contactless guest service card reader

7 Ways to Offer a Contactless Guest Experience: A New Era for Hotels and Vacation Rentals

This summer, the travel industry has seen a drastic change in tourism and vacation planning with people around the globe asking “when can we travel again?” From last-minute getaways, local staycations, regional road trips, and even turning homes into dream hotels or destinations, people are anxious to experience the world again. The Fear of Travel has created a lot of uncertainty and hesitation for travelers to leave their comfort zones. This is why it is vital and more important than ever for hotels and vacation rental owners to adopt new systems and protocols in place at their properties. Starting with the contactless guest experience.

contacless payment

Hotels and Vacation Rentals: Where to Begin

Hotels and vacation rental owners are now asking themselves “what can we do to encourage guests to stay,” as well as “how can we make guests feel safe?” At CuddlyNest we offer every vertical of accommodation, from hotels to vacation rentals to homes, and everything in between. We too have considered these same questions and applied them to our own business model as the travel industry takes steps to offer a safer and more secure experience for guests, staff, and owners. Which is why we have strongly encouraged our partners and property owners to implement contactless services and offerings at their accommodations.

But of course, actions, speak louder than words. This summer, we at CuddlyNest, announced our newest updates to our site and design. Including a brand new sanitation filter that will show guests the last time their desired accommodation was properly disinfected before they book. We also introduced our newest COVID-19 Exceptional Cancellation policy that will allow guests to receive a full refund, with service fee included, in the form of a CuddlyNest voucher that is valid until December 2021.

contactless service tool sanitation

Seven Contactless Services

As an OTA, it is our responsibility to ensure that all guests booking with us feel safe, comfortable, and confident in choosing accommodation for whatever type of travel they are embarking on. We are sharing 10 ways vacation rentals and hotels can offer contactless services in this new travel era. Starting with contactless payment and check-ins.

Contactless Payment

For hotels, one of the best ways to avoid interaction when booking accommodation on site is through contactless payment. By offering contactless payment options, hotels and guests can prevent the use of cash or physical credit cards, and instead, use wireless methods and technology to pay for your stay. Many smartphones also support this type of technology making it incredibly convenient. You can simply tap your phone or card with a chip onto the payment terminal, also known as an RFID reader, without exchanging your payment back and forth with the front desk clerk. This process is fast, secure, hygienic, and will allow hotel properties to make on-site reservations quicker and safer.

facial recognition

Contactless Check-in

Through passport scanning, facial recognition, and app technology, guests are now able to check into their vacation rental or hotel without needing to interact with the hotel front desk or property owner using Near Field Communication (NFC). Your second step after arriving at the property can be hassle-free with little to no preparation necessary.

contactless guest experience payment

Keyless Entry

Entry to your hotel room or vacation rental requires just a tap or your mobile or wireless device. It’s that easy. Many hotels around the world have begun using chip devices to keep everything you need for your stay all in one place, including your trip funds. Similar to contactless payment, using RFID technology, hotels are converting key cards into chip bracelets where guests can add their credit cards to be used for hotel purchases. This also acts as a key to access facilities around the property. These bracelets can even be customized to your purchased package allowing you access to VIP services and facilities if they are included in your stay.

contactless guest service

Pre-Stay Communication

It is normal that your guests may have some questions before and during their stay. Communicating with your guest prior to their visit and being accessible to contact during their visit will allow property owners, staff, and guests to remain a safe distance. We recommend sending a digital welcome packet to your guests prior to check-in including any emergency contact information, and local emergency contacts for the area in which they are visiting. These welcome packets should also include detailed information for all contactless processes at the property including keyless entry and self-service check-in, and food and beverage services.

Go the extra mile to provide your guests with the best ways to contact you digitally including SMS, iMessage, email, and free international messaging applications like Whatsapp, to ensure that for whatever reason if your guest needs to reach you, they can. Taking these small yet effective extra steps will make your guests feel even more comfortable at your property.

amazon alexa sensor technology

Sensor Technology

Whether you would like to turn down the thermostat or relax and watch TV, more and more properties are implementing sensor technology to encourage non-touch amenities. While this may seem like a pricey move especially for single vacation rentals, hosts can get creative by using smart technologies like Google Home and Amazon Alexa which allows guests to voice particular actions and commands within the property. Using these types of devices will create even more convenience and ease for your guests, allowing them to focus on enjoying their stay.

food and beverage services

Food and Beverage Services and Partnerships

Although you may be craving a bite in the hotel dining room, hotels are now encouraging room service over in-restaurant dining. While this is a temporary change to prepare for more socially distant facilities and public spaces, it’s the best way to enjoy the delicious hotel meals at a safe distance.

Over the last few months, the hospitality and food and beverage industries have also collaborated to offer exceptional food delivery services to both hotels and vacation rentals. Property owners are now partnering with food delivery services including Postmates, Uber Eats, Door Dash, and more that have committed to providing safe, secure, and contactless service, especially during the pandemic.

Property owners have also begun adding additional services including meal preparation and continental breakfasts to add more amenities to their sites.

explore outdoors

Off-Site Activities and Excursions

While hotels and vacation rentals work to create more ambient and spaced public settings, guests can help here by exploring off-property locations and activities. Choose accommodations with close access to nature, off the beaten path destinations, and staycations. Now is the perfect time for property owners and hotels to expand on what opportunities and offerings there are for their guests near the property without reaching out of guest comfort.

