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5 Questions to Ask When Booking Your Colorado Vacation

If you’ve decided that you want to visit Colorado this summer, you may already know where you want to go and what you want to do. You might have settled on fun activities, looked up a couple can’t-miss restaurants, and started day dreaming about sharing your vacation photos. Maybe you’ve even finalized your dates and picked out the perfect hotel. Wondering what you might be forgetting? Here are five questions to ask as you start to make your reservations. Not only will they open up new possibilities, but they will also help you prepare so that you can have the best experience on your Colorado vacation.

1. “What’s going on while I’m in town?” or “What do you recommend I do/ see?”

Colorado Events and FestivalsNo matter when you come to Colorado, you’re sure to find a variety of events from beer festivals, wine tastings and food fests to celebrations of local history, races and athletic competitions, and all manner of fun for everyone in your group. Be sure to find out what is happening near you while you’re in town and you’ll get to experience the best of the local culture. In addition, you might learn of nearby attractions that are off the beaten path, whether it’s a little-used hiking trail, a killer restaurant deal, or the best place to catch a glimpse of wildlife.

2. “Are you offering any specials?” or “Do you know of any deals going on?”

Colorado Specials and DealsIt never hurts to ask, right? In addition to doing some initial price comparison, be sure to find out what kind of deals are going on. Even if you weren’t planning on, say, renting bikes to ride around town, you may find out that they are discounted (or free!) with your lodging. Or maybe you can package a hotel room with local guided tours or dining on site. Even if you aren’t able to get a discount on the specific reservation you’re asking about, you may find out about other deals that are available, either on different dates (if your schedule is flexible) or on other available services (like spa treatments or car rentals).

3. “Can I use public transportation, can I walk, or do I need a car?” or “What’s the best way to get around the area?”

Colorado transportationIf you’re planning to stay in Denver, then you may already be familiar with the public transportation options, but once you venture into the mountains, your options can vary dramatically. Before assuming that you’ll be able to figure out your traveling on the fly, be sure to find out what’s available. Some destinations may have local transportation around town but nothing to get you to towns further away. Other destinations may have no options at all. The last thing you want is to find out you need to rent a car after you’ve landed in Colorado. If you truly don’t want to drive, you’ll want to know in advance that your activities and dining will need to be in walking distance of your hotel (and you’ll need to figure out how to get there from the airport).

4. “How far are you from….(the airport, downtown, the mountains)?” or “Where is the closest….(store, restaurant, bus stop)?”

Planning transportation for Colorado vacations

Thinking you’ll want to visit Pearl Street in Boulder, Mesa Verde National Park, and Pikes Peak? Better give yourself plenty of time to get there. Colorado is a big state, and distances that look easy to navigate on a map can turn into full-day excursions once you're actually on the road. Before you put together your itinerary, be sure to double check the travel time between each. Keep in mind that reviewing mileage might be equally deceiving – if you’re traveling back roads, 30 miles could mean two hours, while on I-70 it’s less than half an hour. Even if you don’t plan to cross the entire state, towns and cities can be both bigger and smaller than you might realize. Sure, that vacation home has gorgeous views and easy access to blue ribbon fishing waters, but you may not realize that it is miles from the nearest store or restaurant.

5. “What is the weather like that time of year?”

Colorado WeatherColorado is located in the southern half the US, but much of the terrain is high-elevation desert, a climate that many visitors have never experienced before. If you’re visiting a mountain resort town, you may discover that your hotel doesn’t have air conditioning, and if you are in town early in the season, you may even find yourself using the heat. At the same time, if you are traveling from the mountains to Denver, you will discover a dramatic temperature change; while it might only be 50' in Vail or Aspen, it could easily be 80' in the Denver area. When making your reservation, be sure to ask about what kind of weather to expect around your destination for that time of year. Not only will it help you plan what kind of clothing to pack, but it may change your plans in terms of activities and dining.

Taking the time to ask these five questions when you make your reservations will ensure you get the most out of your Colorado vacation this summer.

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