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Can't Afford A Vacation? Yes You Can. 5 Ways To Save For Travel.

“I’d love a vacation, but I just can’t afford it.”  

I hear this often. I’ve said it myself. But even as the words are rolling off my lips, I know it’s a lie.

Do I really need $4 lattes? 700 TV channels? Another pair of shoes?

Could I pay my monthly bills with an airline credit card and use points to fly free?

Are there off-season deals, vacation packages, or wallet-friendly destinations I’m not considering?

Talk to travelers - wealthy and not, employed and unemployed, boomers and backpackers - and more than likely they’ll tell you that saving for travel is easier than you think. 

Think you can’t afford to travel? Think again. Check out these insider tips in my recent article: 5 Ways to Save For Your Next Vacation

Better yet, how do you save for travel? Share your advice below. 

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9 Thrifty Travel Tips To Save Money On Your Next Vacation

While summer is always the big travel season in the United States, Americans are changing the way they take vacations.

For example, look at the new partnership between Groupon and Expedia. They’re following the increasingly popular deal-of-the-day model and offering significant discounts on travel packages that can include airfare, hotels, activities, car rentals and more.

That’s not the only way to get to your destination for less, though. Try using these 9 thrifty travel tips from consumer savings expert, Andrea Woroch, to save some money on your next vacation.

1. Discover Off-Peak Destinations
With nearly four-million square miles of land area, the U.S. is a big country. This means there are nearly unlimited places to travel. Destinations in California, like Los Angeles and San Francisco, are some of the most popular spots, but they’re also the most expensive. If you think outside the box, you’ll find some really cool locations to have a unique vacation without the crowds.

2. Shop at Auctions
Is your heart set on luxurious accommodations, but your bank account doesn’t match up? The auctions at travel sites like LuxuryLink.com can help you find accommodations, spa credits, meal vouchers and free drinks for as much as 65 percent below the typical retail price. Auction king eBay also offers a variety of discount vacation packages in their travel section.

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3 TRAVEL WEBSITES FOR SUMMER SAVINGS

All too often, we don’t seem to get what we pay for. Wouldn’t it be nice to take back control of the summer vacation? Here are 3 budget-friendly websites that can help you do just that.

At Shell Vacations Hospitality, choose from resorts situated on lush golf courses, the breathtaking coasts of Hawaii’s Big Island and just steps away from some of America’s most famous family theme parks, all offered at low prices for the summer.

Want to name your price too? Check out the newest family-friendly website FamilyGetaway.com that makes planning your summer family vacation a breeze with auction-style sales on luxury accommodations and kid-approved activities.

Luxury Link, the leader in online luxury hotel deals, recently partnered with Travel + Leisure to launch Vacationist.com, an invitation-only, private-sale travel website for luxury travelers that offers significant savings.

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50 Free Summer Activities in Denver

Visit Mile High City This Summer Without Breaking the Bank 

 
Denver’s Blockbuster 2010 Summer is packed with free things to see and do, from fun festivals and outdoor movies to scenic drives and quaint mountain towns. Check out these fabulous freebies to keep you busy whether you’re a home-town resident or vacationing visitor. 
 
FREE FESTIVALS & EVENTS
 

Downtown Denver Arts Festival

May 28-30
Throughout Memorial Day Weekend at the Denver Pavilions mix and mingle with 150,000 art lovers at this free fest, featuring more than 125 of Colorado’s best artists.
 

First Friday Art Walks

June 4, July 2, August 6, September 3
Discover Denver’s thriving creative community during a First Friday celebration, held every first Friday of the month, during which galleries in Denver’s art districts stay open late for a festive, street party-like event.
 

Denver Chalk Art Festival

June 5-6
Larimer Square’s Italian street-painting festival is a two-day pavement painting in Downtown Denver. More than 200 artists come down to turn the streets of the Mile High City’s oldest street into a virtual museum of chalk art.

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Ten Great Theme Parks and How to Save

With summer fast approaching, many travelers are itching to find the ultimate in entertainment with a theme park vacation. Don’t let a hurting economy and expensive entrance fees stand in the way. Discover 10 of the country’s top theme parks that offer summer fun on a reasonable budget.

Click Here for Full Details

 

Source: SmarterTravel.com

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Casino Resort & Spa Summer Escapes With Special Bargain Rates

Agua Caliente Casino - Resort - Spa in Rancho Mirage and Spa Resort Casino in downtown Palm Springs are offering rejuvenating getaways at bargain prices. The resorts’ packages offer discounted rooms, dining specials and free play in their casinos.

At Agua Caliente Casino - Resort - Spa guests can enjoy world-class entertainers like Jay Leno, Elvis Costello, ZZ Top and more at the resort’s premier concert theatre: The Show.

At Spa Resort Casino, guests can relax in the resort’s legendary hot mineral springs, located just steps away from the quaint boutiques of downtown Palm Springs.

The Summer Getaway and Paradise Nights Packages include:

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Rescue the Economy: Go on Vacation!

