Ever Had A #VacayGoneCrayCray? The Story Of Our Nightmare Travel Night.

This is a sponsored post. Please note that, as always, any personal opinions reflected in this post are my own and have not been influenced by the sponsor or compensation received in any way.

Choice Hotels vacaygonecraycray

I absolutely love to travel. I was fortunate to have parents that found both value and enjoyment in travel. They turned as many things into little family trips as possible. Many of them were long car trips, including trips from home (New Jersey) to New Orleans, Key West and Canada. I don’t get to travel as often as I’d like and wish I could do it a lot more often. But it isn’t all bad. I have lots of memories. It’s part of what travel s all about, right? Making memories?

Most of our memories are really good. We do have a few that aren’t so good. You know what I’m talking about. Vacations gone bad. Everyone has had them. I have a bunch  of stories from trips that just didn’t go as planned. But there are a couple that really stand out above the others. Like the story of our little road trip to upstate New York, which took place somewhere around 2003.

It’s the dead of summer. It’s hot and humid. We’d driven the six hours to upstate New York to look at some cars. (We buy all of our cars from one dealer up there.) Due to timing we need to get a room. Money was really tight so I got us a room in this cheap low-budget motel. I saw it on the internet and it looked decent enough. It was near the dealership and a fast food restaurant and the main highway so I figured it couldn’t be that bad. 1:30 am we pull into a full parking lot and check in.

It didn’t take more then about fifteen minutes to realize this was not going to end well. We got to our room, put the bags down and closed the front door. Or so we thought. Upon closer inspection we discovered that the front door wouldn’t close all of the way, it stayed open a crack. We call the desk and learn that the hotel is full. Due to the hour and our state of exhaustion we decide we’re going to stay put in our room. After all, the opening in the door was small, noone could fit in with the door locked. There was only one problem. The door wouldn’t lock. The deadbolt was broken (also apparently the reason why the door wouldn’t shut all of the way).

We chained ourselves into the room, feeling oh so secure knowing there was only the equivalent of a backpack zipper standing between us and any unsavory characters that might be about. It was hot and we were tired and just wanted to rest. UH no, that wasn’t in the cards. The air conditioner didn’t work. When we tried to get it to work it fell right off of the wall with an unceremonious crash. We called the office and were told there were no other rooms and no other air conditioners.

Shaking our heads in disbelief we decide to turn on the tv and relax for a few minutes. Oh joy! The giant tube style tv was bolted to the floor. You couldn’t see it from any comfortable position on the bed due to the way the room was set up. And to add insult to injury, the tv didn’t have a remote, it was manually controlled. Not that there was a big need to concern ourselves about that, it turned out we were only able to get two station – snow and fuzz.

It was time to call it a night. The sooner we drifted off the sooner it would be morning and the sooner we’d be able o get the heck out of there. I don’t know about you but one of the last things I do before going to bed is to go to the bathroom. This would be the point in time where we discovered that the toilet wouldn’t flush unless you lifted off the lid on the back and manually pulled on the lever. We confirmed once again that there were no other rooms. We passed out due to exhaustion, got four hours sleep and got the heck out of there.

Isn’t that crazy! That’s definitely a bit “cray cray”, right!

These are the types of memories that the folks at Choice Hotels are looking for.You’re familiar with Choice Hotels, right? Of course you are. The company’s brands include Comfort Inn, Comfort Suites, Quality, Sleep Inn, Clarion, Cambria Hotels & Suites, MainStay Suites, Suburban Extended Stay Hotel, Econo Lodge and Rodeway Inn. Choice Hotels International, Inc. franchises more than 6,300 hotels, representing more than 500,000 rooms, in the United States and more than 35 other countries and territories.

Now that you know who Choice Hotels is, here’s why they’re looking for your story.

“Every traveler has a story about a vacation or business trip that didn’t necessarily go according to plan,” said Robert McDowell, senior vice president, marketing and distribution of Choice Hotels. “This summer and in honor of our 75th anniversary, we wanted to connect with our travelers in a fun and unexpected way. Through the #VacayGoneCrayCray contest, Choice Hotels can help turn those crazy misadventures back into positive memories.”

