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Hotel loyalty scheme and ATL airport/Newnan suggestions.

Cardiff, Wales
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Hotel loyalty scheme and ATL airport/Newnan suggestions.

Hi, I'm arriving in Atl at 8pm after a 10 hour flight from Britain, picking up a rental car at around 9pm ish.

So I think I'm going to be too tired to drive to Pensacola that night, therefore I'm gonna need a hotel to stay at!

Anyone have a recommendation looking to spend $80 and be safe with a 24 hour McDonalds nearby ;) Between ATL airport and Newnan?

Also I'll be in the states for a month and will be staying in various hotels, so I may aswell stick to the same hotel company and enroll on a loyalty scheme so any recommendations for that too would be much appreciated!

Gainesville, Georgia
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1. Re: Hotel loyalty scheme and ATL airport/Newnan suggestions.

newnan is not really enroute to pensacola. i'm usually wired when i get off a plane so i'd suggest driving on into alabama before stopping, masybe even making it as far as montgomery. but there are a lot of hotels in the auburn area, with a good selection along the entire route once you finalize a target. enjoy your trip!

Atlanta, Georgia
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2. Re: Hotel loyalty scheme and ATL airport/Newnan suggestions.

I think you're being overly optimistic to think you can clear customs and reclaim your baggage to get a rental car only one hour after you land. My estimation is that you will be departing the rental car lot closer to 10pm if your plane lands at 8.

Since you will remain on an interstate highway throughout your drive to Pensacola, you will have a very easy time finding somewhere to stay and eat. As you approach each exit, you will see signs and billboards advertising which hotels and which restaurants are available at each exit, and the signs will tell you which way to turn to get to those destinations.

If you decide to drive on into Montgomery, I recommend stopping right before you get to the city, as the area of Montgomery just south of the city is a bit dicey. The Eastdale/Taylor Road area, just as your approaching Montgomery, is very nice. Auburn is a good suggestion. But, if you want to stop earlier at one of the Newnam exits, Exit 47 has tons of chain restaurants and hotels. You will encounter major construction for several miles just past that exit, so if you're at all tired it will be a good place to stop.

If you're trying to select a chain, I find Marriott Courtyards to be the nicest of the mid to low-priced hotels, but often they're more expensive. I think I would go with Hampton Inn.

Cardiff, Wales
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3. Re: Hotel loyalty scheme and ATL airport/Newnan suggestions.

Hmm it looks pretty much on the way to me, just a few miles off the motorway by the looks of things.

Dont fancy driving the 140 miles to Montgomery, I have plenty of time anywho, so if anyone has a recommendation, hit me!

Cardiff, Wales
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4. Re: Hotel loyalty scheme and ATL airport/Newnan suggestions.

Thanks J, will have a look at Hampton Inn.

]

So would you recommend just going without booking and see what happens, with regards to tiredness and how quickly we can get out of ATL?

This will be my first time driving in the USA so you can see why maybe I'm a little bit hesitant to drive a long distance in the dark on a different side of the road in a car/suv that is double what I'm used to!

Gainesville, Georgia
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5. Re: Hotel loyalty scheme and ATL airport/Newnan suggestions.

you are correct and i am mistaken, newnan is along i-85-s.

Atlanta, Georgia
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6. Re: Hotel loyalty scheme and ATL airport/Newnan suggestions.

Regarding hotel loyalty programs, If you're planning to direct all your business to one program, Hilton and Marriott are really the only two worth considering, as they're far more likely to have properties wherever you go than any of the others. I have a lot of colleagues who're die-hard Marriott Rewards partisans who'll argue that Marriott's the way to go, but for me, I've gotten better value from my HiltonHHonors membership. Purely in terms of points, Marriott may be better, but I've generally had better luck finding a Hilton-affiliated property wherever I was going -- there are places where Marriott has almost no properties while there are several Hilton-branded options around. This will be especially true if you're driving around the states and stopping for the night without prior arrangements -- you're going to be more likely to find Hampton Inns at the price you're looking for (affiliated with Hilton) than Fairfield Inns (the equivalent Marriott brand). As a semi-random example, there are 43 Hampton Inns in Alabama, vs. around a dozen Fairfield Inns.

I've also generally found that Hilton generally does a better job of policing the brand standards at their properties. A Hampton Inn is going to be up to Hampton Inn standards 98 times out of a hundred, and if it's not they'll be hearing from the folks in Dallas at Hilton HQ. Marriott does reasonably well in this regard, but not to the extent Hilton does. I travel 35-40 weeks of the year, and I don't like unpleasant surprises when I show up at a hotel at 10:30 or later on a Sunday night. I can only think of one time in the last decade or so when I showed up at a Hilton property and had any significant disappointment (I'm excepting Doubletree from that, as I'll explain in a moment). I've been in several Courtyard by Marriott or Fairfield Inn properties that weren't up to the standard I expected.

Doubletree is the only Hilton brand that has a lot of variation from property to property. They're mostly older properties converted from another brand; most started out as fairly high-end hotels that didn't keep up that standard. I avoid them unless I have reason to believe that they're particularly good. I doubt there'll be anyplace where you'd be looking at Doubletree anyway -- despite the quality concerns, they tend to be pricier than the range you've mentioned.

Norfolk England
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7. Re: Hotel loyalty scheme and ATL airport/Newnan suggestions.

Hi

When you go to the USA you must have your first nights accomodation pre booked. They will want a written address on the visa waivier form.

Clive

Atlanta, Georgia
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8. Re: Hotel loyalty scheme and ATL airport/Newnan suggestions.

Good point, Clive.

Bluffton, South...
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9. Re: Hotel loyalty scheme and ATL airport/Newnan suggestions.

I don't know when your trip is so maybe you aren't looking anymore. But there are Hampton Inn's in both Newnan and also Fairburn which is between the airport and Newnan. I would recommend staying in Fairburn, the Hampton Inn is very nice and only about 2 years old. It is right off the interstate and close to a few restaurants. But the rates might be more than you want to spend, Hampton Inn's usually run closer to 90-100$ a night or more.

10. Re: Hotel loyalty scheme and ATL airport/Newnan suggestions.

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