Travel Packing Tips

July 31 2012 by Claudia Kunkel

Suitcase.jpgSo, you've decided to go on vacation, awesome! Well, nothing will get your trip off on the wrong foot than the stress of packing.

Remember, you'll be hauling your luggage in and out of your car, through the airport, on and off the airplane, on and off the bus, we've all been there - so here are a few tips so you will thoroughly enjoy your vacation - without throwing your back out.

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Win Prizes From Pocono

July 31 2012 by BW Innsider
Comments (99)

Who's Gonna Win.jpg

Who's Gonna Win at Pocono?!

Do you have a premonition of who will win this coming Sunday for the Sprint Cup Series race at the Pocono track? You could win our prize if you predict correctly!

Leave your guess of who you think the winner of Sunday's race will be in the comments below before the start of the race. We will select one random winner from all correct guesses to win a $25 Best Western Travel Card!

Follow Us on Twitter I Become a Facebook Fan

Book with our Race Fan Rate® for exclusive discounts at Best Western hotels!

Don't forget to check back before every race to play Who's Gonna Win!

Entries must be entered before the start of the race on 8/5. Winner will be announced on 8/6. Limit only one entry per person. Must be 18 years of age or older and a resident of the US or Canada to be eligible to win. Winner will be randomly selected from all correct answers posted in the comments below.

Before Summer is Over - Popular Travel Destinations and Things to Do

July 31 2012 by Matthew Clyde

Summer.jpgSummer's here (for now), school's out and kids are home. But the kids will be back to school before you know it. Looking for a last minute vacation? Never fear, BEST WESTERN has put together a few of our favorite kid-friendly destinations along with several ideas on things to do once you get there. For those who love Pinterest, this will make your summer planning a little easier.

Here is a list of our top 5 favorites:

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3 Reasons My Kids Love BEST WESTERN Hotels

July 30 2012 by Amy Graff
Comments (2)

Amy.JPGAny time our family is driving down the highway and my kids spot a blue and yellow sign they shout out BeWe--in our family that means you've seen a BEST WESTERN hotel! These kids, ages 7 and 9, have fallen in love with the hotel chain. It makes sense. I work for BEST WESTERN and my kids have stayed in BeWes all over the country. But there are three main reasons why this hotel chain continues to win over their hearts.

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Another Great Trip Comes To An End

July 30 2012 by Bryson Forbes

Rockies.jpgToo soon, it was time to bid Calgary, the Stampede and the glorious Rocky Mountains farewell. This trip was definitely one of our best as a family and it was really special to have thirteen of us together for most of trip. Travelling is all about experiencing new things, growing, learning and most importantly making memories. I can safely say mission accomplished on all fronts.

For my mother-in-law it was the first time in her sixty-six years (we were able to celebrate her birthday during the trip) that she had ever been west of Ontario. It's always amazing to see the reaction of people who witness the beauty of the Rockies for the first time. They really are inspiring. Mary also loved the warm buffet breakfasts we enjoyed from BEST WESTERN to BEST WESTERN across Alberta!

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The 2012 Olympics Are Here!

July 27 2012 by Mike Mason

London 2.jpgWith the Olympics finally here, my travel scope is tending to be to be a little more worldwide. So, in the spirit of these Olympics and my love for worldwide travel, I have constructed a Gold, Silver and Bronze ranking of summer travel destinations around the world.

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Destination Weddings

July 25 2012 by Claudia Kunkel
Comments (1)

wedding.jpgIf you've ever had to plan a wedding, you know how stressful it can be. These days, destination weddings are becoming more and more popular. Packaged deals fitting any budget can make planning easier on your wallet. Destination packages can also eliminate the stress of interviewing countless caterers, bakers, florists and other wedding vendors. Additionally, as soon as your wedding is over, you can roll right into your honeymoon as the last of your guests leave.

I've listed my top 10 favorite destination wedding spots around the world, from faraway weddings to destinations closer to home. Regardless of where you decide to have your wedding, you can be sure there's a Best Western nearby! What other places would you add to the list?

