I.N.G. Method
The basics of Last Minute Travel
1. Special Discount Success
ƒ What is it (last-minute, on-demand, 11th hour).
Knowing what to get where for short-term travel needs.
ƒ What is a ‘last minute travel deal’ exactly?
ƒ How does it work and different types of travel discounts and options?
ƒ What you are looking for and how much are you willing to pay?
ƒ What, Where and how long will you be traveling? What is available? Where to look to
find it? How to find the best deals?
2. Cashing-in – making the most of (which and where, value and cost of trip,
travel or vacation, how last-minute travel really works), Finding and leveraging
various options and strategies.
3. Opportunistic - travel booking and reservations, brokering and limited offers,
capitalize and leverage your position and travel bargains around every corner.
4. Obvious and Obtainable – where to find the best deals and making the most of
last-minute travel – a quick and detailed overview
5. Travel brokering – who to ask and where to go to get the best deals, following
a process that works every time!
6. Investment in your leisure – where the real payback and value-proposition is.
7. Negotiating – It is a process and skill-set that requires attention and mastery
8. GREAT results – getting them, focusing on what to do and what NOT to do! 37
9. Closing Thoughts and Remarks
10.Bibliography and Online References
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.
Robert Frost (1874 - 1963), The Road Not Taken
© Copyrighted. All Rights Reserved. 2006.
A ‘How To’ Guide To Getting The Best Deals When Traveling Last Minute
Short-notice traveling is a modern phenomenon that is increasingly
happening around the world. Global travel is taking on a new character
and transformational identity that morphs as the needs and demand of
modern globetrotters and earth-dwellers change.
This, combined with the wonderful enabling technological advances
that we have had in recent years, all contribute to almost on-demand
and real-time travel solutions at our fingertips.
This ‘how to’ guide has your best travel interest and budget at its
heart and core. It will make the most out of your every journey, quest
and world travel – even and especially when booking last minute.
It will help you discover how to make the most of finding and getting
the best travel deals and last minute travel bargains. It will help you to
enjoy life, freedom, memories, others and exploration.
We are calling all nimble adventurers to join us in our 11th
hour, last minute, short-notice quest and journeys around the
globe. You will be pleasantly surprised at the real value and
low cost of ‘globetrotting’ these days, IF YOU KNOW WHERE TO
It will offer some insights into how to capitalize on life’s unplanned or
unfortunate events and highlight how to optimize or leverage
cancellations, to have your best vacation deal at rock-bottom pricing.
When you want it all, great value, low price, choice destination, ondemand and today, how would you get the best last-minute travel
deals? Any ideas? If not, definitely keep reading… YOU WILL NOT
© Copyrighted. All Rights Reserved. 2006.
A ‘How To’ Guide To Getting The Best Deals When Traveling Last Minute
For those of us who want to make the most of last-minute travel
online, there is not a shortage of information. This ‘hidden’ and
somewhat unexplored, under-utilized sector of the travel industry and
market lies in wait, just ready for you to unearth, discover and
capitalize on.
There are also numerous well-known travel-sites that optimize and
open the doors to these offerings. Here are but a few of them (see the
reference listing at the back of the text for more useful links and
ƒ Lastminute.com
ƒ Ratestogo.com
ƒ lastminutetravel.com
ƒ lastminutetraveller.com
ƒ travelzoo.com
ƒ cheaptickets.com
ƒ site59.com
ƒ You can make the most of this market by becoming and being an
informed, empowered and ‘smart’ traveler or global village roamer
by optimizing what the market has to offer. There are lots to take
advantage of for all your quick and spontaneous getaways and lastminute travel plans.
If you run an online search on last minute travel, you will in all
probability get over 10 million hits, which is not surprising at all, given
that we are a mobile, nomadic, traveling global population with lots to
do, people to see, all around the globe. Modern technology, like the
internet places these travel options within our easy reach and enables
us to not just rely on travel brokers, intermediaries or booking,
reservation agencies any more. This is no longer the ‘secret’ insider
paradise. More and more people are taking a pro-active and hands-on
approach in finding and finalizing their own travel plans. Moreover,
© Copyrighted. All Rights Reserved. 2006.
A ‘How To’ Guide To Getting The Best Deals When Traveling Last Minute
they are doing so, saving money, booking directly with carriers and
providers, and negotiating a better price, getting packages and
discount travel deals, vacations, hotels, airfare, destination vacations.
There are also however various niche specialists (like those mentioned
above), trusted brands and go-betweens that capitalize and thrive in
this market and that can easily get you top-notch travel deals, as
experts to the Caribbean, Mexico and Florida and even Europe… AT
Ask yourself…
ƒ Where are your last-minute and/or limited budget travel dollars
taking you?
ƒ Do you know how to make the most of what the market and
travel industry has to offer for last minute or 11th hour travel
arrangements, package deals, vacations, cruises, destination and
all-inclusive, even tourist hot spots and exotic destinations?
ƒ Are you trying desperately to find a grand breakaway last-minute
vacation in an exotic paradise at an unbelievably low price?
ƒ Last-minute packages deals to popular resorts and destinations,
tourist hot spots?
ƒ Cruise and vacation packages and options at lowest pricing
ƒ Using a reservation service or online booking agent or discount
travel brokerage with the best deals at their fingertips?
ƒ How do you make sense of the market and what is has to offer
consumers – how do you get the best deals out there?
© Copyrighted. All Rights Reserved. 2006.
A ‘How To’ Guide To Getting The Best Deals When Traveling Last Minute
If you answered positively and honestly to any of the above, you are
getting excited already at the prospects. The remainder of this book
will help you maximize and optimize, even leverage and capitalize on
this market.
ƒ You will benefit from the largest selection, lowest rates, and one-
stop travel deals, at even as much as 60% off the original booking
or listing price for some deals and destinations.
ƒ There will always be very ‘hot’ rates and hotel deals, combination
packages and discounted airfare to choose from – we help you
make sense of how they work, where to find and how to enjoy them
ƒ This guide will also help you make travel easy and getting top value
for your travel investment dollar for last minute travel will be your
ƒ It will be no surprise to you, that some of the big online providers
like Orbitz, Travelocity and Expedia, have and offer constantly
limited wholesale fares (that could be up to 70% off the list price!),
partnering with the best in the marketplace, just trying to fill the
seats, get rid of the rooms, emptiness costs money, which makes
them more willing to drop the price and offer special rates and
deals, discounts and offers that are hard to believe and refuse.
ƒ Join the happy few, who have already discovered and tapped into
this ‘hidden’ travel market. You never know what you will find! It
also adds an element of excitement to the ‘hunt’!
If you find yourself trying to find travel bargains and discounts,
coupons and special deals, industry consolidators and travel brokers,
super-saver air-tickets and travel packages or discount bundles will all
become part of your travel and booking ‘vocabulary’. These are the
nuts and bolts of the discount travel industry market sectors, which
© Copyrighted. All Rights Reserved. 2006.
A ‘How To’ Guide To Getting The Best Deals When Traveling Last Minute
includes any and all last minute, short-notice and 11th hour travel
needs and requirements.
Bargain travel and real time travel solutions for our fast-paced lives,
that often offer us no choice but to wait until the last minute, now
allows us all to tap into a hidden, soft-sell market that makes us
benefit from the savings and opportunities that it ultimately and
inherently holds.
We can explore and enjoy cheaper seats, tour value, budget traveling,
even shoestring budgets and options with ease and confidence. Last
minute cruise vacations become a reality easily and almost ‘overnight’
of sorts.
The market is literally littered with travel directories and hot deals that
will not last. It reflects real time availability with some smaller
sacrifices on stopover, departure times, connections and the like – BUT
NOT ALWAYS! Sometimes these cheap all-inclusive getaways really
have it all!
So, calling all nimble adventurers! There are lots to take advantage of
and lots to explore to save you money on last minute travel. These
deals might even include early bird specials offerings for limited time
or subscription members, non-refundable travel packages
Whether you are considering travel to a sunny beach or paradise, the
great outdoors, a getaway of a lifetime, visiting Las Vegas and the
casinos, top seller tourist hot-spots, exotic islands, all-inclusive resort
vacations, cruises, off-beat retreats, on a shoestring budget or travel
under $250, even international destinations, there are lots of options
to choose from and GREAT DEALS TO FIND! So, what are we waiting
for… LET’s GO!
© Copyrighted. All Rights Reserved. 2006.
A ‘How To’ Guide To Getting The Best Deals When Traveling Last Minute
The “S.C.O.O.T.I.N.G.” Method
1. Special Discount Success – what is it (last-minute,
on-demand, 11th hour). Knowing what to get where
for short-term travel needs.
2. Cashing-in – making the most of (which and where,
value and cost of trip, travel or vacation, how lastminute travel really works), Finding and leveraging
various options and strategies.
3. Opportunistic - travel booking and reservations,
brokering and limited offers, capitalize and leverage
your position and travel bargains around every
4. Obvious and Obtainable – where to find the best
deals and making the most of last-minute travel – a
quick and detailed overview
5. Travel brokering – who to ask and where to go to get
the best deals, following a process that works every
6. Investment in your leisure – where the real payback
and value-proposition is.
