Loyalty Traveler blog giveaway – two $150 gift cards from has offered Loyalty Traveler two $150 MasterCard gift cards to give away to readers. This post shares a little insight I have about after looking over their website.

Note: I am not receiving any compensation for writing this post. A representative for happened to contact me last week out of the blue only a day or two after I was checking out one of their coupon magazines here in Monterey. I accepted their invitation to share some information with my readers and they will provide a $150 gift card for two Loyalty Traveler giveaway winners.

December 12 Update: Giveaway Winners

The two winners have been selected.

From the comments on this post the winner is #48 – Kaye.

From Twitter the winner is Eric Seeholzer @1ericsee.

Congratulations. I am sure those gift cards will come in handy for trips to New Orleans and Yellowstone.

$150 MasterCard Gift Card Giveaway details:

One $150 gift card winner will be randomly selected from reader comments on this blog post. The second $150 gift card winner will be randomly selected from Twitter entries.

Promotion Duration: Giveaway entries will be accepted from 12 noon Pacific time (San Francisco) for 24 hours from Tuesday, December 10 to 12 noon PT Wednesday, December 11. Please limit your entries to one entry on my blog and one entry on Twitter to give everyone an equitable opportunity.

Loyalty Traveler blog comment requirement: Share your travel destination for holiday/winter travel.

Twitter entry requirements: Share your travel destination for holiday/winter travel and include both @LoyaltyTraveler @HotelCoupons and #RicLT in your tweet. For example:

I am going to San Diego for my winter holiday. @LoyaltyTraveler @HotelCoupons and #RicLT

[Note: All three @LoyaltyTraveler @HotelCoupons #RicLT need to be included for tracking purposes.]

Winners will be chosen from eligible entries using and posted on Loyalty Traveler blog tomorrow after the close of the giveaway.


I have road tripped over 10,000 miles in my car this year. There have been many times I entered a fast food place or rest area where I found a HotelCoupons magazine offering discount hotel rates.

HotelCoupons partners with more than 8,000 hotels in 1,634 markets around the U.S. and Canada. Many hotel partners are highway roadside locations and many are city centers.

I have used HotelCoupons before to get a last minute discount rate in northern California, probably when the magazine was under another brand name like RoomSaver. The hotel magazine has been around for 31 years.

These days last minute room rates are a growing trend in the hotel industry. has a website and mobile apps you can download for last minute hotel rates easily accessible from your mobile device.

You can print coupons from their website or download coupons onto your mobile device.

HotelCoupons Quality Inn Anaheim


HotelCoupons rates are valuable for those last minute bookings when you need to get off the road after driving a long time or when weather sucks. These hotel discount rate offers are useful when your flight is cancelled.

There are HotelCoupons mobile apps for Android, iPhone and iPad.

HotelCoupons apps

One of the features I like is shows nearby hotels using GPS.

HotelCoupons iPhone display

Now it may seem odd that I am writing about an online travel agency this week after writing this post last week: OTAs gain hotel booking market share in 2013. Why?

The reason I see value in a site like is last minute bookings are a specific type of hotel booking where hotel brand websites do not always compete with the lowest rates.

Most hotel brand sites offering Best Rate Guarantee do not allow claims within 24 hours of hotel check-in. Choice Hotels is 72 hours before 6pm check-in to submit a Best Rate Guarantee claim. For this reason, flash booking sites and walk-in rates like those offered by can be the best solution for lower hotel rates on last minute hotel reservations.

Being Loyalty Traveler, there are several times I have spent an hour sitting in a restaurant or rest area searching for a last minute rate good deal with a brand hotel. I usually find them. Not everyone has the practice, will power or time to search for last minute deals with a brand hotel. offers discounts at many brand and independent hotels that may be lower than the published rate for the hotel on its website.

Check out and you just might find a hotel nearby where you can check in with a last minute booking at a lower rate.


Ric Garrido of Monterey, California is writer and owner of Loyalty Traveler.

Loyalty Traveler shares news and views on hotels, hotel loyalty programs and vacation destinations for frequent guests.

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About Ric Garrido

Ric Garrido of Monterey, California started Loyalty Traveler in 2006 for traveler education on hotel and air travel, primarily using frequent flyer and frequent guest loyalty programs for bargain travel. Loyalty Traveler joined in 2008.

More articles by Ric Garrido »


  1. My winter travel will be limited to daily trips to a rehab facility since I had both knees replaced in October. I will be working especially hard this winter to get my body ready for a trip to Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan in May.

  2. I hope to finally get to New Orleans. There’s a giant bowl of gumbo with my name on it! @LoyaltyTraveler @HotelCoupons #RicLT

  3. Destination still TBD. I have 2 weeks off and I’ll be looking for last minute availability. Mystery trip!

  4. I will be traveling to Hawaii this winter…Also many weekend ski trips planned to Breckenridge and Vail!

  5. I will be traveling to Portland, Oregon for my lone three day weekend during tax season! Not exciting, but there isn’t lengthy travel involved and it should be relaxing!

  6. just local day trips this holiday season, but a road trip to Seattle in the summer is on the books

  7. We will be heading to Vegas (for a conference) but turning it into a winter holiday by staying a few extra days…!

  8. First to Las Vegas, then Seattle / Tacoma and I still have one night that will be a last minute booking!
    Happy holidays!

  9. Leaving the east coast for fun times out west.
    Road trip… Las Vegas to Los Angeles to San Francisco.

  10. My family and I are fortunate to be visiting Sherman Oaks, where there is a fabulous cinema complex with current films for all ages, and where one can not only select and purchase the tickets online (nothing unusual about that), but can also select the exact seats! This eliminates the need to arrive too early and experiencing the anxiety that you might have to sit way in the side! What a concept. Consider Sherman Oaks for a holiday trip!

  11. I have to get away from the frozen tundra of Minnesota. I have flights booked for Scottsdale Arizona!

  12. My holiday and winter destination is home sweet home right now but I may reconsider if I win the gift card!

  13. Nothing anywhere near exotic; just “over the river and through the woods” to visit our kids and grandkids in Lexington, SC and Raleigh, NC.

  14. Just one destination? I’ll be in Cancun in a week diving the nearby cenotes. Thanks for this promo.

  15. Going to be local for the holiday but I will probably head to the slopes in NH for some skiing fun!

  16. I am visiting family in Pella and spending New Year’s in San Francisco. Time to see the U.S. while I am back for a while from those exotic places overseas.

  17. i am staying home with my dogs and sending my wife to visit her sister in Colorado Springs.

    Thanks for the contest

  18. Winter travel would be to New York (for theater) and would love to make it to the Sochi Winter Olympics (if I can find the hotel accomodations).

  19. We live in St Augustine FL and always head down to Orlando to see the Mouse for a few days during the Holidays.

  20. My family and I are heading to Miami for 3 days and then on a 7 day Celebrity Cruise. Can’t wait!


  21. Taking a week in Mexico in February, then in March, 2 weeks in Australia and 2 weeks scuba diving in Palau and Chuuk. Planning this for a year.

  22. We’re headed to New England, but I wish we were going to Edinburgh to visit close friends and celebrate Hogmanay. Maybe next year!

  23. The two winners have been selected.

    From the comments on this post the winner is #48 – Kaye.

    From Twitter the winner is Eric Seeholzer @1ericsee.

    Congratulations. I am sure those gift cards will come in handy for trips to New Orleans and Yellowstone.

  24. I am looking to escape to Hawaii. I always turn to website to find coupons and discounts before I plan any trip, near or far.

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