Travel Steals & Deals


Waikiki Bargains
Two Honolulu hotels are offering special $99 room deals. At the Waikiki Beachcomber (800-622-4646), the rate includes nightly accommodations for two and a choice of a daily breakfast buffet or a rental car. At the Aston Waikiki Joy Hotel (800-922-7866), the $99 nightly rate is valid until December 22, and includes accommodations and a free continental breakfast.

Britain on $94 a Day
The "$94 for '94" promotion at the Mount Charlotte Thistle Hotels (800-847-4358) in Britain offers a bundle of amenities. For $94 per person, guests receive nightly accommodations, full English breakfast, a rental car, and discounted visits to historic sites. The $94 rate is available through the end of the year, and includes hotel taxes, unlimited mileage and car-rental insurance. The price is based on double occupancy and requires a 4-night minimum stay at any combination of 90 hotels. (The offer differs slightly at the chain's London properties.)

Washington Weekends
The "Historic Package" at the Latham Hotel (800-528-4261) in the Georgetown district of Washington, D.C., costs $89 per night and includes accommodations, continental breakfast for two, and free parking. The rate is valid on weekends through the end of the year.

A bargain in Hong Kong
If you plan to visit the British Crown Colony before it reverts to China in 1997, consider the exceptionally well priced "Hong Kong Special" package offered by Visitours (800-367-4368). The deal includes round-trip airfare on Japan Airlines, round-trip airport transfers in a Mercedes Benz, six nights at the Park Hotel Hong Kong in the trendy Kowloon district, six American breakfasts, and a half-day sightseeing tour. Depending on departure dates and cities, prices range from $1,085 to $1,445 per person based on double occupancy. The "Hong Kong Special" is available through March, 1995.

Europe on a budget
One cost-effective way to visit Europe this fall is by booking the "Belgian Starter" package offered by Sabena Airlines (800-955-2000). For prices as low as $599 per person (double occupancy), the deal includes round-trip Sabena flights to Brussels, three weekend nights at a Hilton International hotel in either Brussels or Antwerp, and a 3-days Avis car rental. Travelers interested in longer stays can build on the package's remarkable flexibility: Belgium is within several hours drive of many western European destinations; a 4-day extension of the car rental costs just $50 more; and the Sabena flights can be booked for stays of as long as two months. The "Belgian Starter" is available through March, 1995.

A New England ramble
The "Heart of New England Foliage" is a six-day autumn package from Maupintour (800-225-4266) timed to coincide with New England's most colorful season. For $998 per person (double occupancy), the package includes three nights at country inns and two nights at a hotel; 12 meals; a railroad ride, a lake cruise, and all ground transportation; visits to Sturbridge Village, Lexington, and the Norman Rockwell Museum, all in Massachusetts; and visits to the Quechee Gorge in Vermont, Mt. Washington in New Hampshire, and Kennebunkport, Maine. "Heart of New England Foliage" tours begin and end in Boston, and depart between September 21 and October 13.

At home in England
Country Cottages (800-674-8883) sell customized packages that offer travelers exclusive use of fully furnished and equipped country homes throughout Great Britain. More than 6,000 homes, ranging from a one-bedroom thatched cottage to a Scottish castle, are available. Prices for a seven-night package begin at $699 per person and include the accommodations, round-trip airfare to London on Virgin Atlantic Airways, and an Avis rental car. Prices vary dramatically, however, based on the type of home chosen, the time of year, and the number of people traveling together.

Discount on the Danube
A special end-of-the-season cruise on the Danube River starts on October 30 and it is priced at about half the normal summer rate. Operated by KD River Cruises of Europe (800-346-6525 or 800-858-8587), the 14-day excursion on the 104-passenger Heinrich Heine includes accommodations and all meals; prices range from $1,520 to $1,760 per person (double occupancy) for a twin-bedded outside cabin. The cruise on the 3-year-old ship begins in Vienna and ends in Cologne, Germany, and features a complete transit on the new Rhine-Main-Danube canal. Ports of call include Linz and Melk in Austria, and Passau, Nuremberg, Wurzburg, and Frankfurt, Germany.

This column originally appeared in Travel Holiday magazine.

Copyright 1993-2008 by Joe Brancatelli. All rights reserved.