Hilton is one of the hotel chains that treats their loyal members significantly different than the "average" guests. Gold or Diamond level members get free upgrades to Executive Floor rooms and Lounges. These rooms are usually very well kept, have bigger TVs & free WiFi and you get free snacks, drinks, hot breakfast in the Executive Floor lounge.
Without status Hilton is not much different than other chains. No free WiFi and a pretty pricey breakfast service. Some properties are older and don't feature flat-screen TVs in the "standard" rooms whereas the Executive Floor rooms have been upgraded.
With "Presidents Circle" status the treatment at large US / international airports couldn't be better. Always a free one-class upgrade, the car waits for you in the dedicated Gold line (in one of the first spots), no long walk, no waiting at the counter, no paperwork - just jump in, start the engine and leave. Usually the cars for PC members are brand new ones and in a pristine condition. Rarely more than a few hundred miles on them.
At smaller airports or at franchise locations the treatment varies a lot and PC doesn't matter much. You are less likely to get an upgrade and many franchise owners don't care much about status of their clients.
Well... it's entertaining... but that's about it. Tabloid news at its best (or worst for that matter) with intrusive flash/ advertisement banners which ruin the web experience (if there was ever any to begin with). Seriously - I do NOT want to see 30sec of commercials for a 20sec news clip afterwards. Also - the mobile experience on Androids is far from being acceptable with the ads/banners being optimized for the Desktop experience.
By far the best and most comprehensive source for German language news. That shouldn't come as a surprise as the "Der Spiegel" is one of Europe's leading news magazine.
The website is full of free content which gets updated around the clock.
On the downside many articles are written rather subjectively (very common in Germany) and the political leaning of the magazine when it comes to news about the U.S. is strongly "left". So for every 10 articles bashing the GOP you'll get one article praising it. Kinda like MSNBC ;)
But aside from some political bias it's a great site, easy to use and especially their Spiegel TV section with streaming documentaries is nice. Thumbs up!
Well... Netflix used to be great. That was back a few years ago. Nowadays with more (and cheaper) competition like Amazon Prime or iTunes ... it's pretty hard to justify shelling out $9 / month for their streaming service when they rarely update the content and their PS3 software is pretty poor, forgets passwords and crashes...
Expedia is one of the best travel sites and definitely has a great hotel selection (even for smaller cities). I personally never had a travel problem with them (except a few delayed flights - but that's hardly their fault) and think the site is pretty easy to use. Called their customer service once and was placed on a 5 min hold which wasn't that bad compared to other companies like Verizon.
Overall great site!
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