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You would think finding the cheapest hotel price would be easy. I wanted to book a room for two nights at a Comfort Inn in Akron, OH. There are plently of other hotels in Akron, but I have friends that will be staying there as well. So I want to book a room at that particular Comfort Inn.
My firend said AAA rate for two person Double bed room was $56.69 plus taxes. But we dropped our AAA membership after they never showed up when my wife had a flat tire…anyway, that’s a different story.
First I checked Hotels.com. I was looking for a room for 2 nights in November, checking in Friday, and checking out on Sunday. There would be just one adult. When I checked yesterday, Hotels.com showed the lowest price at $57. Now, on the first screen, they are showing the “lowest average nightly rate” as $56.69. But when I clicked through, it shows the lowest average nightly rate as $52.19. But as I said, when I looked yesterday, it showed $57.
Next I checked Orbitz. Yesterday, and still today, it showed the price for the Comfort Inn as $57. When I clicked through, the price is actually listed as $57.99. This site however shows the taxes and fees which are $25.83 for the two nights.
Next I go to Comfort Inn’s website to see if I can find a better price there. ComfortInn.com forwards me to ChoiceHotels.com. Searching on the website shows me the price for a room will cost from $57.99 to $134.99. There’s that $57.99 price I saw at Orbitz. I check to see what the $134 room is. There are several rooms list for the higher prices. One is a suite with a room divider, and another has a 2-person whirlpool in bath. That would be cool, but I don’t need it, and I am looking for the cheapest rate.
Then I decided to check PriceLine. Let’s see what William Shatner has for me. After putting in the place, and dates, I have to sort by hotel name to locate the listed for the comfort in. The listing only shows Comfort Inn Akron, and I have to click through to see if it is the right one (there are several Comfort Inns in the area). It is the correct one, but the average price is listed as $62. Yesterday, I was thinking I could bid on a price, but I didn’t see it. Today, I see where I could have done it. But I am not sure how it would have worked. It might not have let me pick the specific hotel I wanted.
I didn’t check Travelocity yesterday, but I will check them out today for completeness. After entering all my information, I hit search. The results are quickly returned, and I scroll down to find that Travelocity lists the room prices as $62.99. Wow, they are getting worse!
I also check Expedia.com. I have never used Expedia before, but what the heck. The first Comfort Inn I find is listed as Comfort Inn West, and shows prices af $53! That’s a great price, but is this the right Comfort Inn? I click “More Lodging Info”, and it has more stuff, but still doesn’t show me the address. On this screen, I click Hotel Information. Even more info about what the hotel offers, but still no address. I go back and click on see hotel on map. Finally at the bottom there is an address, and I find this is not even the right Comfort Inn! I click BACK all the way to the list of hotels. There is also a Comfort Inn Hall Of Fame, but I am pretty sure that isn’t the one I want. I find the Comfort Inn Akron on the second page. It doesn’t show the prices here, so I click prices and availability. The prices listed start at $52.19, but then I realize these are the AAA rates, and senior rates. The standard rates start at $57.99, same as Orbitz. Hmmm…
Well I ended up book my room through Orbitz, mainly because I already had an account there, and I have had good experiences before. If I hadn’t already booked the room yesterday, I may have researched the prices at Hotels.com a little more.

Recently my Mom and two sisters went on a river cruise aboard the Canadian Empress. A small ship that has only 34 state rooms and maxium capacity is 66 passengers. She is a replica steamboat built in 1981. The 14 crew members that where on board did very well in meeting the needs and desires of the passengers. The six nights that we are where board going from Kingston, Onterio to Quebec City, Quebec where very relaxing and I got a lot of reading done. (But being the youngest on board help in that, at times I felt like I was the young child that creapt out of bed to see the dinner party that the parents where having.) The sailing was done during the daytime hours, this I think is done because of the St. Lawernce River and the amount of traffic that can be on the waterway. We spent the over night hours decked at various marineas along the way. The waters remained calm except on one night that there was a cold front that moved through the area, causing higher winds.

I enjoyed the onshore tours and attractions (they are included in the price of the cruise but are not “required”). Although the pace of them where set by the older folks on the ship. (My sisters and I spent many night after dinner doing walks along the shore to “get the blood flowing”.) There are places I would like to spend more time exploring and others that I felt that I could have stayed home in Rochester, New York and saw something very similar. Many of the tours where very “tourist” and would have appealled to the masses but I found them lacking.

I would do a calm-water cruise again but I would pay close attention to the size of the ship and the average age of the cruisers aboard. There was not enough room to streach out and on the one rainy day that we had, all 48 of us where “hanging out” in the Grand Saloon (the only covered public room). It is a relaxing way to see the country side and learn about the history and people of the area. (I really think that I would have enjoyed a cruise in Europe better!)

I have been playing with the idea of going to Nevada to visit my dad in December. I have a ton of vacation time accrued, and I need to use it. Another reason is to run in the Las Vegas Marathon. I have never run a marathon before. I have never run a half-marathon. I have not run a 10k, or even a 5k. Up to a few weeks ago, I doubt if I had jogged more than a couple miles. But I have started to run on my treadmill. I have bought books, and started reading to see what it would take, and I can be ready by December. Just so you know, I am not starting from complete scratch. I haven’t been a couch potato. I have been training in and teaching martial arts for years, so I am already in pretty good shape. But I have started to walk/jog/run almost dialy on the treadmill. I have been doing about 40-50 miles. I already know I can walk the 26.2 miles. That wouldn’t be a problem. But I want to do it faster. I know I am not going to be able to run it fast enough to qualify for the Boston Marathon, but my goal for this first one is to finish it, and hopefully have a decent time. I have been training with a heart monitor, and have been working on building my aerobic fitness. I have already seen some small improvements. I am building the muscles in my legs that are used for running (not necessarily the same muscles and motions used for the martial arts). I will be ready. As the training for the marathon is not really fitting with this blog, I put up another blog fitness4sports.com where I talk about my training.
Plus it will be a blast to hang out with my dad, and relax out in Pahrump. Eat cheap prime rib dinners, and maybe even do a little book hunting.




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