GOING ON a trip? All you need is a portable computer to make all your travel arrangements-right down to your airplane seating assignment. Whether you're downloading maps, booking tickets or changing hotel reservations, online travel services take the hassle out of making your travel plans. Following is a selection of useful online travel services:
- Travelogix Online (http://www.travelogix.com) subscribers can book instant reservations with 27,000 hotel sites and 61 car rental companies worldwide. The service is free for the first 30 days; a $9.95 monthly service charge thereafter includes 60 free minutes per month online.
- At Holiday Inn's Web site (http://www.holiday-inn.com), you can check room availability, view hotel rooms, review amenities and services at specific hotels and book reservations.
- Tap into Alamo Rent a Car's Web site (http://www.freeways.com) and you'll find information on everything from car rates and availability to vehicle models, seating capacity and storage space. You can also make car reservations.
- Available through Prodigy, America Online and CompuServe, Easy Sabre lets users shop for the best air fares and hotel and car rental rates, check schedules of more than 700 airlines and make reservations with more than 420 of them.
At Your Convenience
A low, low price for an overnight stay at a hotel simply isn't enough to win over most discriminating business travelers: A mere 18 percent of travel managers choose hotels based solely on the lowest price. According to a recent study by the School of Hotel Administration at Cornell University in Ithaca, New York, what most business travelers want are hotels nearest their appointments.
What other features do travelers look for? Negotiable room rates, guaranteed last room availability (meaning a hotel won't charge you a higher rate during peak periods), flexible cancellation policies and free local phone calls. Oh, and forget hotel freebies such as breakfast and airport shuttle service-they have little or no impact on decisions.
Alamo Rent A Car, (800) 327-9633;
Easy Sabre, 4255 Amon Carter, Mail Drop 4300, Ft. Worth, TX 76155, (817) 963-8451;
Holiday Inn Worldwide, (800) HOLIDAY;