It's funny how things change. If you met me a few years ago, I would have never been the girl to decide at 9am on a Friday that we should pack up and leave for a last minute weekend getaway. And today, well, today things are 100% different.
Thanks to a few amazing travel apps, I've been known to call my husband or friends mid-day on a friday and propose a weekend away. (I need at least 45 seconds of notice and then it's off to the races!) Which is why I'm sharing a few tips and tricks for heading off on a last minute weekend vacay.
I don't really know what changed, but in the last few years, I've gotten to be really good at winging it when it comes to travel. It probably has something to do with my job and the fact that I never know what's coming next. It's been a major blessing since it's allowed me to relax when it comes to jet setting and just focus on having fun, eating the best food, and staying at some posh properties. Here's the thing... it doesn't have to cost a fortune to leave last minute and spend a luxe weekend away. Today I wanted to share some of my favorite tips and tricks for booking these luxe last minute vacays so you can enjoy them too! Seeing as how I spend 97% of my time reading/writing/talking about food and travel, let's put it to good use!
Let's assume that you're going somewhere that's easy to get to via car or train...
First things first...
Hotel Tonight: Perhaps my favorite travel app of all times. Fun and swanky hotels give Hotel Tonight their unsold rooms and then we get to see that day's best values. With a few swipes on your phone you can easily and securely book your room and then pack your bags. It's genius. Right now Hotel Tonight is in 27 countries across Americas and Europe, 400+ cities and they are growing like crazy! Some amazing new locations they recently added include The Amalfi Coast, the French Riviera, Panama and TONS of new places in the states. You can book hotels with them for up to 5 nights too. It's amazing. Plus you can get $25 off your first booking with "GDALKIN" as your promo code. Deals go live every morning at 9am... so check early and snag the best hotel!
Uber: I mean, I think we all know how much I love Uber by now. Since giving up my car 2 months ago I've been an Uber die-hard. If it's not reachable by bike, I'm in an Uber. Here's the thing though, it's the best way to get around when you're in a new town. It's easily accessible from your phone and your driver will whisk you away to your destination. Plus it's easy since you get to avoid parking. Another fab part about Uber is that you can pick from a variety of cars. You can get an UberX (least expensive option), a regular Uber Black Car (middle of the road when it comes to price) or an Uber SUV (a tad more expensive but it seats a crowd). Plus they if you're a first time user you can use the code "1vmlu" for a $30 account credit.
Silver Car: Okay, so maybe you want to rent a car. That's totally cool too. Rental cars can be a pain in the ass, but Silver Car has upped the ante when it comes to car rentals and it's quite possibly the best service ever. They've re-imagined the entire process from start to finish. It's affordable, easy, and everyone gets an Audi A4. Add to that a downloadable app that gives you control over the entire experience, from accessing your car to receiving your receipt. It's brilliant.
And last, but certainly not least... Food!
Eater Heat Maps: Eater is my go-to source when I need to do some research for a new food city. They feature TONS of different cities across the states and in Canada and one of my favorite features is the heat maps. It's a collection of restaurants that are currently on the "hot" list. And I can honestly say that they always hit it spot on!!
Trip Advisor: Another great resource to cross referencing restaurant recommendations!
Facebook: Ask your friends!! I've asked the What's Gaby Cooking fans multiple times for restaurant recs and they always are outstanding!! You can also check out my travel index as I've gathered up some of my favorite restaurants from my travels over the past few years!
Do you have some other recommendations for last minute weekend getaways?!? Leave them in the comments so we can all up our travel game!