|Leopard in Kruger National Park, photo by Andrew Ingersoll|
Continuing our saga of filling our travel schedule for this spring, Katy and her nursing school classmate and friend have asked me to arrange a girl’s spa weekend for them. You have got to be kidding me? I am way out of my league here.
Here are the parameters as I know them:
Three or four days max. Paulette will be departing from Durango, Colorado and Katybug from either Hilton Head Island or Savannah, Georgia. The estimate time of the trip is early in the month of April, or a weekend near the end of the month.
They want to be pampered and I don’t want to go broke. I think they want facials, massages and that kind of spa experience stuff, and to gab and catch up after too many years just communicating by phone and email… Being the Frugal Travel Guy, I’m looking to fund this adventure with miles and points for the airfare and rooms. I know the spa services will probably be cash on the barrelhead, but not much I can do about that, is there? Every time I’m looked at spa services at SPG properties, the value for SPG point didn’t seem like a great deal to me.
All suggestions and past experiences will be greatly appreciated. I’ve got points for Hilton, SPG, Priority Club, and a few with Hyatt. Airlines: I’m good with AA, United/CO, and US Airways. I’m at zero with Delta miles. I’ve also got some Tripalertz cash, but the current offering is Palm Springs and the airfare is almost $700 or 40K in miles.
We’ve got May all set with Spain and a Med cruise. June is an Alaskan cruise. A reader, Bill, also from South Carolina, invited me to play golf with him at the Legends Tour Pro Am event in Savannah. I’m really looking forward to that. That is mid month so early April or the third week would be great. Hmm?? That could be San Antonio for the girls and I’ll hang out on the Riverwalk. Any spas in San Antonio? Or maybe we should reconsider the Hot Springs Arkansas idea again.
These trips are all possible because the main costs, hotels and airfare, are being covered primarily by miles and points.. When I booked the cruises I booked the lowest category for the Alaska cruise called an “inside guarantee” We don’t even know the location of the cabin until we board. By playing that game we saved $100 per person on the cabin charge. On the cruise out of Barcelona, we did a “balcony guarantee” which offered the same rules and savings. I’m wondering if a timely offered Andrew Jackson or President Grant ($50 I think) will help with our cabin location?
We used vacationstogo.com for both the cruises. The prices were competitive with other cruise discount sites and they offered an onboard credit as incentive to use their services. Not much, but every penny counts.