Pro tip: Ask your guest to fill out a survey prior to their visit, so you can help customize their experience and make suggestions for activities, restaurants, and excursions based on their needs and preferences. As a vacation rental owner, taking an interest in your guest satisfaction will not only leave you with a sparkling review but a loyal customer.

If you are a property owner, hotelier, or are looking to launch your own bookable accommodation, implement these steps to ensure a safe, secure, and seamless contactless guest experience. It’s the properties that go the extra mile that will leave the best impression on visitors. Find all types of accommodations, vacation rentals, hotels, and more for a price that cannot be beat, on CuddlyNest.


About CuddlyNest:

An Orlando, Florida, based start-up, CuddlyNest is a fourth-year start-up and has grown exponentially since, offering reliable bookings at over one million properties all around the world. CuddlyNest’s mission is to offer all travelers all accommodations at an unbeatable price. The online rental marketplace created an innovative booking fee-sharing model that has been the key to the company’s success. Having the lowest aggregate commission fee in the market allows property managers to be in charge of their earnings while providing guests with the lowest booking price in the market.

amalfi coast view

The Top Ten Road Trips You Need to Take This Summer

As countries around the globe are beginning to revive their summer tourism, now is the perfect opportunity to explore your own and neighboring countries by taking road trips. Travel experts are claiming that RV travel and domestic tourism will boom this summer, which means it’s time to hit the open road. The best part about road trips is that you can turn any 4-wheel ride into an adventure. But did you know there are certain places that are known for being the best road trip destinations?

Let the Road Trips Begin:

We have created the perfect guide to the top ten road trips you need to take this summer. That way when you settle in for an epic excursion, you’ll know exactly where to head. First stop: Route 66.

route 66 in the USA

Take a ride down the historic Route 66.

Route 66 – USA

If you have ever taken a drive in the states, you most likely heard of the U.S. Highway, Route 66. This highway first gained popularity in the mid-1920s as the country’s first all-weather highway linking Chicago to Los Angeles. In total it spans over 2,400 miles and offers so much to explore along the way. This route became very famous as it goes straight through the heart of America crossing over eight states and three time zones. These states include Illinois, Kansas, Missouri, Oklahoma, Texas, New Mexico, Arizona, and finally California.

This road trip route will take you through historic and natural landmarks in the southern half of the country including the Grand Canyon, the Ozarks, Mojave Desert, The Painted Desert, and more. You can even pop in and visit the Route 66 Hall of Fame, to learn more about the history of this national treasure. One thing is for sure, if you are embarking on a USA road trip this summer, you better take a drive down Route 66.

Mongol Rally – Mongolia

Buckle in, bring a good book, and get set because the Mongol Rally road trip extends over 10,00 miles. That’s right! This epic adventure takes you all the way from the UK to Mongolia. While there is no official route, the goal of this road trip is to make it from any European destination to Mongolia in one piece and sometime between mid-August to mid-September. It can also take anywhere from a few weeks to a couple of months depending on your route and can cross over 18 countries. So if you are looking for a wild ride through the world’s most intense terrains, and the opportunity to see Europe and Asia unlike ever before, then this is the perfect road trip for you. One adventurer, Bassam Tarazi, put it best when he said “When you travel across half the world, you learn some things.”

amalfi coast view

Indulge in all the beauty of the Amalfi Coast.

Amalfi Coast – Italy

A UNESCO Heritage site, due to its beauty and rare natural landscape, one must visit the Amalfi Coast in Italy at least once in their lifetime. The actual town of Amalfi and its neighbors are located in the southern province of Salerno. While the towns are typically only accessible by bus and ferry, this is the perfect destination for road trips from cities like Naples, Rome, Florence, and Milan. Often compared to a painting, the Amalfi Coast cities welcome thousands and thousands of visitors every spring and summer to back on its beaches and take in the panoramic views from the top of the hills. If you’re looking to fall in love with a destination this summer, then you definitely will with the Amalfi Coast.

Costa Verde – Brazil

The journey from Rio de Janeiro to Sâo Paulo is one for the books. While you have to pass through some busy traffic the city first, the drive along the Costa Verde is absolutely breathtaking. The full route is 350 miles (560 kilometers). There are multiple stops you will want to make along the way. Including visiting the UNESCO site of Paraty, taking a boat tour to one of the 365 islands off the coast, and hiking the Serro del Mar mountain range. We recommend taking a surf lesson, paddleboard, enjoy the sunshine off the Atlantic Coast and so much more. This is one of the best ways to see the best Brazil has to offer.

12 apostles beach in australia

The stunning Twelve Apostles on Great Ocean Road.

Great Ocean Road – Australia

If Australia is in your travel plans this year or you’re an Aussie and want to explore your own country, then take a drive down Great Ocean Road. The expansive stretch of coast will take you along some of Australia’s most beautiful landscapes. Including the 12 Apostles, Great Otway National Park, London Arch, and more. The entire drive is about 250 miles (400 kilometers), about a 90-minute drive from Melbourne’s city center. It extends all the way to the southernmost point of the continent. Extend your getaway and stay at one of southern Australia’s vacation rentals or hotels to indulge in a one-of-a-kind outdoor getaway.

