Rent a Car for $25 for a Week, Cruise for 5 days for $300

By Zaneta Lowe  - bio | e-mail | Twitter

COLUMBUS, GA (WTVM) - Whether you're hitting the road, or taking to the skies or seas, it seems traveling will be cheaper this year.

"I think there are a lot of great deals out right now, depending on where you want to travel to," says AAA South Travel Manager Roxanne Towler.

So which deals save you the most dollars?  Towler says Valley residents, especially former and current military may want to check out Delta's current special to Frankfurt, Germany.

"If you can depart before May 27th, it's under $450 per person," says Towler.

According to Towler, the same airfare normally runs more than $1000.

That's more than $550 in savings!

Speaking of international trips, Towler says the travel company Insight Vacations is offering discount packages to Europe.

"They're offering buy one airline ticket, get the second airline ticket for $99."

If sailing is more your style, it's seems the all the changes from the swine flu scare equals savings for certain cruises.

"I saw June 1st, out of Tampa for a five day cruise under $300 per person, that's an excellent deal," Towler says of a cruise special at Carnival.

Towler says such a cruise normally runs more than $500, so that's $200 you get to keep!

Towler also says Alaska cruises are about down 25%.

"We looked at traveling the same day last year and it was like $1911 per person and now it's down to like $1450 per person."

That's a difference of more than $450!  If you're planning to drive, don't worry, there are discounts there too.

Travel Expert and creator of Tom Parsons says Hertz has a special where consumers can rent a car for a week for $25.

The only catch, the vehicle has to be rented in Florida, but returned outside the state.

So Parsons suggests a fly-drive.  Maybe track down a decent airline ticket for one way and see the sites on the road.

Other travel savings ideas:

  • Try to book during the "shoulder" season, that's just before the summer season begins.  Travel experts say hurry though, the season starts sooner this year, at the end of May.
  • Don't forget to enter discount or promo codes when you book flights, hotel rooms, etc.
  • Haggle for upgrades at your hotel!

The site offers the following tips:

  • Surf the internet for deals on vacation packages. You may find an affordable all-in-one package that includes transportation, accommodations and meals.
  • If you're headed to the beach for your vacation, consider booking a condo or beach house instead of a hotel. Private renters may be open to negotiation and more reasonable in their rates. The availability of a kitchen can also help you avoid going out to eat for every meal.
  • While eating out is fun and easy, it's also expensive. Buying food and beverages at the grocery store can save you money over the course of your trip.
  • If you plan on driving to your vacation destination, research gas prices online before plotting your course. In general, filling up along a highway is more expensive than taking an exit into a town.