Emily Kaufman’s Insider Fall Travel Tips

Emily Kaufman, The Travel Mom

Here are the latest insider secrets about the best ways and places to get the best travel deals and values for getaways for the entire family or anyone eager to take advantage of empty travel destinations.

October is a Great Time to Find Deals on Cruises.  Fall is a great time to travel since it’s shoulder season, you can get great deals and the summer crowds are gone.  It’s also the perfect time to plan a cruise vacation because you can get lots of incredible deals and special incentives this time of year, for the holidays and next year, too.  CLIA, the Cruise Lines International Association, is celebrating National Cruise Vacation Week from October 21st through the 27th with “The World’s Largest Cruise Sale” where 25 of CLIA’s cruise line members and over 7,000 travel agencies throughout the U.S. and Canada team up to offer spectacular savings and value on a wide variety of cruises – including “Virtual National Cruise Week Events” where you can go online to get information and even book your cruise. You’ll find amazing deals around the world across all cruise categories – on major cruise ships, smaller and adventure cruise lines, luxury cruises, and even river cruises in Europe and Asia. Just go to cruising.org for a full list of special offers and to find a CLIA-certified travel agent.

Here are two great deals:

Carnival Cruise Lines: Gives you up to $200 Cash Back per stateroom and accept 50 percent reduced deposits on select sailings through December 2013. With prices starting at $259, this is a great value for cruises to The Bahamas, the Caribbean– great choices for short or seven-day vacations. In fact, for Carnival’s 2013 European cruises, travelers can save up to 20 percent, and only have to put $99 per person down as a deposit.

Celebrity Cruises: Take a seven-night or longer cruise to Alaska, the Caribbean, Bermuda or Europe between January first and April 30th and get up to $250 in Onboard Credits to be used in restaurants, the spa or for other shipboard activities.

Use Technology to Organize Your Travel Details. Whether you’re planning a family cruise, ski trip or international vacation this fall or winter, you can use your smart phone and apps to organize so many things for your trip.  Just program the numbers of airlines and hotel contacts into your phone so if you need to rebook a flight or hotel because of travel delays, the numbers are right there.

Don’t Forget Travel Insurance When You Travel. And you don’t want to get caught with extra fees for flight delays or lost luggage, so you need to think about travel insurance.  TravelGuard.com offers many comprehensive travel insurance plans that typically include coverage for things like trip cancellation, interruption or delays, lost or stolen luggage, and emergency medical expenses.  They also provide 24-hour travel assistance and emergency services and even have a popular Gold Plan that includes free coverage for kids under 17. You can find out all the details at TravelGuard.com.

Tourism Websites are a Great Resource for Savings and Freebies at Your Destination. Do your research and subscribe to email alert lists from travel, airline, hotel and tourism websites so that you’re alerted to travel deals when they’re published.  Here’s a great deal for Los Angeles Tourism.  They have a fall program called “Museums LA” from October 1st to November 11th and you get FREE admission to LA’s leading museums like the Huntington, Getty Center and Getty Villa, even the Grammy Museum.  And when you book two nights or more at any participating Los Angeles area hotel on DiscoverLosAngeles.com/cultureLA , you get FREE admission for two people and museum store discounts at 30 of LA’s top museums—a savings  of nearly $500.  Also, check out 100 Free things to do in Los Angeles.

Bundle Your Trip to Save More. Also, look for ways to bundle your trip to save.  If you purchase your vacation as a package with your airfare, hotel and car rental together, you can usually save a couple of hundred dollars on your trip.  Cruises are a built in bundle of value since they include accommodations, meals, and entertainment.


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