7. Negotiating – It is a process and skill-set that
requires attention and mastery
8. GREAT results – getting them, focusing on what to do
and what NOT to do!
© Copyrighted. All Rights Reserved. 2006.
A ‘How To’ Guide To Getting The Best Deals When Traveling Last Minute
The Basics of Last Minute Travel
Special Discount Success – What Is It (Last-Minute, On-
Demand, 11th Hour). Knowing What To Get Where For ShortWhat is a ‘last minute travel deal’?
It depends on whom you ask. The traveler, the operators and travel
providers, the booking and reservation agent, travel industry experts,
or those who have ‘cashed in’ on the Last Minute Travel Deals
available in the marketplace. You might even have your own definition.
Here are a few initial ideas on what exactly last minute travel deals
ƒ Typically, they can be getaway packages for ‘immediate use’ and
timely travel.
ƒ A good example will be the upcoming and following weekend or this,
maybe even next week, tomorrow, in 2-3 days time.
ƒ There are literally hundreds of constantly updated last minute
packages available.
ƒ These last-minute discount travel packages can include anything from
airfare, hotel, rental car (when needed) and often additional add-ons
such as event tickets, maybe even an exploratory hike or outdoor
activity (depending on the destination) or pre-paid meals.
ƒ All of these wonderful offerings are then bundled together to grasp
your interest and hook a sale.
ƒ Empty space, unsold or undersold flights, trips, rooms etc. cost the
operators money.
ƒ They would rather make a deal and have butts in seats and heads in
beds than has none at all!
ƒ There is a real monetary reason behind offering these packages at
cheap, rock-bottom pricing. It is better to make some money than
© Copyrighted. All Rights Reserved. 2006.
A ‘How To’ Guide To Getting The Best Deals When Traveling Last Minute
none at all is the rationale and it serves all parties’ best interest. It is
a truly mutually beneficial arrangement and circumstance.
These trips are mostly sold from as little as THREE hours to FOURTEEN
days before departure. This is definitely more than a trend these days.
This reflects our society and its needs for on-demand and real-time,
last-minute travel, so characteristic of the fast-paced world we live in.
You could call by early morning or even lunchtime to see what is
available and by the evening, you could be on a plane to your
Prices are typically quoted per person and do not include the taxes and
any other admin fee, airport tax and the like. Be sure to confirm the
total cost. You will still be quite surprised at how inexpensive these
packages really are. It is now very possible to cash-in on great deals.
The world is literally your oyster and these last-minute travel deals
and discount packages, can be yours - now and even at the last
impulsive, procrastinating, fleeting minute!
Flexible packages are the key and answer. They can include a wide
range of options and prices. Here are some examples:
ƒ For flight and hotel only packages – depending on the destination,
you could pay as little as $200 per person
ƒ Upgrade packages including airfare and more (such as rental car,
dinner or an activity) $180.00
ƒ And even PLUS or SUPER packages that includes hotel
accommodations and more (such as rental car, dinner or an
activity) -- start at about $150
These bundles of 11th hour travel packages also comes with choice,
contrary to what popular belief is that you are ‘limited’ and getting the
scraps of what is left. This is not always so.
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A ‘How To’ Guide To Getting The Best Deals When Traveling Last Minute
Cashing-In – Making The Most Of (Which And Where,
Value And Cost Of Trip, Travel Or Vacation, How Last-Minute
Travel Really Works), Finding And Leveraging Various Options
And Strategies.
Short notice travel does not have to be expensive. On the contrary,
most people are mistakenly believing that the earlier they book, the
better the price. This is not necessarily true.
This is a very liberating and empowering experience, when you
discover that you can get great travel deals last minute and make your
travel dollar go further.
These packages (let’s say for illustrative purposes rental car, flights
and hotel), actually may have and cater to some of the most wellknown brands and airlines. American, Delta and Continental Air Lines,
Starwood, Bass or even Loews Hotels, even Avis or Budget Rent-ACar.
Available now. dynamic, (almost) real-time technology, constantly
updates flight, hotel and other travel information, ensuring that if a
package is listed in the Last Minute Deals arena, that it I definitely
available right now. Availability is very limited typically , though, and
packages are removed typically from the travel sites’ inventory, when
they run or sell out. Good advice would be - when you see something
you like, buy it! Last Minute Deals cannot be reserved and might be
gone by the time you click back. It is instantaneous, immediate,
urgent, it does not last long and adds excitement and even ‘impulsive’
and opportunistic, which also makes it really attractive to most of us
who like to be spontaneous and surprised, living on the edge and
enjoying life to its fullest, not necessarily knowing what is around
every corner!
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A ‘How To’ Guide To Getting The Best Deals When Traveling Last Minute
FIND and ENJOY Discount Prices on Last Minute Travel
Reservations. Bargain, budget traveling on-demand, in real-time,
even last minute for flights hotels, cars, packages, vacations,
cruises, destinations and deals tailored and customized to your
11th hour need there are numerous information and reservation
services that can help out getting you on your ways. They act as
the go-between and brokering channel or you can opt to buying
direct for carriers and operators. Make the most of the so-called
11th hour travel market where seats and deals GO FAST!
Have fun while enjoying top-notch service and huge savings to boot.
Cheap and last minute. Stretch your budget further, see the places
you want when you want for less, where options are many and deals
are limited and can not be reserved – you have to book or lose out, in
the moment, right now, or someone else might snatch it up.
Supply and demand still dictates here! Many people cancel their trips
or plans and these cancellations and unsold or undersold travel spots
fuel the market and frenzy.
It makes it possible to scoop-and-scoot! We hope you find the lowcost, last-minute deal travel market to reward you greatly with the
11th hour trip of your dreams, exceeding your expectation and NOT
robbing your pocketbook of spending dollars – benefiting from all that
the market has to offer.
With a little know how you can make it possible and make the
difference cost-wise as well.
© Copyrighted. All Rights Reserved. 2006.
A ‘How To’ Guide To Getting The Best Deals When Traveling Last Minute
REMEMBER: The travel industry and providers do not want to
lose money, they would rather make a deal and make some
money than run at a total loss – think about it, it does make
sense. This is obviously why last minute bargains abound!
Here are just some of the ways you can cash in on the last-minute
travel market:
ƒ Insiders and clearing houses, promotional offers, under or unsold
flights, hotels and cruises (staffing, products and services are
already an expense – they want to recapture some of this ‘loss’)
ƒ Repackaged unsold inventories at better pricing – all inclusive
packages and combinations are attractive, affordable and offers a
wide range of possibilities
ƒ Save money, no stress, time-savers bargains and online deals.
Opportunistic - Travel Booking And Reservations,
Brokering And Limited Offers, Capitalize And Leverage Your
Position And Travel Bargains Around Every Corner.
Finding last minute travel deals and bargains takes effort, luck, timing
and some smart work. There are lots of different strategies to use to
land some travel last minute deals. Regardless of the reasons for your
short-notice travel need, impetus or requirement, there are numerous
options open to you. Whether the trip is for business, family, seeing
new places or a welcome break away from routine and all else that
causes stress and chaos, so part of our modern lives.
Planning and spending your travel dollars wisely do not have to take a
back-seat when taking advantage of last-minute travel deals. You can
actually really put both to work to your best advantage getting the
best trip at the lowest possible fare, beyond and exceeding your
© Copyrighted. All Rights Reserved. 2006.
A ‘How To’ Guide To Getting The Best Deals When Traveling Last Minute
expectations. The reasoning behind saving money while traveling is
really quite simple. If your travel budget is extremely tight, it does not
mean that you still can not take a break and enjoy life! There are so
many places to see and so much to do and enjoy that you can not
pass up any opportunity. When you do have the time and means, even
if you want to depart right away, there are options and choices.
Some of them are truly amazing deals. You would not want to throw
caution to the wind and bear in mind that there are still small
expenses that add up on a trip, like tips, cab fare, drinks and
entertainment and the like. Making your travel most enjoyable is still
paramount. The focus does not all have to fall on the dollars and cents
you have to spend on getting to and from there, while there and
having a good time. You can relax and enjoy the mini-breakaway.
Do everything you can to ensure your trip is a success, enjoyable and
memorable and that it does not break your pocketbook in the process.
This guide is written in an easy-reference style and format, so you can
use it in its entirety or just as much or as little as you need to make
your next last minute trip count!
In it you will find relevant tips that can assist you in any travel you
might be undertaking in the near or foreseeable future. It is all about
saving you money on your travel endeavors in the process.
Well-deserved traveling, short-term break-aways or vacations,
destination or spontaneous trips, all can fall into this short-notice
category with real ease and you will be pleasantly surprised on the
selection and special offers that are available.
This guide will offer tips and insights on how to customize, optimize,
maximize and personalize your travel experiences every step of the
way, even for 11th hour travel options.
© Copyrighted. All Rights Reserved. 2006.
A ‘How To’ Guide To Getting The Best Deals When Traveling Last Minute
Throughout this unique process, travelers attend pro-actively to the
impact of decisions. Delay might mean you miss out on a opportunity
– these special deals normally do not last long and are gone before
you know it. When you see it book and secure it. When you come back
to verify, it might be GONE! There are many un-seized opportunities to
save some cash in this last-minute travel booking process.
