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Vacation Specialist: Brandon Smith
Travel AgentMy name is Brandon, I have been a travel specialist here at Dream Vacations since November 15th 2005. During that time I have sent more than 15,900 individuals on vacation to many various resorts in Mexico and the Caribbean. I love what I do, we make vacation dreams a reality! When you call me, get ready to travel because you and I will find exactly what you are looking for.

I have traveled out of the country to the following vacation spots; Aruba, Cabo San Lucas (2 times), Cancun, the Riviera Maya (8 times), Puerto Vallarta (3 times), Punta Cana and Jamaica (3 times). During these trips, a little of my time was spent relaxing but the majority of these trips have been work trips or FAMs we call them. During a FAM trip we are responsible for touring as many properties as possible so that we can be more familiar with the products we are offering. I feel that this gives me a tremendous advantage over other agencies based on personal experience and traveler feed back.

My most recent vacation was September 4th 2012 to the Iberostar Paraiso Maya in the Riviera Maya Mexico. I spent four nights there and I toured about 22 different resorts in the area. I had a great time this past September and I highly recommend the Iberostar Paraiso Maya!
bsmith@godreamvacations.com
Call Me Toll-Free:
1-800-828-0639 x102
What Clients Have Said About Me:
Jamie
“Brandon Smith has been very helpful. We have worked with him two years now and will call him again next year.”
Mina
“Brandon is the BEST and was very helpful.”
Nayri
“Brandon is always quick and responsive. This is why I always come back to him and send referrals over all the time.”
Richard
“Thank You Brandon. It was Great!!”
Kevin
“Brandon Smith kept us informed !”
Hyatt Ziva Los Cabos EVOLUTION OF ALL INCLUSIVE
by on July 22, 2014 | No Comments »
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First of all, when you see a Hyatt “Ziva” Resort, that is their label for family friendly. When you see Hyatt “Zilara” Resort, that is their adult only brand (such as the old “The Royal in Cancun”). Hyatt has purchased the Dreams Cancun resort and are renovating it now (opening in 2015) as well as they have purchased the Ritz Carlton Rose Hall in Montego Bay and are renovating and adding on to it and should open later this year they said, November 2014. The Hyatt Ziva / Zilara in Rose Hall will have both an adult only wing and then a family wing, thus the two names. They also have the old Dreams Puerto Vallarta and are planning a big renovation there, may open later this year as well.

For me, the Hyatt Ziva Los Cabos was a fantastic resort! Big pool area, large enough to get away from the swim up bar and had an infinity pool area as well as a separate activities pool. The food was very good each time I ate there, especially the breakfast. The beach was very large, didn’t use it but looked amazing and yes the waves were high! The resort is located IN San Jose, right across the street there is a dolphin pool excursion and you could literally walk to the bars if you wanted or take a 5 minute taxi ride. You could also walk to the “Mega Mart” if you needed any supplies such as sun screen, batteries, new shorts lol or whatever.

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The room was great! It had the large Mexican style tiles (not marble), jacuzzi, double sinks and good size balcony. Most all rooms will have an ocean view. They do have the adult only pool with pool bar in the Premium Section that was a nice quiet relief but it sits behind buildings so no ocean view room. The restaurants were decorated just like every where else, all of which were air conditioned except for one which was down by the ocean. Night life, they have a sports bar with AC and karaoke nights that they are planning on renovating soon plus they have a nice upscale coffee/drink bar right off the lobby, can’t remember what is was called or how late it was open but that’s where we had our meeting with Mike Going from Funjet. They also have a full Martini Bar, 7 total pools and nightly entertainment at the “Grand Theatre.”

Overall, I think this resort is just as nice as the Dreams but I don’t think you are going to see Hyatt Resorts like this available with Apple Vacations going forward. I have no fear recommending this resort as a “6G Apple” if I were rating hotels. I think this resort gives you the best “5 Star” Family vacation in San Jose Del Cabo and for just adults traveling, no reason not to go there. It did not feel all family, it could be good for anyone I truly believe.

