If you’re like most travelers, one thing that’s important to you is sticking to a budget while you’re away from home. As this is a Ramada St. George Thrifty Traveler feature post, I’m about to help you do just that by utilizing something you probably already use every day. It’s called social networking, and it’s easier than you think to use it to your advantage when it comes to pinching pennies.
Facebook, Twitter, Yelp, Foursquare, TripAdvisor, Google+, and now Pinterest. These are just a few websites with one common purpose; to be social. Believe it or not, these services aren’t just for posting the latest pictures of your grandchildren, sharing embarrassing moments that happened to you at work, or passing along a quote from the morning news. Businesses down the block and across the world are becoming part of the global phenomenon known as social media, encouraging communication between businesses and consumers like you.
So what does this mean as a budget-conscious traveler? You need to like, follow, favorite, check-in to, and pin the places and businesses in your hometown as well as those in any city to which you are planning on traveling. Why? Chances are those businesses and places are not only carrying on a dialogue between consumers and tourists (a great way to find out what to expect when you arrive), but they’re likely running contests, promotions, special discounts, showcasing specific menu items or products on sale, and other great ways to save on the things you’re going to buy anyway (or wish you could treat yourself to while on vacation). Check out StGeorgeUtah.com’s Facebook timeline. It’s full of 50% or more discount offers for golfing, spa packages, tanning, bakery goodies, meals and more in St. George. Services like Foursquare and Yelp regularly have exclusive discounts and promotions that you can claim when you “check in” to places on your smartphone (such as Buy 1 Get 1 Free at restaurants and coffee shops, or 15%+ discounts at hotels and other service providers).
How do you find and take advantage of the savings opportunities available? Simple. Just do a search for businesses and places in your area from within the website or application. If you’re using a smartphone or tablet, most social apps (like Facebook and Google Check-In, Yelp and Foursquare) can detect your location and automatically find businesses around you that offer discounts and promotions, along with customer reviews so you can pick the best ones that fit your needs. And because these networks are meant to be social, they usually will show you related businesses and services based on your searches and interests, making it even easier to find the best specials and most savings.
By spending time a little differently on sites you’re already using you can easily find new ways to save big on your next trip across the country, or across the street. So venture out in the digital world and get social!
While you’re at it, be sure to like us on Facebook. As a special thank you, you’ll instantly get a printable voucher to save 15% on your next stay with us. We’re also regularly running contests for free night stays, sharing information about great local events and deals, and keeping everyone updated about the goings-on at the St. George Ramada.