Panorama Route – South Africa

South Africa’s scenic road trip, Panorama Route, is not just a beautiful drive but a historic adventure through the world’s third-largest canyon, Blyde River Canyon. The entire route takes you through the Mpumalanga province and takes about two to three days to complete. Visitors will love adventuring through waterfalls, forests, and South Africa’s many natural landmarks including Echo Caves and God’s Window. You can also visit national parks and reserves including Kruger National Park and Mount Sheba Nature Reserve. Take a safari drive through the game reserve. You may even spot some of the big five along the way. This will be a trip unlike ever before.

iceland ring road view

Iceland’s coasts are filled with charming towns and villages.

Ring Road – Iceland

Iceland’s Ring Road will take you around the entire island. If you ever dreamt about exploring Iceland’s breathtaking waterfalls and geysers, then this is the best way to see it all. The full drive will take about 12 to 13 hours. However, due to the conditions and roads usually takes about a week to complete. There are a few routes you can take, and route one is about 800 miles long. Your trip will most likely start in Reykjavík, the capital of Iceland. Start off day 1 of your adventure by indulging in a day of luxury at the Blue Lagoon. Your excursions will also take you whale-watching, glacier walking, hiking, and so much more. Discover it all on your once in a lifetime road trip around Iceland.

Cabot Trail – Nova Scotia

While this list of road trip includes many that last anywhere from a few days to over a month, Cabot Trail in Nova Scotia is one of the shorter road trips on this list. However, that does not mean it does not have just as much to offer road trippers. The drive takes up to five hours and is 185 miles (298 kilometers). The route will take you around Cape Breton Island allowing you to enjoy the gorgeous views. The trail is named after John Cabot, an explorer who found his way to the islands in 1497. The rugged coastline will present you with a relaxing journey of views right over the highlands. Canada has many road trips you will want to embark on, and this one makes the top of the list.

Torres del Paine Park

Enjoy the views of Torres del Paine National Park.

Patagonia – Chile

While this time of year is actually the winter in Chile, June-September is still an excellent time to take a road trip to Patagonia. One of the most jaw-dropping sights in the world is a view of the Torres del Paine national park. Seeing the glaciers and frozen lakes up close offers such a remarkable feeling. You have to see it for yourself. There are also many advantages to road tripping in Patagonia this time of year. Including ice-skating on the lake, watching for arctic wildlife, and hiking. While many people choose to take this drive on their own, it is always a good idea to consult with a tour company or guided road trip. Extra planning comes in handy to make sure conditions are optimal before embarking on your journey. Find incredible accommodations on the way.

Nha Trang to Quy Nhon – Vietnam

This road trip is filled with Vietnamese countryside, fishing villages, and incredible landscapes. If you are a fan of motorbikes and bicycles, you’ll want to take this trip. On your route, you’ll also enjoy sites including Ba Ho Falls and Da Dia Reef. The journey up highway one takes a total of four hours and is 131 miles (212 kilometers). Not only is Vietnam very peaceful and beautiful, but it is also incredibly budget-friendly. Extend your trip by staying at one of the charming hotels along the South China Sea.


Are you ready to embark on one of these incredible road trips? Let us know which you plan to take this summer, and we will help you find the perfect accommodation. Check out our blog for more summer adventures.

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CuddlyNest provides all accommodations to all travelers at the best price. Find unlimited travel inspiration on our blog and social media channels

adventure - travel from home

10 Ways to Internationally Travel from Home

Are you still looking for ways to fill your wanderlust? Every day, traveling again seems closer and closer. However, there are still many ways and possibilities to take advantage of international travel from home, today. Re-visit some of your past trips through photos and videos, discover new places through movies, plan future getaways with bucket lists. There are so many options and ways to continue exploring.

Ways to Travel from Home Explore

1. Make A Photo Album of Your Travels

It’s hard to go on vacation without taking a million photos. However, it is more often than not that those pictures live only on your phone or on your social media channels. Take advantage and relive your international travel by making a photo album or scrapbook. Not only does this make a great memento for you, but it is something you can share from generation to generation to come. You may just need to make more than one. There are also many tools including Canva or Shutterfly that can help you.

2. Listen to an Audiobook or Read a Book About Travel

There are numerous books by writers all over the world, who can simply whisk you away on an unforgettable adventure just using their words. From Ernest Hemingway’s fictional escapades to Jedidiah Jenkin’s brave accomplishment of biking from Oregon to Patagonia, be inspired by reading and listening to international travel books. Find one that you can’t get enough of and be sure to pack it with for your own future trip.

movie night - travel from home

3. Have a Movie Marathon with Films from Around the World

Is there a movie that made you think, wow I want to go there now? With movies from Eat, Pray Love, to Out of Africa to Midnight in Paris, there are hundreds of films that can transport you to another place in just a few minutes. Pro tip: turn your backyard into a “home theater” by setting up pillows, Christmas lights, and a projector. Your movie experience will be so elevated, that you’ll forget you are even at home.

4. Take a Virtual Tour

The international community banded together to offer global travelers an opportunity to explore museums, world monuments, national parks, and more. Whether you are interested in learning more about the intriguing artwork of Van Gogh or are curious about the history of the U.S. National Parks, virtual tours and experiences can be your unofficial tour guides right from home. Discover endless opportunities to explore without moving from your sofa, by embarking on a journey through virtual reality.

