Explore New England This Fall

We LOVE Fall in New England. Besides Apple picking & hiking the colorful trails, the best way to take in the beautiful landscape and make the most of the autumn colors is to seek out an overlooked vista, a hidden gem, or a new adventure! You can start in Northern part of Vermont, New Hampshire, or Maine and follow peak foliage south over the course of a week or two. Midweek is the time to hop between towns. For a vintage and very scenic travel experience, hop on a New England railroad car and cruise along the countryside. TIP: Do consider making your reservation as much as two months in advance, (which means now!) especially if you’ve got your eye on a particular room at a particular property.

For more information, please read the article at:

http://archive.boston.com/travel/explorene/specials/foliage/galleries/best_fall_fol

http://instantworldbooking.com/


April 22nd is Earth Day!

Lets celebrate together by making these few changes in our own lifestyle! I put together a list of 10 ways, but there are literally hundreds of ways actually!

1) Change your light bulbs to fluorescent bulbs, they last longer & use less energy.

2) Recycle, Recycle, Recycle! As much plastic, paper, glass & cans as possible! All over the world there are recycling bins.

3) Invest in a set of canvas bags. I did & will never go back to plastic grocery bags again! Even when I travel!

4) Buy rechargeable batteries for devices used frequently. My camera & phone for instance I use rechargeable for & I’ve saved a lot of money!

5) Avoid disposable products, such as plates, cups, napkins and cutlery. Use reusable towels and dishwashing cloths in place of paper towels and disposable dish sponges.

6) Shower instead of Baths: Showers use less water. Don’t forget to install an efficient showerhead.

7) Install low flush toilets.  These use 1.6 gallons per flush, instead of 3.5 gallons, cutting water consumption by more than half.

8)  Double side your printing and give scrap paper to the kids or turn it into note paper for the phone table.

9) Turn off your computer every day! It might not sound like much, but it does add up!

10) And finally, my favorite…try riding your bike or just walk to the store/post office/ your Church, ect. Not only does it Let the car contribute less to the atmosphere, but its a great way for us to get into shape!

Together, we can do this & make the World a better place, not only for us but for generations to come!

http://www.instantworldbooking.com/

 

 


Think You Know About Bed Bugs? Think Again!

Part Two

Did you also know that when you travel, you could be bringing home these lovely critters? Bed Bugs are known to climb into your suitcase, if you are staying in an infested hotel room.  If you place your suitcase or clothes on the Hotel bed that’s infested, (keep in mind  that they are so tiny, you will never be able to see them)  they could just  climb on aboard & decide to travel along with you, all the way until you unpack  your clothes at home, then, they will set up house on your bed!  : o

Not the kind of guests I would love to have in my house!

To be continued…..


How to use LinkedIn to Promote your Hotel, Hostel, or B&B

LinkedIn is excellent for professionals to promote their businesses. But what about hotels, hostels, and bed & breakfasts?  Many don’t know is how effective it can be for both marketing and SEO.

The key to LinkedIn successful marketing is to set up a complete user profile.  There are many sections within LinkedIn that enable you to enter targeted keywords and promote yourself as not only an accommodation manager, but also as an expert in the tourism field.

Concentrate on these main areas:

Name and Headline – Show your full name. You may be able to establish yourself as an expert in the accommodation industry.  So, use your full name to increase searchability.  Headlines should include your name and accommodation name.

Summary – Summarize your experience and specialties. Include specialties of your property.  Market your accommodation along with your personal expertise.  Including targeted keywords in the Specialties section increases the searchability of your profile.

Experience – Import your resume if possible to fill out this many of the sections within your profile. This not only makes completing your profile easier, but also enables you to review the final result for more accuracy.  Make best use of any opportunities to include keywords or language promoting both you as an expert, and your accommodation’s best features and services.

Skills & Expertise – LinkedIn allows 50 separate skills and expertise phrases.  Take advantage of this to enter keywords or phrases to enhance SEO.

