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Comparison Travel Vacations

Hotel Rewards – Getting the most from your stay

How To Live A Lavish Lifestyle On A Budget – Hotel Rewards

Nowadays you do not have to call a 1-800 number to book a hotel room. You can use your phone, tablet or computer and book through a website or an app. With 100’s of sites with the same information, trying to find the best deal or even proper accommodations can become overwhelming.

While using comparison sites like BookVip, CheapOair, OneTravel, Booking.com, Priceline, etc. make it easy to compare and contrast many hotels across a variety of brands may seem like the best option, but I would have to argue it is not, Especially if you book a lot of rooms.

Most large hotel chains have their own online booking system and loyalty rewards program. At one point in time, you could get a better nightly rate by booking through the comparison site but most big chains guaranteed they their prices are the lowest and no longer offer additional deals to the discount sites.

The loyalty rewards programs offer many perks including Free Early Checking and Late Check-Out, Floor and Room Preference, Discounts for local attractions and most importantly, Rewards Points.

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Turning Staycations to Vacations

If you are still reading this, you must be interested in how the rewards system works. Each brand has their own reward setup but generally, you receive 10 points for every dollar you spend, not including taxes and fees. The more expensive the room, the more points you receive. Some programs offer options to buy points outright while others let you receive extra points by paying a few dollars more when booking a stay.

Booking off-season, from the late fall to early spring, is a great way to rack up points to use during the summer. On top of that, most programs offer additional ways to earn points during the off-season such as; booking multiple times during a specific period, applying for a brand-specific credit card and using a specified payment method during a particular period.

Booking a room at a hotel once or twice a month off-peak has other advantages as well. Being able to use the hotel’s amenities such as pools, spas and fitness equipment for free and the change of scenery would add to your quality of life. Many of the brands that offer these programs provide free breakfast and/or have wonderful dining options nearby.
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Categories
Comparison

Apple Music vs Tidal

Streaming Services: Does It Even Matter

We can trade the pros and cons of the two music streaming services that would last for days. Honestly, the functionality of either service or any other service doesn’t really matter. What it comes down to is how will the service integrate into your lifestyle. I personally do not care much for Pandora or Spotify. To me, they essentially pull you in with the promise of being able to stream millions of songs for free with the hopes that you will pay to have more control over what plays next. From my experience, those who want to pay, pay and those that do not want to pay, do not pay. I love music, and I want to build my own playlist. I want my playlist to cross genres and invoke multiple feelings; happiness, sadness, nostalgia, etc.. I make a playlist for road trips, cookouts, and moments to myself. To me, control is where Apple Music and Tidal rise above the rest.

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The Real Difference

Where Apple Music and Tidal differentiate is simple, if you use other Apple products and services, Apple Music is definitively better. If you do not use other Apple products and services, I could not imagine Apple Music is a very good experience. The fact that you can integrate Apple Music with tour local iTunes library is amazing for someone like me who has an extensive collection of out of print music, not available on any streaming service, from the 90’s and early 2000’s. Add in the fact that you can upload your local collection to the cloud, from a Mac (of course), and stream it as well it is the hands-down winner for me. While I feel that the flow of Tidal, particularly on mobile devices is leaps and bounds better than Apple’s approach, the seamless iPhone integration is too much to ignore. I actually used Tidal for the last year or so, and it was pretty good for when I used it. If there was one complaint that I could give to both, it would be the lack of an app for Linux. As both companies strive to improve there services, we will likely revisit this debate soon.


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