Guide To Booking Your Trip Through Us

Before we can accept your reservations, you must print out and fax (1-914-835-1666) to us the credit card authorization form.    Click here to view this form.

As I mentioned in a previous post, after 2 years of research and development on the part of the Tour Operator “Travel Impression” the firm has taken a natural step forward to offer to the GLBT Community, a host of product lines in order to serve a high quality travel product with which everyone should be comfortable.

Travel Impressions has screened over 2000 hotel properties and travel destinations with “Our Community” in mind. In the process of “putting a package together” they have also established joint ventures with car rental firms, land based local sight-seeing tour operators, Rail Europe, and a host of supportive services.

When you visit the booking site, you will be greeted with the following page. (If you click on the image you can get a better view of the page.)  In this guide we will concentrate on the “HOT DEALS”, “DESTINATIONS”, the Booking of your trip.  But please take some time to explore all of areas in the “What’s New” section.

Click the image to enlarge

Click the image to enlarge

HOT DEALS

To begin this demonstration, click on “HOT DEALS” to view the current “HOT” specials being offered.

Click the image to enlarge

Click the image to enlarge

After clicking, you will be presented with a page similar to the following.  There’s a very good chance that visiting this page on consecutive days will give you different results since these deals are being updated daily.   For this example, let’s Click “All Promotions” for the Continental United States

Click the image to enlarge

Click the image to enlarge

Here we see a list of the current promotions  being offered.   Let’s click on “FREE Nights, Wine and San Francisco Landmarks!”

Click the image to enlarge

Click the image to enlarge

We now see details of the “FREE Nights, Wine and San Francisco Landmarks!”   We have a choice of 4 hotels, 3 of which are offering the 4th night free.  And all of the packages include a 5 day rental from Hertz.  The price ranges from $339 to $569, per person, double occupancy.

Click the image to enlarge

Click the image to enlarge

I heartily suggest that you click on the above image to get a better view AND to read the restrictions at the bottom of the screen.  For your convenience, I have reproduced them here:

“Tours operated by Travel Impressions. Rates are land only, per person, based on double occupancy in specific room categories and include 5 day economy Hertz Car Rental, hotel accommodations and hotel tax. Hyatt Regency Monterey rate and promotion is valid for travel now – 1/31/09. Doubletree Sonoma Wine Country rate and promotion is valid for travel 1/01/09 – 3/31/09. Sheraton Fisherman’s Wharf rate is valid for travel now – 3/31/09. The Fairmont Sonoma Mission Inn & Spa rate and promotion is valid for travel 1/01/09 – 3/15/09. Blackout, weekend, holiday peak season surcharges apply. Car rental is available to qualified renters only, does not include tax or insurance, and certain age and other restrictions apply. Rates and promotions are accurate at time of publication and are subject to changes, exceptions, cancellation charges and restrictions. All advertised savings are reflected in price. Not responsible for errors or omissions in the publication of this ad. Additional higher priced packages available. Valid for new bookings only.”

Reading and understanding these restrictions for ANY the tours are your responsibility.  If you do not understand anything, or have any questions at all, please contact me either at 1-914-835-7600 ext 226 or email:awright@richtravel.com, BEFORE you make your booking.

Also, please be aware that these restrictions are not OUR restrictions.  These are the restrictions of the hotel or resort at which you will be staying.

Now, let’s get back to booking our trip.

Let’s assume that this package is exactly what we need for a quick mental break.  Let’s also say that we prefer the The Fairmont Sonoma Mission Inn & Spa (with the 4th night free!) for $569 per person (5 day Hertz Compact Car Rental, hotel accommodations and hotel tax all included. Car rental is available to qualified renters only, does not include tax or insurance, and certain age and other restrictions apply.)

