Best Room in the House is at a Hotel

PRNewswire-FirstCall BELLEVUE, Wash. Oct. 21 :, the world`s leading online travel service, understands
that spending the holidays with family, while joyous, can also be a little
stressful. According to Expedia(R)`s second annual holiday survey,* 85
percent of those traveling over the holidays will include a family visit
between Thanksgiving and New Year`s Eve, and eight out of 10 plan to stay
with their families. Unfortunately, that doesn`t necessarily translate to
a restful break—only 19 percent of those polled said that visiting
family equates to a perfect holiday vacation.

For those staying home for the holidays, 76 percent will have friends or
family stay with them, but 84 percent of those hosting families would
actually prefer their guests stay at a hotel. That`s why this holiday
season Expedia has teamed up with renowned life coach, author and
columnist Martha Beck to offer tips that help travelers put a little
vacation into their holiday travels.

“As Expedia`s research shows, Americans often feel conflicted when it
comes to the winter holiday season. While it`s a good time of year to
spend time with family and friends, it can be taxing between hunting for
that perfect gift, sharing a room with your siblings again and enduring
dad`s relentless questions about when he`s going to see grandkids,” said
Beck. “Fortunately, there are many things people can do to minimize
holiday headaches and maximize the festivities this year.”

According to Beck, travelers can liven up the holidays at home by making a
few simple adjustments, such as:


—Be an early bird. Inclement winter weather can often cause flight
delays, and you don`t want to keep your family waiting while you pace
around a crowded airport. Booking the first flight of the day ensures
you`ll have the next ticket out of town as soon as conditions improve.—
Give yourself and your back a rest. After a full day of visiting with
relatives, staying at a nearby hotel lets you—and them—enjoy a few
minutes alone to rejuvenate for the next family activity. Plus, it sure
beats sleeping on the pullout couch Grandma bought at a yard sale 30 years
ago.—Be mobile. Give yourself the keys to freedom by renting a car
through With numerous rental companies and great low rates to
choose from, you won`t have to fight with your brother over dad`s car this
holiday.—Start a new tradition. Break out of the norm and treat your
family—in their town or yours—to fun activities including dinner
cruises, museum tours, helicopter rides or a special Sunday brunch. This
can help dampen sibling squabbles, as well as the urge to eat so much
chocolate that it hurts to blink.—Travel smart. Utilize online travel
resources to make your holiday trip as smooth as possible. For example,`s Traveler Tools provide frequent airport and airline updates,
information on check-in procedures, flight status and travel advisories to
navigate your journey with ease. If only choosing the right gift for Mom
were this easy.—Think outside the gift box. Instead of a traditional
gift exchange, convince the family to spend the holidays soaking up the
sun in Mexico, or swooshing down the slopes at Vail. A holiday vacation is
something the entire family will enjoy, and the memories are sure to last
a lifetime.

Expedia has more than 55,000 lodging options to choose from, so travelers
are sure to find lodging close enough to Mom, but far enough away to make
an escape after Uncle Bob`s roaring rendition of “Jingle Bell Rock.” In
addition, Expedia provides a vast selection of exciting winter destination
activities, allowing holiday travelers to put some fun into holiday visits
with just the click of a mouse.

To make the holidays even easier, Expedia`s holiday hotel sale delivers
savings of up to 25 percent off of already low hotel rates in more than 30
popular destinations at home and abroad for travel through January 1,
2004. For more information, visit:

Additional travel trends revealed in the 2003 Holiday Survey:
—73 percent of those traveling are heading more than 200 miles from home
this year.—Americans know that planning holiday travel in advance helps
ensure a hassle free holiday. Nearly 40 percent of`s survey
respondents said they plan to book holiday travel one to three months
prior to departure this year.—Being cooped up in the house all day is
what travelers like least about holiday trips. 86 percent like to go out
to a restaurant or visit a museum while away over the holidays to relieve
stress.—36 percent said they feel like they need to escape and enjoy
some alone time when visiting family over the holidays.—One-third of
survey respondents indicated going home for the holidays is not a `real`
vacation. Sample Holiday Deals Available on**—New York to
London: Five nights at the Copthorne Hotel Effingham Park Gattwick,
round-trip air and River Red Rover pass—from $624 per person—San
Francisco to Whistler, BC: Four nights at the Coast Whistler Hotel,
round-trip air and 3-day lift ticket—from $445 per person—Los
Angeles to Chicago: Four nights at the Clarion Hotel Barcelo, round-trip
air and Medieval Times Dinner and Tournament—from $457 per person—
New York to Miami: Four nights at the New Casablanca on the Ocean Hotel,
round-trip air and an Everglades tour and airboat ride—from $382 per
person—Washington, DC to Seattle: Four nights at the Mediterranean Inn,
round-trip air and Experience Music Project passes from—$499 per person
—Chicago to New York: Four nights at the Club Quarters-Downtown Hotel,
round-trip air and tickets to “Rent” from—$569 per person About
Expedia, Inc.
Expedia, Inc. is the world`s leading online travel service and the fourth
largest travel agency in the U.S. Expedia`s award-winning Expert Searching
and Pricing (ESP) technology delivers the most comprehensive flight
options available online. ESP also allows customers to dynamically build
complete trips that combine flights, Expedia(R) Special Rate hotels and
other lodging, ground transportation, and destination services and
activities. Expedia`s quality and leadership have been recognized in
awards such as PC Magazine`s “Editors` Choice” and Forbes “Favorite
General Travel Site.” Expedia is also the first online travel site to earn
the Good Housekeeping Web Site Certification, awarded to Web sites that
meet Good Housekeeping`s rigorous standards for consumer protection and
quality assurance. Expedia is a wholly-owned subsidiary of
IAC/InterActiveCorp . CST: 2029030-40.

NOTE: Expedia,, and the airplane logo are either registered
trademarks or trademarks of Expedia, Inc. in the United States, Canada
and/or other countries.