Travel deals

Travel deals for Black Friday/Cyber Monday/Travel Tuesday

Skip the things. Grab travel deals on Black Friday/ Cyber Monday instead.

Here are some travel-related deals for Black Friday/Cyber Monday/Travel Tuesday to get you started on deal-shopping this season.

More deals to come!

Deals on getting from here to there

Look for Amtrak’s “Track Friday Sale,” to go live at Amtrak.com on November 29. Last year’s deal offered 30% off nationwide train travel well into the new year.

Many airlines will be offering discounts and flash deals.

To catch them, make sure to follow a few favorite airlines on Twitter and other social media sites and join their frequent flyer programs so you get email announcements sent to insiders.

Until December 2, Air France is offering current and new Flying Blue loyalty program members triple miles on most US to Paris flights purchased for travel December 7 to March 31, 2020.

Irish flag carrier Aer Lingus will offer $100 off on round trip economy fares and $200 off on round trip business class flights from the US and Canada to Europe booked between Tuesday 11/26 and Tuesday 12/3 for travel between January 1 and March 8, 2020.

Turkish Airlines is having a Black Friday “Friday Flyday” sale with discounts to various cities around the world.

According to Hopper, many other airlines, including Cathay Pacific, Air New Zealand, Singapore Airlines and TAP Portugal will likely launch sale offers on Cyber Monday or Travel Tuesday.

Airport lounge pass deal

Plaza Premium Lounges has a walk-in offer for holiday flyers.

From 5 a.m. November 29 through midnight on Monday December 2, travelers flying out of Toronto or Vancouver, B.C. can get 25% off a 2 or 3-hour lounge stay and 35% off 2 and 3-hour lounge stays in their airport lounges in Winnipeg and Edmonton.

Place to stay  

It seems that just about every hotel and resort is courting travelers with a Black Friday/Cyber Monday/Travel Tuesdays deals this year.

Savvy shoppers will be able to snag great lodging deals but pay attention to the fine print on the offers. Some deals are non-refundable, have blackout dates and narrow stay windows or other restrictions.

As with airlines, you can often get the best deals if you are a member of a property or chain’s free-to-join frequent-stay program. And, keep in mind that discounts often don’t apply to local and state taxes and resort and amenities fees, which can be quite steep at some properties.

Here are some offers that caught our attention:  

Hilton Hawaiian Village Waikiki Beach Resort’s Cyber Deal, underway now through December 3, offers Honors Members up to 30 percent off a Hawaii vacation. Valid for stays Nov. 28, 2019 through June 30, 2020.  

For its ‘Black Friday Meets The Mile High’ deal at The Curtis in Denver, the hotel is linking its holiday booking deal to Denver’s elevation of 5280 feet. The hotel is offering discounted rates of $52.80/night for dates in December and January booked from Black Friday to Cyber Monday (11/29 – 12/2).

Virgin Hotels in Chicago, San Francisco and Dallas are celebrating Cyber Month. Discounts of up to 30% off best rates will be available December 2, 2019 through January 2, 2020 for stays between December 2, 2019 and June 1, 2020. As a bonus, each hotel will choose a winner each day to be upgraded to a penthouse suite.  

MGM Resorts properties in Las Vegas, including Bellagio, Aria and MGM Grand, have lined up Cyber Week deals up to 35% off regular rates, plus 5% more for M Life Rewards members, from November 25 through December 4, 2019. Look for many more offers Sin City offers on visitlasvegas.com.

Pacifica Hotels, which owns boutique properties on the Pacific Coast, will offer 40% off room rates during its Cyber Monday Sale. The hotel’s Passport Program participants get early access to the sale on Friday, November 29th. Sale covers stays from December 2, 2019 through March 14, 2020.

If you book on the HotelTonight mobile app, use the code HTDEAL25 between Monday December 2 and Tuesday December 3 (Cyber Monday/Travel Tuesday) to get 25% off one hotel stay.

And double-up on discounts at Hotwire’s mobile app with promo codes that can be used on top of discounted hotel bookings made between November 27 and November 29. Use code HWBF for $10 off $100 hotel bookings; HWBF40 for $40 off $300 hotel bookings and HWBF70 for $70 off $500 hotel bookings. On Cyber Monday (Dec 2), use promo code HWHOTDEALS for an extra 11% off $100 Hotwire Hot Rate Hotels.

Packages and tours

Botswana, Okavango Delta, Moremi Game Reserve, Photographing Elephants on a Game Drive

Cruise lines and tour companies will be also be floating special offers during this holiday shopping weekend.