In these few pages, we will attempt to briefly uncover less
known and obvious financial detail, affordability, and special
offerings available that pertains to short-term travel locally,
domestically or abroad. Here is to finding some savings,
discounts and price-busting tips as you explore these pages
and the world!
Maybe you are panicking because you left your plans to the very last
minute. Now booking your trip, shopping around online or checking
some websites or travel magazines lies ahead of you like a large
obstacle . Some of us might even be thinking of calling some travel
agents to do our homework for us and get the best, cheapest price.
Perhaps you have not taken a trip in a very long time and find yourself
in desperate need of a good breakaway vacation to remember and just
on the impulse of the moment decides to ‘travel’, wherever your dollar
can take you.
Maybe you are a young student backpacking and exploring some
corners of this wonderful world we live in, or a retired couple enjoying
the travel scene together who decided on a whim to take a cruise.
Whatever your situation and reason for travel, we trust you will
potentially find something in these pages that will inspire you and save
you some money in the process.
© Copyrighted. All Rights Reserved. 2006.
A ‘How To’ Guide To Getting The Best Deals When Traveling Last Minute
To get us started, here is the first tip for all the procrastinators,
impulse travel buyers, discount bargain hunters and vacation shoppers
amongst us. DO NOT WAIT ANY LONGER! Uncover, utilize and seize
the moments, potential and opportunities that low-fares, unsold or
undersold specials might hold.
There are always others who cancel their plans and even bundles deals
that might have you off to your choice destination sooner rather than
later or even right now, within hours to be exact! It is possible. Maybe
not within the hour, due to all the increased security, but all travel 3
hours to fourteen days are seen as short-term bookings that fall into
this last-minute category.
Leisure packages, time-share, vacationing deals, travel packages,
even destination vacations, cruises and city-tours or breakaways all
offer you the opportunity to go to places you love or have not seen,
have always wanted to visit, but could normally not afford. Due to the
deeply discounted rates they now become most appealing and scooped
up before you know it. They are typically not available long, change
often and are non-refundable. You have to take these trips on the
specified dates and times and there are normally not a lot of ‘wriggle’
room for changes and customization. If you want to invest in a
budget-conscious travel solution, these last minute packages will be
the ultimate offering to deliver to your expectations and requirements.
Booking and taking advantage of market conditions (fortunate or
unfortunate) offers you the opportunity to make it work to your favor.
It is like any other business transaction, where you would try to find
the best buy for your travel dollar.
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A ‘How To’ Guide To Getting The Best Deals When Traveling Last Minute
Investing time and effort getting a good idea on what is available,
typical costs, individualized discounted trips that offer more than
bottom-line are still priorities that take time, energy and effort.
Once you know what kind of travel, trip or vacation your dollar can
afford getting it booked these days is as easy as clicking a button,
even paying online or working through a reservation clearing house or
booking agent, wholesale travel provider. They are all accepted,
popular and commonplace methods.
Some travelers even choose to book directly with the airlines, tour
operators or providers themselves to optimize their chances of
discounts. Sometimes this works, other times some of the ‘bulk’ type
deals are presented as special offers only available through certain
partnerships or alliances. Both options work for consumers, so choose
the one that is most applicable for you and brings you the most benefit
and lowest cost.
To be effective with last minute travel, be SMART, be Specific,
Measurable, Action-oriented, Realistic, and Time-constrained in your
planning, requests and dealings. Ask for specific time-frames,
departure/return dates, even how much you have or want to spend.
Cover as many details as you can and ask questions about medical
and travel insurance. Being aware of possible scams should always be
part of your planning and execution of this process as well. Know what
your immediate travel plans and requirements are and communicate if
clearly (whether online or by phone, email or in person). The devil is in
the details that saying goes, again pay attention at the time of your
request to stated intention, involved parties, location, purpose and the
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A ‘How To’ Guide To Getting The Best Deals When Traveling Last Minute
Considering the logistics in this fashion, makes it that more realistic to
enable your family to take the planned trip of a lifetime and for the
travel ‘broker’ to find you exactly what it is that you are looking for,
even something you might not have expected for less than you
thought possible. It is about options, choice, variety and availability. If
you can imagine it, it might be possible is a good mantra to have and
keeping a positive attitude and frame of mind might deliver a trip that
exceeds your wildest expectations.
Put your dollar, will and persistence to good work in hunting for the
right trip. Although traveling might occur sooner rather than later,
leave enough time for you to get to and from the airport and get a
suitcase packed! The rest of the transaction should go without a hitch.
Confirming details and bookings are still a good idea, even if your
travel is within the next 24 hours or less.
Use your travelID and booking confirmation code to check details
online. This type of travel will most likely be traveling on e-tickets.
PLEASE notify the booking agent if you are traveling with infants,
toddlers of kids that might require paper-tickets! Check and verify all
document and small details PRIOR to departure.
ƒ Saving money is a priority, but it is not all that matters. Keep an
open mind and use suggestions on hotels, car rentals, airfare,
destination travel, food, maximize discounts, comparison-shop,
special offers, insider-tips and more to put more hard cash in your
travel pocket.
ƒ Avoid unnecessary cost and costly mistakes, deal with impulse
buying, un-reputable travel service providers, traveling without
insurance, always read the fine print, buyer beware and other
insights that will help you hold onto your travel dollar or spend it
appropriately on what you want, is wise and advisable.
© Copyrighted. All Rights Reserved. 2006.
A ‘How To’ Guide To Getting The Best Deals When Traveling Last Minute
ƒ Confirming details and verifying all costs, special
restrictions, change fees, cancellation, medical and travel
insurance etc. are all important Read the fine-print so to speak.
Ask as many clarifying questions you need to have full confidence
and queries or concerns addressed and dealt with to your
ƒ Be a wise, empowered and informed consumer, making wise
choices and decisions on all last-minute travel endeavors. Make this
guide your travel companion and checklist to evaluate good last
minute travel deals. These tips and words of wisdom and advice is
meant to assist and enable many world and avid last-minute
travelers, brave 11th hour explorers and bag-toting travelers
everywhere, to becoming travel-bargain smart, frugal, informed,
happy, innovative, creative and prepared travelers, who are making
the most of what the market has to offer. (Even when traveling on
a limited or shoestring budget and for short-term travel!)
Obvious And Obtainable – Where To Find The Best Deals
And Making The Most Of Last-Minute Travel – A Quick And
Detailed Overview
Most people mistakenly think that you need a lot of money to travel,
or that vacations are simply too expensive and lavish and they will not
be able to bring it by on their funds available and means at their
This is a good example of a wrongful assumption. DO NOT ASSUME,
ask and FIND OUT FOR REAL, is seek sound reputable and reliable
advice. Some of these stellar offerings and travel deals are very
‘obvious’ and obtainable to all. It is no longer only intended for travelinsiders, niche experts and travel agents. IT IS POSSIBLE AND
Most of us want to focus on having a good time and ensuring that a
couple of the smaller details are taken care of, even if it is for shortnotice traveling, can make all the difference. Take control of your
process and get involved. Do not merely rely on someone else to
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A ‘How To’ Guide To Getting The Best Deals When Traveling Last Minute
search, find, book and ‘deliver’ your trip! We still want peace of mind
and consistent quality service, even excellence that exceeds
expectations. Just because it is last minute does not mean we have to
satisfied with sub-par services or offerings. T
Taking advantage of saving opportunities and discounts, limited offers
and utilizing tips and tricks from frequent last-minute travelers and
bargain-hunters, seem to be the key to unlocking some of the travel
success others enjoy taking advantage of this category offerings.
Lessons learnt, will serve us all well when taking our next trip, whether
to the campgrounds, some exotic tropical paradise or both, even when
last minute!
Here are some suggested sources for finding information on last
minute travel deals:
ƒ web-pages and specific online providers who specialize in hot deals
for vacation package bargains, discounts, packages and unsold or
undersold special travel deals
ƒ travel websites, brokerages and discount fare operators, airline
carriers and websites with last minute fares and seat sales,
ƒ travel specialist portals and online auctions, like priceline.com
where taking advantage of overnight flights, empty seats and
multiple connections and other ways to save money while traveling
the globe, is a mastered art of comparison-shopping and a lastminute budget traveler’s paradise.
ƒ Printed material, budget travel magazines (like Arthur Frommer's
Budget Travel Magazine and Bestfares magazine, free with
membership to Bestfares (www.bestfares.com) and books,
ƒ other traveling newsletters, email lists and e-zines online, offering
industry and insider travel tips, low-fare find and book trips secrets
and tips, and even specific destination guidebooks might all give
you an idea on what to expect from certain locations, pricing etc.
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A ‘How To’ Guide To Getting The Best Deals When Traveling Last Minute
You can use these as resources for comparison or ideas, even for
going places last minute (just to get away!), you would not have
considered if it was not for the attractive price-tag.
ƒ There are books written on the topic of last-minute travel as well.
Specific budget-travel, industry-related publications and resources
abound. They can all help get you ideas on what to expect and how
to bargain, even for shot-notice, 11th hour, last-minute travel.