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American Motorcyclist Association

July 25 2012 by Jason Fogelson

AMA.jpgIf you ride a motorcycle, any kind of motorcycle, you should join the American Motorcyclist Association.

The AMA was founded in 1924, and has spent the past 88 years lobbying for the rights of motorcyclists and promoting the motorcycle lifestyle. The organization advocates for riders' rights with local, state and federal government offices, and also sanctions motorcycle races and recreational events. Motorcycling is subject to plenty of regulation, and there are those who would have our favorite activity banned outright. It's too noisy, too dangerous, too threatening for many people, and they'd be a lot more comfortable if we weren't out there having fun on two wheels. The AMA is a sane, responsible voice for the rights of all riders.

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Jasper to Canmore

July 23 2012 by Bryson Forbes
Comments (1)

CW.JPGAnother beautiful day in Alberta, literally our eighth consecutive day of high twenties, sunshine and no rain at all in the forecast. We started our day, with a similar pattern that I have really adapted well too, a buffet breakfast at Best Western. I can't emphasize enough what a tremendous benefit this has been for us on our family vacation. For me, breakfast is the best meal of the day and to have a warm buffet, prepared for me with no clean up is becoming a staple of any vacation I take moving forward. If you are planning a trip in the near future, remember to include things like breakfast, parking and internet access in the budget. Breakfast alone on this trip saved the five of us approximately four to five hundred dollars!

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What's better: Fast, or Free wi-fi?

July 23 2012 by Chris McGinnis
Comments (1)

Wifi.jpgI'm going to stick with the hotel wi-fi theme introduced in a previous post this month because there's a new study that shows just how important this issue has become to business travelers around the world.

It's not just Americans who need a high-speed internet fix when traveling on business or vacation. Some 95% of respondents in a recent survey among business travelers from Europe and the Middle East admit to taking their mobile devices on vacation for work as well as personal use. More than half (56%) of respondents said that they used their mobile device for accessing work e-mail or downloading work documents when on vacation-- an increase over last year's figure of 48 percent.

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New England By Motorcycle, Day Seven: Pittsfield, MA to New York City and Home Again

July 20 2012 by Jason Fogelson

A10.jpgToday is the last day of the trip. I've got to ride from Pittsfield, Massachusetts all the way to Queens Village, New York before 3:00 pm to return the Electra Glide and catch my flight home.

Over eggs and sausage in the breakfast room at the BEST WESTERN Berkshire Hills Inn & Suites, I study my maps and brochures. I flip through the local newspaper, and notice that there are numerous local attractions to consider.

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Jasper: Maligne Lake

July 19 2012 by Bryson Forbes

A00.JPGOur great weather experience continued as we woke up to sunny skies. We headed over to The Inn restaurant at the BEST WESTERN PLUS Jasper Inn & Suites and Suites for an excellent buffet breakfast. What a great start - scrambled eggs, sausages, bacon, pancakes, French toast, hash browns, assorted yogurts, fresh fruits and juices, oatmeal and cereals and coffee and teas.

The highlight of our day was heading over to Maligne Lake, which is about 50 km's from Jasper but well worth the drive. In fact, this was the highlight of this leg of the trip. The drive from Jasper followed a rushing river that was spectacular and provided great opportunities to wildlife sightings. With 7 of us in the car there were lots of eyes peeled for bears, caribou, moose and deer. Despite all the eyes, we only saw one deer on the drive up.

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New England By Motorcycle, Day Six: Hanover, NH to Pittsfield, MA

July 18 2012 by Jason Fogelson

A6.jpgI amaze even myself sometimes when I'm on a motorcycle trip. After that belly bomb of fried seafood that I ate at Al's Seafood last night, I can hardly believe that I wake up hungry this morning. Must be all that fresh ocean air. Lucky for me, a good hot breakfast is included with my stay at the BEST WESTERN PLUS The Inn at Hampton.

I load the Electra Glide, thumb the engine to life and snick the gear selector into first. Soon, I'm cruising along Interstate 495 -- just for a few miles -- and I cross into Massachusetts for the first time on this trip. In case you're keeping track, that's the sixth state in six days. Cheating a little in this part of the country, but it still counts.

