Luxe Lodging—For Cheap

You gotta love hotels that offer in-room dining, turn-down service, and luxe health clubs, but sometimes renting an apartment, condo, or home for a vacation makes eminent sense. You’ll probably rub shoulders more frequently with locals. You may enjoy a more spacious environment, helpful if you’re traveling with children. And you’ll probably save money. Then, of course, there’s the technique for staying free all around the world. But more on that in a moment.

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Beating The Rising Dollar

Travel writers have spent the last nine months remarking on the strong comeback of the U.S. dollar versus foreign currencies while encouraging travelers to put overseas destinations back on their travel wish lists. But lately the dollar has been slipping, and it’s time to consider ways to travel that can make up for that reversal of fortune.

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Titanic Awards

What’s the worst single thing you’ve ever experienced while traveling? Well, actually, the worst several things you’ve experienced? Stockholm-based travel journalist Doug Lansky wants to know for a survey he’s taking that will launch the world’s first annual Titanic Awards, a celebration of all things that can go wrong on the road.

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Three Great LA Restaurants For Right Now

I’ve never understood why some travelers dislike Los Angeles. There’s the traffic, yes, and when it rains, drivers panic. But the city offers such a delightful smorgasbord of architecture, art, and cuisine—not to mention great weather and the beach—that I visit LA as often as possible.

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San Francisco: Where to Stay

I checked out a new old hotel in San Francisco the other day called Hotel Frank. Just plain Frank. The city where Bill Kimpton began Kimpton Hotels—small, idiosyncratic hotels—in 1981 is home to a number of older hotels that have been given a face-lift and turned into ostensibly hip hostelries, and Hotel Frank is one of the latest entrants.

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The Washbag is Back

There are few cities more enjoyable to visit than San Francisco, and I’m long overdue in checking on what’s new in the city by the bay. So last week, I dropped in on a couple of new hotels and visited an old favorite haunt that is, in its way, new again.

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Free Ride

There’s still nothing better than free. If you’re planning a trip to Europe this summer, consider choosing your destination and timing your visit when there’s free fun like this to be had:

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Savvy Travelers

What if you’re a traveler who’s really nuts about Germany? Or Italy? Or France?

If that describes you, then you’re a candidate for newsletters that lavish attention on your particular country of interest.

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Summer Travel Deals

Summer still seems far away as I write today from my home in St. Paul, Minnesota. But I know the cherry blossoms are out in Washington, D.C., and spring is more evident along the East Coast. And no matter the weather, if you can think far enough ahead about your summer vacation and act fast enough, you can save a bundle at several of the world’s best vacation destinations.

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Getting Acquainted

How do you get situated when you land in a new, big city? I go directly to the nearest, fanciest hotel in town. Even if I’m not staying there.

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About Rudy Maxa

Rudy Maxa

Rudy Maxa is host and executive producer of the public television travel series, Rudy Maxa's World. The 78 episodes he has hosted have won numerous awards, including a 2008 regional Emmy for his episode "Rajasthan." He's a contributing editor with National Geographic Traveler magazine and has written for a host of national travel magazines and newspapers. For nearly 15 years he offered consumer travel commentary on public radio's business show Marketplace as "The Savvy Traveler," which was also the name of a one-hour, coast-to-coast weekend show on public radio that he co-created and hosted for four years. Prior to his career as a travel writer and broadcaster, Maxa was an award-winning Washington Post investigative reporter, magazine writer, and columnist for 13 years, during which time his reporting was nominated for the Pulitzer Prize. He was a senior writer at The Washingtonian magazine and Washington, D.C., bureau chief of Spy magazine. The author of two non-fiction books, Maxa lives in downtown St. Paul, Minnesota.