ƒ Budget travel is a popular topic and if you mention to your booking
agent that you are looking for a special deal right up front, ensure
that they check the specials, discounted and limited availability
options FRIST and not the highest listing that will get them the
most commission.
ƒ Travel word-of-mouth from regular travelers, colleagues, family and
friends, who travel frequently often share great insights. We cannot
discount these value-adding insights. Learn from the lessons and
experiences of others
ƒ Coupons and special vouchers, family discounts and specials,
online, limited-time internet-bargains all come and go . It is a
dynamic market that changes and shifts quickly and constantly
ƒ Resort, time-share and other tour operator, cruise or vacation
promotions. Sales-pitch pop-up windows on travel sites, even
tourist boards and information centers, could all have some
information on last minute deals. You do not have to only rely on
seat sales to get a GREAT DEAL!
ƒ There are many others, yours for the exploring. They may all
provide us with all the information we can possibly handle and put
to use when booking our last minute trips and packaged travel
We will now turn to sharing some thoughts and ideas on how to
actually find these special, great and discounted, low-fare, traveling
last minute deals and bargains.
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A ‘How To’ Guide To Getting The Best Deals When Traveling Last Minute
How and where to find cheap last minute airline tickets
ƒ Last minute travel deals are generally the best if you cannot locate
a cheap last minute airfare. Flights booked later and closer to the
departure date are typically MORE expensive than if you were
booking way in advance and earlier on.
ƒ An understanding of how the airlines operate exactly, will help you
land those cheaper, last minute airline tickets by the dozens. Open
seats, connections, cancellations, unsold, undersold and the like,
will yield you the best pricing possible. REMEMBER: empty seats
cost money! The airlines would rather make a deal than have
no butt in the seat!
Where and how to find cheap last minute hotels?
ƒ Do not book your hotel, or anything else before you book the airline
tickets! Package deals have lots to offer you and pre-existing
bookings make it more difficult to take advantage of the ‘bundled’
savings that could come your way.
ƒ Be adaptable and flexible with your itinerary. You want to have the
flexibility of dates as far as last minute travel is concerned. You do
not necessarily have to ‘sacrifice it all’!
ƒ With cheap last minute hotel rooms, you do not need to settle for
anything less. As most last-minute travelers discovers hotels are
rarely booked to capacity. There are always some rooms available
in most cases. It is highly possible for you to stay in a good hotel
and pay cheap prices. It is up to you however to ASK. No-one is
going to volunteer these discounts upfront. Do so at both time of
booking, when confirming and again at checking in! No harm, no
foul. The worst thing that can happen is they can say NO or that
nothing is available.
ƒ Actually, the less money you spend on a hotel, the more ready cash
you have for the rest of your trip and enjoyment! Always ask
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A ‘How To’ Guide To Getting The Best Deals When Traveling Last Minute
yourself how much time you will really be spending in the hotel
room itself. Opt for what is most important to you and then spend
your hard-earned travel dollars there.
How and where to find cheap last minute car rentals
ƒ If you are not careful, your rental car bill could end up being the
most expensive expense of your whole trip
ƒ Help keep your car rental cost low, go for a compact and ask about
deals, discounts and packages available. Be sure to check and get
is important to get substantial coverage to protect your life, your
What to look out for when you buy travel insurance last minute
ƒ Another item on your list that should be of utmost importance and
priority is medical and travel insurance. With most of these deals
being non-refundable, you have to take some protection not to be
at a total loss, should something happen.
ƒ Life is totally unpredictable and you have to be ‘prepared’ for
anything. LIFE HAPPENS, so plan for it! Inevitabilities and
unfortunate events, even weather can play and deal you a nasty
hand. What will you do then if you do not have coverage or
recourse? DO NOT FORGET OR OVERLOOK these elements of travel.
ƒ Get familiar with the basics, as knowledge of travel insurance, can
help you know and understand what you are buying. Taking a more
pro-active and hands-on approach in your whole finding, booking,
getting and preparing phases of your trip, planned or unplanned!
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A ‘How To’ Guide To Getting The Best Deals When Traveling Last Minute
Travel Brokering – Who To Ask And Where To Go To Get
The Best Deals, Following A Process That Works Every Time!
First come, first serve is the rule here, regardless of whom you ask,
where you find the deal online. These deals are of limited availability,
open access to all and in high-demand. This all forms the perfect
recipe for more demand than supply! You will have to act quickly once
you see something that appeals to you or have been informed of a
great deal at a low or even rock-bottom price. There will be not time
for hesitation or reservations, you will be expected to book on the spot
and these trips are typically non-refundable as mentioned earlier, so
ensure that you will be in the position to take full advantage of the
deal and trip.
Be smart and budget for the unexpected, delays, unplanned extended
stays, inevitable layovers or other complications. Show some
resilience, positive attitude and utilize your financial resourcefulness to
make the most of your trips, regardless of what life and fate throws at
you! Pack your street smarts and pocket-money you saved from your
last minute travel deal.
Give your travel dreams wings with some last minute travel deals. It is
possible for you to travel in style and enjoy a great trip, even on a
limited budget. Traveling is exciting, full of promise and potential,
enjoyment and value. For most of us, even when planning our travel
well, the ‘dilemma’ or decisions that always have to made are
where and when to go, where to stay, how to get there and/or
destination travel, cost and all related documentation and insurance.
We want to explore and experience, even if we do not have a lot of
cash on hand to do so under normal circumstances. Discounted lastminute travel does afford the opportunity to do this unbridled and
affordably. Going somewhere we have never been or to places we
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A ‘How To’ Guide To Getting The Best Deals When Traveling Last Minute
have never seen, inspire and get us excited. When agents suggest
special deals that almost sound to good to be true, we envision great
Discounted travel is not for the faint of heart and remaining flexible
and adaptable throughout the process and while traveling is essential
to make the most of it.
There are lots of reasons we call on last minute travel options:
ƒ sun or adventure seekers
ƒ weekend getaway, restless spirit, love seeing new places
ƒ holiday travel (Christmas and Easter, thanksgiving)
ƒ to see family or people we know at a certain location or country,
attend a spectacular or special event,
ƒ visiting an exotic destination
ƒ looking for peace and quiet
… and lots, lots more.
A good rule of thumb to remember for last minute travel is that The
best time to start planning your trip is when the impulse hits
There is nothing wrong with tapping into the expertise, connections
and insider knowledge the travel industry and agents have to offer.
Things to remember when dealing with travel, booking or reservation
agents, travel brokers or wholesale, discount travel providers:
ƒ easily provide current information,
ƒ get industry updates, possibilities and pricing, availability, plan and
book vacations;
ƒ find big discounts and special deals.
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A ‘How To’ Guide To Getting The Best Deals When Traveling Last Minute
ƒ able to point out details that would otherwise remain hidden and
ƒ resourceful, patient and imaginative sources with access to
databases ad special offers not always open to the general public
ƒ want to provide you with the best travel and customer service
options and solutions that are right for you.
ƒ mostly work on a commission basis
ƒ ensure that this is the best deal for YOU and not just for their
interest and pocketbook alone!
Save money by asking many questions and pose the question about
discounts. If you do not ask, they will not necessarily offer the
cheapest option or hunt for better deals!
Ask about less popular or less common types of travel, like
‘Ecotourism’ . Agents will possibly advise you to consider carriers and
travel providers that advocate and practice sustainable, safer and
environmentally friendly options for travel. It has less impact on the
environment and does not disrupt the local economy. On the contrary,
it utilizes supports and optimizes it! They tend to be smaller operators
and typically a little cheaper than mainstream.
Regardless of what you choose, it is all still about making the most of
your trip and seeing any and all that you want to, experience and
enjoy your travel and quest, even on a budget, optimizing the
discounted last minute traveling bookings.
When considering a trip or planning any kind of travel, including shortnotice traveling or trips, it is important to plan for the unexpected and
consider the financial side of things early on. This ensures affordability,
liquidity and having the resources to enjoy it to the fullest – no matter
what circumstance, life or fate can throw at you.
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A ‘How To’ Guide To Getting The Best Deals When Traveling Last Minute
Be prepared that things might actually be more expensive than you
expect and always have a ‘cushion’ fund or couple of dollars handy for
the unexpected.
Investment In Your Leisure – Where The Real Payback
And Value-Proposition Is.
When most people think about last minute travel they think about
where to go, what is available, how much you want to spend or can
afford, look at options or modes of transportation (air, road, and
train), package deals, special offers and discounts.
Shopping online for the best deals available is probably the most
popular mode of exploration (or desperation!) We want on-demand,
real-time answers and solutions to our travel dilemmas and/or plans.
Road-trips and when traveling by car, there are a lot of ways
you can optimize savings.
ƒ Using your own car or renting a small compact can be a lifesaver
for short weekend getaways a little closer to home. You get to
spend some time alone or with the family getting where you need
or want to go.
ƒ Deeply discounted rates and packages (including insurance, mileage
etc) are all available from main carriers, with convenient pick-up,
drop off and streamlined processes. Well-maintained vehicles and
carefree driving goes a long way to get you there safely. Having
and using an Automobile Association membership, can get you
additional discounts and coverage. Even on hotel rooms and
service, should the car give you trouble along the way. Some
restaurants and other providers also give discounts when you show
your membership cards. Be sure to ask about these ‘membership’
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A ‘How To’ Guide To Getting The Best Deals When Traveling Last Minute
rates and perks at time of booking and then again when at the
ƒ Entertainment and snacks in the car can also save you some
money. Typically picking up these items at convenience stores or
rest stops, gas stations and the like, tend to be more expensive.
