2010 Travel Tips for a Last Minute Summer Vacation

July 2010:

Emily Kaufman, The Travel Mom, on location in Ft. Lauderdale.

Trying to squeeze in a last minute summer vacation before the kids go back to school but haven’t made any travel plans? Don’t worry.  If your budget is tight and you’re concerned you’ve missed out on travel deals, you’re in luck. The Travel Mom, Emily Kaufman, has some creative ways to take a last minute summer vacation without breaking the budget.  Many people may think they’ve missed out on travel deals for the summer, but it’s  not too late to plan your summer vacation.  Although you can definitely save by planning your vacation in advance, especially when it comes to airfares, Emily says she’s been seeing a lot of great last minute travel deals online every day.

TIP # 1 – Get Great Travel Deals in Destinations Where Summer is Actually the Low Season. The summer is a great time to get really good rates at the best hotels and low airfares when you think about vacationing in destinations where summer is the low season.  One of Emily’s favorite vacation spots in sunny Greater Fort Lauderdale where there are 23 miles of clean, beautiful beaches overlooking the very blue Atlantic Ocean on the East Coast of Florida.  It’s gorgeous in summer and you can see for yourself with their Live Beach Cams on the destination’s website at sunny.org.  You can also save 50% on admission to museums, spas, and lots of outdoor activities including golf and kayaking with their special two-for-one  “Vacation like a V-I-P” card.  That’s just a sample of how you can get good deals at off the beaten path summer destination.

TIP # 2 – Save 50% Off Your Vacation by Taking a Mini-Vacation. One way to save on your last minute vacation is to take a shorter vacation or a mini-vacation.  It can cut the cost of your trip in half, especially if you do a road trip to a destination not more  than a half-day drive from your home.  Mini-vacations don’t require weeks of planning but still provide the same basic essentials of any trip: the chance to recharge your batteries, get your mind off of work and take a break from your regular routine.   Also, when you’re traveling with the kids, look for a hotel that is reliable, kid-friendly and has all the amenities they need, like the Hilton Garden Inn. Between now and September 6th, with the HHonors ‘Great Getaway Promotion’ you get 20% off the Bed ‘N Breakfast rates plus get a delicious cooked-to-order breakfast for up to four adults staying in the same room. And kids 12 and under eat breakfast for free.   HGI.com has a list of participating hotels all the details.

TIP # 3 – In the World of Travel, Loyalty Has its Rewards so “Be Loyal.” If you’re looking for a last minute getaway, check into your loyalty reward programs as you might have enough reward points for a mini-vacation.  It’s important to be “Be Loyal” since hotels, airlines, cruise lines and rental car companies all reward their loyal customers with great travel perks. Loyalty means free upgrades, priority check in, preferred seats, free baggage check and dedicated telephone numbers for faster service.  Cruise Lines even host special events on board for their loyal members and are given priority tender tickets and priority dinner reservations.

TIP # 4 – Road Trips are Easy and Less Expensive Last Minute Vacations. A road trip is probably one of the easiest and least expensive last minute summer vacations you can do since you can save by not paying a huge airfare.  The most important thing to remember is to book your hotel in advance and make sure, in addition to your GPS system, that you carry real maps with you as they can really help if come across unexpected construction and need to take detour in an unfamiliar area.

TIP # 5 – Official Tourism Websites are a Great Source for Travel Deals at Your Destination. Check with the official tourism site where you’re visiting as you can almost always find great deals there with discounts on attractions, dining deals, hotel deals and so much more.

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