By Quentin Fottrell
If you are itching to fly away before 2012, airline and hotel deals abound, if you don’t mind a long flight. Vision Airlines in Suwanee, Ga., is offering flights from $36 one-way to The Bahamas. The Waikiki Hotel in Honolulu has discounts of up to 30% on rooms. Both locations have warm weather far into the fall. And if you book a flight/hotel package, Angela Lyda, senior editor at Travel-Ticker.com, says, you may even find sweeter – more exclusive – bargains.
The best part of the shoulder season? The summer crowds are gone. Of course, the Bahamas is still in hurricane season until December, but some resorts will give you de facto hurricane insurance in case you need to cancel. Our experts – Lyda; Andrew Young, web editor for Travelzoo.com; Anne Banas, executive editor of SmarterTravel.com; and Jason Clampet, senior online editor at Frommers.com – chose three deals further afield worth a look.
It’s fall in Argentina’s northern hemisphere and spring in the southern. Travel-Ticker lists flights for $1,299 return, including six nights in a hotel, a saving of $400 per person. In the northwest, Cayafate Wine Resort has rooms starting at $125 per night for doubles, or 18% off. The downside? No winter skiing or sitting on the beach in summer. And individual flight prices can also be unpredictable. Lyda says. “We don’t get to see a lot of seats sold by airlines for hotel packages.”
Iceland is less than six hours by air from the East Coast. Banas says Iceland Air and Iceland Express are offering $1,000 per person for four-night hotel/flight packages. Both offer free overnight stopovers in Reykjavik en route to mainland Europe. But Young says it’s expensive to shop there. Clampet adds, “Outside of Reykjavik, transportation is tougher with many roads closed October through May.”
September and October are still warm in Turkey, but not unbearably so like in July and August. Travel-Ticker package tours average $1,400 per person sharing, a saving of $700 per person. Clampet says September, October, April and May are the best times to go to avoid standing in line at museums. However, Banas says the dollar will likely stretch further in euro-zone countries given the continued weakness of that currency in recent months.
Have you found any money-saving fall getaways?