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Recap: The Week’s Biggest Stories and Best Deals

SmarterTravel

Following is our regular summary of the latest travel news and best frequent traveler promotions reviewed during the past week.

If it was a good deal—or a notably bad deal—from an airline, hotel, or car rental loyalty program, you can read all about it here, and plan your travel accordingly.

Priceline’s First Choice of Spokesman Was NOT William Shatner

In its early days, Priceline came close to choosing a celebrity spokesman whose later infamy could have drastically altered the company’s future. Guess who?

Delta Says ‘Forget the Price, Buy the Experience.’ Should You?

When choosing an airline, flyers’ number-one priority has traditionally been price. Delta thinks it can change that.

American Sets Start Date for Spend-Based Mile Earning

On August 1, American will follow Delta and United in converting its loyalty program to award miles based on dollars spent rather than distance flown. It’s a downgrade for all but the most frequent flyers.

Is the TSA’s PreCheck Overpriced and Overcomplicated?

Is cheaper PreCheck the fix for long security lines? The U.S. Travel Association thinks so.

One Hour of Free Inflight WiFi from T-Mobile

Got a smartphone and T-Mobile service? Traveling on a Gogo-equipped airline flight? If so, you’ll be entitled to a free hour of inflight WiFi, on every flight, beginning on June 13.

Red Roof Brings Transparency to Hotel WiFi Speeds

Red Roof Inns is bringing some clarity to the question of hotel WiFi performance with its Verified WiFi program, which uses an outside company to check WiFi speeds at Red Roof properties and certifies hotels that “have a good video streaming experience.”

Earn Up to Quadruple Southwest Points for Car Rentals

Through January 31, 2017, Rapid Rewards members can earn up to quadruple points for car rentals.

Uber Now Allows Advance Bookings

Uber’s new Scheduled Ride service launched this week in Seattle. Car-hire companies, which offer similar services, should be very afraid.

Win a 7-day Trip for 2 to Italy (or $4,000)

Enter the Eight O’Clock Coffee “Chill in Italy” sweepstakes by July 13 for a chance to win a seven-day trip for two to Italy, including air and hotel accommodations. (Winner may elect to receive a check for $4,000 in lieu of the trip.)

Somebody has to win, right? Might as well be you.

More from SmarterTravel:

After 20 years working in the travel industry, and 15 years writing about it, Tim Winship knows a thing or two about travel. Follow him on Twitter @twinship.

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