How To Be A Smarter Traveller
Even the most relaxing vacations come bookended with a rush or two of journey-related adrenalin. Between those 6am bag drops and last-minute train dashes, there’s a host of potential pressure points to puncture your zen, from lost luggage to map-reading mishaps. Luckily, a little pre-planning and some clever choices can go a long way, thanks to the benefits of Marriott Bonvoy, the travel programme from Marriott International that gives members access to over 7,000 properties spanning 132 countries and territories around the world.
To highlight the joys of a stress-free getaway, Marriott Bonvoy has teamed up with photographer Rankin on a new campaign titled Loyalty & Love. The collaboration celebrates the luxury of a hotel stay and the importance of escaping the reality of the daily grind with the people we love.
When it comes to keeping your next break breezy and making the most of being well looked after during a hotel stay, make sure you travel smarter with the tips below.
How To… Fight The Fear Of Missing Out
In a world of endless Google reviews and online advisers, it’s easy to feel that you have to make the most of every aspect of your visit to a new town; to sample only authentic neighborhood eateries, to score one-of-a-kind souvenirs and to return home with a list of “great little place down a side-street” recommendations of your own. But to avoid spending your entire trip staring at your phone and sifting through listings, a more natural approach to living like a local is to, well, ask a local. And if your confidence levels or language skills don’t stretch to striding up to a nearby market trader and demanding to know their absolute favorite spot for a laid-back lunch, the hotel concierge may be the next best thing.
The concierges in Marriott Bonvoy properties are on hand to help with tips on where to go and what to see—and now you don’t even have to wait until you’re in the hotel lobby to get the full service. The chat function of the Marriott Bonvoy app lets you talk to a virtual hotel helper 24/7. So you can be Phileas Fogg, with your own smartphone Passepartout, planning your itinerary and securing the best tables at the hottest restaurants from the comfort of your couch.
How To… Cruise Past The Check-In Queue
After crossing several time zones on the flight over, and spending what feels like as long again in the taxi from the airport, the last thing you want is to reach the hotel front desk only to be stuck behind a large party with surprisingly specific room requests. The Marriott Bonvoy app lets you skip all that with its on-the-go check in, leaving more time for exploring those off-the-beaten track spots once you arrive.
How To… Make Some Serious Memories
Once you’ve logged a few stays and acquired a nice stash of points, the obvious thing to do is to turn those Marriott Bonvoy points into more lovely nights away. But a nifty alternative is to redeem them against extracurricular experiences and events instead – from destination tours and activities to money-can’t-buy experiences that turn your basic wish-you-were-heres into once-in-a-lifetimes. You can bid points for member-only exclusive experiences like behind-the-scenes match day access at Old Trafford, a culinary masterclass with a Michelin-star chef, backstage passes at music concerts or meet and greets with sporting legends through Marriott Bonvoy Moments.
How To… Find The Right Hotel For You
The Marriott Bonvoy travel programme gives members access to a portfolio of 29 global hotel brands. So that cool weekend city break in a downtown W, that anniversary stay in a luxurious St Regis and that budget-friendly family getaway at a Residence Inn—they all add points to your haul, taking you one step closer to the all-important next holiday.
How To… Get It And Not Regret It
You’ve got 12 different tabs open and a couple of additional browsers to make sure the travel aggregators aren’t somehow talking to each other and conspiring to drive up your holiday budget—plus your cursor hovering over the “add-to-basket” button… Sure, there’s a certain thrill to scoring a discounted deal on your dream destination, but wouldn’t it be less stress to just log into the Marriott Bonvoy app, click the hotel of your choice and know you’re getting their exclusive member-only prices every time? Yes—yes it would.
This story originally appeared on Esquire.co.uk. Minor edits have been made by the Esquiremag.ph editors.