First Two Weeks of Discover America Daily Getaways, Mostly Disappointing

The US Travel Association’s Daily Getaways — prepurchased discounted travel deals — returns weekdays from April 9 through May 11.

Sponsored by American Express, paying with an Amex yields a 10% discount, it’s hard to imagine many people won’t do this.

There’s a limited number of each deal, the better ones tend to sell out quickly, and this year some of the deals will offer a portion of the available items on ‘pre-sale’ — with access codes made available on the prize provider’s Facebook page, as an incentive to get people liking their pages.

It’s being covered across lots of blogs and forums, and in the past there have been some pretty good deals. So far the Daily Getaways website shows the first two weeks’ worth of deals and there aren’t any that I’ll be jumping on.

Monday, April 9 there’s 10,000 Priority Club points for $67, just over $60 using an Amex for the purchase. And there are larger points purchase amounts at this price as well. And that’s a good price for the points! But you can buy points at this price any day of the week, provided you have at least 5000 points in your Priority Club account already — just book and cancel cash and points awards, you’re basically buying points at a discount that way and then when you cancel you get the purchased points back rather than the cash component of the cash and points award back.

Tuesday, April 10 there’s a 1-day Avis rental car for $30 after Amex discount, that’s fine but I don’t see any reason to prepay Avis which will preclude points earning or other discounts, I can often get rental cars at this price point anyway. They’re also selling a Chairmans Club membership for ~ $1000 after discount, the status is one of my favorites in all of travel, the best available car on the lot whenever you rent a mid-size (excluding specialty cars like Corvettes etc), they’ll deliver cars to you, and they drive you back to the terminal instead of your having to ride the shuttle bus. But you need to rent cars a lot to make the $1000 worthwhile.

Wednesday, April 11 there’s pre-paid Vegas hotel deals but Vegas deals are a dime a dozen, choose your property, I’m not a fan of prepaying and I certainly wouldn’t stay at Circus Circus.

Thursday, April 12 there’s packaged attractions in major cities and that’s great if you’re visiting those cities and want to do all the major touristy things that included.

Friday, April 13 it’s Busch Gardens or Seaworld for ~ $40 after Amex discount.

The following week has deals from Diamond Resorts, Alamo, Marriott, Caesars hotels, and OMNI hotels.

The best, deal, probably, is ~ 20% off on the purchase of Marriott Travel Cards (prepaid gift cards, full discount with Amex to purchase) on Wednesday, April 18. I’m not a Marriott guy but for those who are this is probably worth doing.

I’m looking forward to their revealing the offers which start April 23! Hopefully something I’ll find something to jump on.

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community InsideFlyer.com, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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  1. That Marriott offer would be 30% off if paid with Amex plus I’d think you would still earn Marriott points. Am I correct on that?

    (I am looking at staying at a Courtyard on the big Island of Hawaii and this may be an excellent way to say using points and buy the hotel for cheap!

  2. I spent several dollars last year on various deals. Based on what’s shown so far (first 2 weeks), my bank account is safe. Hopefully week 3+ will have better offerings.

  3. Sorry, miscalculated. It would be 20% off, but still a heck of a deal over my other options in buying gift cards.

  4. “just book and cancel cash and points awards, you’re basically buying points at a discount that way and then when you cancel you get the purchased points back rather than the cash component of the cash and points award back.”

    Maybe it’s just me but can you please explain this process with a little more detail? I’m new to Priority Club.

  5. Beth,

    In order to cash+points booking with Priority Club, you have to have at least 5,000 points in your account.
    Then find a property whose award level is 15,000 points and book a cash+points award. Choose the 5,000+ $60 option and book it. Then go back to your reservation and cancel it. Instead of being refunded 5,000+ $60, you will get 15,000 as a refund. Thus, effectively you purchased 10,000 points for $60. However, these points do not count toward status (Gold, Platinum etc.) Points purchased via Points.com and Discover America Daily Gateaways do count for status.

  6. I am an Avis Chairman…. I not sure what it is worth, but it is a great benefit and great service. If you rent alot of cars. I would think about it.

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