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Summer travel is upon us and with gas prices on the rise, what will leisure travelers do this summer? An insightful, accomplished editor friend of mine, from the Family Travel Network, reported that leisure travelers will take to the highways instead of the skies this summer.

So how will you vie for leisure travelers this summer?  What can you offer to be a standout in a crowd of sameness?  A city hotel, could win with lower weekend rates as much of their business is midweek.  But how do you extend an exciting weekend adventure for travelers who aren’t on business.  Maybe you offer children under the age of 10, a fun “CEO” package giving them special perks; a business brunch, an team building exercise with other “CEO” kids and a cool mocktail, and pool party.  City hotels can also map out nearby excursions that are fun for the entire family; shopping, museums, fun lunch outings, nearby parks and more.

Well you say, what if I am a resort-style property.  Resort’s obviously have more overhead but with that comes more amenities. Price lowering might not be an option, but value-add always is.  Why not offer ice-cream socials, make your own sundae buffets, have the chef conduct kids cooking/bakery classes, and/or utilize the activity instructors and have them create a summer take-home-craft; in example a bird feeder.

Teens and in-betweens are just plain tough, but one thing is for sure socializing, cool music, pizza and a “Parent’s Please Do Not Disturb” sign are a sure way to make them happy for an hour or so.

How will you incorporate social media?  Pinterest, one of the hotest new social media tools maybe worth a look. Develop a Pin-it-to-win-it campagin, using the idea of submitting a resort photo and getting people to re-pin it.  The person with the most re-pins wins something during their next stay such as a spa treatment, breakfast, or more.

Summer is right around the corner and travelers are planning today.  How will you reach them?