Travel Planning OCD: It’s Economical

Paris apartment--$85/night. Thank you, obsessive compulsive disorder!

When planning our trip to Europe, I made train reservations months in advance.  I booked hotels ahead of time, I searched for the best flight deals–and found a really reasonable mid-summer flight from JFK to London Gatwick.  I reserved an apartment for two weeks in July on January 14th.  Everything was done in advance, and everything was very, very reasonably priced.  I highly recommend super-obsessive planning as a great way to save money on travel.

However, with all the travel I’ve been doing, it seems I’ve gotten a little lax in the planning department.  You see, I completely forgot to book a hotel for my one night in New Orleans post-cruise, before a 6 am flight.  Yes, you read that correctly–I forgot.  What is happening to me?

And do you know what is really expensive?  A semi-last minute hotel room on a Saturday night in a major port city that just had two ships pull in to port.  I think I figured I’d just book at the place I’m staying pre-cruise.  Nope–they have a two night minimum stay.  And yes, I called and explained that I’d be staying for three nights pre-cruise.  They didn’t care.


My other option was the hotel inside the airport.  You know, like in Orlando.  Well guess what?  The airport doesn’t have a hotel inside of it.  Most airports don’t, in fact.  And with a 6 a.m. flight, I didn’t feel good about staying at a Motel 6, where they may or may not have a concierge desk or valet to make sure that I get in a cab at four in the morning.  And so, for approximately the cost of two nights in a Paris apartment, I’m staying in a convention center chain hotel on the New Orleans riverfront, directly across from the casino I have no intention of visiting.  Sure, it’s a short walk from the ship to the hotel to drop off my bags for the day.  Yes, they will have a desk capable of calling a taxi for me.  And absolutely, it will be the easiest thing to do.  But damn, it was expensive.

Yes, this time, I chose safety and convenience over thriftiness.  I’ll ask it again–what is happening to me?

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