T-T-K Tuesday: Earn double miles on hotel bookings (TODAY ONLY); rome2rio travel site review

T-T-K Tuesday.

A phrase I recall well from my days studying with Pete Bond of the MET opera orchestra in undergrad.  What seems like a written-out stutter is actually trumpet-nerd speak for the 2nd day of the week (well, in most normal countries.  I guess we start on Sundays in the US?).  Many fanfares use rapid tonguing for which we use syllables like Too and Koo.

Sooooo, without further fanfare (groan), my travel tip for the day.

A website that launched fairly recently is called Rocketmiles.  By booking through their site, you can earn airline miles.  Most hotel programs you can’t earn miles from, so this is a nice way to get extra miles, especially if you are going on a trip anyway.  Starting in about 45 minutes, you can make a booking on their site that will earn double the miles.  This is valid for the next 24 hours only!

***PS- Shameless plug***

If you register for Rocketmiles using this code:

C9Z5L7DB

OR use the following link:

https://www.rocketmiles.com/refer/C9Z5L7DB

I will earn 1,000 extra miles as a bonus, and so will you.  Just sayin’….

***end shameless plug***

I am going to San Diego for a day with no place in particular to stay on the way back from my trip east (the one I booked a cross-country flight for $76, remember?), so I’m taking advantage of this to book a hotel I could use anyway, and earn 12,000 miles in one night.  Yup, that’s correct- in one day and for $150, I’ll earn over 1/10th of the miles I need for my upcoming trip to SE Asia and New Zealand, and have a relaxing last day before the fall semester starts pretty close to the beach.

Granted, you have to search a bit and make sure you’re getting a good value for your money.  This one will work out to under 2 cents per mile, which is definitely a good value.  For cheapskates like me, make sure your hotel has accessibility!  Mine has an airport shuttle and San Diego has decent public transportation, so I’ll be okay.

I don’t usually stay in hotels (generally only when going on music tours, though we stayed in hotels on family vacations growing up).  I don’t usually think to stay in them, not only are they not a budget option, but it’s a lot harder to meet people.  Similarly minded travellers are more often found in hostels, and couchsurfing is a great way to meet locals, expats, and other friendly people who live in a town (I guess I’ll have to do another post on couchsurfing tips).  I recently talked with a former colleague of mine from Temple University teaching days who is also into travel deals and using points and miles, so I am going to look into hotels some more.  It does seem like some locations (cough, cough, the middle East) might be better to stay in hotels, so I will see how cheap I can do so.

Tip #2: Rome2Rio

I am hoping to visit a UNESCO site called Studenica Monastery, and potentially another nearby site called Stari Ras on my upcoming trip to Serbia.  I’ve been doing a lot of searching for public transportation in Serbia and the Balkans.  The information is somewhat lacking on anything but the most major routes.  Serbian Railways‘ website actually is fairly useful if you can figure out the navigation.  There’s a nice system map that shows all the places one can go.  It still is not entirely clear though which places you can take a bus to go further from, or how much it will cost.

Monastère de Studenica

Studenica Monastery.  Inside are some of the best preserved Byzantine-era frescoes.

I found a potentially invaluable website called Rome2Rio which helps address this issue.  You type in where you want to go and from what location, and it lists travel options and price.  Trains, buses, planes, and even taxi hire are included.  Some of the info is potentially outdated- for instance, it says that there is a direct train from Sarajevo to Budapest, but that train’s service was cancelled as of December 2012 from all reports I’ve read. Also many of the listed train travel times are just condensed travel times- they don’t include the layovers!  Make sure to click through and get to the company’s website (for trains, it’s usually the German railways site, http://www.bahn.de, which lists train schedules across Europe).  Still, it’s probably the best resource I’ve come across as of yet, so I’ll try to keep up on it.

Okay, well, enough for today, time to get back to studying!  I promise promise promise, soon there will be the end of Istanbul trip, my Spain trip, Panama/central America trip, etc.  Cheers!

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