5. Make a Fort in Your House

Especially with little ones in the house, making a fort is an excellent way to show them a brand new place. Whether you build a castle out of couch cushions and pillows and call it Buckingham Palace or layout all your towels, umbrellas, and boogie boards in the backyard to create the beaches of California, your kids will love going on an adventure you plan for them. It may just be their best yet!

themed dinner - travel from home

6. Plan a Themed Dinner

From celebrating Cinco de Mayo to learning how to make homemade pasta, what will make meals at home even more fun? Planning a themed dinner! You can even include your friends and have a virtual party. Ask your pals to bring their favorite dish so you can celebrate together, eat yummy food, and enjoy your at-home restaurant.

7. Listen to a Travel Podcast

Last week we created a list of the best travel podcasts to listen to in 2020. Not only will podcasts give you helpful information when planning your future stay, but they will also give you great ideas on where to go, and what to do and see there. Check out our list to find your new favorite show.

postcards - travel from home

8. Re-Purpose Your Old Postcards

Do you have dozens of postcards sitting in a shoebox under your bed? If so, there are a few different ways to re-purpose them! Do a DIY (do it yourself) project. All you need is a couple of pieces of string and some clothespins to turn your wall into a global paradise.

You can also make photocopies and mail them to friends and family. Your loved ones will be so thrilled to receive mail from you during this time, and it’s a great way to share your past experiences with them too.

9. Make a Bucket List Pinterest Board

We have given you dozens of ideas for bucket list adventures, and now it’s your turn to make them a reality. A good place to start is by organizing your adventures using Pinterest Boards. From surfing vacations to mountain getaways, when planning your future trip your trusty board will help you organize and plan based on your interests. You can check out our CuddlyNest Pinterest page for inspiration.

international travel wish list

10. Make a CuddlyNest Wishlist

Travel is nothing without finding the perfect place to stay, and we are here to provide you with incredible accommodations at the best price. Use our CuddlyNest “Save to Wishlist” tool to plan your future getaway now, and stay later. To save to the wishlist, all you need to do is log in to your CuddlyNest profile, press the save button on the right-hand side of the listing, and it will appear in your wishlist under your profile, waiting for you to book and visit. It’s that easy. Your domestic or international travel plans can be done in seconds.

We would love to join your international travel from home. Let us know what journeys you embark on. Check out our blog for more inspiration to fill your wanderlust.

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CuddlyNest provides all accommodations to all travelers at the best price. Find unlimited travel inspiration on our blog and social media channels

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CuddlyNest Staff Picks: Favorite Books to Read While Traveling

Do you have a favorite book? A story that took you on an adventure? A collection of essays that inspired you to experience life to the fullest? The CuddlyNest team is sharing our go-to books that we could not get enough of this year. As our team is based all over the world, we love to stay connected and let each other know what we are up to, reading, listening to, where we are planning to visit one day, and more. And, we want to share that with you, as well, starting with our favorite books.

favorite travel books

CuddlyNest’s Favorite Books

Although our travels are on hold, we can start putting a list together of books we want to take on our next getaway. So check out this incredible list of books. By the end of this list, you will want to read every single one. Let us know what you add to your list.

Manuela – Italy

Book: Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage

Author: Haruki Murakami

Genre: Fiction, Surrealism, and Magical Realism

Adi – India

Book: 48 Days to the Work You Love: Preparing for the New Normal

Author: Dan Miller

Genre: Business and Non-Fiction

Sali – Albania

Book: Shuni

Author: Naomi Fontaine

Genre: Nonfiction

Igor – Brazil

Book: Cien Sonetos de Amor

Author: Pablo Neruda

Genre: Poetry

girl reading while camping

Andrei – Croatia

Book: Old Man and the Sea

Author: Ernest Hemingway

Genre: Novel and Nautical Fiction

Ritesh – India

Book: The 5 am Club

Author: Robin Sharma

Genre: Parable and Self-Help

Jessica – The United States

Book: To Shake the Sleeping Self: A Journey from Oregon to Patagonia, and a Quest for a Life with No Regret

Author: Jedidiah Jenkins

Genre: Travel, Autobiography, and Nonfiction

Rahul – India

Book: The Immortals of Meluha (Shiva Trilogy)

Author: Amish Tripathi

Genre: Fiction and Fantasy

Kristina – Croatia

Book: Led by Faith: Rising from the Ashes of the Rwandan Genocide

Author: Immaculée Ilibagiza, Steve Erwin, Rick Warren

Genre: Nonfiction and Autobiography

Dmitry – Russia

Book: Alchemy: The Dark Art and Curious Science of Creating Magic in Brands, Business, and Life

Author: Rory Sutherland

Genre: Business and Psychology

man reading on the beach

Hassan – Pakistan

Book: The Alchemist

Author: Paulo Coehlo

Genre: Fiction, Fantasy, and Classic

Rachel – The Phillippines

Book: The Kite Runner

Author: Khaled Hosseini

Genre: Fiction, Historical, and Contemporary

Hana – Morocco

Book: En tenue d’Eve: Féminin, Pudeur et Judaïsme

Author: Delphine Horvilleur

Genre: Jewish Literature

Nitin – India

Book: Mastering In-House SEO

Author: Simon Schnieders

Genre: Business and Encyclopedia

Sufyan – Pakistan

Book: The Forty Rules of Love

Author: Elif Shafak

Genre: Novel and Literary Fiction

We can’t wait to hear what you are reading. Would you be interested in a CuddlyNest book club? If you are, let us know your favorite books in the comments below!

