Planning Ahead for a Special Trip May Not Come Naturally to Some. I get it. Many folks, including some family members (ahem) prefer spontaneity over planning. But here's the thing: particularly if there's a specific flight you want, a particular cruise itinerary, a unique hotel or lodge you're hoping to stay at, or even a special dining experience, it can be impossible to secure when it's a last minute trip.
Case in point: I'm helping clients with a special anniversary trip, and they decided to go ahead and book round the world tickets for specific dates then reach out to me. Unfortunately, the specific lodge they were hoping to stay at, the only one of its kind in one of their destinations, is fully booked for their dates, and the chances of a cancellation are close to nil.
There are no comparable luxury options in this remote area, and they already booked their flights, so they're taking a significant step down in terms of their alternative accommodation as a result.
Their next logical question was whether they could dine at this luxury lodge, or book any of the lodge's private guide experiences, but because of its intimate nature (only 15 stand alone accommodations) no outside guests are permitted to dine there, and private guide experiences are not offered to outside guests either. While this is somewhat unusual, it's also the case at Relais & Chateaux luxury lodge Otahuna in New Zealand, Laucala private island in Fiji (well, unless you're a good friend of the owner, billionaire Dietrich Mateschitz, the co-founder of energy drink Red Bull), and at some other high end luxury lodges and resorts.
Fortunately the clients are at their preferred luxury hotels and resorts for all of their other destinations on this round the world trip, but it's nevertheless a stark reminder of how crucial it is to plan well in advance, particularly for high demand and remote locations, flights and experiences.
In another example, I've also had clients plan a last minute trip to Peru and Machu Picchu. There, it's important to not only take into account the availability of boutique luxury hotels, including whether they want to stay at the Sanctuary Lodge across from the Machu Picchu ruins (the only accommodation there, with just 31 rooms, vs. the options in Aguas Calientes), but also the tickets for Machu Picchu, particularly admission for the Huayna Picchu mountain trek, with just 400 tickets available per day) and also the train tickets to and from Machu Picchu.
In this case, the clients are traveling during shoulder season rather than peak season, so even though their arrival and departure dates for Peru were fixed, by rearranging the order of some of their stays within the country we were able to secure the exact accommodations they preferred as well as tickets for Huayna Picchu.
Have you ever discovered that you planned too late to secure the hotel or resort you were hoping to stay at?
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