Wednesday, January 13, 2010

WPPI 2010: Hotel Deals

WPPI is always a great time - lots of learning, lots of networking but also spending lots of money! I'm all about saving where you can and here are some tips and deals for saving a few extra bucks for your hotel stay.


MGM Grand

The MGM Grand is where everything happens and is where 80% of the people going to WPPI stay. I highly recommend staying on site as by the time you are done going to classes and/or the tradeshow, you are barely going to have enough time to change before needing to be somewhere for an event, dinner or party. Having your room, shower and bed in the same hotel is a value within itself and there is also the savings to be had by not taking cabs, renting a car or taking the monorail. There is also the added perk of the networking that you will be able to do in the elevator lobby and when roaming the hotel.

The WPPI rate is $149/night + taxes for a standard room (click here to book at that rate) in the grand tower which is a decent deal but keep your eyes out on deal sites, particularly Smarter Vegas and Easy Click Travel, for up to the minute deals on rooms. Sometimes you won’t be able to find cheaper room rates but will be able to utilize promotions such as free buffets, dining credits and more. Currently using code INB307 on the MGM website will get you the same $149/night rate but you will also get 2-for1 daily buffets at the Grand Buffet, $25 credit at the Grand Spa and 2 free passes to the Fitness Center. Lately it seems that about a month out is when the rates tend to start drop and the deals are available for the rooms so keep that in mind when booking. Also sign up for the MGM emails and follow them on Twitter for special sales that don’t make it to the public.


The Signature at MGM Grand

The Signature is the 'elite' hotel of the MGM Grand, much like THEhotel is to Mandalay Bay. The rooms are all suites, set up like condos and are individually owned. The hotel is non-smoking and non-gambling so it is a quieter resort like stay. It also offers its own Starbucks (the ones at the MGM are PACKED during WPPI), lounge, fitness center and pool so you'll always have a quiet place to retreat to that isn't packed with people. They are located just behind the MGM with the entrance into MGM Grand by the spa - closer to the convention area than the main hotel bank. Here’s where the deal comes in. I have negotiated a discount rate for Photo Lovecat readers with Blue Chip Vegas (a condo management company for The Signature). Use code WPPI as the Rate/Corp code for 25-30% off the MGM website rate (which takes you currently to $103.55/night). ** The discount code is now invalid as all the rooms they had available booked up, they may reopen closer to the show if rooms reopen. Until then, check out VRBO.com for other condo deals for The Signature**


Offsite Hotels

You can find ridiculously cheap hotels in Vegas ($30/night for some of the lesser known hotels on The Strip, sometimes even cheaper with hotels off The Strip) but make sure that you take into planning that you will be renting a car, walking, taking a taxi or using the tram to get to/from the convention. Often it doesn’t pay to save the few bucks a night when you have to shuttle back and forth and spend a lot on transportation. If you want to stay close, check out NYNY, Tropicana and Hooters for the closest hotels to MGM. They are within walking distance (MGM has an elevated bridge that connects to NYNY) and typically have reasonable rates (currently NYNY is $84/night, Tropicana $59/night). Otherwise you may want to try and stay at hotels that are along the monorail route for quicker access to the MGM (Bally's, Paris, Flamingo, Harrah's, Hilton).


Rent a House

Got a lot of friends but don’t want to sleep like sardines? Think about renting a house through VRBO. The housing prices can run the gamut from cheap to expensive but when you consider that everyone will be splitting the cost it can turn out to be cheaper than staying in a hotel and with many perks that hotels do not offer such as kitchens and private pools.

Hopefully this helps you navigate finding a better deal for booking your stay for WPPI.


Corey Ann is a wedding & lifestyle photographer from North Canton, OH. She is a mix of everything - fashionista, travel guru, deal hound and geek rolled into one. She's had a website online since 1997 and a blog since 1999. When not plotting world domination or her next trip, she can be found reading one of the 100+ books she reads a year. Follow her on Twitter.

17 comments:

  1. It's awesome that you negotiated a rate at The Signature. Smart planning!

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  2. Nice tips, thanks Corey! I am so bummed I can't make WPPI this year but hopefully you'll be posting this info again next year ;)

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  3. Will there be a Photo Lovecat event at WPPI this year?

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  4. I booked on easy click travel, really did get good deals there.
    thanks for the info, always love to read you posts.

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  5. It's going to be hit or miss with the deal sites, generally they start getting the better deals about a month or so out from the travel date you are looking for. I also have heard that MGM tends to be a bit tighter with the codes and deals than other hotels, so it may be best used for booking another hotel for the stay.

    Thanks for the lovely comment!

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  6. HI. THANKS! i just tried WPPI on the signature and it's not working. hum

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  7. oh nevermind. i guess i have to book through blue chip. sorry. i'm lame

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  8. @nissa: We are working on coming up with something a bit different this year that won't be like other parties out there. We'll let you know what is going on when it's all official. SOMETHING is in the works but the details aren't firmed up yet.

    @jen: Yep, the discount is through Blue Chip. If you click on the link you can make your reservation directly with them on the page.

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  9. Corey I just tried the Blue Chip code and it isn't working.... does that mean that the rooms are gone? Realizing this is a month old just now.

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  10. My guess is that it may be sold out - I emailed them and will update the blog when I find out!

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  11. Laura they did sell out but may reopen closer to WPPI. If you still want to stay at The Signature, I highly recommend using VRBO or use code SIG021 for the 4th night free.

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  12. Thanks for looking into that, Corey! And for all the advice!

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  13. Will you be having another Lovecat party this year? :)

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  14. Hi there. Please be careful with Blue Chip. I tried to cancel my reservation with them as I can't go to WPPI and they were extremely rude, told me that they would only cancel my reservation if they felt like it, and when I called the MGM, they had never heard of them. Someone can have my room now. :)

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  15. Hi Tira!

    I am very very sorry to hear this! From the research I had done online and on Trip Advisor, the company has decent reviews. I will contact them to make sure that this doesn't occur again!

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  16. Did you find out anything about Blue Chip Corey? I also made a reservation with them :O

    Dustin

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