When filling up, do so closer to larger centers, as gas might be
more expensive in more remote areas. Travel necessities like a first
aid kit and cell phone can also save you money and lives if
required due to an accident or breakdown.
ƒ Car rental and hotel packages are popular and bundling at times is
cheaper than booking it separately.
ƒ Frequent guest plans and family discounts are all available. It is up
to you to ask about package deals, special offers and discounted or
best rates available.
ƒ There are also other options than pricy hotels, like motels, self-
sufficient apartments, B&B’s and guesthouses .
ƒ Decide what the most important part of your vacation is and spend
your dollars there. You will not be spending a lot of time in your
hotel room, so opt for what are priorities for you.
ƒ Continental breakfast is included at some.
ƒ Hotels are rarely fully-booked, so always as about cancellations,
last-minute check in specials and more, even upgrades to suites
and even lofts, or beach-view rooms in certain areas.
ƒ If you do not ask, you will not know. The worst that could happen
is that nothing is actually available.
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A ‘How To’ Guide To Getting The Best Deals When Traveling Last Minute
Here are just a few suggestions for reduced ‘Airfares’:
Like everyone else, the internet has put pricing for flights at our
fingertips. There are numerous providers that let you search, sort,
compare and prioritize, even name your own price to find ‘matching’
deals and best pricing. Seat sales are not the only sources of great
fares. Here are a few online suggestions:
Explore offerings online, comparison shop and booking with discount
airlines are all smart strategies.
Flexibility on your part regarding dates and times will translate into
more substantial savings.
Enrolling in an air miles, reward or frequent flyer plan that often
includes discounts on hotels and car rentals can be used at this time to
optimize your savings even more.
Even for last-minute holiday travel, avoid so-called ‘peak’ periods
during the day for example, business hours etc., (pick red-eye or
weekends if available) For holidays, spring break, and peak business
hour time’s makes for more travelers en route and supply and demand
will dictate pricing and cost. It is usually much higher. Take advantage
of shoulder and low season travel periods.
A little known fact is that some of the best airfare rates often involve a
Saturday night stay.
Dealing with the carrier directly, logging on to the airline's website and
checking out unadvertised flight specials are also great ideas. Booking
on-line usually saves a few dollars too.
Use a park-and-fly service and park your own vehicle at the airport.
Driving your car there and back is much cheaper than a taxi if you live
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A ‘How To’ Guide To Getting The Best Deals When Traveling Last Minute
far from the airport. There are also airport bus services or shuttles that
are cheaper than taxis.
Negotiating – It Is A Process And Skill-Set That Requires
Attention And Mastery
Even though this deals with short-notice, 11th hour, last minute travel,
there are still some important consideration to keep in mind:
Regardless of whether you are planning way in advance, locking in a
price or flexible enough to wait until last minute, taking advantage of
deeply discounted fares and travel deals, there are options to suit
every pocket, taste and travel budget!
Making the decision to invest in some cancellation insurance and travel
medical insurance is still smart and advisable. Protect yourself and
your travel investment as best you can.
Some other tips for the budget conscious, might be
ƒ selecting the neighborhood-friendly hotel that caters to the local
crowd, not the pricy touristy options necessarily, a bit removed or
off the beaten path maybe – it might actually be much cheaper too
ƒ Value and hospitality can make all the difference no matter where
you are. They can be a valuable local resource or source of
information that can make your stay memorable and enjoyable,
albeit short!
ƒ However, if you do choose the upscale hotel, always ask about the
best available rate upon check in and/or any discounts or special
offers at check-in
ƒ Call on and use the concierge or check-in desk services, they are
your link to the corner of the world you find yourself in.
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A ‘How To’ Guide To Getting The Best Deals When Traveling Last Minute
ƒ They are there for that special insider and local insights, tips and
expertise at your disposal that can make your trip truly memorable.
It is like having a walking, talking tour-guide and information
source right there, at your side and disposal. Utilize it to your
advantage. Get tips on eats and activities, shopping, entertainment
and events in the area – FREE OF CHARGE!
ƒ There are lots of unique ways to learn about what is waiting, to
make your trip and experience that more special and memorable.
ƒ Other things they just might be able to help you with are handy
referrals and ideas on what things might cost, book ground
transportation and much, much more.
Get as much information beforehand about where you are traveling to,
how long the flight is, the connections, cheapest flights, package
deals, discounts and special offerings or limited deals. Empower
yourself with knowledge and pricing to not be taken advantage of,
exploited or extorted, or being taken for a ride, even falling victim to
misrepresentation or false information.
No matter whom you book with or through, all topical and relevant
destination information, trip details and any additional information that
you might require, should also be available upon request. Feel free to
ask any questions, concerns or raise issues and address uncertainties
at the time of booking, PRIOR to committing funds and confirming the
Last minute cruises and short notice travel bargains are often updated
and reflective of the almost ‘real-time’ offerings that are available in
the marketplace. If you are trying to save on short notice flights and
you do not have the luxury of booking early to optimize pricing, there
are some strategies that you can follow:
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A ‘How To’ Guide To Getting The Best Deals When Traveling Last Minute
Life is pretty much unpredictable and we can not always plan for
everything. So what to do when you are stuck having to book traveling
last minute? Sometimes airfares can be three or four times as high as
normal. Finding the lowest fare applies for everyone, even business
travelers. It could be as simple as a few empty or extra seats on a
flight. When they are filled or taken, the deals typically ‘stop’ or run
out. Airlines will rather settle for reduced fare and incoming revenue
than suffering a loss.
Last minute websites are popping up everywhere. They are
increasingly becoming a popular choice, especially for those who are
not committed to going anywhere in particular or specific preferences
or requirements. Cheaply and spontaneous are the keywords for this
type of travel. Discounts abound and some airlines even offer these
deals online. What you need to look for to find these ‘specials’ are
promotions or special discounts.
Shop around for connections and departures that work and are
affordable. Bidding for last minute seats on carriers in recent years
have also not been left to the desperate or insider market.
Increasingly people are utilizing these 24-hr type travel solutions to
get them where they have to go. Unsold inventories are typically the
best way to discounts for airfare.
Something referred to as ‘bereavement fares’ are not really deals.
They are 50% discounted fares for those attending a funeral for
example. Eligibility guidelines and criteria are spouses, grandchildren,
children, parents, grandparents and aunts, uncles, nephews and nieces
of the dearly departed.
Discount carriers are another option for cheaper pricing for flights.
They do not typically penalize you as much for changes or have
outrageous fares.
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A ‘How To’ Guide To Getting The Best Deals When Traveling Last Minute
Some other creative ways individuals have been able to ‘cash in’ as it
were on cheaper fares, are by acting as a courier for companies. The
catch they have is that as a passenger-carrier, you are required to
surrender your luggage allowance and live with a carry-on bag, but
you might be able to get fares even for cross-Atlantic flights for $100
Priceline and Hotwire are two innovative ‘bidding’ travel
solutions. They do come with some risk and are popular due to their
you-name-your-price type concepts and operating principles. Tickets
are typically non-refundable and with no change options. If the ticket
is purchased you have no choice of airline or flight, it is set. You can
often select your day of departure, but not necessarily the time of the
flight. If you are flexible in your travel itinerary, this could be of huge
benefit to you. It does remain somewhat purchasing of travel a bit
‘sight-unseen’ or blind, according to some. You do not know quite what
you will get. There are elements of uncertainty. Credit cards are also
automatically booked and are at times non-refundable. Check the
details PRIOR to bidding or booking with online auctions. They are
typically online travel auction providers with deep discounts and
special offers, last minute deals and discounted travel packages with
very low fares.
With all airfare type savings, the trick is to find some deals and book
them quickly. It is really as simple as that. Even major routes and
corridors will have empty seats and this will fuel this market and
interest every time around.
If you get ‘bumped’ in a position where a flight is oversold, you may
qualify for a free flight next time round. Airlines again will rather give
away a free ticket than risk having an empty seat and no incoming
revenue! Sometimes airlines only offer discounts, not free tickets, but
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A ‘How To’ Guide To Getting The Best Deals When Traveling Last Minute
it is worth finding out. Find out and confirm all details prior to giving
up your seat so easily!
For hotel rooms, there are always room tax (as high as 13% in cases),
which is inevitable. You have to be aware of and pay them. Most
discover this fact upon check out. Mini-bars are notoriously overprices,
so a hands-off rule is a good thing to have. In-room movies are
expensive as well. Expensive or valet parking service is another way
for hotels to make money. Phone services and long distance changes
are typically high. Avoid requesting extras, they might almost always
be at additional cost.
Online bidding is fair game these days and there are numerous
discussion boards and blogs on how to be successful on the most
recognized sites like priceline and hotwire. Remember with this type
of ‘bookings’ there really are no guarantees and if your bid is too low,
you will be out of luck completely. It is a chance that you are taking.