Groups – Join LinkedIn’s groups, which allows you to interact with others in your tourism and accommodation profession.  But, also take advantage of the opportunity to create your own group.   This will enhance your own credibility, and the notability of your hotel, hostel, or bed & breakfast. Groups are one of the main items that come up when people search the site.

Definitely maximize the visibility of your web presence by including your Website link and your connections. Instead of just showing the link to your website, LinkedIn allows you to place keywords as anchor text to your site.  So, don’t show just http:///www.myhotel.com, show your anchor text as “My Hotel”.

Connections won’t help directly with SEO, but they are absolutely important in helping you with ill definitely help you with online marketing.  People sometimes forget that LinkedIn is not just a business site, but is still one of the most visible social media sites.  Get your profile to work for you by connecting with others in tourism and travel.  Form alliances with complementary businesses, like transportation companies that can provide benefits to your customers.  Grow your connections by including people from past jobs and work experiences.

Follow these examples, and you can very quickly establish yourself as a tourism industry expert on LinkedIn.  This will also be a very effective tool for both SEO and your overall marketing effort.

For more information on how Instant World Booking can help you maximize the productivity of your online marketing effort, send an email to info @ instantworldbooking.com.  Feel free to send your comments.

Online marketing for hotels, hostels, & bed and breakfasts

 


Remember Things with a Mnemonic Object

Good simple advice for living … Not necessarily travel related.

By placing a familiar object in an unfamiliar context, you can intentionally trigger the recall of a memory when that out-of-place object is seen again.

Use a beanbag when you think of something you have to do in the future, and then throw the beanbag across the room where you will stumble across it later. When you see the beanbag out of place, you will remember the thing that you have to do. Another example of the technique is thinking of something you have to do the next day while laying in bed about to fall asleep. You could throw a pen across the room, and when you saw the pen in the morning out of place it would remind you of that task when you woke up next morning.


Top Tips for Staying Cool in the Summer

Temperatures in the 90s and higher are dangerous, and become more dangerous the higher they go and the longer they last. The very young and the very old are at the highest risk, as their weight and age can impair their ability to handle high temperatures.

12 Tips for Staying Cool This Summer
Be aware of the heat. Pay attention to it and modify your activities appropriately.
Pay attention to your hydration status and be sure to drink plenty of fluids.
Try to stay in relatively cool areas, even when outside. Many public places, such as libraries, shopping malls and movie theatres, are air conditioned.
Avoid hot, enclosed places, such as cars. Never leave children unattended in a car parked in the sun.
Use a fan, if available.
Stay on the lowest floor of your building.
Eat well-balanced, light and regular meals.
Wear loose-fitting, lightweight and light-colored clothing.
Cover windows that receive a significant amount of sun with drapes or shades to help keep your house cool.
Weather stripping and proper insulation will keep cool air inside your home.
Cool beverages are good for cooling down the body, while alcoholic drinks can impair the body’s ability to regulate its temperature.

8 Signs of Heat Overexposure
Heavy sweating — though if heat stroke sets in, the body can no longer compensate and stops sweating.
Pale skin.
Muscle cramps.
Feeling tired and weak.
Altered mental status (confusion or disorientation).
Headache.
Becoming semi-conscious or passing out.
Nausea or vomiting.

6 First Steps to Take After Recognizing Heat-Induced Illness
Call 911.
Get the person out of the sun and into a cool area. An air-conditioned area is ideal, but moving someone into the shade will also help.
Apply water to help the person cool off.
Apply ice to the neck or armpits, where large blood vessels are close to the surface.
Remove any heavy clothing.
Immerse the body in cool water, either at a swimming pool or in a bathtub.


Paid Translations from Instant World Booking

As a hotel, B&B, or hostel, you may receive a notice from Instant World Booking that “Paid” Translations are available for your property information.  This means that either your translated material is out of date, or that more language translations are available for your property. 

Automatic translations are an important and unique service of Instant World Booking, not available from other providers.  Each property already gets a few translations at no cost.  But, increasing your translated content can maximize your online exposure and help gain an international audience.  Updating your translations more frequently will also ensure that Google and other search engines refresh your content in their index.