Click on HOME at the top of the screen:

booking-engine-page-home-arrow
Click the image to enlarge

We are now ready to book our trip, so we will concentrate on those details.  The package we are looking at offers a 4- night stay with a free Hertz Car at the The Fairmont Sonoma Mission Inn & Spa (with the 4th night free!) for $569 per person.

booking-engine
Click the image to enlarge

Whether or not you are purchasing an airline flight; the “system” requires a FROM and TO airport location.  The only factor that is truly important is that you select the proper TO destination.  The destination is the means by which the “system” determines which hotels and resorts to display for your selection.  For this demonstration, let’s select New York/JFK as the FROM location, and San Fransicso CA as the TO location.  See the image below.

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Now click on the little calendar icon under the words CHECK IN and you will see an enlarged calendar.

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Click on the right-facing arrow to get to March

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Now click on the “9” so we can start our on March 9 and the calendar will disappear.  Click on the second calendar icon, under the words CHECK OUT, when the enlarged calendar appears, click on the right-facing arrow to get to March, then click on “13”  as shown below

Click on the image to enlarge

and the calendar will once again disappear.

For this demonstration, we will be traveling from New York City to San Francisco for our trip, so we will leave the box marked “ADD FLIGHT” checked.  On the other hand, if we were already planning to be in the San Francisco area and wanted to take this vacation, we would just click the box marked “ADD FLIGHT” to remove the check mark and the system would bypass the airline reservation process.  Also notice that when you remove the check from the ADD FLIGHT box, the “CLASS”, “Coach”, and “First/Business” disappear,  leaving only the hotel information.

bookingengine-with-and-without-flight

We also have the option of viewing all of the hotels in our selected area or selecting a specific hotel.  For this demonstration, we have already decided to stay at the The Fairmont Sonoma Mission Inn & Spa, so let’s click on the button in front of “Select Specific Hotel” and we see that a scroll-box open for us to make our selections.

2009-01-13_32

2009-01-13_33

For this demonstration, let’s select the ALL option and the system will present us with a selection list later in the booking process.

When we click the down-facing arrow next to “ROOMS:”  we have the opportunity to reserve either one or two rooms.  When we select two rooms a additional line appears for us to indicate how many people will be in each room.

Click the image to enlarge

Click the image to enlarge

Also,  please notice that children can also included in our vacation.

For this demonstration, let’s leave the remainder of the choice as they are already set:

  • We can look at all hotels available for our selected dates
  • We will be staying with our partner
  • We will need one room for 2 adults with no children

Now just click on FIND BEST DEALS

booking-engine-find-best-deals1

You will taken to a “Please Wait” for a few seconds while the “system” looks for the hotels in the area that you selected and available for your selected dates.

Shortly, you will be presented with a screen very similar to the following, listing the available hotels.  Scroll down the screen until we find teh The Fairmont Sonoma Mission Inn & Spa.

Click the image to enlarge

Click the image to enlarge

Here is our desired hotel.  We can see that we have a choice of options.  Click on “Show more rooms and pricing at this hotel”

Click the image to enlarge

Click the image to enlarge

The options available are displayed

Click the image to enlarge

Click the image to enlarge

For this demonstration, let’s stay with the initial offering, so click on the SELECT across from “Fairmont European Plan” as shown below

Click the image to enlarge

Click the image to enlarge

The “system” will shortly display your VACATION SUMMARY as shown below

Click the image to enlarge

Click the image to enlarge

On this screen, you have a few options that you may select

  • Add a Car
  • Add Activities
  • Change the flight
  • Select a Different Hotel
  • Purchase WITH  Travel Protection Plan
  • Purchase WITHOUT  Travel Protection Plan

Since the package that we have selected includes a car, we can select the car now, click on ADD A CAR at the top of the screen

2009-01-13_15a

The system will now display the rental car options as shown below

Click the image to enlarge

Click the image to enlarge

You MUST indicate that “The driver is 25 years of age or older, with a valid driver’s license and a major credit.”  If you do not check this box, you will not be able to precede from this page.

You have the option to change the Pick-up or drop-off date and time, but for this demonstrations, let’s leave those as they are.   You may select your choice of car, but the class of car included in the price of the promotion is the “Compact 2/4dr Auto W/ Air”, so let’s select the Compact.