In response to the shaky economy, many hotels and destinations are offering worldwide deals to make travel more affordable than ever. The best way to get the global economy back on its feet is to start spending again, and here are a few great travel companies doing their part to help travelers. From Caribbean resorts and Amazon adventures to barging bargains in France and South African safaris, the deals abound.

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Casa Colonial Beach & Spa Gives Guests Cash Back - 20% Off Room Rate, Complimentary Daily Breakfast

CASA COLONIAL BEACH & SPA GIVES GUESTS CASH BACK THROUGHOUT 2009

—Luxury five-star resort on the north coast of the Dominican Republic offers travelers 20 percent off room rate and complimentary daily breakfast on stays Sunday through Thursday April through December 23, 2009 -

The 50-room luxury boutique hotel, Casa Colonial Beach & Spa, situated on the Dominican Republic’s north coast, has announced another value-added offer for savvy travelers. Guests who book a stay from Sunday through Thursday in 2009 at the lavish Casa Colonial Beach & Spa will receive 20 percent off their room rate and complimentary daily breakfast.

The discount of 20 percent will be taken off stays Sunday through Thursday on rack rates ranging from $350 - $1,300 in high season (January 4 – April 18, 2009) and $286 - $968 in low season (April 19 through December 23, 2009). The offer cannot be combined with packages or existing offers, is based upon space availability and a two-night minimum stay is required.

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Beach Getaways: Instant Savings & Special Offers at Orbitz

Ready for a beach vacation this spring? From white sand beaches in Barbados to Mayan ruins in Mexico, Orbitz is offering some hot deals in top Caribbean and Mexico beach destinations.

Sample offers:

Save big during Best of Barbados
Save up to $600 on select 5+ night vacation package bookings through 04/10
$600 OFF

Save up to $200 on Grand Bahama Island vacations
Save $200 off 4+ night vacation packages with promotion code
200GBI through 04/06
$200 OFF

Curacao Now! Save $200 Instantly
Save $200 off 7+ night vacation packages with promotion code CURACAONOW through 05/23
$200 OFF

Learn more…

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Top 10 Deals of the Week from Orbitz


TOP 10 DEALS — WEEK OF MARCH 23, 2009
Are you experiencing an unexplained urge to save? Each week the experts at Orbitz.com compile the ten best travel deals from their site to help put you on the path to travel wellbeing. Enjoy.

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NEW Pricedrop Protection on all Flights & Vacation Packages at Priceline.com

Hey there budget-travelers…

Priceline.com follows Orbitz’s Price Assurance lead in helping travelers get the best possible deals on travel. Starting today Priceline.com is backing up every Flight AND Vacation Package purchase with Free Pricedrop Protection. Book by June 1st and you’ll be automatically covered if prices drop before the trip.

Here’s the deal:

Up to $300 Cash Back if Flight Prices Drop:
If another priceline customer books the same flight for a lower price, they’ll automatically refund the difference in cash…up to $300.

Up to $600 Cash Back if Vacation Package Prices Drop:
If another priceline customer books the same vacation package for a lower price, they’ll automatically refund the difference in cash…up to $600

Learn more (ends 6/1)

 

Source: Priceline.com

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$50 Gift Card with 2 Nights at Renaissance Hotels

Check out this new stay-n-shop promotion from Orbitz…

Stay 2 nights at Renaissance Hotels and get a $50 Nordstrom gift card

Reward your sense of style and get a $50 Nordstrom gift card when you book 2+ nights (Thursday – Sunday) at participating Renaissance Hotels and Resorts.

Book and travel by May 25th, 2009.

Learn more

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Xanterra Suggests Free, Nearly Free and Priceless National Park Experiences

Some of the best things in life truly are free, particularly in our national parks. And even those things that aren’t free are still an incredible value, in part because every item with a price tag in every U.S. national park has the approval of the National Park Service.

Here’s a few budget-friendly ideas from National Park concessioner Xanterra Parks & Resorts:



Free experiences:


Spot an owl. Or a bear, elk, wolf, otter, bighorn sheep, pronghorn, coyote, bison or trumpeter swan. The Lamar Valley in the northern part of Yellowstone National Park is often called the “American Serengeti” because of its abundant wildlife. Some good binoculars and a little patience are all you need to observe the wonders of the park’s wildlife. Xanterra also offers a variety of guided wildlife-watching experiences.

Go low. At 282 feet below sea level, Badwater Basin in California’s Death Valley National Park is one of the lowest places in the world. The vast salt flats are typically bone-dry but can turn into a ready-made lake after a big rainstorm. Look up at mountainside sign marking sea level posted well above the Badwater Basin viewpoint. No, up a little higher. Feeling small yet?

Walk in the footsteps of presidents. Six presidents – and Three Stooges – have stayed at Yellowstone’s Old Faithful Inn. It was built for $140,000 in 1904 and is one of the most famous buildings in any national park. A Xanterra historian tells travelers about the inn’s colorful history during free walking tours offered several times a day throughout the summer.

