Quick guide to Daily Getaways 2015

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The Daily Getaways are a set of travel deals available in limited quantities.  Each day for the next several weeks, a new deal becomes available at exactly 1 pm ET.  The most popular deals will be sold out before you can finish saying “where’s my wallet?”  The best way to grab these deals is to be at your computer minutes before the deal goes live and refresh your browser continuously like a madman until the option to “Buy” appears.  Then, click the button and hope not to see the dreaded sold out message.  There are often multiple deals available on the same day. To increase your chance of getting one you can try first for the deal that you think will be less popular than the rest.

Are any of these deals worth this craziness?  In general the answer is… it depends.  For almost every deal, you can save money by buying them if you were planning to spend more money on similar travel anyway.  Many deals, though, will only encourage you to pre-pay for things you might never actually want to use.

To save you time, I’ve summarized each deal below and rated the ones I consider particularly deal-worthy with a thumbs up icon:

ThumbsUp

Date Available Deal Frequent Miler’s Review

3/23

SOLD OUT

Alamo $50 certificate for $25 ThumbsUpCertificates can be combined with Alamo Insiders 5% discount (sign up for free).  Up to 3 certificates can be applied to one rental (but you’ll have to call to use more than 1).  Can maximize this deal and get nearly half off by using on rentals costing just over $50, $100, or $150.  Savings can actually be even better than advertised since taxes and fees will be proportionally lower as well.
3/24 Buy IHG points for around .6 cents each There’s no guarantee that IHG points will be worth .6 cents or more when redeeming them. So, go for this deal only if you have immediate plans for their use and know you’ll save money. If you need IHG points in the future, it’s always possible to buy IHG points for .7 cents each by booking and cancelling Points & Cash stays as long as you have at least 5,000 points available.

3/25

SOLD OUT

Buy Club Carlson points for .45 cents each Redemption values for Club Carlson points tend to range from around .2 cents per point to a bit over 1 cent per point.  The only way to ensure getting a good deal from this is to combine with the Club Carlson credit card which gives you the last night on a multi-night award stay for free.  However, if you already have the Club Carlson credit card then you probably also have plenty of Club Carlson points.  Only buy if you’re short on points and know you can use them.
3/26 Diamond Resorts 5 night stay for $525 Certificate expires May 8, 2016. Meh.  You can probably do just as well renting a week from a timeshare owner.  Check listings on sites like tug2.com, redweek, etc.

3/27

SOLD OUT

Buy Hilton points for .5 cents each Don’t do it unless you have concrete plans for a Hilton stay that would give you good value for the points. Hilton points are rarely worth more than the current Fair Trading Price of .45 cents each when redeeming for stays.
3/30 Buy Best Western points for .55 cents each To be honest, I have no idea if .55 cents is a good price for Best Western, but it does happen to exactly match the current Fair Trading Price for Best Western points. My guess is that this offer is only worthwhile for topping off your account if you have nearly enough points for an award.
3/31 Buy two nights in Vegas in a suite for $495 or $608 Travel is valid through March 31, 2016. “Blackout dates may apply.”  Spend $495 or more for the possibility of booking two nights?  No thank you!
4/1 Buy multi-night Vegas or Atlantic City packages for $350 to $1400 Travel must be completed by July 1, 2016 and must be booked no later than 30 days in advance of desired scheduled arrival date. No thanks!
4/2 Buy a 4 pack of 2-day Universal Studios Hollywood California tickets for $313 (Retail price $436) If you happen to know that you’ll go to this particular park with four people and will need 2 day passes, and that you’ll go before they expire on April 30 2016, then this can be a deal.  It’s definitely not for me.

4/3

SOLD OUT

Buy Choice Privileges points for .4 to .45 cents each ThumbsUpThe current Fair Trading Price for Choice points is .55 cents, so this can definitely be categorized as a cheap way to buy Choice points.  That said, points are only worth buying if you know for sure that you’ll use them. It’s worth noting that Choice points can also be transferred to Southwest Airlines at a reasonable rate.  See this post for a full analysis of this deal.

4/6

SOLD OUT

Avis one day car rental for $30; or Chairman’s Club membership for $1,115 Chairman’s Club membership sounds like an awful deal to me.  The one day car rental certificate could be worthwhile if used for an otherwise very expensive rental.  One-way rentals are not allowed.
4/7 One to two night stay at various Omni Hotels for $162 to $338 As with all of these deals, only buy if you know you’ll use those nights and that you’ll save a lot of money over booking directly.
4/8 Two nights at a Loews resort for $275 to $1000 As with all of these deals, only buy if you know you’ll use those nights and that you’ll save a lot of money over booking directly.
4/9 Package deals for Las Vegas stays ranging from $475 to $1525 Expiration dates vary, but are generally around the end of this year. No thanks.
4/10 Buy Hyatt points for 1.04 to 1.1 cents each The current Fair Trading Price for Hyatt points is 1.11 cents, so this is a reasonable price at which to buy Hyatt points.  There aren’t many packages available though, and they tend to sell out nearly instantly so the chance of being able to buy a package is close to zero.  Don’t waste your time.
4/13 Buy Universal Orlando Resort packages for $700 to $3,042 These are very specific package deals – I suppose they could be good deals if you need the exact combination of perks being offered, but I’d personally rather keep my options open.
4/14 Buy various 2 night Vegas packages for $299 to $590 Nah.
4/15 Buy Hertz points for 3.2 to 4.6 cents each ThumbsUpThe listed point offers are based on AnyDay rewards. If you find cheaper Standard Award availability, your points will go twice as far as advertised.  For example, they advertise a 1 week rental for $252.  That package actually gives you 5,500 points which are enough for two weeks at the Standard Award rate (or 1 week at the AnyDay reward rate).  I see this as a good deal, but there are very few packages available.  Good luck getting one.
4/16 Buy Busch Gardens or Sea World tickets for about half price ThumbsUpIf you know you’ll use the tickets, this looks like a good deal to me.
4/17 Buy Marriott e-gift cards for 20% off ThumbsUpAccording to the site: “the eGiftCard is available for use at participating Marriott branded or Ritz-Carlton properties worldwide for stays, dining, spa treatments, golf and more.”  If you know you’ll be staying at Marriott properties then this is definitely a solid deal.
4/20 Buy Fairmont Hawaii package for $1780 or Fairmont Scottsdale package for $610 The nice thing about these packages is that you actually get multiple certificates each good for 1 night plus breakfast and they have no expiration dates.  So, the Hawaii deal is like pre-paying for Fairmont nights for $297 per night (breakfast included), and the Scottsdale package is $203 per night (breakfast included).  If you use those certificates during high-season in either location, then you could save a lot of money over paying the going rate.  That said, you could instead apply for the Fairmont credit card to get 2 free nights at any Fairmont hotel worldwide.
4/21 Buy Vegas packages for $150 to $1700 More Vegas packages that expire by or near the end of the year.  No thanks.
4/22 Buy a $1,000 Expedia hotel coupon for $650 Coupon is only good for a “+VIP Access or Expedia Rate hotel.”  Is that all hotels that show up on Expedia? Or, just select ones?  Plus, “Coupons can only be used once. Any leftover value is void;” and “a coupon can only be applied to one hotel room per booking;” and “Coupon values don’t apply to taxes or fees.”  This sounds like a gamble to me.

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