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Family Takes "Retro to Now Road Trip"

7/30/2009

Best Western and AAA’s “Retro to Now Road Trip” Compares the Modern Road Trip with Road Trips of the Past

PHOENIX (July 30, 2009) – Best Western International is taking a look at how today’s technologies have changed the road trip experience with a “Retro to Now Road Trip,” co-sponsored by AAA, which transports one family back in time for one leg of the trip, and brings them back to present day for the latter portion. Along the way, the family will answer the question – how have road trips changed over the years and has it been for the better?

As grand prize winners of the Best Western and AAA “Retro to Now Road Trip” sweepstakes, the Monteith family will hit the road and tour some of the Northeast’s most famous cities and landmarks in a way most modern day families don’t – in a standard family van, without access to a CD player, cell phones or other technology. While traveling in the vehicle, provided by Hertz Rental Car, video games and DVDs will be replaced by road games and paperbacks to keep the children – a five-year-old, eight-year-old and nine-year old twins – occupied. The journey will be guided by a TripTik® Travel Planner provided by AAA.

“We are huge fans of road trips and really looking forward to hitting the road with Best Western and AAA,” said mom Vonnette Monteith. “I have been preparing the kids for the road trips that I grew up taking, which will mean car games instead of game consoles or DVDs. They are really excited to experience an old fashioned road trip.”

Midway through the journey, the family will switch to “now,” with all familiar and modern amenities returning. In addition the family will drive a fully-loaded 2009 Volkswagen Routan, the only minivan in America with German engineering. Features include power sliding doors, U-Connect ™ Bluetooth cellular phone wireless connection, DVD navigation with wide touch screen, built-in single-disc AM/FM/CD/DVD/MP3, USB connection, 30GB hard drive, music storage feature, Sirius Satellite Radio and rear view backup camera.

“Best Western is synonymous with the iconic family road trip, having opened our doors to driving families for generations,” said Dorothy Dowling, Best Western senior vice president of marketing and sales. “AAA and Best Western online and mobile tools let the fun start with the planning and continue during the ride, while the hotel is where the vacation really comes together. Great service, convenient locations, comfortable rooms, free high-speed Internet, and breakfast make Best Western the perfect partner to a road trip-- then, now and always.”

Travel fans can follow the Monteiths on their “Retro to Now Road Trip” via Best Western’s travel blog www.bestwestern.com/roadtrip and on the hotel’s Facebook, Twitter and YouTube pages. AAA also will share updates on the trip via its travel blog, www.aaatravelviews.com.

AAA – Best Western “Retro to Now” Itinerary

•Sat., Aug. 1 – Drive to Gettysburg, Penn. Tour Gettysburg and sightsee. Overnight stay at the Best Western Gettysburg Hotel, established in 1797.

•Sun., Aug. 2 – Drive to Philadelphia. Tour Philadelphia and visit historic sites throughout the city. Overnight stay at the Best Western Independence Park Hotel.

•Mon., Aug. 3 – Drive to New York City. Tour Manhattan, including Central Park, the Statue of Liberty and more. Overnight stay at the Best Western President Hotel.

•Tues., Aug. 4 – Continue touring New York City. Receive Volkswagen Routan. Drive to Boston. Overnight stay at the Best Western Roundhouse Suites in Boston, Mass.

•Wed., Aug. 5 – Sightsee in Boston. Overnight stay at the Best Western Roundhouse Suites.

•Thurs., Aug. 6 – Drive to Buffalo, NY. Overnight stay at the Best Western The Inn of Lackawanna.

•Fri., Aug. 7 – Tour Niagara Falls. Overnight stay at the Best Western The Inn of Lackawanna.

•Sat., Aug. 8 – Depart for home.

About Best Western International
Best Western International is THE WORLD'S LARGEST HOTEL CHAIN®, providing marketing, reservations and operational support to over 4,000* independently owned and operated member hotels in 80* countries and territories worldwide. An industry pioneer since 1946, Best Western has grown into an iconic brand that hosts 400,000* worldwide guests each night. Best Western's diverse property portfolio, its greatest strength, stems from a business model designed to give owners maximum flexibility to address market-specific needs. Equally committed to the business and leisure traveler, Best Western recently embarked on a mission to lead the hotel industry in customer care. World Vision is the charity of choice for Best Western in building the world's largest family, as our hotels and staff sponsor children in need around the globe. Since 2004, Best Western has served as the Official Hotel of NASCAR®. For more information or to make a reservation, please visit www.bestwestern.com.

*Numbers are approximate and can fluctuate.

About AAA
As North America’s largest motoring and leisure travel organization, AAA provides more than 51 million members with travel, insurance, financial and automotive-related services. Since its founding in 1902, the not-for-profit, fully tax-paying AAA has been a leader and advocate for the safety and security of all travelers. AAA clubs can be visited on the Internet at AAA.com.
About Volkswagen of America, Inc.
Founded in 1955, Volkswagen of America, Inc. is headquartered in Herndon, Virginia. It is a subsidiary of Volkswagen AG, headquartered in Wolfsburg, Germany. Volkswagen is one of the world’s largest producers of passenger cars and Europe’s largest automaker. Volkswagen sells the Rabbit, New Beetle, New Beetle convertible, GTI, Jetta, Jetta SportWagen, Eos, GLI, Passat, Passat wagon, CC, Tiguan, Touareg 2 and Routan through approximately 600 independent U.S. dealers. All 2009 Volkswagens come standard-equipped with Electronic Stabilization Program. This is important because the National Highway and Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has called ESC the most effective new vehicle safety technology since the safety belt. Visit Volkswagen of America online at vw.com or www.media.vw.com to learn more.

About Hertz Corporation
The Hertz Corporation, a subsidiary of Hertz Global Holdings, Inc. (NYSE: HTZ), is the world's largest general use car rental brand, operating from approximately 8,000 locations in 145 countries worldwide. Hertz is the number one airport car rental brand in the U.S. and at 42 major airports in Europe, operating both corporate and licensee locations in cities and airports in North America, Europe, Latin America, Australia and New Zealand. In addition, the Company has licensee locations in cities and airports in Africa, Asia, and the Middle East. Product and service initiatives such as Hertz #1 Club Gold(R), NeverLost(R) customized, onboard navigation systems, SIRIUS Satellite Radio, and unique cars and SUVs offered through the Company's Prestige, Fun and Green Collections, set Hertz apart from the competition. In 2008, the Company launched Connect by Hertz, entering the global car sharing market in London, New York City and Paris. Hertz also operates one of the world's largest equipment rental businesses, Hertz Equipment Rental Corporation, offering a diverse line of equipment, including tools and supplies, as well as new and used equipment for sale, to customers ranging from major industrial companies to local contractors and consumers from approximately 350 branches in the United States, Canada, China, France and Spain.