YouTube sensations Rhett & Link have signed on to generate buzz surrounding the contest, and will select the best of the worst trip experiences to reenact on their Good Mythical Morning Show every Thursday for their millions of viewers. For consideration and to be eligible for the grand prize, participants are required to submit their most extreme vacation misadventures beginning June 30, 2014, via www.vacaygonecraycray.com or through the embedded video link on Rhett & Link’s YouTube channel. The first vacation misadventure will be reenacted by Rhett & Link on Thursday, July 17, 2014.

The contest entry deadline is August 27, 2014 at 11:59 PM, EST, and the potential winner will be announced September 4, 2014.

For Official Rules, including prize descriptions, and how to enter, visit www.vacaygonecraycray.com

Here’s a video that explains it a bit better.

Do you like to travel? Have you ever had a vacay gone a little cray cray? What happened?

Choice Hotels vacaygonecraycray

About the Author

NJ Mom of 2 boys. – TJ, a 21 year old, and CJ, a 17 year old with Down Syndrome. Jersey girl. I have three younger brothers, all of whom have children. Social media enthusiast. Ds Advocate. Cat person. I love rock music! I HATE the misuse of the word retarded. I take it personally and find it very offensive.

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  1. Have bag (always packed and ready for travel). I( still well remember a family vacation back in the late 90’s. Our old small Class C RV meant to sleep six was packed with family–hubby, four kids, one spouse, favorite uncle and son, and me of course–drove 1,000+ miles to Florida and back. Sleeping, and eating in tight quarters there was no room for relaxing. Gas stations few and far between in the night we drove on until the tank ran bone dry. Call AAA. On the road again, flat tire stopped us in our tracks. Get tow truck as no commercial tires available on the interstate. Naturally the AC hiccoughed. Of course, the septic system backed up. Years later, I am thankful that the trip was before three of the kids’ spouses and seven grand kids.

  2. Oh man, what a nightmare that was for you guys! I don’t have anything nearly that crazy!

  3. Oh goodness yes on the terrible vacaygonecraycray. I live in NC now but all of my family is in New York and getting a bit older so driving the whole way is not an option anymore. We’ve had some terrible experiences the worst being during a snow storm and stayed in a No Name Hotel in PA. Let’s just say the Bates motel would of been a better choice. Everyone slept but me since I just knew Freddie Crougar was under the bed. haha. Those memories last forever 🙂

  4. Thankfully, I’ve never had any actual “cray-cray” travel mishaps. I’ve heard horror stories from other people though. That’s why I always keep aware of exits and lighting in stairwells, etc.

  5. I’ve never had any story-worthy travel disasters. However I do always look for emergency exits and make sure my room is well lit before I leave just in case.

  6. I’ve had rained out vacations like everyone but no real bad trips. I think the only horrible thing that ever happened was when a blogger lied to a hotel and talked them into giving her my room that the brand booked me, leaving me in the rain. Ugh!

  7. WOW! That sucks you’ve had a few horrible experiences. I think we all have though. It’s a given. Not everything goes perfectly according to planned lol One of my worst vacays was in Banff a couple of summers ago for my birthday and Canada Day long weekend. Pretty much spent the whole weekend in the hotel, none of the stuff we had planned and paid a decent amount of money to pre-book happened. All because of one person that was on the trip with us. I hope to go again someday soon and experience the things I didn’t get to.

  8. We have definitely had a few “vacays gone cray-cray.” On one of our more memorable vacations, my son and I got food poisoning, then I got a blistering sunburn. Overall, I spent most of the trip in bed.

  9. We once stayed at a hotel at Hilton Head that had a kitchen fire about 20 minutes after we checked in!! Luckily I’m a little neurotic about finding the emergency exits upon entering a hotel, so we knew what to do and all. And it was fine, just a few hours out in the parking lot. But still, scary!

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