You shudder when you hear that this year’s convention will be held in New Haven. How well you remember the last time you made the 4400 km round trip from Miami in December, 25 years ago.
You anticipated disaster from the beginning as you pondered all the complicated permutations. And for once you were right. You spent a whole day gnashing your teeth, wondering why your CEO chose such an out-of-the-way place. But then you found out that most of the bigwigs in your business are based in New York or Boston. So New Haven was a convenient mid-point. For THEM – not for you, of course!
You (well, actually, it was your secretary, Mavis) spent hours on the phone to flight companies, car hire firms and hotels, working out all the finer details. Mavis had to make 20 phone calls before she finalized anything. And then you had to tell her to start everything from scratch because the final cost broke the expense account ceiling.
Nightmare of 1988
This is nothing compared to the inconvenience of the trip itself. It was something out of Planes, Trains and Automobiles. In fact, you suspect that the famous movie starring John Candy was somehow based on your own experience. When you arrived at the conference you were utterly exhausted. You didn’t even have a mobile to tell them you would be five hours late for your presentation!
You didn’t know who to sue first, the company that booked your flight but refused to reimburse you – even though your plane got diverted to Washington because JFK was snowbound. OR the rental company whose car heating system broke down when temperatures plummeted to minus 10. OR the hotel who didn’t realize they had inadvertently double-booked your room. In the end you decided to sue EVERYONE.
You opted out of several trips to New Haven for the convention since then, citing the most far-fetched excuses. But this year there’s no getting round it because YOU have to make THE keynote address. Oh, and you are now deputy CEO of the entire company.
Sweet dreams in 2013
Yup, that was life back in 1988. Fast forward a quarter of a century. You don’t know how lucky you are. You don’t need Mavis at all. And you certainly don’t have to make 20 calls to individual travel companies. All you need is a website that can multi-task – fix your hotel accommodation, flight and car hire, all at once by aggregating information from multiple online sources. A site that will tell you the best and lowest car rental rates for your needs and arrange everything for you as a complete package. A site that offers multiple search engines, including the main rental car search, but also more besides, providing a complete travel planning tool.
Now, that trip from Miami to New Haven. No, don’t start twitching! It really is easier. You can get the best rates, at travel times of your choosing, on one site by collecting information from various travel and commercial companies like Expedia and Priceline. This can be done within a few seconds. If, for example, the aggregator finds that the best deal is through Expedia, you often find you can follow this up with a special deal on a hotel.
The site gives you a detailed breakdown of the vehicles on offer – economy, compact, intermediate or SUV etc – and lists all the prices offered by car rental firms. It gives you detailed information on the daily rate and the gizmos in your hired vehicle. You can plan the entire trip within minutes and do it all on your own!
Thanks to the all-in-one package planner, you get a detailed and economical itinerary breakdown – instead of the mental breakdown you had to endure when having to go through different companies in the past. And, when you’re done with the convention, you can book a nice winter getaway because you can also check vacations and cruises on the same site. See, life really did get easier!