Thank you for visiting hotels and travel.
This page will explain more about the homepage, about the face behind the page and his team, and about what you will find here if you choose to become a regular reader.
What is hotels and travel about …?
Hotels and Travel is a webpage, where we share our experience on board of various airlines and in different classes of service from the perspective of a frequent flyer but with additional information for those who are not regular flyers. Our focus is on trips of Star Alliance Airlines but we have recently decided to report about experiences on board of Oneworld Airlines as well. So stay tuned … Oneworld reports will soon take off.
We report also about our experiences staying in hotels of different chains, mainly in Asia, Europe and the US. The questions we ask during our visit is, how the frequent guest is threatened and is the hotel offering all the perks, a loyal member of the frequent guest program can expect or are there any caveats? We also share our impression of the hotel and the facilities and services offered by the hotel in an overview of the hotel with general information, e.g. how to reach the hotel, which rooms are quieter … We also report about the experience if one is not holding (highest) elite status.
So, the focus of our reports is on the benefits of frequent flyer and frequent guest programs and how to earn the most miles and how to get elite status but also how to use your miles in a more creative way while being on a business or leisure trip. Occasionally we do pure mileage runs … And of course we also report about the experience on board a plane or at different airports.
In the last couple of years, we have added comparisons of the benefits of various frequent flyer programs and frequent guest program and plan to add more information to these overviews. In the future you will find here additional information about promotions. This part is still work in progress and we hope to improve it in 2013 significantly.
Who we are …?
The face behind Hotels and Travel is Jan Klein. Being in a position which involves regular (business) trips alone or with colleagues and having friends living at different places around the world, it is very often necessary for him to travel by plane just for a few days. And while doing so, he tried to make these trips as smooth as he could. In a time when loyalty programs were not widely known and many people thought they were only for business travelers flying in Business or First Class, he discovered, that this was not quite true and learnt to understand how these programs could improve his travel significantly. Since he was asked about his trips by friends and colleagues he started hotels and travel to share his experiences.
What started as a small page became soon a page accessed by different people from all over the world.
Jan Klein is still in his current position at a government office in the Düsseldorf area but runs also a small travel agency together with colleagues and is also working as consultant in regard to frequent flyer and frequent guest programs. A small team supports him by his efforts to make hotels and travel a reliable source for - but not limited to - frequent travelers.
He is also moderator at Flyertalk.com for the IHG forum (under his nick FLYGVA) and has been guest in the telecast “Daheim & Unterwegs” on April 13, 2012 on WDR sharing his experiences as a frequent traveler.
Picture of "Daheim & Unterwegs" (Mr. Klein second from left)
Picture courtesy of WDR
How we travel and how we report …?
We pay for all our trips out of our own pocket or using miles, points or free night certificates from hotel promotions which we have earned during our stays. We are usually not invited by hotels and in the very rare case that this will happen, we will let you know. We do not make any comments or remarks in our booking that we will blog or reports about our experiences on board a plane or in a hotel.
In hotels, we check in as regular guest without requesting any special treatment. We take pictures of hotels trying to show the hotels during a regular stay i.e. without the arrangements made in official pictures and during nice weather. We show the hotels as a guest experiences it during a leisure or business trip. We try to respect the privacy of other people, which means the pictures might not be as good as using a tripod or flash but we do not want to be too invasive for other guests. The most room categories we book are standard room of the lowest category, but sometimes we book a higher category – like the regular traveler does. We use promotions rates as well as rack rates. We let all readers know, what we booked and what we get and in which room we stayed.
Regarding flights, we book Economy Class, Business Class or First Class tickets using miles or paying cash. The most of our travel is in Economy Class. We add our Frequent Flyer Status to the booking and try to pre book the best available seat, which is not always possible. We use lounges and elite fast track lane if we can and if we are entitled to use them, but also have a look at the regular facilities for the passengers without frequent flyer elite status. We also share tricks and hints and let you know which is the best way for a transfer and if there are any shortcuts while being in transit at various airports around the world. And we offer something for the plane enthusiast and let you know the exact registration of our planes and add also a little bit of background information like engines or history of the plane.
How we are funded …?
We use affiliate links to get a little bit of revenue. You will never see any add which is not in some way related to the content of the webpage. But again, these links do not in any way influence our reports or reviews. It helps us only to cover our expense for hosting and software; it does not cover the travel expenses. A list of the most of our partners could be found here.
Why in English, it is .de …?
Good question! The page started in English back in 2003 as it is the language which will be understood by the most people and many of our friends are non-native German speakers. So it was without any question English to write the reports. Later we continued in English despite the fact that the page is hosted in Germany and the most reports are written by Germans. We simply have not the resources to translate everything to German but you eventually will read a German blog in the future. And half of the people accessing our side are based outside of Germany according to.
How do I know if the page is updated …?
That is easy, just visit it regularly. But if you are unable, we are on facebook and we have a twitter account where we publish if something knew is available on our webpage.
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