Travelers looking to experience bucket list cruises destinations such as Antarctica, Alaska and Norway can take advantage of Hurtigruten’s deals of up to 50% off select 2020 and 2021 itineraries. Sale dates are November 27 through December 4, 2019, and include expedition voyages aboard the line’s MS Roald Amundsen, the first hybrid electric-powered expedition ship in the world.

Abercrombie & Kent’s Holiday Sale offers discounts of $1,000 to $3,900 on a wide variety of adventures to destinations such as Vietnam, India, Peru and Kenya. Their sale runs from 8 a.m. C.S.T. December 2 through 4 p.m. December 6, 2019.

Deals on attractions

While you’re grabbing airfare and lodging deals, be on the lookout for discounts on attractions and amusement parks in cities you plan to visit.

Now through December 8, 2019, use promo code “GIFT” to get an additional 10% off the deals and discounts to more than 50 theme parks, attractions, activities and dinner shows at Visit Orlando.

From Saturday, November 30 through Monday, December 2, use promo code CYBERMONDAY to save up to 15% on Go City passes, which offer discounted admission packages at popular attractions in more than 20 cities.

And in advance of the July 4, 2020 opening of LEGOLAND New York Resort, the price of the park’s highest tier annual pass, the Gold Pass, will be on sale for $99.99 instead of $209.99 from Black Friday through Cyber Monday.

The pass can’t be activated until the LEGOLAND New York park opens but waiting will be worth it. The pass not only offers year-long admission to this new LEGOLAND resort, but admission to more than 30 other Merlin Entertainment attractions around the country, including LEGOLAND resorts in California and Florida, LEGOLAND Discovery Centers, Madame Tussauds and SEA LIFE Aquariums.

(My story about Travel Deals for Black Friday/Cyber Monday/Travel Tuesday first appeared on CNBC in a slightly different form).

Filed your taxes? Now get some free stuff.

As of March 16, at least 61 million early bird tax filers had already received refunds averaging $2,960 from the Internal Revenue Service.

But millions of other taxpayers are still rushing around gathering receipts and grappling with paperwork and electronic forms as the April 17 tax filing deadline nears.

Whichever column you’re in, you can still take advantage of Tax Day rewards ranging from free pizza and cookies to discounts on hotel stays and getaways.

Here’s a sampling of some of the deals I gathered for a piece on CNBC:

Free (and charmingly discounted) food and snacks

As is their tradition, on Tax Day, April 17, Great American Cookies will be giving away a free cookie to anyone who stops at one of their participating stores. This year’s treat is a Cookies & Cream cookie.

In keeping with its Tax Day motto of “No taxation without relaxation,” Kona Ice trucks will once again show up in many communities on April 17 to hand out free shaved ice. As part of its “Tastes Like America” menu campaign, on April 17 participating Hardee’s will offer customers a free Sausage Biscuit until 10 a.m. and Hot Dog on a Stick will give each customer that stops by participating locations one free Turkey or Veggie Dog on April 17.

Taking a cue from the tax forms, Grimaldi’s Pizzeria locations around the country are offering 16” Traditional Cheese pizzas for $10.40 on April 17. Bruegger’s Bagels is offering a downloadable coupon for a Big Bagel Bundle (13 bagels and two tubs of cream cheese) for $10.40, a $3.50 “deduction,” they note, off the regular price. (Valid through April 17).

And Potbelly Sandwich Shops has set aside 75,000 free sandwiches as a Tax Day reward for people who join its Potbelly Perks program. Those already enrolled in the program will find a buy-one, get one-free sandwich offer loaded on their app April 17 for Tax Day use.

Travel Deals

Throughout the month of April, four Kimpton hotels southern California – Hotel Palomar and Hotel Salomar in San Diego, the Shorebreak Hotel in Huntington Beach and The Goodland in Santa Barbara – are giving out “Random Refunds.” Each day one randomly chosen guest at each hotel will find they’ve been refunded a hotel charge such as the resort fee, parking charges, restaurant bill or perhaps the in-room movie.

From April 17 to 20, Hotel Saugatuck in Saugatuck, Michigan is offering a 20 percent discount to anyone who shows a current 1099 tax form (or proof of membership in the United Auto Workers or Freelancers unions). The B&B is also offering guests a box of local chocolate fudge at a discount, for $10.99.

Thinking of spending your tax refund in Europe? Rail Europe is offering travelers $25 off bookings of $400 made through April 24. Use code: TAXDAYRE18.

Budget-minded tax filers can also take advantage of some other timely travel deals that just happen to fall around April 17.

Filing taxes may not be a walk in the park, but anyone can take a walk in a National Park for free on Saturday, April 21, when entrance fees are waived at any of the National Parks that have them, including Mesa Verde National Park in Colorado, Arizona’s Petrified Forest National Park and others where the entry fee per car can reach $20.

