I have a ton of travel sites bookmarked and travel iPhone apps loaded. I can search for hotel vacancies in Chicago and San Francisco by their number of stars, free coffee and wifi, WSJ delivery, pools and fitness centers, and whether they let pets stay. What I cannot search on Kayak or TripAdvisor or Priceline, however, is whether the desk clerk at the hotel I’m crashing at during a weekend getaway is going to give me a weird look if I walk into the lobby holding another guy’s hand. Expedia just launched a new feature to fix that.
Among the new filters on Expedia (dot com!) is “LGBT-welcoming.” It’s right there among all the other amenities you require. For now, results are limited to a few major cities including Chicago, Los Angeles, New York City, New Orleans, Palm Springs, Provincetown, San Francisco, and the South Florida area, but more are coming. (Getting tagged “LGBT-welcoming” likely requires a thumbs up from the International Gay & Lesbian Travel Association.) And while other travel sites have gay sections, Expedia appears to be the first to integrate gay-friendliness as just a standard hotel criteria among all the others.
And while obvious picks like the W New York pop up, lots of boutique hotels are on here too. Which is actually no surprise, because we all know that to be truly LGBT-welcoming, you’ve gotta be chic, too.
Honestly, I just crave a hotel search feature that will allow me to book a reservation for one king bed and two male names on the reservation and not have the clerk ask me upon check-in if we’d be more comfortable with two queen beds. NO WE WOULD NOT!