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The Road to Jasper

July 17 2012 by Bryson Forbes

A3.jpgThe plan for today was to get from Banff to Jasper which is about three hundred kilometres northwest through the Columbia Icefield and Jasper National Park. We really got lucky because the weather was ideal to do one of the world's most scenic driving experiences. Highway 93 weaves through the most majestic mountain views, emerald coloured glacier-fed lakes and abundant forest landscapes. Everywhere we looked we were surrounded by breath-taking beauty. Everyone in the car was pretty quiet just taking in all in.

We made a quick stop at the Columbia Icefield which as the name suggests is the home of a huge glacial icedrift. Unfortunaely all the glaciers in Western Canada are receding glaciers which means more snow and ice is melting that is being replaced each year. Experts claim that within 75 years there will be no glacial ice left in this part of Canada which is unsettling after having the privilege of just seeing them in all their magnificence.

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Travel Packing Tips

July 16 2012 by Mike Mason

B.jpegSo, you've decided to go on vacation, awesome! Well, nothing will get your trip off on the wrong foot than the stress of packing.

Remember, you'll be hauling your luggage in and out of your car, through the airport, on and off the airplane, on and off the bus, we've all been there - so here are a few tips so you will thoroughly enjoy your vacation - without throwing your back out.

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New England By Motorcycle, Day Five: Portland, ME to Hanover, NH

July 16 2012 by Jason Fogelson
Comments (5)

A3.jpgThe cool ocean air makes for a great night of sleep. I wake up totally refreshed in my Maine Lodge room at the BEST WESTERN Merry Manor Inn. I'm a creature of habit -- I always pack up my gear before heading down for breakfast, then make a final inspection for anything I missed when I return to my room after eating. I've always found that having a system keeps me from leaving important things behind. I stay in so many different hotel rooms that if I left one item behind in each room, I'd have to replenish my travel supplies before every trip. So, I have a system.

Breakfast is served in the Merry Manor's restaurant, and is included with my night's stay. It's nice to get table service instead of buffet every once in a while -- it gives me more time to relax and plan my day.

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The View from Banff

July 12 2012 by Bryson Forbes
Comments (2)

A3.jpgAfter another wonderful pancake breakfast at the BEST WESTERN PREMIER Freeport Inn and Suites we packed up, checked out and hit the road north-west for "The Rockies" and a couple days in Banff.

is about an hour from Calgary and consistently voted Canada's number one travel destination. Nestled in the Rocky Mountains you definitely cannot beat the breathtaking views and mountain air. We arrived just before lunch and checked into the BEST WESTERN PLUS Siding 29 Lodge. Just to answer your first question right away, the name Siding 29 dates back to the early days of Banff in 1883 when the Canadian Pacific Railway made it's way west and the work camp, which later become the town of Banff was known as "Siding 29".

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Small Businesses Expect More Travel

July 12 2012 by Chris McGinnis

A1.JPGIt's more likely than not that the business traveler you are seated next to on the plane, or bumping elbows with at the hotel breakfast bar works for a small or medium sized company. And it's likely you'll see more of this kind of traveler out and about in the coming year, according to a new survey from American Airlines.

In a June survey of 1,100 of travel managers at small and medium sized companies, 71% said that the economic outlook for their firms should improve in the next 12-18 months. Despite the current mixed data about the state of the US economy, 86% of these companies expect their travel to increase up to 24% over the next year. A very optimistic 6% anticipate an increase of more than 25%.

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Family Day at Stampede

July 11 2012 by Bryson Forbes

A2.jpgWe woke up Sunday morning to Toronto-like conditions. A rare heat-wave in Alberta has temperatures climbing up to thirties celcius (nineties fehrenheit) so we felt right at home here.