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CuddlyNest provides all accommodations to all travelers at the best price. Find unlimited travel inspiration on our blog and social media channels

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Mexican Food vs. Tex-Mex

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Have you ever wondered what the difference between Tex-Mex vs Mexican food is? If so, this blog post is for you! We recently watched Taco Chronicles on Netflix, which made us think, “What is the difference between Tex-Mex vs Mexican food? So if you’ve been pondering this question just like we have, read on as we delve deeper into this common query.

mexican food tacos

The fifth of May is an important day for many Americans and Mexicans, as it celebrates Cinco de Mayo, or Mexican Independence day. Just like Mexican food and Tex-Mex, this holiday has its own misconceptions. We are going to debunk myths about the celebrations surrounding this holiday. As well as the difference between the two delicious cuisines.

Cinco de Mayo: Why is it celebrated?

Cinco de Mayo is a United States holiday that celebrates Mexico’s Independence Day. However, this is a very famous misconception, as Mexico’s Independence Day is actually September 16, 1810. In Mexico, this day marks the “Battle of Puebla.” This battle was fought on May 5, 1862, between Mexico and France. The Mexicans unexpectedly defeated the French, thus they were able to keep the independence they already had.

cinco de mayo history

Why Cinco de Mayo is really a celebration of Mexican Food:

Two years after Mexico won the Battle of Puebla, the U.S. began celebrating Mexican culture on May 5th. Since then, millions of Americans celebrate this tradition every year. From festive parades and dancing in the streets to large tables of nachos and enchiladas, this celebration is all about food and fiesta.

cinco de mayo dancing

Food and Drink Consumption in the U.S. on Cinco de Mayo:

  • According to the cocktail market, about 126 million liters of tequila were consumed on Cinco de Mayo in 2019. It is also the seventh-largest beer-drinking holiday.
  • The California Avocado Commission says that about 87 million avocados were consumed on Cinco de Mayo in 2017.
  • Fiesta Broadway is the largest celebration of Cinco de Mayo. It is held every year in Los Angeles, California.
  • Mole Poblano is the official holiday dish.
  • There are over 360 tortilla factories in the U.S. that contribute to the production of tortillas.

mexican food margaritas

Mexican Food vs. Tex-Mex: What’s the difference?

In order to truly celebrate Cinco de Mayo, you need to know the difference between Mexican food and Tex-Mex.

  • The term Tex-Mex is short for Tex-Mexican (Texas and Mexican), a combination of both American and Mexican cuisines.
  • The most notable difference between the two cuisines is the ingredients. In almost all Tex-Mex dishes, cumin is the main ingredient, however, most traditional Mexican dishes don’t include it at all. Traditional Mexican plates use ingredients such as chile peppers, oregano, cacao, cilantro, and more.
  • Tex-Mex taco shells are typically hard tortilla shells, while Mexican taco recipes call for soft corn tortillas.
  • If you find cheddar on your Mexican food, then it is a Tex-Mex dish. Mexicans always use white or yellow cheese.
  • Many typical Mexican dishes including enchiladas, tacos, and more belong to both Mexican and Tex-Mex cuisines. However, Tex-Mex prepares them with their own flavors and style.

Iconic Tex-Mex Dishes

Here we’ve listed a few iconic tex-mex dishes to give you some ideas about what to eat during your next Cinco de Mayo celebration!

  • Chili con Carne: Chili con Carne is a classic Tex-Mex dish made of chili, which is chilis, chicken broth, and your own (or others) secret ingredients, and Carne, either chicken, beef, or pork. If you haven’t tried traditional Chili con Carne before, then what are you waiting for?
  • Steak Fajitas: Fajitas are grilled meats usually served on a taco and doused with delicious spices and toppings. A definite must-have during your next traditional Tex-Mex celebration.
  • Queso: Queso has been described as one of the pillars of Tex-Mex cuisine, and is even sometimes referred to as the “national party dip of Texas”. Essentially gooey, melted yellow cheese with green chiles, you’ll be able to find this dish almost anywhere Tex-Mex food is served.

Iconic Mexican Dishes

Mexican cuisine is a diverse and massive array of cultures and ingredients, so it’s hard to list just a few dishes. However, we’ve listed a few traditional Mexican foods here just to give you an idea of what Mexican cuisine offers.

  • Tacos: Tacos are a hugely popular Mexican food all over the world, and for good reason. At its most basic, tacos are small tortillas filled with cheeses, sauce, and fillings such as meat, beans, or vegetables. Traditionally, a Mexican taco is very basic, and rarely contains more than just meat and some sauce and few toppings.
  • Enchiladas: Enchiladas were made for cheese lovers! A large tortilla stuffed with veggies, beans, and meat, then covered in cheese and baked, this mouthwatering dish is a Mexican classic and one you won’t want to miss.

