Travel + Leisure is launching its subscription travel club today
You can now join a travel subscription service that lets you book trips curated by an iconic travel magazine.
On Wednesday, Sept. 8, Travel + Leisure Group launched its long-anticipated travel subscription service. During a phone call this week with Noah Brodsky, president of the Travel + Leisure Group, he said that even though some people may not be ready to travel yet, "it's always a good time to get inspired."
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Called Travel + Leisure Club, the members-only subscription service gives travelers the "curated content of T+L along with an array of travel experiences."
Right now, club membership is available for an introductory rate of $9.95 per month, which includes access to trip itineraries inspired by the pages of Travel + Leisure magazine (full disclosure: my former employer); discounts on everything from rental cars to hotels and flights; a concierge; exclusive experiences only for members; and a subscription to the magazine.
As a member, you might get a complimentary drink or extra course when you book a table through a preferred restaurant partner. Earlier examples have included VIP reservations at an editor-picked restaurant or a private tour. These benefits alone could offset the cost of membership if you take advantage often enough.
Members, Brodsky says, save an average of 25% on the hotels, itineraries and other experiences. In theory, it sounds easy enough to make use of the membership in your everyday life, too — not every dinner out has to be part of a trip of a lifetime, after all. And according to a statement, the concierge service could even help you plan a home renovation inspired by resort or hotel photos you dog-eared in the latest issue.
On Wednesday I joined the subscription club to check out the membership offerings. Of note are the itineraries (largely domestic at this time), including a five-day tour of Charleston, South Carolina — once again considered the top city in the country (and one of the best in the world) in the brand's annual World's Best Awards.
"One thing we've heard over and over," Brodsky said, is that "it's amazing no one ever put a 'book now' button on [Travel + Leisure]."
Now, that's more or less the case.
Travelers who book the Captivating Charleston itinerary will see the city the way the editors have described it, through Lowcountry culinary walking tours, a catamaran sailing around the harbor and stays at two of the best boutique hotels in town.
Brodsky said the plan is to launch new itineraries every month.
When Brodsky and I spoke last, he said the club would be both “exclusive” and “really accessible.” And it does promise to deliver both serious savings as well as members-only perks for less than the cost of an ad-free Hulu plan.
"I think the pricing will certainly speak for itself," Brodsky said. "I think anyone who gives [the Club] a try for free ... they will see the value there on their very first booking and the content is going to keep [them] inspired."
"When you follow the advice of editors, you know that what you're booking is going to be of that caliber ... you know that the work has been done for you to pick amazing experiences."
Right now, you can try out the Travel + Leisure Club with a 30-day free trial. Just keep in mind that you need to email or call to cancel your trial before being charged.
And for travelers who aren't sold on the subscription service, the Travel + Leisure Group has also rebranded its online booking platform, formerly BookTandL.com. Now called Travel + Leisure GO, anyone can come to this portal to research, plan and book trips.