One of the great traditions of stampede are pancake breakfasts where businesses, clubs and associations host a full western breakfast featuring pancakes, sausage, scrambled eggs, juices, coffees and teas. Of interest, the BEST WESTERN PREMIER offers a pancake breakfast every day with but they also feature waffles, fresh fruits, cereals, custom made omelettes, oatmeal, muffins, pastries, yogurts, juices, coffees and teas. Sixteen of us showed up at the Calgary Winter Club to stompin' country tunes, face-painting, cowboys & cowgirls as far as the eye could see.

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Calgary Stampede- Opening Day Parade - Day 2

July 10 2012 by Bryson Forbes
Comments (1)

Z.jpgWe touched down in Calgary last night in the early evening and were met with fanfare and cowboy hats. After picking up our rental chariot for the week we checked into the BEST WESTERN PREMIER Freeport Inn and Suites and were immediately impressed. This was my first experience with a BEST WESTERN PREMIER and it did not disappoint (more details in tomorrows blog).

One of the great benefits that we experienced immediately was the onsite restaurant and lounge and they were extremely accommodating. There were 11 of us and they provided us with a private area, superb service, food and a great selection of wines.

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What's better: Fast, or free wi-fi?

July 9 2012 by Chris McGinnis
Comments (3)

A.jpgHotel wi-fi has been in the news a lot lately-- for example, a recent and widely read article in USA Today suggested that some of the biggest hotel chains in the US are now considering adding new charges for in-room wi-fi.

But few hotels that have offered wi-fi for free in the past are now charging for it. Instead, they are moving to a tiered offering.

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Festival Season has begun

July 7 2012 by Bryson Forbes

A1.jpgI just came off a grueling weekend helping launch Oakville's inaugural ribfest! I was asked months ago to help our local rotary club and sat on the marketing committee to promote the festival to officially start summer! I am still suffering from Smokey Hickory withdraw from the sweet aroma that seven "Ribbers" from across north America emitted overt the last seventy two hours. The event was held at Sheridan College and it attracted almost 24,000 people crushing the initial goal of 15,000.

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Calgary Stampede: Here we come!

July 6 2012 by Bryson Forbes
Comments (2)

A3.jpgThe countdown has been on for months in my house as we get set for a fantastic summer vacation in 2012. We are heading to Calgary this afternoon to start a nine-day getaway with lots of action.

The first cool point is the "we". Leaving from Toronto are my wife, Ruth and I with our two kids, daughter Caira who is nine and my son, Ethan who is 8 along with my mother-in-law, Mary. We are meeting up with my Mom and Dad in Calgary and my sister and her family. She has two girls, Alicia who is 4 and Julia who is almost 2. My Aunt and Uncle are also in Calgary, so for some of the events there will be thirteen of us!

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Off the Beaten Path

July 6 2012 by Sam Lowe

21 palace.jpgLike many of us seniors, I am no longer interested in scrambling into uncharted territory just so I can view something most everyone else hasn't already seen and photographed. I prefer the attractions that are easily reachable, even though thousands have been there before me. But I have also come across a good sampling of lesser-knowns that have been well worth exploring.

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Celebrate America from the Heart

July 3 2012 by Mike Mason
Comments (4)

fireworks.jpgNothing says Independence Day quite like a colorful and thundering fireworks display. The only thing that would make it even more special is if you were celebrating it in the beating heart of the United States of America: Washington, D.C.

The National Mall with the U.S. Capitol and Washington Monument on either side creates a stunning backdrop for fireworks that annually light up the 4th of July night sky. Make sure to claim your seat early in the day after the mall opens to the public at 10:00 a.m. You will need to enter through one of the security entrances, but once you've selected your spot, there is plenty to do. Activities on the mall include readings of the Declaration of Independence, a folk life festival and an evening concert by the National Symphony Orchestra out on the West Lawn.

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Two Ways to Win at Daytona

July 3 2012 by BW Innsider
Comments (48)

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Loads of Prizes for the Daytona Race!

For the big race at Daytona, we are giving you TWO ways to win!

