Time for a Smile
During my recent stay at an inn in a historic city, after a pretty busy day,
I was just dozing off a bit after midnight when my brain told me that I was
hearing something in the hallway. I just tuned it out thinking it was
someone inconsiderately talking to someone else loud enough for me to hear
it through my door.
Then I began to realize that it was continuing and a person -- you could
tell it was a man with a low -toned voice in the hallway, and he was saying
something like "hello, hello - Joanne, hello." I finally got up and went to
the peep hole in my door. I looked through the hole and could make out
someone in the hallway going up to each door saying "Joanne, hello."
When he came up to my door, I jumped back, hoping he could not see me
peeping at him! I phoned the desk and asked them to send up security as
there was a man in the hallway who seemed disoriented. Imagine my shock when
I went back to the peep hole (it was better than HBO) to view him from the
back and found him to be quite naked! Or, if he had anything on, it was
hidden in his rather large stomach.
The security guard arrived and asked him what he was doing and what his name
was. He said he was with his "girlfriend" and that his name was Mr. Smith.
According to "Mr. Smith," his girlfriend had pushed him into the hallway and
closed the door. Now he couldn't remember which room was theirs! So, he was
going up to all the doors.
After awhile the police arrived and took him away. As they were walking down
the hallway, I heard one of the policemen mutter, "...and he didn't even get
any of those little soaps." I was howling...If this was a one night stand
for Mr. Smith, I imagine it proved to be quite an expensive one!
Scoop: Everything You Ever Wanted to Know About Bed and Breakfast Inns,
by veteran B&B travel writer Maxine Pinson, is the only book of its kind
-- written for inngoers as well as innkeepers/aspiring innkeepers. In
addition to helpful articles for innkeepers, the book provides
invaluable information (primarily in a Q/A format) for guests who are
not quite sure what to expect when they first begin staying at B&Bs.
INNside Scoop is being offered to innkeepers at a reduced rate of
six copies for $36 or 12 copies for $59.43 (plus S&H). Inns in more than
18 states now have INNside Scoop in their guest rooms and/or gift
here for more information about this unique book; charge orders may
be placed by calling 800-871-8977. The introduction to the book was
written by Sandy Soule, editor of BedandBreakfast.com and endorsed by
Jerry Phillips, former executive director of PAII.
Hotels fastest growing segment online: "According to a new report
from PhoCusWright Inc., in 2007, for the first time transactions on the
Internet will account for
over half (54%) of all U.S. travel bookings. Suppliers (e.g., airlines,
hotels and car rental agencies) have been outperforming online travel
agencies (e.g., Expedia, Travelocity, Orbitz and Priceline) since 2000, but
growth rates for the two channels will converge by 2008." Other insights
from PhoCusWright’s U.S. Online Travel Overview include:
- Hotels will be the fastest growing segment online, surpassing air
travel, which until 2006 had long been the fastest growing product
- While the U.S. represented just one third of total online and
offline travel bookings of the combined North America, Western Europe
and Asia Pacific markets in 2005, the U.S. share of online bookings was
over 60% of all online bookings.
- The tipping point of the travel market, with the online channel
becoming the norm for travel purchases, is going to further shape
consumer behavior that utilizes Travel 2.0 tools and applications.
Gift card purchases beat estimates: Reuters reports that gift cards
were more popular than expected this past holiday season, as shoppers in
search of quick and easy gifts snapped up $27.8 billion of the cards in
November and December, according to a survey by the National Retail
Federation. That figure outpaced the $24.8 billion in spending on gift cards
that the trade group had initially estimated. Almost 51% of shoppers who had
redeemed holiday gift cards said they
spent additional money beyond the value of the cards.
Luxury hotels and signature fragrances: Many luxury properties, and now
hotel chains, have
embraced signature fragrances. “At Omni Hotels, hidden machines spray a
lemongrass–green-tea scent into the lobby and a coconut fragrance, for a
tropical effect, around the pool; this year the hotel group plans to offer
scents in its meeting spaces—citrus for energy, supposedly; lavender and
sandalwood to reduce stress. Westin Hotels & Resorts is debuting a signature
White Tea aroma in 127 lobbies around the world.”
It’s OK to make a rich breakfast: “Although 60% of adults they'd like
to lose 20 pounds, dieting in America is at an all-time low, according to
The NPD Group's ‘Eating Patterns in America’ report. On the list of Top 10
diets, Weight Watchers is No. 3, after "My own diet" and "A
doctor-recommended diet." NPD found that the
percentage of adults on a diet is at its lowest level since 1990, when
35% of women and 26% of men were dieting. Last year, those levels dropped to
26% of women and 19% of men.”
