Posted by: hmchang | January 1, 2008

Travel: Thoughts on Trip Travel Planning based on Orlando Trip Experience is one of the best resources for getting the honest reviews for hotels, restaurants, etc. Yahoo! Travel is another great resource to use – the “trip planner” functionality is very intuitive to use. Simply search and add or remove attractions and restaurants. There are a lot of other people’s travel experiences for reference, which is good especially when you have no clue where to start or when you are looking for in an area.

Betterbidding is an online forum that shares the information of. We booked our first hotel (12/21-12/25) at the Rodeway Inn International through priceline by direct purchase at $51.58/night, the second hotel (12/25-12/28) at the Marriot Orlando Airport through priceline by bidding at $70.92/night, and the final hotel (12/28-12/31) at the Fairfield Inn Orlando Airport through hotwire at $46/night. The Fairfield hotel turned out to be the best deal we got – they provide the largest amount of TV channels, great continental breakfast and free wireless internet. We were also lucky enough to get assigned to the 9th floor in the Marriot Orlando Airport since they provide breakfast and snacks almost all day in the common room, only accessible for 9th floor guests. Thus, if you plan to stay there, request for a 9th floor room.

I think both deals from priceline and hotwire would be good, but I now prefer to choose first from hotwire for they show the detail of whether the hotel provide complimentary breakfast and free internet services. Their deals are usually comparable to priceline and sometimes even cheaper.

For plane ticket and car rental, I used to get my available deal. There are lots of other ticket comparison website but this one is very informative and have a lot of good search options. I especially like their “trend” function for the airline ticket price. We kind of got a very bad deal on our plane ticket – 590USD round trip LAX-MCO flying frontier and US airways with 1 stop each. I think when the time gets closer, tickets will become cheaper as we observed there are still empty seats. For non-holiday seasons, it should be less than 250USD round trip.

Car rentals from the sites near airports are convenient but will most of the time incur additional airport tax. If possible, it is really more preferable to rent somewhere not the airport. But I think that would be tough for travelers. We got a Toyota hybrid for 62USD/day – which is very costly for 2 people. There are a lot of car rental coupons from fatwallet and ebates to use and good deals can really be found if search properly.


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