When considering a hotel, location is key. How far is it from a transportation hub? Are there places to eat or a supermarket within walking distance? How far is the subway or bus stop? We try to stay within walking distance of a train station or within walking distance of a subway stop. We save money on transportation to and from the stations that way. However, staying near an airport often means you will have a more difficult time getting into the city in a short amount of time.

Using a site such as or for research will help you learn what is in the area and what the basic rates are. It probably goes without saying, the pictures always present the hotel to its best advantage. We have had a surprise or two.

After you have narrowed your choices, you may wish to contact the hotels directly and ask if they provide group rates and what amenities are included. Sometimes the hotel will give you a better rate than that listed on the clearing house sites.We have found that smaller hotels are easy to work with for group rates.

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