There are also lots of success stories about bidding and actually
getting the price you want to pay for your travel by some clever
maneuvering and travel booking smarts. It pays to read through these
and use them as words to the wise!
The following is an example of a checklist that you can use when
bidding for a hotel room through one of these online auction-bid type
clearinghouse travel transactions and solutions:
ƒ Familiarize yourself with what the exact or ballpark going rate
through is. You can use the web sites of major airlines, hotels, car
rental firms, and others.
ƒ Sites like Expedia and Travelocity can also be utilized in your search
to gather data.
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A ‘How To’ Guide To Getting The Best Deals When Traveling Last Minute
ƒ If you are shopping for hotels, start with the four-stars and then
move down to the two stars, review successful and unsuccessful
bids online and respond with this information on hand for reference
to guide your decisions and bids.
ƒ There are no guarantees and numerous factors that affect the price
and successful bid. Market conditions, demand, economics, time of
year, major events and more.
ƒ The toughest lesson to learn from online travel auctions and
biddings is to BE PATIENT and PERSISTENT! Do not be too quick to
put in a higher or lower bid. BE SMART ALL-ROUND!
If weekend escapes are for you, last-minute deals are easy to find.
Most people crave and want the weekend away, but most
(mistakenly), think that they cannot afford it. Big city breakaways,
country retreats and even destination or exotic, romantic getaways fall
into this category of popular choice.
Getting there and back and finding a place to sleep and eat, getting
around while there, are all top priorities for travelers, so the industry
answers the call with package deals that make the trip more alluring
and typically more affordable too. Bundling in this case, of these
services, will be a little cheaper than securing them separately on your
Paying attention to the little details and costs that add up quickly is to
be recommended. Reasonable room rates, good affordable parking,
ground transportation like taxi cabs can be a little expensive too. In
most major cities there are free shuttle, bus or trolley services and
using public transit is also an option. Entertainment and sightseeing
passes, city tours are great deals too as they again bundle together a
couple of touristy attractions and discount it to make it more appealing
and affordable.
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A ‘How To’ Guide To Getting The Best Deals When Traveling Last Minute
If you want to see just how pervasive this trend and how appealing
some of this pricing is, just type into any search engine the words last
minute holiday and see what pops up. It will be overwhelming at
first, but once you start to sift through the clutter, the major players
and legitimate providers are doing a great job at getting the word out
on what they are trying to achieve and you will see some great last
minute deals cross your path. DO NOT MISS OUT! ACT QUICKLY!
Still remaining diligent and practical despite the fact that you are
dealing with short notice travel, does not really change all that much.
Verifying and confirming details, being skeptical of deals that just
simply sound too good to be true can normally be seen as protecting
your interest and investment dollar. When in doubt, PASS!
Discount travel package deals always sound like such a bargain. They
typically are. They tend to be mostly priced better and lower. Ensure
that you know about all the details and implications of the cancellation
and refund policy. Scrutinize the fine print and calculate what the
financial impact would be. How much money will you likely lose or
forfeit? What are the risks involved?
Almost without exception, paying attention to travel and medical
insurance will be considered smart and advisable. We will say it again.
Budgeting a little extra for the inevitable or unexpected, will serve you
and your interest pretty well. Do not leave yourself in a lurch or
difficult situation. Even incidentals can start adding up! Avoid any
penalties or late check-out fees.
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A ‘How To’ Guide To Getting The Best Deals When Traveling Last Minute
Booking and administration fees, commissions and the like, have to be
clarified upfront. Ensure that you are aware of any and all charges,
taxes and request a breakdown for all charges billed to your credit
When it comes to meals and all inclusive last minute deals, be sure to
confirm. Drinks are typically extra as are some meals, snacks, room
service and the like. Confirm if you are unsure. Finding out about all
associated costs of your trip will safeguard you against surprises,
shocks or over-spending.
GREAT Results – Getting Them, Focusing On What To Do
And What NOT To Do!
For all- if not most of us - finding the right leisure at the lowest price
is probably what appeals most about last-minute travel. But how do
you find the inside scoop to be S.C.O.O.T.I.N.G. and making the
MOST of your travel solutions, without paying and arm and a leg for it,
or a cent MORE than we absolutely have to?
Partner with those who have negotiated the best deal possible on your
(and all other fellow-travelers’) behalf already. Variety and lowest
pricing under one roof and in one value proposition sounds like the
perfect solutions and in many cases of 11th hour travel it truly is
enough and sufficient to save you some dollars.
Whether you are planning on traveling this weekend or next weekend,
the next 3 hrs, 24 hrs or fourteen days, you will fall into this ‘shortnotice’ travel category. Package combinations of car hotel and airfare,
some, any or all of the above are possible.
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A ‘How To’ Guide To Getting The Best Deals When Traveling Last Minute
Great ideas and destinations are too many to list or name here. Some
are priced under $250 US per person, they could include mini-retreats
and vacations, refresher, special events, major city visits or tours,
hotel stays, rental cars and airfare. These types of packages can save
you time, effort and money.
Traveling for cheap does not have to be an ever-elusive goal. Most of
us do not have ready-hand splurge dollars to go wherever we want,
when we want, although we would like to! However, there are travel
packages and deals that can make some of our travel or destination
dreams come true.
You do not need all those thousands of hard-earned dollars or windfalls
to make it possible. Most take advantage of booking early and in
advance, but not all have discover the secrets and rewards or last
minute travel. Taking advantage of the absolute ultimate and best
deals that the market has to offer is now a click or call away.
Flexibility, thrill-seekers with an adaptable sense of humor and
adventure, willingness to take some risk and willing to travel alone if
that is what it takes. Arranging couple or group travel last minute can
prove to be near impossible.
As to where to find cheap tickets and travel, most people would
head on over to the virtual marketplace. Online sites can help you
custom your 11th hour travel to your needs, budget and requirements.
Skyauction.com, priceline.com, expedia and hotwire are all examples
of these treasure troves of travel deals. Not to forget the other BIG
names like Travelocity and Orbitz. From comparison charts to bidding
statistics, booking travel has taken on a whole life of its own.
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A ‘How To’ Guide To Getting The Best Deals When Traveling Last Minute
Things to watch out for is sites toting the same last-minute deals over
and over. They normally are not as deeply discounted, but not
necessarily capitalizes on the last-minute offerings and market in its
totality. Booking airfare online is by far the cheapest way to do so.
Airlines have to stay competitive and have an edge. They have to
make the most of supply and demand and one way they do that are
through discounted fares. Travel agents can offer you numerous
discounted and special offers not always available to all. They have the
access and the connections. So, although you are paying them, you
could benefit substantially from the discounts. Someone else is doing
all the grunt, search and legwork for you.
For last minute travelers who are really serious about finding great
deals, email and subscription lists are a good way to ensure you get
the skinny of real-time, new and exciting deals. Two sites that are
often toted as having great services on these fronts are travelzoo.com
and lastminutevacations.com. Sometimes there are weekly and/or
daily updates on available deals.
When and where are still the major questions and dilemmas
or challenges if you will involved with travel, even short
notice, last minute and 11th hour travel.
Spend most of your time checking prices and to see if the deal is
legitimate. Off-peak and midweek are popular spots to pick. Decreased
demand periods are go scoping or targeting areas, times and zones.
As are off-season or shoulder season. Holidays and business travel not
as much. Packages and deals do not have to be limited to airfare, they
can include cars and hotels, meals, activities, events and tourist
attractions as well. Saving cash AND having a good time are both
priorities with this type of discounted travel.
© Copyrighted. All Rights Reserved. 2006.
A ‘How To’ Guide To Getting The Best Deals When Traveling Last Minute
The travel industry as a market is really starting to open up. Even to
individuals like you and me. It is not longer just a privileged few and
inner circle who gets to enjoy the bounty. Discount travel is growing
and travelers are smart, wising up to working the system and letting
the system work for them/us!
Packages deals do not have to be purchased through travel agents or
brokers anymore, they are now available online. Airlines, hotel chains,
major brand providers, cruise-lines, and tour operators, niche
specialists are all getting into the game. This makes for a highly
competitive market that you can quite successfully tap into if you have
the time, energy and effort to focus a targeted search and personal
travel plan campaign, for your last minute travel deals and packages.
It will be worth it!
Knowing the value of what you are getting, and not only what you are
paying is key to this process. Spotting the best package will also
improve with more exposure and experience. Your own expertise will
unfold over time. For now, if you have to rely on others to get your
results, that is acceptable too.
Wholesale discounts for car rentals for example, will save you a couple
of dollars, rather than booking individually or separately with the
major carriers directly. This seems counterintuitive, but worth
exploring. Knowledge is power - make it work for you.
Deals will come and go. There are lots of variety, choice, some risk
involve, BUT ALSO great reward and cost savings to be had. No
wonder more and more want in on the last minute deals of the
century. There are always some risk with consolidator plane tickets,
human error, system failure and most of these transactions are nonrefundable.
© Copyrighted. All Rights Reserved. 2006.