Let’s indicate that the driver is over 25, with a valid driver’s license, and a major credit card; them click on the “SELECT” Economy 4dr Auto w/Air.

Click the image to enlarge

Click the image to enlarge

The system then shows us the updated VACATION SUMMARY

Click the image to enlarge

Click the image to enlarge

Your next choice is to decide if you want to schedule and activities during your San Francisco area vacation.  Click On ADD ACTIVITIES, at the top of the screen to explore the options.

2009-01-13_17a

You will be presented with a list of possible activities, that can be pre-scheduled for your vacation.

Click image to enlarge

Click image to enlarge

You can click on “more information…”  under any of the displayed activities, to get a more detailed description.  The price for each activity is listed in the blue border around the activity.  If you would like to schedule any of these items, simply check the box labeled “Select Item”, and the price will be added to your Vacation Summary.

Click the image to enlarge

Click the image to enlarge

If you decide to purchase any of these activities, you will receive a “paper voucher”.

If while you are at your destination and you decide you do not wish to take the tour, it is **VERY IMPORTANT**, to hold onto this voucher so you can send it back to be reimbursed when you return from your vacation.

Although it may make no practical sense, for this demonstration, let’s select an activity.  Let’s select the  “Deluxe City Tour/Bay Cruise” by clicking the box preceding it.   Then,  click “Continue With Select Activities” to continue with the vacation planning.  Of course, if you are not selecting any of the listed activities, you would click “Continue with no activities”.

Click the image to enlarge

Click the image to enlarge

We are now looking at the updated Vacation Summary page return to the Vacation Summary Page.  It shows us our selected flights, hotel, activities, and rental car.  At this point you may stll change your flights, change the selected hotel, change the activities and the rental car.

Click the image to enlarge

Click the image to enlarge

At this point, I highly recommend,  if you have not already done so, to click on and read the “Terms and Conditions” AND the “Travel Protection Plan”.

We only have one more decision to make before finally booking our vacation.  This option is to decide whether or not to accept the optional TRAVEL PROTECTION PLAN.

I suggest that you click on “Travel Protection Plan” and read the what is covered by this Trip Protection Plan. While it may not, initially, seem practical to purchase this Plan, consider whether you can honesty afford to lose the price of your vacation if something were to happen and make it impossible for you to start or complete your vacation.  I heartily suggest that you read the “Travel Protection Plan” before declining this coverage.  Ultimately, the final choice is yours and yours alone.

The Travel Protection Plan is valid ONLY for citizens of US and Canada. If you are a citizen of another country, we can explore alternative trip insurance products for you.

Click either “Purchase With Travel Protection Plan” or “Purchase Without Travel Protection Plan” to continue with vacation planning.  You will now see the Purchase screen.

Click the image to enlarge

Click the image to enlarge

Complete all of the fields on the form: First and Last Name, Credit Card Information, and billing address.

Also click on “Terms and Conditions” to read them, then click the box indicating that you have read and understand them.

You have another opportunity to read about the Travel Protection Plan.

Finally click on “SUBMIT”.

Next you will see the Vacation Confirmation screen, confirming all of the details of your vacation as well as verification of the amount billed to your credit card.  At the top of the screen you can click on “Printer Friendly Version” to print this for your records.  You will also receive an email confirming this  same information.

Click image to enlarge

Click image to enlarge

At this point,  please print the Credit Card Authorization form found here.   Complete this form and fax it to me at 1-914-835-1666 within 24 hours.  If it is not received within 24 hours, your reservations will be automatically canceled.

All the necessary travel documents and applicable vouchers will be sent to my office in Harrison, New York and I will forward them to you immediately via 2 day Express Mail.

If you have any questions or problems, you can reach me Monday through Saturday 10:00 am to 7:00 pm EST at 1-914-835-7600, or anytime via email at awright@richtravel.com

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One Response

  1. With all the doggone snow we have gotten recently I am stuck inside , fortunately there is the internet, thanks for giving me something to do. 🙂

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