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Rosen Hotels & Resorts Announces Extension of their Military Half-Price Orlando Accommodations, Food & Beverages through 2009

Rosen Hotels & Resorts in Orlando announces today the extension of their special offer for active duty military. In honor of their continued service and commitment to our nation, active, guard and reserve military can enjoy half-price accommodations and half-price food and beverages at Rosen Hotels & Resorts’ four Orlando leisure properties through the end of 2009. The four hotels include Quality Inn International, Rodeway Inn International, Quality Inn Plaza (all three ideally located along International Drive, in the tourist corridor) and Comfort Inn Lake Buena Vista near Walt Disney World.

Rooms at the four Rosen Hotels & Resorts’ leisure properties start from $59.95 (rate is prior to the discount and does not include applicable taxes). This special military rate can be booked online at: www.orlandohotels4less.com\military or by calling 1-877-224-5377. Participants must present a valid military ID and should be active, guard or reserve military. The package is based on availability and is subject to black-out dates. Not valid for groups or conventions. Rates are subject to change.

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American Airlines Extends Offer of Free Companion Ticket for Future Travel to United Kingdom or Caribbean

Travel Through the End of March and Two Can Fly For the Price of One On Your Next Getaway

American Airlines has extended a special offer that rewards customers who fly round trip from the United States to the United Kingdom with a free* companion ticket for future travel to the UK or to select destinations in the Caribbean.


Now through March 31, simply fly American Airlines round trip in First Class or Business Class, or on select Economy Class fares from the United States to the United Kingdom, and earn the free companion ticket for future travel.

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Going Going Gone Thalys Special From Rail Europe

If you book travel on the Thalys train between January 14-February 28, 2009 - you’ll receive up to 50% off your first or second-class Regular one-way tickets on most Thalys routes. It’s all part of Rail Europe’s Going Going Gone Thalys Special, good for travel between January 28-March 31, 2009. Book quickly! This high-speed train goes fast.


Click Here for Details

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Frontier Airlines announces three-day sale with fares as low as $39* each way

Check Out This Economic Stimulus Package…

 


Frontier Airlines today revealed its own economic stimulus package that will save you big bucks on travel to more than 50 destinations across the United States. The Denver-based carrier is holding a three-day sale starting today, Jan. 21, 2009, with fares as low as $39* each way. Sale-priced tickets must be purchased by 9:59 p.m. MST on Jan. 23, 2009 for travel through May 20, 2009.

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Presidential Powder Packages

Check Out These Powder Packages Fit for A President

In observance of the inauguration of the United States of America’s 44th president, Utah ski and snowboard resorts are rolling out some presidential packages.  Discover Utah’s ‘White House’ a.k.a ‘The Greatest Snow on Earth’.

Martin Luther King Size Package
This package at Alta Ski Resort includes nightly lodging in a room with one or two beds, complete breakfast and gourmet dinner daily, all taxes and service charges, a two day Alta lift ticket and round trip airport transfers. Rate is $420.00 per person per day. Double occupancy and three-night minimum stay required. Room type is assigned by Rustler Lodge at time of check-in. Available from 01/15/09-01/20/09. More information available at www.altavacations.net.

Park City Mountain Resort’s Presidential Package
Includes a ski-in/out two-bedroom luxury condo with private hot tub at Silver Star from 1-19-09 for 5 nights with 4 days of adult lift tickets. Kids stay and ski for free. Based on 2 adults and 2 kids (7-12 years). $549 per adult per night, taxes and fees included. Subject to availability. Restrictions apply. For reservations call 800.331.3178.

Secret Service Package
Powder Mountain, one of Utah’s better kept secrets, enables access to secret stashes only known by Powder Mountain’s elite force of Adventure Pros via snowcats, helicopters and buses. This powder-full package includes three nights lodging in a luxury slopeside log home (sleeps 10, one day of in-bounds guided snowcat skiing on over 5,500 acres of terrain, 18,000 vertical in one day of heli-skiing with Diamond Peaks Heli-ski Adventure and a Powder Snowcat Safari accessing 2,500 private acres of powder. $1,645 per person plus tax- Based on 10 guests. Offer available througout 2008-09 season conditions permitting. Reservations can be made by emailing columbineinn@powdermountain.com or calling 801.745.1414.

For information on Ski Utah or its 13 resort partners visit www.SkiUtah.com or call 801.534.1779.

 

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Save up to 30% at select Starwood New York Hotels at Orbitz

Hot Deals In New York City With Starwood Hotels at Orbitz

NYC. Capital of the world. A truly legendary town that pulses with energy, culture, and life
any time of day or night. Explore renowned museums such as the Museum of Modern Art, fascinating neighborhoods and world-famous attractions like Central Park.

With five unique brands to choose from, Starwood Hotels & Resorts has the perfect hotel
for your next visit. Plus, save 10-30% at select properties this winter.

Sheraton Manhattan at Times Square - Save 10%

Sheraton New York Hotel & Towers - Save 10%

Four Points by Sheraton Manhattan Soho Village - Save 10%

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