Money Wise--Summer Travel Deals - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

08/16/04

Money Wise--Summer Travel Deals

Have you taken a vacation trip this summer? If you haven't taken at least a weekend getaway, there's actually still time and quite a few good deals for you to consider. Would you take a cruise or head to a casino if you had the chance? It's a lot easier than you might think.

"There are some great last-minute deals for people who haven't made their vacation plans yet," said Jason Best, owner of Savannah's Williamsburg Travel.

Deals that, unless you're the one on the trip, could sound to good to be true. Best says now is prime time for a trip. "I just booked a family of two for a three-night cruise departing on August 13," he said. "The total cost for both including port charges taxes and fees is $535. That's an actual booking. There's no bait and switch like you might see online that's a different price."

Best says he's finding that there is a little bit of space left on a whole lot of ships, and if the cruise schedule meets yours, the price can't be beat.

If gambling is the name of your game, a trip to Las Vegas may be in the cards. "We've got three-night packages including round trip air from Savannah including hotel and taxes, at Excalibur for 441," said Best. "A lot of time you'll pay that just for your ticket to Vegas."

Say you want somewhere more tropical. Cancun might be the place to be. You can have a three-day weekend there for just over $500 a person. "What's interesting there is that it includes your round trip air and it is all inclusive: food, dinner and entertainment," said Best. "Some are sweetening the deal by throwing in free pre-trip hotel stays in Atlanta."

That way, you won't have to worry about driving for hours to catch a flight the day of your trip. You can stay in Atlanta one day early for free and then catch your flight the following day.

So if you thought your summer vacation was a goner, reconsider. You may be in one of these special spots sooner than you think. "We've got some great last-minute packages that cruise and tour operators expect," said Best. "It's a great way to move unused inventory, so it's never too late to plan a vacation."

The best way to get the best deals: be open. Give your travel agent a travel window, a budget, and give him or her an idea of what you'd like to do. This way, even if you don't go to your number one travel spot, you can at least be somewhere very similar. 

If you have money questions you'd like answered in Money Wise, email moneywise@wtoc.com.

Reported by: Dmitra Denmark, ddenmark@wtoc.com

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