That same survey reveals trends and statistics regarding breakfast:
- “More than
half of breakfast meals consist of just one or two items. Even
weekend breakfasts don't amount to much. We don't see a marked
difference between weekdays and weekends. And over time, the number of
items included in breakfast meals has fallen, from 2.46 in 1985 to 2.17
- “Consumers viewed only 38% of their breakfast meals as a 'full or
complete meal'; 45% of the time breakfast was viewed as a 'small or mini
meal'; 5% of the time they described breakfast as more of a 'snack,' and
11% of the time it was a beverage-only situation.”
The products consumed most frequently for breakfast at home:
- Coffee and cold cereal, chosen 32% of the time.
- Fruit juice: 26%
- Milk: 16%
- Bread: 15%
- Fruit: 13%
- Eggs: 12%
- Hot cereal: 9%
- Bacon: 4%
- Hot tea: 4%
Vacation.com predicts baby boomer travel boom: “The
leisure travel industry is about to boom thanks to the Baby Boomers
coming of age and having more free time and the desire to travel, according
to Lauraday Kelley, VP Education & Training for Vacation.com.”
Germans spend the most on travel: “Germans retained their position as
the world leaders in expenditure on foreign travel last year.
Germans spent a total of 60.5 billion euros on business and leisure trips
in 2006, according to Dresdner Bank’s annual report on the tourism sector.
That is 11% of worldwide expenditure on foreign travel.”
Rising costs affect business travelers most: “With the
price increases imposed on air, hotel, and car rentals, American Express
estimates that the average domestic business trip will cost $46 more this
year and the average international trip will increase by $180.”
17 million British people to book 2007 trips online: The 2007 Holiday
Online Planning Report by market research company Continental Research shows
that at least
17 million people in the U.K. are forecast to book part of their main
2007 holiday via the internet. New research shows that 13 million will go
also online to purchase part of a short break. More than three quarters
(78%/21 million) will seek information about their main holiday online, with
59% (16 million) using the internet to source information about short
trends for 2007:
- In a recent industry survey, Beijing tied with Venice on the list of
top vacation destinations. Americans are starting to consider travel to
other previously "taboo" destinations such as Vietnam, where the dollar
is strong and Americans find they are extremely welcome.
- Baby boomers will be logging fewer office hours and taking longer
MSN predicts the following will popular:
- Spas and all-inclusive resorts
- Cruises, especially Caribbean cruises and European cruises
- Niche travel
- Green travel
- Connoisseur travel
Expedia.com consumer survey conducted by Harris Interactive® reveals a
few key travel trends:
- All signs point to this spring break season being as busy as last
year, continuing the pattern of the recent peak winter holiday season.
- 16% of U.S. adults plan to travel by air more this spring than they
did last spring, and 66% plan to travel by air as much as they did last
- Airlines continue to raise fares despite declining fuel prices.
- Unseasonably warm temperatures in parts of the U.S. earlier this
winter could mean deeper discounts in warm weather destinations like
Florida and the Caribbean.
- Warmer than average weather could also bolster more interest in
skiing and big-city trips. This season is on track to break the record
of 59 million skier visits in a season, set just last year, according to
the National Ski Areas Association.
- Recent changes in passport requirements do not appear to be
dampening interest in overseas trips. The survey found that 74% of U.S.
adults say that they are equally (68%) or more likely (6%) to travel to
Canada, Mexico, Central and South America or the Caribbean, the areas
recently affected by the new passport rules.
Seniors and Internet usage: “There are 11.5 million seniors (defined
as those 65 or older) who regularly access the Internet. Jupiter expects
that number to double by 2010. Only a third of the senior population is
regularly online today, but in 2010, online seniors will represent half of
the total senior population. That makes
seniors the fastest growing segment online. They are great potential
- They’re educated and affluent. The have more disposable income and
are more likely to have a college degree. They are also more likely to
be married or living with a partner.
- They’re not sitting around the house. Seniors who are online are
more likely to have a job, which means they are more likely to be
exposed to technology at work and to have a network of younger
colleagues to guide them. And all that disposable income means that they
travel for leisure more than any other segment – an average of 3.0 trips
a year, versus 2.2 trips for those under 65.
- They’re not all watching 60 Minutes. Seniors use email, send
e-greetings, and share photos at nearly the same rates as the general
This Month's Sponsor
BedandBreakfast.com, RezOvation and Expedia, Inc.
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"This is the greatest last-minute but long-lasting gift
shopping stop on the net. We have enjoyed buying and getting B&B gift
certificate cards! Thanks for your professional service!" – Bruce B.
Read thousands of
live, unedited customer comments.
the inns that participate in the gift certificate program, just
log in to your Home Base, or
for more information.
You can earn money by selling gift certificates on your
website! Earn 5% with our
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