“I wake up in the morning and I piss excellence”

I just got back from a weekend trip to Indiana with friends.

What’s there to do in a small town an hour North of Indiana in the middle of November?

Nothing at all.

But we found $77 round-trip flights, and we decided to get four couples together and just hang out at our friends Mark & Kristen’s house.

We got in Friday afternoon and the wives jumped straight into shopping and mani/pedicuring. (Cliché? Maybe, but not as cliché as what the guys did.)

The husbands grabbed the bourbon, the junk food, headed for the basement, played pool, and watched stupid movies on their 10-foot big-screen with surround-sound. (Bonus points if you can name the movie in the subject line.)

When our wives got home (pretty nails & all) we cooked a nice dinner, hung out around the fire and just shared story, after story, after story.

No expensive restaurants…

No fancy excursions…

Just 2 nights of relaxing, bourbon, wine, home-cooking & friendship. Sunday, we all headed back to the airport & went back to our normal lives.

The funny thing is – the majority of the stories we shared were of trips to places we all had in common.

Not just in recent years, but 5 years, 10 years, even stories from 30 years ago were shared as vividly as if they happened just last week.

The moral of the story?

The more you make travel a priority – the more amazing stories you can carry with you the rest of your life, and no one can take those memories from you.

Not the bank after a foreclosure.

Not your boss.

Not even your ex’s divorce lawyer.

In fact, the ONLY person who can take those memories away is you…

By continuing to tell yourself you’re too busy to make travel a priority.

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[Edit: Little did we know – this would be the beginning of a tradition of many trips together in years to come. Some with just the couples when the kids were away. Others with ALL of the kids on what we now call “Friendcations”.]

 

New York

Turks & Caicos Friendcation

 

Steamboat CO Friendcation

 

Detroit

 

High School Reunion

BOOKVIP Vacation Vouchers

If you’re reading this, it’s because you’re concerned about the validity of the Book VIP vouchers you received as a bonus for giving our premium trip-alert service a try.

Image courtesy of BookVIP.com

Book VIP has two aspects to their business:

  1. Bargain all-inclusive vacations that require a timeshare presentation. (A lot of people are concerned about their 130 complaints on BBB, but that’s out of tens of thousands of transactions. Despite over 130 registered complaints over the course of 5 years, they still have an A+ rating with the BBB. Here is my personal opinion on why.)
  2. “Empty Allotment” vouchers that do not require a timeshare presentation. (These are the vouchers I’ve given you, and they’ve already made money by selling the voucher to me, so unlike all destinations on BookVIP.com, timeshare presentations are NOT required.

I am not affiliated with BookVIP, but my wife, friends, and I have been to several resorts available through their empty allotment voucher program. Here are a few more notes that might help with your decision.

  • NO timeshare presentations are required to redeem any of those vouchers.
  • You have to pre-pay taxes of about $19 per day, and it can be used for 18 months after that (subject to availability).
  • The value of the various resorts they give away vary in actual value depending on season, but they’re certainly a lot more valuable than the taxes you pay to activate them.
  • The most important thing to remember with these vouchers is that they are “subject to availability”. The more flexibility you have on dates you can go, the more likely you’ll find available dates you can redeem these vouchers. (If they don’t have availability on the dates you wish to travel – you can also ask to exchange your destination for any other destinations they serve.)
  • Here’s the rub: Although they will offer incentives like free meals, or free excursions to attend a timeshare presentation, know that it is NOT required for the lodging voucher. If you agree to attend one, make sure you get a big incentive for it!

Just as with any hotel you book – I always recommend reviewing the resort offered on TripAdvisor.  (Especially in this case. That way, you can avoid the painful discussion with the barely-english-speaking call center by just activating online. Their reservations department is far more educated and helpful, and they’re the ones who can actually answer questions about dates/destinations. The activation department’s job is solely to painfully fumble through their script designed to collect your pre-paid taxes.)

Happy travels!

–Joel

PS – Please don’t forget that this voucher is a bonus for trying our trip-alert service, but has nothing to do with The JGOOT Way of travel. If you decide you don’t like their terms of service – don’t worry. Once you learn the 3 simple rules of “The JGOOT Way” of travel, there will be PLENTY of ways to get even better travel deals.

If you give “The JGOOT Way” of travel a fair chance for a couple weeks and decide you won’t be able to give a testimonial like those I’ve included below, simply email us at “cancel@justgetoutoftown.com” within the first 30 days, and ask for your money back. We’ll issue a refund, AND give a parting gift just for giving us a try.