1. Submit your usual prediction of who will win the race in the comments below for a chance to win a $25 MasterCard gift card.
2. Follow Us on Twitter and during the race, tweet the name of the driver in the lead each time there's a lead change with the hashtag #bestwesternleadchange. For example: "Michael Waltrip #bestwesternleadchange" That's it! We will track all hashtag tweets and each one gets you an entry for a chance to win prizes like gift cards and signed hats! It's a fun way to make the race more entertaining and rewarding. You can also find other NASCAR enthusiasts.

Follow Us on Twitter I Become a Facebook Fan

Book with our Race Fan Rate® for exclusive discounts at Best Western hotels!

Don't forget to check back before every race to play Who's Gonna Win!

Entries must be entered before the start of the race on 7/7. Winner will be announced on 7/9. Limit only one entry per person. Must be 18 years of age or older and a resident of the US or Canada to be eligible to win. Winner will be randomly selected from all correct answers posted in the comments below.

Things you can only do in North America! What's your favorite patriotic destination?

July 3 2012 by BW Innsider
Comments (56)

US.jpgTell Us and Enter for a Chance to Win a $250 Best Western Travel Card!

What are some of the best things to do or see in North America? Do you have a favorite patriotic (or otherwise) destination you love to travel to in the U.S. or Canada? Tell us about it and you will be automatically entered for a chance to win a $250 Best Western Travel Card!

Limit one entry per person. Must be 18 years of age or older and a resident of the US or Canada to be eligible to win. Winner will be randomly selected from all entries posted in the comments below. Winner will be announced via comment post on and via Facebook/Twitter posts after winner is verified. Contest ends July 31st.

New England By Motorcycle, Day Four: Manchester, NH to Portland, ME

July 2 2012 by Jason Fogelson

A4.jpgDo you stop at those "Welcome" centers at the state line? I do, almost always. First of all, they usually have clean bathrooms and water fountains, so that's a plus. Second, they are almost always staffed by friendly, knowledgeable people who can point you toward interesting sights and routes. They're always up to date on current road conditions, and they'll highlight a map that leaves little to the imagination.

I had a filling and delicious breakfast in the dining room at the BEST WESTERN PLUS Executive Court Inn & Conference Center this morning before I checked out and got on the bike to ride. I looked around for the bullfrogs who entertained me with their songs last night, but alas, they seem not to be early risers.

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Hawaii Photo Contest - $500 BW Travel Card

July 2 2012 by BW Innsider
Comments (8)


Win a $500 Best Western Travel Card!

We will be featuring various North America regions during 2012 for photo contests. July's contest features HAWAII! Gorgeous photos are not hard to come by in this tropical destination. We want you to share with us your favorite and best photo you have taken during your visit to Hawaii. Don't have a photo of Hawaii? The contest is open until July 31, 2012 so visit Best Western Hawaii online to find great deals and hotels to stay at this month, plus lots of great attractions and places to visit during your trip.

Submit ONE photo to us that meets the criteria and you could win the Grand Prize of a $500 Best Western Travel Card! .

On the right hand side of You Must Be Trippin' is a slide show of all submitted pictures. We will select one photo that we feel best represents Hawaii. Only one photo per person will be accepted, so choose wisely! Don't forget to give us a brief description of where your photo was taken, plus your name, email address and a brief description of where your photo was taken. With no name and email we will have no way to contact you if you win.

How to enter:

  1. Submit an email with ONE photo attached, or email:

  2. Make sure you include your name and email address in the body of the email along with a brief photo description (Names & emails will not be publicly displayed. If you do not provide your name and email in the body of the email we will have no way of contacting you if you win)

  3. Make sure the subject line is: Hawaii Photo Contest

Visit Best Western Hawaii to learn more about the absolute breath-taking landscapes and features of Hawaii and for offers for your next vacation!

Failure to follow any of the above rules will result in your removal or disqualification from contest contention. Best Western reserves the right to edit submitted descriptions for length and privacy. By submitting a photo you release rights to Best Western International. Please allow 2-3 business days for your photo to be posted. Winner will be announced after verification is received and posted to this article's comment section and Twitter. Must be a resident of US or Canada and 18 years or older to enter. Contest ends July 31, 2012.