Sunday, January 11, 2009
Thinking a trip just isn't in the cards this year? Think again. The current economic climate may have us all keeping an extra eye on the budget, but it also has resorts and tour operators scrambling to fill rooms. That means the deals are coming, fast and furious, and the prepared traveler is the one who will get the best bargains.
Sally Walker -DaviesGet Outta Town
First, get with a local travel agent -- they've got the relationships with vendors, so they've got the inside track on sudden specials and pricing. Tell them how much you want to spend and a general idea of where you'd like to go. For instance, saying '$500, February, a beach in Florida' is much more likely to help them find you a deal than being set on a certain weekend in February and a specific beach in Florida.
Next, go online and check the airline sites for package deals. I logged onto the Northwest Airlines last-minute site -- nwa.lastminute-packages.com -- as I was writing this column. I chose a last-minute Memphis -Miami weekend trip, leaving Saturday and returning Monday, for $371 per person, including flight and hotel.
Also, check our travel blog -- commercialappealblogs.com /travel. I'll be posting deals as I find them.
As with any travel planning, the more flexible you are, the better chance you have to save some money.
Orbitz just launched a new addition to its travel planning site called Deal-O-Rama. Twice each month, on the first and the 15th, the latest travel bargains are posted on deals.orbitz.com.
Special offers, along with promo codes for redeeming the offers, are listed on the page. For details, click on the "how to redeem" link.
Holiday Inn goes clubbing
Holiday Inn has gone vacation clubbing, launching a club vacation site that allows booking a villa or condo just as you would a hotel room. Currently being offered at just one resort, the Orange Lake Resort in Orlando, the hotel group will soon offer more locations. Check it out at hiclubvacations.com.
For those of us who travel with hot stuff -- as in curling irons, flat irons and other heated hair accessories -- there's the Hotty Hoody. Colorful silicone covers for irons allow instant pack-ability for still-hot irons, a bonus when one is dashing for a plane. $24.95. Find it online at HottyHoody.com or by calling (877) 446-8894.
Get Outta Town runs every other week, with news of great deals, luxury finds, cool gadgets and more. Contact Sally Walker Davies at thedestinationdiva.com.