Chalk this one up to a total surprise! I mean, like everyone else that visited the Daily Getaways website this year, I had seen the banner about the $10,000 travel giveaway to celebrate 10 years of these getaways, but I did not think for a moment that I would win!
I Won the $10,000 Daily Getaways Giveaway
What was the Giveaway and How Did People Enter?
Everyone who purchased a package (or sent a postcard to the address they gave in the terms) received an entry for the $10,000 travel getaway package. Given the number of packages, that would mean there would be about 10,000 entries, maybe more? Of course, I did not buy any of the packages to gain an entry, in fact, I don’t even think I gave it much attention at all as that was not the focus of the Daily Getaways for me.
Apparently, the entry that won the package for me was the Alamo car rental discounts. That was actually funny how that happened – I tried to buy 3 at once (the limit) but it kept only processing it to the end as a single coupon. So, finally, I bought one and then bought two in the next one to still reach the limit. One of those was the entry that was selected.
The $10,000 Trip Prize
In fact, I had given the whole thing such little attention that when I was contacted about being the winner, I thought it was a cash prize at first! 🙂 But, it is actually a vacation package in the US that will be a “custom” package to go up to $10,000 in total. I can go over that amount but will need to pay the difference. To book it, I need to go through the US Travel Association travel department so we are supposed to be talking soon to start putting some things in order.
It will be for my family and I (6 people) and it has to be used within 1 year from last week. Also, I will be responsible for the taxes at the end of the year on the total actual retail value of the price, of course, so this isn’t exactly a “free” package for me – consider it a much cheaper version of what it could be!
Another thing that stood out was that I cannot earn frequent flyer miles (awww, come on!!!! 🙂). Also, I would imagine that since they will be using some travel portal that I will not be able to earn hotel points/nights either. That is a big bummer also!
Planning the $10,000 Travel Getaway
So, what will we be doing? The package covers things like airfare, car rentals, hotels, and activity packages (that can be purchased online – things like Disney, etc). Of course, we could go with miles and points to cover a lot of that on our own but we are hoping to utilize this prize for a destination and activities that would have really pushed the envelope of the redemption amount with miles and points.
No miles or points this trip!
One of the things that I am looking forward to is the hotels for this reason. When we travel together as a family of 6, we would normally have to get two rooms or book a room and upgrade to a large enough suite.
Booking such rooms with points or booking two rooms with points can be an expensive points proposition. But, they may not be that bad with cash (for some hotels, a large enough suite for 6 of us may cost $280 per night while a basic room could cost $200 that would be bookable with points – but the suite wouldn’t be bookable with points or would cost way too much).
Our Tentative Destination
For our destination, we are thinking of San Diego sometime next year, in either February or April. I have been through there quickly before but it was always something on our to-do list for a visit. Plus, there are a ton of activities out there to do with children.
Please Help with Trip Suggestions!
But, we are not set in stone on that yet! So, we would like to have some suggestions from you all on potential other destinations for those months with 4 children (ages 4 – 11). We are from western NY so the East Coast is not something that is high on our list. We have also spent some time in Arizona so that isn’t exactly on our repeat list this time.
- What cities do you recommend as must-see places in either February or April (in the US)?
- What activities do you recommend for kids in San Diego that you think we should not skip?
- What hotels in the San Diego area would be places you would recommend to stay at for a longer period (at least 10 days)?
- Just give us any suggestions for places you would think would be awesome to visit and why!
Of course, I will be covering some of this trip and the things we do in future blog posts. I didn’t really even want to write this post because I didn’t want it to come off that we were gloating about winning this. But, this is about travel and we will be doing posts about the travel we do with this so it would seem strange to not write about! Plus, we really would like to get your input on some potential destinations and activities! We want to really make this trip something special!