Iberostar Rose Hall Suites Image Gallery
by on July 15, 2014 | No Comments »
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IBEROSTAR’s Premium Collection. Iberostar Rose Hall Suites is a premiere choice for family vacations, romantic getaways, or group travel to Jamaica. Iberostar Rose Hall Suites is conveniently located in Montego Bay. Guests of Iberostar Rose Hall Suites have full access to all the facilities at Iberostar Rose Hall Beach.  With close proximity to Rose Hall, guests can experience traditional Jamaican lifestyle and enjoy all the island has to offer. The Iberostar Rose Hall Suites strives to offer guests the ultimate in rest and relaxation. All of the elegantly furnished junior suites are spacious with inviting, magnificent views.

Get to know all about Jamaica
by on July 10, 2014 | No Comments »
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All Inclusive Group Travel
by on July 8, 2014 | 1 Comment »
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Have you ever thought about how fun it would be for you and some of your closest friends or family to get together and take a trip to an All Inclusive Resort? Well, I have and I can tell you this, it’s easier than you think and traveling as a group can be such a great vacation for everyone involved!

Here at Dream Vacations we offer All Inclusive resorts to many various locations in Mexico and the Caribbean with areas such as Cancun, Riviera Maya, Punta Cana and Jamaica. For group travel, we have discounts that start with as little as $20 off per person and go up to an entire free vacation for one person in the group for every 21 adults that travel. No matter the resort or location you chose to go with, we will offer the best overall service and price for your group. Don’t think you have enough people to travel to qualify for a group? Think again!

Our most common type of group vacation starts off with as little as 5 rooms and 10 adults traveling. We call these our “Social Groups.” In years past, groups would of had to have had at least 10 rooms as minimum with only one person paying for the group. So really the only people who could save money in the past with this many people traveling were groups such as company travel or weddings that the bride and groom paid for all guests (doesn’t happen often). Now with our new Social Groups that have 5 rooms or more, we can help families or couples book their vacation from any departure city for various lengths of stay at the same contracted resort with an extra discount. Example; Joe and Sally fly from Chicago and want to stay for 7 nights while John and Sue fly from St. Louis and only want to stay for 4 nights but each couple wants to pay separately. NO PROBLEM! We simply request a promo code to use when booking each reservation that will save anywhere from $20 to $40 off per person at the time of booking.

With traditional groups, if you are  going to have 10 rooms or more with at least 21 to 26 adults traveling, you can qualify for one person totally free. If the group is traveling on an “Charter Flight Package” it only takes the 21st person to get a full air and hotel free traveler (only pay for taxes). If you package is for just a resort stay without airfare or if the airfare is on any commercial airline such as American, Delta or United, the 26th passenger gets a full free hotel stay and will only need to pay for the airfare. For traditional groups packages, in order to receive most discounts one person is considered the group leader and would be responsible for gathering all payments as well as names of travelers would be partaking in the fun!

Planning a group vacation is easier than you think. Get together with friends or family, have some dinner and drinks to talk about where you might want to go and even take your time looking online at some of our most popular locations mentioned in this blog to have an idea of works best for you. Then simply give any one of our expert travel specialist a call to get started!

Looking for the best deal? Number of nights matters…
by on July 1, 2014 | No Comments »
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best vacation deals 2Part Three and the final installment of “Looking for the best deal on your next vacation.” If you missed Part One or Two, click here to take a look. If I were to say to you; “So I want the Presidential Suite for less than the Standard room, is that possible?” you first thought would be to say no, that doesn’t make any sense. How could I get the best room for a lower cost than the standard room? Well you can’t and neither can you get more nights on a vacation for less money than few nights…. unless….