 We hope you learned a thing or two, about Cinco de Mayo! Enjoy your feast, and don’t forget to let us know what you make at home.

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CuddlyNest provides all accommodations to all travelers at the best price. Find unlimited travel inspiration on our blog and social media channels

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Plan Now, Stay Later Photo Contest

Do you have a favorite travel memory? Something that really stuck with you and makes you want to set off to explore the globe again? While we cannot all pack our bags to set off on an adventure at this very moment, what we can do is relive our travels again and again through photos and memories, by joining our Plan Now, Stay Later contest and campaign.

photography contest

How to join The Plan Now Stay Later Contest:

By participating in our #PlanNowStayLater Photo Contest. From pictures of you and your special someone at the top of the Eifel Tower to a photo of you celebrating finishing your first international marathon, we want to relive that moment with you. Entering is easy! Find the entry instructions here and start by going to our Instagram channel, and do the following:

  1. Like our Post announcing the photo contest. 

  2. Post your favorite travel photo to your personal Instagram feed and tag @cuddlynest and #plannowstaylater in the caption.

  3. Share the post in your story and tag @cuddlynest and #plannowstaylater.

We will select three winners and share their photos on our feed every Saturday in the month of May. All three winners will be announced in our stories on May 2nd at 5 pm CEST. If your photo was not selected this time, don’t worry, because we will be hosting new contests every month.

We can’t wait to see your favorite travel pictures!

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Plan Now, Stay Later.

Browse. Book. Stay.

CuddlyNest provides all accommodations to all travelers at an unbeatable price. Find unlimited travel inspiration on our blog and social media channels

plan now, stay later

CuddlyNest Launches Plan Now, Stay Later Logo and Slogan

plan now, stay later

CuddlyNest, the booking platform with all accommodations for all travelers at the most unbeatable price has added “Plan Now, Stay Later” to their “Browse. Book. Stay.” slogan, in light of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Plan Now, Stay Later

With the inclusion of “Plan Now, Stay Later” in its mantra, the booking platform, with over one million accommodations worldwide, has also altered its logo to demonstrate social distancing with its birds flying in opposite directions. The edit to the logo and slogan has been made across the platform’s social media channels, including Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, PinterestLinkedIn, and Youtube.

CuddlyNest’s Partner & COO, Ritesh Raj says, “We wanted to clearly show that social distancing and adhering to the policies set by the CDC is a priority of our business. While travel is at the core of what we offer, we want to encourage our guests to stay home at this time. We also want to help guide them in planning a safe and incredible getaway in the future.

CuddlyNest continues its efforts in providing the travel community with information, tips, inspiration, and guides for future travel.

The travel industry and the global community are seeing a major set back right now, but we will overcome this pandemic stronger than ever. With the support of our team, families, and friends, we aim to give everyone the opportunity to explore our beautiful destinations again, very soon,” says Raj.

The CuddlyNest support team is working endlessly to ensure that the safety of its guests, hosts, and partners is the top priority. The platform has a banner located on its homepage that directs to its response page, which answers all COVID-19 related questions. The support team can be reached on the website’s contact page, and at [email protected].

For more information on CuddlyNest’s COVID-19 Response please visit, here.

About CuddlyNest:

An Orlando, Florida, based start-up, CuddlyNest is a fourth-year start-up and has grown exponentially since, offering reliable bookings at over one million properties all around the world. CuddlyNest’s mission is to offer all travelers all accommodations at an unbeatable price. The online rental marketplace created an innovative booking fee-sharing model that has been the key to the company’s success. Having the lowest aggregate commission fee in the market allows property managers to be in charge of their earnings while providing guests with the lowest booking price in the market.

yoga outdoors

Yoga: The Perfect Way to Start Your Morning

What do you do to stay mindful and calm during periods of stress and uncertainty? Here at CuddlyNest, one of the things that help us stay connected, grounded, and mindful together is yoga. That’s why twice a week, all in different parts of the world, we get together virtually through AtréYoga Studio, to practice.

yoga in the morning

Start Your Morning with Yoga

For this week’s Workout Wednesday, we invite our community to join us in our practice, by starting with Surya Namaskar – Sun Salutation. This is the perfect flow to start your day off on the right foot. Learn the correct positions and form for each pose provided here, by yoga instructor, Anna Paloma, and follow along on our IGTV and Facebook Watch to practice the Sun Salutation with our CuddlyNest Community. Namaste!

yoga poses

1. Standing Mountain Pose — Tadasana

Stand with your feet hip-width apart. Press your palms together in prayer position.

2. Upward Salute — Urdhva Hastasana

Inhale as you sweep your arms out to the side and overhead. Gently arch your back and gaze toward the sky.

3. Standing Forward Fold — Uttanasana

Exhale as you fold forward from the hips. Bend your knees if necessary.

4. Half Standing Forward Fold — Ardha Uttanasana

Inhale as you lift your torso halfway, lengthening your spine forward so your back is flat. Your torso should be parallel to the floor. Keep your fingertips on the floor.

