Archives for July 2007

Artifical Plants in Orlando Vacation Rental Homes

Hi,

Can you recommend where we can get some quality interior artificial plants in the Orlando area?

Answer:

For what it’s worth, in our rental homes we’ve been slowly moving away from artificial plants because of the dusting maintenance hassle. Our complaint is that artificial plants show dust very quickly and the housekeepers aren’t very keen on cleaning them.

Yes, I know we can use anti-dust products. You can dust artificial plants by hand, dunk them in the pool, take them outside and hose them down, but the problem is that it’s another task, and in my opinion, it’s a great plan to eliminate repetitive tasks to keep your costs down and to free up your own time for more important things (enjoying the weather, for example).

We still (sparsely) use nice dried flower arrangements, but we’re replacing artificial plants with other decorations like ceramic art, birds, cast metal objects, decorative bird houses, that sort of thing. They consume space just as well but are much easier to dust, according to our housekeepers.

When Should I Book My Airline Flights?

Hi Chuck,

Just wanted to ask some advice.
We are limited to traveling during school holidays. Up to now we have always booked our flights as early as possible, but it has always been expensive. Since finding the forum I have seen some really good price offers for this period, some under half what I have paid. Are there always offers or is it better to book early?

Answer:

I am currently in the Myrtle Beach airport –
I paid $16 round trip to fly here from Detroit

Last week I flew from Detroit to Boulder Colorado for $100 round trip.

The week before that, I flew from Detroit to Orlando for $16 round trip.

As I write this, Spirit Airlines is offering a special airfare from Los Angeles to Guatemala for $18 round trip.

Regretfully, you’re mostly screwed.

The airlines know when school breaks are. They know when travel is most desirable, and like any good business, they charge the most at times of greatest demand and conversely charge the lowest when people are least likely to travel.

Here’s my advice:

To get the best airfares, you need to sign up for the “special deal” notification lists from the airlines, and you have to be ready to pick up and go *when they tell you to go*

If I’m planning to go somewhere and my travel dates are not flexible, I usually sign up for a fare alert service like Travelocity’s farewatcher alert. If a good fare sale pops up I take it, but I rarely wait any longer than 2 weeks before departure to buy airline tickets.

Good luck.

Having a Car in Florida

Chuck,

We were wondering if you, or anyone you know have bought and registered a car to their house in Florida. We like the idea of buying a car and keeping it in safe storage to use when we go over.

Answer:

Generally, it doesn’t make financial sense to own a car.

Be sure to add up all the costs to purchase a car and insurance.
Consider the cost of a taxi or bus to get from the airport to your car every time you visit. Also remember that you’ll be forfeiting use of part of your garage and that your stored automobile could be subjected to damage by guests.

Now, take all those costs of ownership and compare them to the total amount you paid for car rentals last year while in Florida. Generally, renting makes much more sense.

Why are inexpensive Motel 6 Motels so popular?

Many of us are probably familiar with the folksy twang of the Motel 6 spokesman and his commercial sign-off, “I’m Tom Bodett and we’ll leave the light on for ya.” For more than thirteen years commercials featuring Mr. Bodett’s gentle humor have invited people on the road to visit Motel 6 the acknowledged leader in the low cost motel field. However, other than a memorable tagline, what are the features that make Motel 6 such a popular place for the weary traveler to lay his/her head? [Read more…]