Monday, August 26, 2013

Getting to the Big Game - Arena Bowl 2013

Ahhhhh….I’ve finally had the chance to really catch up on life after dropping everything and heading to Orlando.

You know what stinks?  Having to plan a trip last minute!
Since it was impossible to know if C’s team would win their last playoff game (on a Saturday) and make it to the Championship game (the following Saturday) we couldn’t really book flights in advance.  Yes, we could have done Southwest with no change fees….but their flights were over $800!

A few days before the playoff game I asked C to talk to his Director of Player Personnel and find out which hotel they would be staying at “if they won.” We were able to book their same hotel about a week in advance and would have no cancellation fees if they didn’t end up winning. Boy am I glad I did that!  Minutes after the final playoff game was over, the 1500 room hotel was completely booked up. We were really lucky we had secured a room beforehand!  The Rosen Shingle Creek in Orlando was gorgeous.  I would definitely recommend it.
For a few weeks leading up to the big game I periodically checked on flights.  Watching prices go up and down for weeks knowing you can do nothing about it really sucks!  For some reason it was a TON (like $300+) cheaper to fly into Tampa from Phoenix, rather than flying straight into Orlando. Since Tampa is about an hour and a half away from Orlando we decided we would fly into Tampa and drive the rest of the way.  Huge money saver!  Plus, there are beaches in Tampa.  You better believe we stopped!
The day of C’s playoff game I watched flights go from $353 up to $415.  Not a huge change, but still, cheaper is definitely better. After the game and the mini celebration we got straight to work.  Me, my mom and two other player girlfriends called Travelocity to book our flights together.  When we got on the phone with the rep, our flights were $415.  This man seriously took forever to research the flights and secure the one we wanted.  He even apologized for how long he was taking.  Then after he was done he told us our flights (the SAME flights we originally called about) were now $525 each. What?!?  I was livid. I immediately asked to speak to a manager.  Guess what they did? They put me on hold and never came back (on purpose obviously).  I even called on another phone and they answered right away and put me on hold again. We waited on hold for over 50 minutes and no one ever came back to the line. Travelocity has the worst customer service I have ever, EVER experienced!  Hello!  We were trying to book 4 flights…that’s a lot of revenue they could have received!
Anyways…back to my story. Sorry about my angry tangent.
As we were on hold we began to look at other options on our cell phones.  We ended up booking straight through United.  The flights were $500 each though, which was hard to swallow.  But, we were officially headed to Orlando!

Since we knew we were going to fly into Tampa we also booked a car rental early that we could easily cancel.  We got a car for $10 a day! Man on man Florida is way cheaper than Arizona.  A car rental here is $40+ a day! 
Do you want to know what the bad news is about getting the cheapest flight available??  We had to 
leave phoenix at 1am and fly through the night.  Then, we also had a 4 hour layover in Charlotte, which is the coldest airport known to man.
I think that enough for today….and all I’ve talked about is setting up the trip!

Next time I’ll tell you all about what we did in Florida (red carpets included) and of course the game!
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1 comment:

  1. sounds so frustrating!!! but I hope you had a good time. And if the charlotte airport was too cold, just step outside to our "normal" heat. lol



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