5. Four-Limbed Staff Pose — Chaturanga Dandasana

Exhale as you step or jump back into Plank Pose (High Push-Up Pose), with your hands under your shoulders and feet hip-distance apart. Continue exhaling as you lower your body toward the floor. Keep your elbows tucked in toward your sides. If needed, come to your knees for Half Chaturanga.

yoga outside

6. Upward-Facing Dog Pose — Urdhva Mukha Svanasana

Inhale as you draw your chest forward and straighten your arms. Draw your shoulders back and lift your heart to the sky. Press through the tops of your feet, lifting your thighs off the floor and fully engaging your leg muscles. Keep your elbows tucked in toward your sides.

7. Downward-Facing Dog Pose — Adho Mukha Svanasana

Exhale as you lift your hips and roll over your toes, placing the soles of your feet on the floor. Your heels do not need to touch the ground. Ground down through your hands and the soles of your feet as you lengthen your spine. Lift your belly and sit bones toward the sky.

8. Half Standing Forward Fold — Ardha Uttanasana

Inhale as you step or jump both feet between your hands. Lift your torso halfway, lengthening your spine forward so your back is flat. Your torso should be parallel to the floor.

9. Standing Forward Fold — Uttanasana

Exhale as you fold your torso over your thighs. Bend your knees if necessary.

10. Upward Salute — Urdhva Hastasana

Inhale as you sweep your arms out to the side and extend up once again. Gently arch your back and gaze toward the sky.

11. Mountain Pose — Tadasana

Exhale as you come back into Mountain Pose. Bring your hands into prayer position.

Repeat this sequence five times for a full practice.

Why we practice with AtréYoga:

  • Their instructors are clear and precise, always focusing on a rectangular position of the mat for asanas and clear instruction during yoga training.
  • Metaphors and examples are used to guide the asanas and make them easier to understand.
  • Whether you’re a beginner or advanced yogi, anyone can participate and learn thanks to the visual cues and guidance from the instructors.

Come join us for the next session!

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master your yoga poses

Browse. Book. Stay.

CuddlyNest provides all accommodations to all travelers at the best price. Find unlimited travel inspiration on our blog and social media channels

margarita pizza

Five Traditional Italian Dishes You Can Make at Home

Are you looking for the perfect meals to whip up this week? Look no further because we have prepared a menu of five traditional Italian dishes that are easy to make and will leave you wanting more. Before you start cooking and become the next master chef, it’s important to learn a thing or two about where traditional Italian dishes come from and why they are an integral piece of Italian culture. Let’s start with the origin and ingredients.

italian dishes

Before we get cooking, let’s learn about traditional Italian dishes and cuisine:

Restaurants around the world have adapted certain plates and recipes to create their own version of Italian food. However, when it comes to traditional preparation, it’s important to know the correct methods and ingredients in order to make your Italian dishes just right. Or Perfetto come Italia, as the Italians say.

  1. Italians don’t use very much garlic.
    While you may find garlic bread at the top of most menus in Italian restaurants around the world, traditional Italian restaurants don’t serve garlic bread.  Rather, bread is typically served plain. Italians avoid overusing garlic in their dishes. They prefer to rely on flavorful and fresh ingredients.
  2. Spaghetti and meatballs is not an authentic Italian dish.
    Don’t worry, we’re not denying spaghetti and meatballs is delicious, however, it is not an authentic Italian dish. Italians actually rarely serve meat in their pasta.
  3. Pepperoni means “bell pepper” in Italian.
    If you have ever walked into a pizzeria in Italy and asked for a pepperoni pizza, you were probably surprised when a pizza with bell peppers was brought to your table.
  4. Naples (Napoli) is the most popular city in the world for its pizza.
    The word pizza was first documented in A.D. 997, with pizza as we know it originating in Naples, Italy.
  5. On average, an Italian eats about 51 pounds of pasta a year.
    You heard that right! In North America, a person eats around 15 1/2 pounds of pasta to compare. Yet, we think the more pasta, the better.

italian dishes caprese salad

A Traditional Starter: A Caprese Salad with Pesto Sauce.

Juicy and full of flavor, the Caprese salad topped with a pesto dressing, is a staple in any Italian meal. Originating from the Island of Capri in the 1950s, this salad is simple to prepare and requires only a few fresh ingredients. Fresh tomatoes, mozzarella cheese, salt and pepper, basil, and homemade pesto sauce to dress. Learn how to make the famous Caprese salad with pesto, here.

italian carbonara dish

A Hearty Pasta Dish: Spaghetti alla Carbonara.

If you have ever had pasta in Italy, you probably tried spaghetti alla carbonara. One simply hasn’t lived until you’ve had this meal. The real key to making traditional carbonara is making it with guanciale, not pancetta. This recipe requires only spaghetti, eggs, peppercorn cheese, guanciale, and pepper. However,  if you can’t find guanciale in your local market, pancetta is perfectly acceptable to use. Indulge in a plate of carbonara, here.

margarita pizza italian dish

A Classic: Pizza Margherita.

Learn how to make a classic Margherita pizza from professional Italian chefs in Napoli. You can turn your kitchen into a cheesy paradise in just under thirty minutes. All you need is flour, yeast, olive oil, mozzarella cheese, fresh tomatoes, and basil and a lot of love to make a pizza like the pros. Find an authentic recipe, here.

florentine steak

A Delicious Main Course: Bistecca alla Fiorentina.

