Posted on Wednesday, 19th January 2011 by

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I’ve been retired over two years now and the winter before retiring I had dreams of spending my winters indoors after retirement looking out into the woods during snow storms watching snow flakes gently float to the ground while Cardinals and Blue Jays feasted at the feeders scattered amongst the trees.  I would drink my coffee while reading the newspaper and enjoy not going out into the cold.  The fact is I’ve discovered that I am not the type, yet anyway, to just sit in the house and relax during the winter.  I will admit watching the snow fall and the birds eat is beautiful, but the fitness center is calling me, I want to see the latest movie and I want to have lunch out with a friend.  After spending the past month getting out in the weather to participate in my favorite activities I need a break from winter so I can survive winter.

If you’ve signed up for weekly saver fares from your favorite airline or the many agencies that send weekly emails with the latest travel deals then all it takes is a little time online to find a getaway from winter for a week or two and taste some of that warmth that’s still three months away.  Whether you just want to relax on the beach, go to an amusement park in a warmer climate or cruise the Caribbean or Mexican Riviera, with a little time you can find something that fits your budget.  I found a great deal on an 11 night Caribbean Cruise, balcony suite with ship board credit and a free dinner in my choice of specialty restaurants on board.  All for what I would normally pay for an inside cabin.  But there may be some of you that love playing in the snow.  There are deals for you snow bunnies also!

If a last minute getaway is more to your liking, then watch your weekly saver fares for a warm spot with a low fare.  Your next move is finding lodging but don’t forget to look at vacation rentals.  It is far better than a hotel, more relaxing and you have the option of fixing your own meals or eating out.  I have one recommendation about traveling to Florida in the winter.  Make sure you’re not going during the Daytona 500 before you click on “complete purchase” for that great airfare.  I made that mistake a few years ago.  I knew car rentals in Florida are very reasonable.  After buying my ticket I couldn’t find any rental car under $400 for the week.  I could not figure out why until I got on the airplane to travel to Orlando.  The NASCAR gear that covered nearly ever passenger on the plane cleared things up quickly!

Here are some of the deals available now and a list of resources to assist you in a finding your own special winter getaway, whether you live in a cold climate or want to go skiing to rejoice the fun that all those snow flakes can create.

  1. www.bookingbuddie.com has a list of hotel rooms under $100 a night, starting at $28 in Cancun Mexico up to $91 in Jamaica.
  2. www.Groupon.com and www.LivingSocial.com offer daily deals for lots of items including an occasional weekend getaway.  Living Social had a weekend getaway to Virginia Wine Country last week at the Rosemont Manor with a price of $379 for 2 nights in a luxury suite.
  3. www.vacationstogo.com has a list of deals from ports all over the US to a variety of destinations.
  4. http://Disneyworld.disney.go.com Walt Disney World has special resort rates for this winter and spring.
  5. www.usairwayscruises.com has a list of deals at great prices.  You can sign up for their weekly cruise deals email.
  6. http://cruises.continental.com also has a list of deals at great prices.  Sign up for their weekly cruise deals for a list of their best deals.
  7. www.orbitz.com can give you a snap shot of airfare deals.  I recommend you also check the airlines website which may match the price and have lower fees for a savings.
  8. www.kayak.com offers a weekly email with their best travel deals.  They will also keep track of airfares for your favorite locations and let you know when there is a sale or package deal you might want to take advantage of.
  9. www.independenttraveler.com offers a snapshot of weekly deals in an email subscription.  Their current focus is winter escapes with a list of the top 8 destinations.
  10. www.crucon.com is having a January Sail-a-bration with a list of deals weekly.  Their newsletter sent weekly to your email advising of the latest deals, some are so good you don’t want to pass them up.
  11. www.snow.com for a list of deals to go play in the snow out in the Rockies!
  12. www.onthesnow.com not only gives you the snow reports for any area of the country they also have links to show you current deals at ski resorts anywhere in the US.
  13. www.ski.com provides a list of deals but will also customize your ski vacation to meet all your expectations.

Well, that’s it for this month!  As for me, I’m off to sit on my balcony looking at the azure color of the Caribbean as I float by islands and enjoy my coffee and read my kindle…or maybe I’ll explore the ship, swim and have lunch with my friends.  Sitting is just not my style, yet anyway!

Nancy Holston

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The information provided may not cover all aspect of unique or special circumstances. Travel policies and packages are subject to change without notice. To ensure the accuracy of this information, contact travel providers and hotels at the time of your bookings to confirm pricing, itinerary, and all costs. The comments and observations are limited to the author’s personal experience and your results may vary significantly. This article and replies to comments are not intended to substitute for professional travel services. Our reply is time sensitive. Over time, various dynamic economic factors relied upon as a basis for this article may change.

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