Rants from the road: So many ways to lose money while saving

There are a lot of things I could be doing, sitting here this third morning of business travel in my $229/plus tax/night room at the Marriott Providence Downtown.

I could look out the window at my view of the Mobil Station with the majestic rise of the highway just beyond. I could be reading about "Weekend airport woes" in my complimentary copy of USA Today (and wondering how this particular newspaper has wrapped up the hotel market). I could, as I drink my Gourmet Bean coffee from its filter pack, splashed with two Mini Moo's of Half & Half, review my Express Checkout "Guest Folio."

If I was more energetic, I could compare and contrast my Hilton Garden Inn, Crowne Plaza Hotels and Resorts and Marriott Express Check-Outs printouts. If I pay attention, I will note that at the Hilton Garden Inn I had a "Zip-Out Check-Out."