For all meat lovers, you will not want to miss having Fiorentina steaks at your Italian dinner. It’s a known fact that at least one person in every Tuscan home knows how to make this steak. With just a couple, easy steps, you can learn how to traditionally make Bistecca alla Fiorentina, too.

italian dishes tiramisu

A Must-Have Dessert: Tiramisù.

An Italian feast isn’t complete without an incredible dessert. Tiramisù is a classic. With no need to bake, and requiring just a few minutes to prepare, it’s the perfect dessert to any dinner. The coffee biscuit and mascarpone cream are simply irresistible. You’ll have to try it for yourself after learning the recipe, here.

Now that you know how to prepare these five traditional Italian dishes, enjoy and Buon Appetito!

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Browse. Book. Stay.

CuddlyNest provides all accommodations to all travelers at the best price. Find unlimited travel inspiration on our blog and social media channels

Virtual Tours and Experiences You Can Take from Home

How are you spending your days at home? While social distancing may leave you with some extra time, now is the perfect opportunity to embark on a one-of-a-kind adventure. You can start by taking virtual tours of your favorite locations around the world.

 

virtual tours planning

From museums to national parks to global landmarks, tourism boards and businesses worldwide are providing the global community with virtual experiences, so that no one has to miss out on exploring while sheltering in place. Anyone can take the opportunity to visit these sites right from the comfort of their own home, you just need to know where to start. All those days spent dreaming and wondering if you would ever see these places for yourself, and now you can. We’re not saying you will never want to go in person, but taking a virtual tour beforehand will make the experience and knowledge of the place that much better.

Ready to Explore through Virtual Tours?

There are so thousands of unique experiences to choose from, it’s hard to pick just one. Now you don’t have to. Whether your bucket list includes a tour of NASA, climbing Mount Everest, or a visit to Machu Picchu, you can experience it all by taking a virtual excursion. Here at CuddlyNest, we have curated a list for you, so that you don’t have to look very far to experience it all. Let us know where you plan to virtually visit.

Wonders of the World:

The list of wonders of the world has grown over the years to include a larger catalog of truly remarkable sites. You can visit those through your screen here:

Taj Mahal – Agra, India.

Machu Picchu – Andes Mountains, Peru.

The Acropolis – Athens, Greece.

The Great Wall of China –  Huairou District, China.

Tower of London – London, England.

Petra Wall – Petra, Jordan.

Christ the Redeemer – Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

Angkor Wat – Siem Reap, Cambodia.

Stonehenge – Wiltshire, England.

Chichen Itza – Yucatán, Mexico.

 

petra virtual tour

Experience the majesticness of Petra, Jordan.

 

National Parks and Natural Reserves:

National Park Week starts April 18th, which makes now the perfect time to explore nature’s creations right from your couch. Your nature visit can start in less than five seconds. When parks and reserves begin to open up, be sure to plan your adventure. You’ll be an expert on these locations after taking a virtual tour.

Patagonia – Argentina & Chile.

Yosemite – California, USA.

Cliffs of Moher – Clare, Ireland.

Mount Rushmore – Keystone, South Dakota, USA.

Giant’s Causeway – Northern Ireland.

The Northern Lights – Swedish Lapland

The World’s Largest Cave – Son Doong, Vietnam.

Mount Everest – Tibet & Nepal.

Yellowstone – Wyoming, and Montana, USA.

Avatar Mountain – Zhangjiajie, Hunan Province, China.

The Faroe Islands – Portugal.

 

 

patagonia virtual tour

Enjoy the calming crystal blue lake in Patagonia.

 

Museums and Galleries:

Take a tour through your favorite exhibits and galleries, without having to wait in long lines and behind crowds. With 360 views and high-resolution video imagery, you will feel as if you are in the work of art. Have you ever visited these locations in person? Add them to your bucket list to see in person during your future getaway.

Anna Frank House – Amsterdam, The Netherlands.

Salvador Dalí Museum – Barcelona, Spain.

Air Force Museum – Dayton, Ohio, USA.

NASA – Langley Center in Florida.

The British Museum – London, England.

The Guggenheim – New York City, New York, USA.

The Louvre – Paris, France.

The Catacombs – Paris, France.

Smithsonian Museum of Natural History – Washington D.C., USA.

 

louvre virtual tour

See the Mona Lisa in the Louvre up close.

 

Landmarks:

Enjoy virtual tours of some of the world’s most highly regarded national landmarks. Some of these locations are not always the easiest to get to, which you don’t have to worry about now that you have unlimited access right from home.

Blarney Castle – Cork, Ireland.

The Holy Land – Jerusalem.

Buckingham Palace – London, England.

The Statue of Liberty – New York City, New York, USA.

The Eiffel Tower – Paris, France.

The Colosseum – Rome, Italy.

The Vatican – Vatican, Italy.

 

Theme Parks and Attractions:

Make a list of the attractions you want to see during your future visit to Disney World, the Met, and more.

The Metropolitan Opera – New York City, New York, USA.

Walt Disney World – Orlando, Florida.

San Diego Zoo – San Diego, California.

 

To see an extensive list of over 2500 museums, galleries, and natural parks offering virtual tours, visit here.

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Browse. Book. Stay.

 provides all accommodations to all travelers at an unbeatable price. This blog post is the fifth post in a series by the CuddlyNest team, on the Coronavirus Outbreak. To see more information about our policies please visit our response page