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Old Dec 8, 09, 6:03 pm
  #7  
GadgetKen
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: BDL
Programs: AA, DL, HA, WN, UA, B6, KX, Amtrak, HHonors Silver, SPG
Posts: 130
Agree on condos being a better route, particularly if you are staying in one location for at least one week (condo rentals usually, but not always, are in one week intervals). Advantage of more space, cooking facilities, washer/dryer (if not in the room then a coin-op for the building), often more of a community feel than a hotel. Only drawbacks I can see are some smaller properties may not have long front-desk hours (some do have a resident manager though, and all can make arrangements for late arrivals), there may be some variability in the quality of rooms depending on the owner and the property manager, and if you are more into luxury resorts with all the activities and amenities, not all condos may be up to this gold standard.

Have done condo rentals through AAA or direct with the condo property in the past. Have never tried Ebay for travel (but have used for many merchandise purchases), but with PayPal and SquareTrade protections, the risks are fairly low. Check the sellers record of complaints (should be 98% or better positive reviews, the number of transactions they've done, and how long they've been in business.

In more recent years have been using SkyAuction...for Hawaii this means they will send me an RCI certificate to be presented at check-in plus I'll need to pay a minor local tax and sometimes a small service charge for certain amenities (e.g. room safe) at check-out. Will be staying in Kauai starting this Friday: 1 night motel, 3 weeks at a condo, 3 nights at a better quality hotel. Used motels/hotels for the stray nights on each end of the condo rental because I could get a frequent flier ticket by flying certain dates (otherwise an expensive ticket from BDL).

There are other online condo vendors such as redweek.com, vrbo.com, island realtors, etc. Key thing is shop around, do a background check and read all the fine print. You can save a lot of money and get a nice place to stay.
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