If you stay for longer, you can get a better price: I hear this question more often than you would think and my initial reaction is the same as I think yours would be if I posed the same question to you as above right? Well this scenario can and does happen but only in about 1 in a 1000 times (remember the Odds and Averages?) So you call in and ask for a price on a 5 night vacation, then you ask “if I stay for 7 nights, will that be cheaper?” How could that possibly happen? Any guesses…. This can happen one of three most common ways.

First of all, if your 5 night flight price is much higher than the 7 night flight price, then adding 2 nights in a resort can make it seem as if your rate is lower for 7 nights. Such as the 5 night airfare was $700 per ticket but the 7 night airfare was only $400 per ticket and your room rate is $100 extra per night. You add two nights for $200 but you save $100 because your flight cost went down by $300.

best vacation dealsSecond, if there happens to be a promotion at a particular resort where they are offering “free nights” when booking 7 nights or more. I have seen a few cases where a hotel offered 2 free nights when booking 7 night stays so adding 2 nights was the same price as booking 5 nights. This is probably the least common occurrence and typically seems to happen more with NON-All Inclusive Resorts.

And Lastly, when we have charter packages with Apple Vacation and Funjet Vacations. These such companies really risk the fact that they are going to fill their planes when they offer these special charter flight packages. If they don’t fill the seat, they still have to pay the airline for it. So, maybe there is a big sale price on a 7 night charter flight because those are actually “packages” that is less expensive than your 5 night flight on a commercial airline such as American Airlines. This is more common than you might think because everyone wants a “package” but true packages only happen on these type of charter programs. If your booking a commercial flight with connections for example, you are truly buying a flight and then booking a hotel. They are combined as one purchase not discounted because of booking together.

Looking for the best deal on your next vacation? Last minute savings…
by on June 24, 2014 | No Comments »
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best vacation dealsWelcome to Part Two of how to find the best deal on your next vacation. If you missed Part One, you can click here to go back and take a look at what all we covered then. We get a lot of calls and requests for last minute deals for places like Cancun or Jamaica and believe me, they are out there but they aren’t always what they seem nor are they always exactly what you wanted in the first place 3 months ago when you started planning your vacation.

I mentioned in Part One that personally, I’m a man that plays the odds or averages. And that I have come to learn that that only consistent thing about prices in the business is that they are inconsistent. No one knows all the answers nor do we know what is going to happen tomorrow when it comes to prices on vacations. So today were are going to talk about the myth that is “Waiting until last minute to book your vacation will be the best deal.” This is the Part Two of a three part series so stay tuned for more answers in my next blog.

Waiting until last minute to book your vacation: Waiting until 30 days or less to book your vacation can save you money IF and ONLY IF you are wanting to travel in the off season time frame or if you really don’t care about the quality of your resort. Keep in mind the best resorts and the best flights and the best travel dates are the best because everyone wants them! Therefore, if you are traveling during peak seasons such as Spring Break, Summer or Holidays such as Easter or Christmas, booking early will almost be guaranteed to be less expensive if you book as early as 10 months in advance. For example, if you want to travel during Spring Break next year, I will suggest that you book your vacation no later than Christmas the year before. Last minute deals are normally for mid to lower level resorts that need rooms filled or for flights that are on mid-week flights that the airline could not fill.

best vacation deals 2I’m not saying you can’t wait and try to look for last minute deals because like I said, they do exist but keep in mind that in many cases a last minute deal is going to save you $50 a person or maybe $100 a person. The Odds are (remember I’m an odds guy) that the prices will go up as the planes fill, because that’s what they do on a regular basis. Airlines don’t have people who check their own prices and change them all day long, they computer programs that are written in such a way that the airline is going to make as much money as they can. Think of it this way, if you go to the casino, no matter the game you play the odds are that the house is going to win. Does someone walk out of there with a penny slot jack pot on a Wednesday at 9:47 am? Sure, it happens. But how many people walk out of that casino with less money than when they walked in? That’s the same with waiting until last minute to book your vacation, you are beating against the house and the house (airlines) normally win.

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