Update your content now in 15 languages for only $ 9.99.  Just log in to your profile at our website, and check that your property information is up to date.  Then, proceed to the ‘TRANSLATIONS’ page.  Purchase your paid translation, and we’ll handle the rest.  There’s no limit to the amount of content that we’ll translate for you, so make sure your property information is completely filled out.  For a price this low, there’s no reason to wait.

There are more reasons why translations are so important.  If you’ve updated your profile recently, your translated material may now represent old or inaccurate content.  With additional translations, you will also gain placement on many more pages, which is important for web rankings.  For example, most properties have placement on at least 15 websites in our network.  If you purchase paid translations to 15 languages, then you automatically get 225 (15 x 15) distinct pages on our network, versus only 15 pages if you only have English material.

Finally, you may use your translated information for multiple purposes.  Once we translate your material, you can copy it to your own website, marketing material, and also other booking sites.  There are no limits on how you may use your translated material.  Get your paid translations now.


How to Know if an Email is Fraudulent

For small hotels and bed & breakfasts, weeding out fraudulent email requests can be more of an art than a science. But, here are some foolproof methods of identifying scam emails in under a minute. Fraud prevention has become an important part of everyday business at Instant World Booking, so we’ve learned a few things along the way.

Whenever you receive an email reservation request, and the body of the email mentions “credit cards used for full payment”, this is a red flag. Most legitimate requests would never ask about full payment in advance by credit card.

90% of fraud emails will be sent from yahoo, gmail, hotmail, or some other free email service. So, if there’s any doubt about the content of the email, check the sender’s email address.

Now, here’s the foolproof part. Check the email headers. Many scammers have become good at faking email addresses, website domains, even copying the exact logos and website content of legitimate businesses. However, they cannot fake the “email headers”. Here’s how to check them:

From your email inbox, right-click the suspect email. Select “Message options”. You will immediately see the headers, starting with something like “Return-path:”, “Envelope-to”, etc.

If the header contains a source domain or address that looks suspicious, the email is most likely fraudulent.


New Payment Methods for IWB Payments and Affiliate Programs

If you use Instant World Booking’s excellent IWB Payments service, or are an affiliated hotel, take advantage of our most efficient payment option: Delivery by EFT Electronic Funds Transfer (ACH)

Choosing this delivery option directs us to automatically deposit the funds to a specified bank account.   Receiving funds by EFT is free, and is relatively fast, although not as fast as a Wire Transfer.   So if you are currently receiving funds by Bank Wire Transfer, and wish to save the fee associated with that method, choose EFT.  Free delivery via EFT is currently available for the following currencies and countries:

AUD to Australia.

CAD to Canada.

EUR to France, Germany, Italy, Netherlands and Spain.

GBP to The United Kingdom.

NZD to New Zealand.

To sign up for IWB Payments see:

http://www.instantworldbooking.com/payments-systems.php

Learn more about our affiliate programs:

http://www.instantworldbooking.com/affiliate-programs.php


Version 4.2 Update – XML API Guide

We are pleased to announce update v4.2 of our Instant World Booking XML API Guide.  This new release includes some new features for updating allocations and rates.  Specifically:

  1. API Function: setallocation now includes the ability to update rates without altering # units, and vice versa.  This enhancement provides greater flexibility in the calendar management process.  See section 3.3 of the XML API Guide for a description of these new features.
  2. API Function: createrooms now automatically returns the room id assigned to a new room type.  This enhancement allows users to eliminate the extra step of submitting separate XML requests to obtain the room id for a new room type.  See section 3.1.2 for more details.

See our updated XML API Guide at:

http://www.instantworldbooking.com/xml/InstantWorldBookingXMLAPI.doc

To keep abreast of the latest news with Instant World Booking’s XML API, follow our blog or subscribe to the RSS feed at:

http://www.instantworldbooking.com/blog_iw/category/xml-feeds/