If you are planning to take a weekend trip before the end of September and haven’t booked your travel yet, there’s a great deal being offered through Expedia right now. The deal comes in the form of a $200 off coupon when you use the “flight+hotel” option on Expedia and pick a Intercontinental Hotel Group hotel to stay at. IHG hotels include Crowne Plaza, Holiday Inn, Staybridge Suites and a few other brands.
On the last page of the booking process, there’s a spot to enter in the promo code- 200IHG. If the package value is more then $200, not including taxes and fees, then you will get a $200 discount. This means that you can conceivably book a $250 package and pay only $50 for it (since most taxes and fees seem to be in the $50 range).
The code has to be used by end of August and the trip must be completed by the end of September. Also, only one code can be used per person/credit card. So if there’s several people that want to get in on this deal, each person will have to book it on their own.
The challenging part about this promo is finding hotels that the promo works with since not all IHG hotels are participating. There is a thread on the Slickdeals forum that lists some of the hotels that are and are not participating. Cities that are close to wherever you’re flying out from will generally result in cheaper packages overall since the airfare won’t be as expensive.
It took several dummy bookings in cities like Chicago, Portland and Seattle before I found a nice deal in New York City using the Holiday Inn by Newark airport. Through the promo I was able to get a package deal that cost $130- $79 less then the $209 price of the airfare alone.
The only problem with the package deal is that I didn’t actually want to stay in a hotel all the way out in Newark. No problem- you don’t have to use both the hotel and the airfare portion of the deal. You can use only the part you want and throw away the other part. So for my trip I booked another hotel in the city. It means I’ll have two hotel reservations at the same time, but ironically it’s cheaper to do it that way.
In fact, I was able to save $35/night on my second hotel reservation by booking through Quikbook.com. They don’t charge any fees for booking through their website and also don’t charge any fees for cancelling a reservation (the hotel may charge a fee if it’s past their deadline to cancel). For most hotels, Quikbooks doesn’t even charge for the room until you check out. So it’s a great way to hold a room without having to commit to a deposit up front. They also offer rates lower then what most hotels are offering and have a best rate guarantee. The downside of the site is that they focus mostly on major cities in the US, so it may be hard to find something if you’re going to a small town.
So if you’re thinking of going on a fall getaway, now is the time to book it. The Expedia promo has already appeared in several travel deal forums and blogs, so the inventory availible may disappear soon.
If you’re able to use this promo, let me know. I’m curious to see what deals people are finding with it.