Snag Hotel Deals With Private Sales

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Glenn Counts doesn't worry about airfare when he travels -- after all, he's a Continental Express pilot and can often hitch a ride. Hotels are a different story, though, so Counts is among a growing number of travelers jumping on the latest trend in discount hotel stays: private sales. A handful of Web sites offer registered members (registration is typically free) bargain-priced lodging that's often luxurious.

Counts most recently vacationed in Prague after a deal from Jetsetter lured him, he says, to "a really great luxury hotel that was actually in my price range." SniqueAway customer Lisa Litwiller, who will soon visit Williamsburg, Va., figures she'll save $350 on a two-night stay for two, compared with rates the same hotel recently listed on its Web site.

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Anne Kates Smith
Executive Editor, Kiplinger's Personal Finance

Anne Kates Smith brings Wall Street to Main Street, with decades of experience covering investments and personal finance for real people trying to navigate fast-changing markets, preserve financial security or plan for the future. She oversees the magazine's investing coverage,  authors Kiplinger’s biannual stock-market outlooks and writes the "Your Mind and Your Money" column, a take on behavioral finance and how investors can get out of their own way. Smith began her journalism career as a writer and columnist for USA Today. Prior to joining Kiplinger, she was a senior editor at U.S. News & World Report and a contributing columnist for TheStreet. Smith is a graduate of St. John's College in Annapolis, Md., the third-oldest college in America.