Monday, July 4, 2011

Flash Sales - Luxury Link - FamilyGetaway - Vacationist

We used SniqueAway to get a great deal on our room at the Shores Resort and Spa in Daytona, Florida at the beginning of June. Like Seize the Deal and Groupon with their popular deals of the day, numerous sites have popped up offering short term/flash sales for travel. These 'member's only/private sales' typically run for about a week and offer 20-60% off of regular prices at luxury hotels and resorts around the world. It could just be a flash in the pan like the deep airfare discount sites of the early 00's. (Oh, how I miss them.) But still, they're worth looking into as you do your travel planning. It doesn't cost a thing to become a member, and you get a nominal credit for recommending the sites to friends (should they also book.) Keep in mind many do not offer a refund for cancellations so be sure to read the fine print in the terms of service. Also keep in mind, that if you sign up you'll find yourself with a lot of tempting spam in your email inbox.

Today I was looking at Vacationist, part of the Luxury Link travel group. One of the travelers that I follow recommended it during a recent podcast. Launched last year as a partnership between Travel + Leisure and Luxury Link, Vacationist offers 3-7 day sales with 25-40% off of regular prices. They have a virtually identical business model to SniqueAway, but their locations are more varied and international. Nothing fancy, just quick sales in beautiful places. 
Luxury Link, itself offers both live auctions and fixed price rooms with up to 65% off the room price. They have an enormous selection of properties as well as vacation packages and tours worldwide. Luxury Link is impressive just for the shear scale and diversity of their offerings. Their site is broken out to include destinations, interests, and property types. I actually ended up lost in their site for a couple hours poring over what they had to offer. I can honestly say that this was the first time I've found myself browsing for accommodations by 'Villas, Estates and Castles.'

Within this same group of companies, takes the same model and applies a 'family-friendly luxury' spin; big discounts, buy now and auction offerings but at family focused destinations. FamilyGetaway includes theme parks and portal for hotels with 'cool pools.' How cool is that?

I know there are more of these sites competing for our every shrinking travel dollars, if you have a favorite or you'd like to recommend one to us, please let me know. 

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