It wasn't that hard. Mind changed! For a big, complicated trip with lots of stops, flights, shuttles and changes, I'll never go back. Groupon uses a mix of agencies, Stevens said. And Richter points out that there's nothing like a human being with expertise.
Past Groupon Coupon Codes
Even if you're not using a deal website, travel agents can help you work within a budget. Do you like to know detail about every hotel? Do you insist on picking your airline seat? Is it really important to be in the heart of the action versus a residential neighborhood? Deal packages often list a hotel that you'll probably be staying at, but it could be one of a similar size and rating. That said, many tour operators who supply vacations to deal sites will work with you to customize or upgrade a trip.
Want a nicer room? They'll find it.
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When my friend and I went to Paris and Rome, we decided we were too old to share a room. It was a big chunk of change, but worth it in the end.
Groupon, LivingSocial Launch Realtime Deals Battle in New York
Every hotel I've stayed at from a deal site has been clean and comfortable. There have been quirks, like the shower head that pointed directly out of the stall and onto the bathroom floor. But isn't that the charm of international travel? When booking my Greek honeymoon, I checked several online tour provider sites, including Go-today and Gate 1 Travel, to see packages outside of the deal sites.
I noticed when they had a good deal on their regular sites, they didn't have one on the deal sites, and vice versa. LivingSocial was the best deal at the time, but I would have been willing to buy directly through the travel provider if the price was right.
Groupon Hotel deals...too good to be true? - New York City Forum
Same goes when booking hotels on deal sites. Check around to other booking services and directly with the hotel to make sure it's really a bargain. Is the deal for two people traveling together? Do you have transportation between locations on your trip? These things can add up, making your deal less of a deal than you thought.
If it says eight days, it means six nights. And check the weather wherever you're going. Deals abound in the off seasons, but that could mean hitting a destination at the coldest, least desirable time of year. About flights: Most deals will list a few departure cities including New York and Boston, but if you read the fine print, you often have more options.
Then again, don't take that for granted.
Call the agency before you buy the voucher and have them price out your specifics. A couple of months ago, my fiance and I bought an awesome Groupon deal to Spain, scheduled to fly out on New Year's Day. No deal! Thankfully, Groupon has a pretty relaxed return policy and gave us a full refund, which leads me to my next tip.
Food was included. It was cheaper than my fiance and I getting a hotel for the weekend. We didn't get food poisoning or lost at sea. The room was clean. The chow was serviceable. To be honest, it was just kind of lame. We made the most of it, but could tell it was an older boat. Activities were cheesy or lacking. And it felt like one big sales pitch.
Do Groupons Expire?
Whenever we'd start to relax, the cruise director would come on an intercom and try to sell us Trollbeads. Contact Stephanie Hayes at shayes tampabay. Follow stephhayes. Manage my subscription Activate my subscription Subscribe Log in Log out. Groupon has long since outgrown its roots as a scrappy daily deals provider. In addition to classic Groupons, those deeply discounted merchant vouchers we all know and love, Groupon now sells merchandise directly Groupon Goods , offers formidable travel deals Groupon Getaways and Market Picks , and purveys hard-to-get tickets to concerts and other live events GrouponLive.
GrouponLive purchases are final after the day of purchase, absent an extraordinary event, such as a natural disaster. Groupon Getaways and Market Picks are usually valid only within a predetermined travel window, after which their promotional value disappears and the offering merchant s are responsible for processing face-value redemptions. Most regular Groupon buyers let the occasional deal slip through their fingers.
These eight strategies can help you recoup your investment on your expired or about-to-expire Groupon purchases. Some apply only to certain Groupon products like traditional vouchers or travel purchases, while others are universal. All are good for your wallet. The most straightforward way to extend the full value of your Groupon product beyond its expiration date is simply to ask the issuing merchant to do you a solid and waive the stated expiration date. For Groupon purchases other than traditional vouchers, these compromises will look different.
For instance, a travel merchant that agrees to extend your booking or redemption deadline might impose blackout dates during peak travel times. For this reason, Groupon highly recommends and I wholeheartedly second buying travel insurance on any airfare, hotel, or cruise purchases you book through Groupon.
In the age of Yelp and Facebook, ordinary customers have extraordinary leverage. In my experience, merchants see little value in going toe-to-toe with indignant customers, even those they perceive as acting unreasonably. I worked in the service industry for a long time. I know an unreasonable customer when I see one. However, they can and will compel merchants to honor the face value of an expired voucher or deal, no matter how old. Depending on the circumstances, they may try to persuade the issuing merchant to honor your expired voucher or deal, or come to some other arrangement.
You have 24 hours to use them to purchase a new voucher or vouchers. Your original voucher will become worthless. This is one of the few times a traditional Groupon voucher can lose its face value. Before executing your trade, read the fine print on both links above. According to the Groupon Promise , the plain-English version of its return policy, refund terms are actually pretty strict for traditional vouchers: Once three days elapse after purchase, all sales are final. Getaways that require you to book within a preset window are refund-eligible when the merchant is unable to honor your booking request during the active window.
The catch: You need to offload your Groupon before it expires.
Sought-after items command premiums on these sites. With a compelling listing and a little luck, you could actually turn a profit on your impulsive purchase. In rare cases, live performances and events booked through GrouponLive are refund-eligible after the day of purchase. When the time comes to redeem your expired Groupon, spend just the bare minimum required to trigger the deal or negotiate with the merchant to reduce your spending requirement further and exit the situation with minimal damage to your discretionary budget.
Groupon frowns upon this behavior and will intervene on your behalf if you bring an incident to their attention in a timely fashion. All Rights Reserved. Money Crashers.