A ‘How To’ Guide To Getting The Best Deals When Traveling Last Minute
Here are some handy tips and tricks you could bear in mind when
considering any type of discount travel packages, last minute travel
deals and/or spontaneous getaways:
ƒ Travel involves money and can be really expensive. Ensure you are
aware of the risk, refund and fine print, all financial implications and
are well insured. A lot of research and homework needs to be done
and is seen as a prerequisite in securing the best possible deal.
ƒ Travel deals enable, empower and share the load of this burden
somewhat to an extent. Deeply discounted and even cheap rates
are in ample supply. It may benefit a wide selection of diverse
travelers of varying means and purpose.
ƒ Business and last minute travelers amongst the most popular
pursuers of opportunity, promise and low rates. Here, there is no
booking in advance. Convenience bookings online, room
specifications and preferences, even bidding how much they would
like to pay for is gives them involvement and hands-on engagement
in their own travel plans. Most like that an awful lot. In a
demanding, society and consumer-driven economy it almost seems
logical that this would have unfolded as it did.
ƒ No matter when, where, for how long or how much, travel in itself
provides some thrill. Travel and medical insurance can not be
under-emphasized – DO NTO COMPROMISE on your own safety and
wellbeing. This is not the items to be skimpy on or to cut your
travel dollar.
A scurried hurrying, frenzy and panic, confusion and even stress, is
what typically characterizes last minute travel. There may be
legitimate reasons, for booking lat, but it does not make it any easier!
© Copyrighted. All Rights Reserved. 2006.
A ‘How To’ Guide To Getting The Best Deals When Traveling Last Minute
Planning to undertake any journey at the last minute can prove to be
challenging. If you have to meander through the maze of online travel
deals, booking agents, brokers, wholesales, clearing inventory
warehouses and even auctions, you have caught a rare glimpse of this
industry and sector of the travel market.
Departures and timing are everything. Flexibility and adaptability, a
good sense of humor and traveling Mid-week or off-week times could
end up saving you more than merely your dollars, money, it can even
save your enjoyment and sanity in the process!
Connecting flights are cheaper than direct flights. A good tip is to
subscribe to a number of last minute travel sites. Some offer alerts
and email notifications of top deals that become available the moment
they land on the marketable. Low and cheap rates are competitively
listed and you can make your selection quite easily.
The right approach, negotiation and friendly attitude could help you
secure the deals you need.
Affordable travel deals and information are freely available online.
Comparisons and once in a lifetime deals and travel packages are large
in number and awaiting your investment in time, effort and dollar
Comparison-shopping and comparison rates can go a long way in
getting you the best possible deal(s) – even if it is short-notice, last
minute or 11th hour travel.
The following tips help in finding the best travel deals:
© Copyrighted. All Rights Reserved. 2006.
A ‘How To’ Guide To Getting The Best Deals When Traveling Last Minute
ƒ BEING FLEXIBLE and open-minded
ƒ TRAVELING SMART and avoiding busy times, peak seasons,
holidays and business hour travel. In this case – do not follow
the crowd!
ƒ BE CREATIVE with locations and departures: Other airports and
travel connections
ƒ Consult with agencies and websites – do your homework. Avoid
being taken advantage of for lack of knowledge, some defraud
travelers on discounts and deals, just to get their hands on the
travel dollars or commissions, booking fees and volume.
ƒ DO NOT EVER feel pressured into accepting any deal, if you feel
uncomfortable or uneasy.
ƒ CHECK AND VERIFY the reputability, track record and
legitimacy of the booking, reservation agent, channel that you
choose to use.
Closing Thoughts and Remarks
Snap decisions can pay off, Days or hours could make all the
difference in our on-demand, technology reliant, enabled and results
driven world, consumers and now even travel solutions. The process
itself has become streamlined, effective, open and more casual, some
say even empowered, more-so than ever before.
The travel industry and our old ‘habits’, ways of doing things are fast
and ever changing. There are lots of debates and opinions on whether
you save anything by actually booking early these days! According to
studies done by the Travel Association of America the majority of
modern traveler’s book their trips not more than two weeks in
advance. Obviously this could be due to numerous reasons. T
here are increasingly more and more discount travel offers to be had
online. Both leisure and business travel are included in this trend.
© Copyrighted. All Rights Reserved. 2006.
A ‘How To’ Guide To Getting The Best Deals When Traveling Last Minute
There are more seats and beds to sell in a shorter time frame, less and
less people are booking travel in advance, leaving providers and
industry players with the challenge of finding creative ways to make
the formula for success work (both ways!) ENTER last minute travel
deals! There are lots of thoughts that waiting could actually be a good
thing these days with lots of bargains to be had.
When the travel business is suffering these types of bookings are
lifesavers that provide a steady stream of revenue, albeit lower, at
least it is something! Most would gladly do the deal than risk not
getting any at all. The game has changed, for both sides of the fence
and the new economy finds strange bedfellows exploring mutually
beneficial value-propositions like last minute travel to survive, even
grow and/or thrive, where others who opt not to miss out and even
risk going under.
As more and more of us get comfortable with online
purchasing traveling will not escape this modern trend of
bargain hunting online.
There are even websites capitalizing on this trend and at the forefront
of a lot of the vibe, buzz and energy created in and around the
industry and travel in general. It is in effect reshaping the landscape
and face, processes and outcomes of travel.
Packaging and bundling travel deals have gone a long way to find
great value for travelers and consumers. Tourism in general is still
hurting from some industry, economical and global aftermath and
fallout. As and industry and sector it has not remained unscathed by
these ‘forces’ and negative impacts.
© Copyrighted. All Rights Reserved. 2006.
A ‘How To’ Guide To Getting The Best Deals When Traveling Last Minute
Low occupancy rates, empty seats they all make people more nervous
and negatively impacts success and growth. This is one way the
players are dealing with it! Last minute deals are popular and getting
more-so every day. This is evidence of a BIG paradigm shift for most
consumers. Their behavior shows that they have adapted to the
challenges and opportunities that this new trend and circumstance has
brought with it.
Internet specials and midweek offerings and lower cost options are
getting more and more prevalent and accepted practice.
Most argue that as the economy gets better and world events stabilize
so will the travel industry and with it will disappear the last minute
deal. Others are not so sure about that. They think that consumers are
getting used to these deals and specials as ‘standard’ and what was
the gold standard or edge today, will be the new pre-requisite for
If you are impulsive by nature, or even if you are not , these
deals will have something for everyone. You will not be able
to pass it up!
There are last minute travel clubs, discussion boards, blogs and
forums going up everywhere. Globally people are advising each other
on where the best deals are to be had and most are spending the time
online to find and secure what they need even on short notice. This
trend will continue and grow. Stand-by travel-deals and last minute
bookings are not really that new, they have just moved onto the forefront more now.
© Copyrighted. All Rights Reserved. 2006.
A ‘How To’ Guide To Getting The Best Deals When Traveling Last Minute
Follow these tips to save money when arranging last-minute
vacation packages
If you’re planning a last-minute vacation package, you can save by
being a bit more flexible with your travel choices.
Search online and identify a benchmark cost for transportation,
accommodations, etc. Once you’ve narrowed down your
accommodations options, check out reviews about them.
Research last-minute airfares and lastly, take risks. If you’re really
after savings, gamble on inexpensive but lesser known travel
Maybe you are planning a last minute weekend trip or trying to escape
from some cold weather. By using strategies unique to booking lastminute travel, you might find more than you bargained for online. It
will give you the best bang for your buck, the best value for money.
The request might be simple. Here is one example of someone’s plans
and experience with last minute travel: wanting to fly from Boston to
New Orleans with as few connecting flights as possible, stay two or
three nights at a mid-range property within walking distance of both
the French Quarter and the St. Charles streetcar, and spend about
$400 per person. The request sounds simple. The hunt online for the
best pricing and discounts, lowest fares, VERY REVEALING!
Maybe even considering something a little different helped, like a cozy
Using BookingBuddy.com (a sister site of SmarterTravel.com),also
searching the Big 3, namely Expedia, Orbitz, and Travelocity to get a
benchmark price pf sorts for airfare. Doing some homework will almost
© Copyrighted. All Rights Reserved. 2006.
A ‘How To’ Guide To Getting The Best Deals When Traveling Last Minute
always pay off. You are in a better position to negotiate if you are
knowledgeable and knowing if you are getting value or ripped off.
As a rule of thumb cheaper flights are to be found on the airlines' Web
sites first, more-so than through a third-party agency also no ‘fees’
checking each carrier site takes time, most consumers opt for one of
the comparison sites.
You are oftentimes not left with many options. Still trying to find a
decent price range, searching last-minute travel provider websites like
the aforementioned Site59 would also help.
Here are some online excerpts on How to be a SMART lastminute traveler:
There are various ways to save when booking your last minute travel:
• Be flexible. Without being held to specific dates, your options and
choices will open up. If you are not stuck on specific brands or
carriers, there are wider choice and more options obviously Experts
online are of the opinion that Budget travelers can get away for a
last-minute weekend for even less, by staying at budget hotels and
choosing the cheapest flight options. And, if you're flexible, you can
save by switching your dates to travel on the cheapest weekend.
• Do your research. Knowing what things cost, how much you are
paying, the value and price comparisons or benchmark pricing will
help you out tremendously. If you have these on hand BEFORE you
book, you will just know if you're getting a good deal or not, wasting
your time or really cashing in. Bargain hunting for travel deals then
becomes really easy!
ƒ Optimize your selection and choices: Compare and contrast price for
all airfares and vacation packages on several different sites. This will
© Copyrighted. All Rights Reserved. 2006.
A ‘How To’ Guide To Getting The Best Deals When Traveling Last Minute
help you to get a handle on and idea about what the average rate
and costs are for your travel dates. Hunting for the best combination
will give you the best and lowest fare option. Custom your own BEST
travel deal. Take control of the process and be in charge of your own
travel destiny for a change!
• Get your priorities straight and know what is important to you.
Balance value and price. Visit TripAdvisor, a very useful Web site with
consumer reviews of hotels, motels and bed-and-breakfasts written by
previous guests. PRIOR to booking these insights will help you out
immensely avoiding costly mistakes,
• Monitor ANY and ALL last-minute airfares. last-minute airfares
databases also have lots of inventory for unsold or undersold seats. Be
alert for savings, even where and when you do not expect them.
• Take some calculated risks. Be rewarded for your ‘blind trust’,
providing your credit card information before seeing the airline and
exact flight itinerary.
WARNING: These packages are REALLY CHEAP at times, BUT
THEY ARE nonrefundable and unchangeable. Either way you
Some useful advice from the last-minute online travel experts:
From Hotwire.com:
• Be flexible. Sometimes departing a day earlier or later can make a
big difference in airfare price. Travel on Tuesdays, Wednesdays or
Thursdays for the best deals of all.
© Copyrighted. All Rights Reserved. 2006.
A ‘How To’ Guide To Getting The Best Deals When Traveling Last Minute
ƒ If it's a weekend getaway, save some cash by leaving on a Thursday
and returning on a Sunday. (In general, try to avoid holidays.)
• Jump on it. When you see the right deal, book it quickly. Airline
ticket prices can change within minutes. Coordinate scheduling and
make other pre-travel arrangements before you search, so that you
can book your fare as soon as you see it.
• Broaden your horizons. Once you choose your city, be sure to search
multiple neighborhoods to find the best deal. You may be surprised by
the great last-minute deals you turn up.
• Go off the beaten path. You may find more bargains.
Kari Swartz, leisure travel specialist with Expedia.com
• You may find an incredible deal at the last minute, but there are
risks. When you see a good price, lock it in.
• Set a budget. That way you'll avoid credit-card remorse.
• Entertain a destination that may not have made your short list.
• Be creative. Travel in low season. Go to Las Vegas or the Caribbean
in the summer for smaller crowds and better rates. Or go to Orlando
when school is in session.
• Booking a vacation package is the best way to travel.
From Consumer Reports Travel Letter
• A travel agent is the best resource for finding last-minute package
deals, as they're kept abreast of many of the last-breaking discounts.
© Copyrighted. All Rights Reserved. 2006.
A ‘How To’ Guide To Getting The Best Deals When Traveling Last Minute
• Check out tour operators' Web sites as well as third-party sites such
as Site59, LastMinuteTravel.com and 11thhourvacations.com for lastminute discount offerings.
• Don't wait until the last minute to look for a cruise deal. The key to
capturing bargains is booking about a month in advance.
• Seek out cruise consolidators, who make comparison shopping
easier, and occasionally offer rates even lower than what you'd find on
the cruise lines' site.
• Register online with several major airlines to be e-mailed bargain "efares" each week. Also log on to the major travel booking sites; just
make sure to comparison shop by going to the airlines' own sites.
• For a hotel deal, visit the hotel chains' Web sites to look for getaway
promotions or weekend specials.
• Call the individual hotel and ask if any specials, upgrades or lower
rates are available.
Bob Albert, general manager of Site59
• Know what the price includes. A great last-minute deal doesn't mean
you have to take a leap of faith by paying before you know the details
— such as an unknown hotel or a less-than-desirable flight itinerary.
Unlike Site59, some sites give only a booking window (morning,
afternoon, night) while others don't display the airline information until
after you submit a credit card.
• Know your options. You never know when you might want to get
away, so it's always best to be informed. Sign up for e-mail notices.
© Copyrighted. All Rights Reserved. 2006.
A ‘How To’ Guide To Getting The Best Deals When Traveling Last Minute
A closing thought : To find the deals, you must be in the know.
Where to book, when to book, and what to expect.
Many call it the hottest sector for online travel!
Bibliography and Online References
Online References For Global Travel Services and even Last
Minute Travel Options and Travel Packages
ƒ 1st Choice Vacation Rentals: The easiest way on the Internet to
find vacation properties worldwide, including homes, villas,
condominiums, ski cabins, bed and breakfasts, timeshares and much
ƒ Asinah.NET is a global travel portal, offering travel, hotel and
weather information on hundreds of cities around the world.
ƒ CyberWorldTravel.com - Find ALL your travel needs here;
worldwide discount hotel rates, airfare, rental cars, cruise packages,
vacation rentals, and much more.
ƒ Discount Travel Promotions, Offers and Traveling Tips
Travelling-Tips.com offers discount airline, hotel, cruise, car rental,
© Copyrighted. All Rights Reserved. 2006.
A ‘How To’ Guide To Getting The Best Deals When Traveling Last Minute
rail and travel reservations plus free traveling tips and secrets to plan
your vacation or business trip.
ƒ Interesting Holiday Properties For Rent - Villas, Gites and chalets
all over Europe and North America. The properties are great deals
and offer something very special to the renter.
ƒ Hotel Discounts Worldwide
Search our database for discounts on hotels worldwide, organized by
ƒ The Lost Luggage Tales - Travel the world... Tell your tales... Real
stories from insane journeys.
ƒ Visit the MySummerVacation.com travel site and see what folks did
on their vacations. Also check out The Cruise Line website with
links, information and cruise news.
ƒ Overseas Property Guide - Property for sale and to rent directly
from the owners, and selected real estate agents in Spain, Florida,
France, Italy, Portugal, Cyprus, U.S.A, Australia, U.K. Advertise your
property for sale or to rent here.
ƒ Rob's Great Travel Links - maps, magazines, information and
more. Includes travel destinations for all over the world. Good place
to find Maps to purchase, including regional maps of Mexico.
ƒ An Online Travel Resources and Directory Online travel resource,
tips and secrets to plan your vacation or business trip. Find vacation
packages, airfares, hotels, car rental and cruises with the lowest fares
and at discounted prices.
ƒ Vacation Rentals .com: The #1 Rated Site. Easily find vacation
rentals world wide. Listings include description, photos, pricing and
direct owner contact information to get the best rates.
ƒ Discount hotels and hotel reservations--hotelsatanywhere.com,
cheap discount hotels and discount hotel reservations
ƒ last minute travel deals: avishotels.com, Last minute travel deals,
cheap flights and airline tickets
© Copyrighted. All Rights Reserved. 2006.
A ‘How To’ Guide To Getting The Best Deals When Traveling Last Minute
ƒ TravelProfessor.com - The largest and complete travel directory,
guides for cheap accommodation, hotels, tours, resorts, cruise, golf,
agency, adventure,...
ƒ Cheap hotels and hotel reservations: internethotels.com, cheap
discount hotels and discount hotel reservations
To optimize your online search for last minute travel deals use
this handy reference list
Discount Air Fares
Lowest Airfares
Cheapest Airfare
Low Air Fares
Lowest Airfare
Student Airfare
Best Air Fares
Discount Airfare
Student Airfares
Best Air Fare
Discount Airfares
International Airfares
Cheap Domestic Air Fares
Last Minute Airfare
Discounted Airline Tickets
Cheapest Air Fares
Last Minute Airfares
Discounted Airfare
Cheapest Air Fare
Low Airfares
Discounted Airfares
Last Minute Air Fares
Low Airfare
Cheap Plane Ticket
Last Minute Air Fare
Cheap International Airfare
Cheapest Airline Tickets
Cheap Airfare
Cheapest Airfares
Cheap Airline Ticket
Cheap Airplane Ticket
Discount Flight
Discounted Airfare
Cheep Airline Tickets
Cheap Air Line Tickets
Discount Air Tickets
Cheap Airfare
Flight To New York
Cheap Airflights
Cheap Airfares
Flight To Boston
Cheep Tickets
Discount Airfare
Flight To Miami
Cheep Flights
Discount Airfares
Flights To Washington
Cheep Airfare
Cheap Air Fair
Flights To Dallas
Last Minute Flights
Cheap Air Fairs
Cheap Air Flights
International Flights
Book International
Airline Tickets
Flight Tickets
Discount Flights
Last Minute
Bargain Flights
Cheap Airline Ticket
Cheap Airline Fares
Airline Fare
Flight Fares
Last Minute Travel Deals
Plane Fares
Low Fare
© Copyrighted. All Rights Reserved. 2006.
Low Fares
A ‘How To’ Guide To Getting The Best Deals When Traveling Last Minute
One can never consent to creep
when one feels an impulse to soar.
Helen Keller (1880 - 1968)
To deny our own impulses is to deny
the very thing that makes us human.
Andy and Larry Wachowski, The Matrix, 1999
© Copyrighted. All Rights Reserved. 2006.