The U.S. Travel Association’s Daily Getaways sale runs this year from April 9 through May 8 and features daily deals up to 60 percent off everything form loyalty point programs and car rental coupons to attractions tickets, hotel stays and more from travel companies such as Hertz, Hilton, and Universal Parks and Resorts.

 A tidying-up trip

Once you’ve filed your taxes, be sure to store away the important financial paperwork you might need should the IRS come calling for an audit.

But don’t stuff everything back in that shoebox. Take a moment to review Consumer Report’s advice on what receipts and records you really need to keep and what can be thrown away.

Bundle the discards, print out this coupon for 5 pounds of free document shredding and take your first post-Tax Day trip to your local Office Max/Office Depot store.

Updated list: Travel Deals for Black Friday/Cyber Monday

Updated Monday at 9:11 a.m. West Coast Time

Looking for Black Friday/Cyber Monday travel deals? Of course you are!

Check here for what I’ve found so far for airlines deals and here for deals on hotels, rail, travel books and other travel-related options.

I’ll keep updating through Monday – so send me notes about anything that looks really great to you.

 

Black Friday/Cyber Monday Travel Deals

Thinking about all the things you’ll be able to shop for at great discount once Black Friday and Cyber Monday come around?

Add travel to the list.

Here are some deals that have arrived in my inbox. Check back (I’ll remind you) as the list gets longer and the deals go live.

*In some cases the links/deals mentioned won’t be ‘hot’ till November 27, but some are available now.

Among those offering deals:

Read up on where you’re going – or want to go with discounts (us code BF5017) on DK Books 

Amtrak – 30 percent off on select travel through Monday

40 percent off Joie de Vivre properties – throughout the year – if you book by Nov. 29.

Rail Europe 

Priceline.com will have Black Friday deals and Cyber Monday deals for its email subscribers.

Hotels.com will offer a slew of deals – some 50 percent off – Tuesday November 21 through Wednesday November 29.

There are also Black Friday/Cybe Monday deals from GoAhead Tours,

Expedia.com

W Hotel’s newest hip property in Bellevue, WA, W Bellevue  will join Starwood’s “Biggest Sale of the Year,” coming Cyber Monday.

Hotwire is currenlty offering what they call a ‘million-dollar deal,’ with a batch of 5-star hotels available for booking for $50 for travel Dec. 8-28, 2017.

The Viceroy Hotel Group will roll out Cyber Mondays deals beginning on 11/20 that will bookable throughout the week. Discounts of 30 to 40 percent at various properties.

These properties are among those promising Black Friday/Cyber Monday deals as well: Carmel Mission Inn (CA), Chicago Athletic Association hotel Godfrey Hotel Boston.

Loews Hotels will launch a 3-day sale on Cyber Monday with 20 percent off rates.

Liftopia will offer 25 percent off gift cards on Cyber Monday.

And if all this shopping news is making you dizzy, keep in mind that you don’t have to participate.  To help you avoid all this buzz, New York State is offering free admission to all its state parks on Black Friday and many state and national parks nationwide have fun, free, family-oriented activities on tap.

More to come…

 

 

 

 

 

Canada is looking very good right now.

Bow Lake in Banff National Park, Alberta, Canada.

While global travel to the United States may be dipping due to recent actions by President Donald Trump’s administration, tourism numbers for Canada are climbing.

And it’s not just because Canada has the most donut shops in the world (per capita).

There are plenty of other reasons the tourism spotlight is pointing north right now, as I outlined for this story on NBC News:

The Lists

Both the New York Times and Lonely Planet put the second-largest country in the world (by area) at the top of their list of places to visit in 2017.

The Dollar

One U.S. dollar is currently worth about 1.30 Canadian dollars, making dining, shopping, lodging and admissions to attractions great deals for Americans taking their travel dollars north of the border.

The Parties

2017 is Canada’s 150th birthday and there are sesquicentennialcelebrations and events taking place across the country. Consider planning a trip around some of the highlights, or time your trip to one of the activities in Canada’s handy (and constantly updated) Passport 2017 app.

Ottawa, Canada’s capital city, has some serious celebrations in store, from a four-day NHL Stanley Cup 125th Tribute (March 15-18) that will feature a hockey-themed concert, to La Machine — enormous mechanical creatures including a spider and a dragon that will do battle on the streets of downtown Ottawa July 27-30, to an underground multimedia experience (Kontinuum) from the end of June through September; and, on August 27, Canada’s Table, an open-air dinner for 1000 that will be set up right in front of the Parliament Buildings.

La Machine will bring fierce, gigantic mechanical creatures to downtown Ottawa July 27-30 to celebrate Canada’s 150th birthday. Jean Dominique Billaud

Nationwide, Parks Canada is offering free admission for the entire year to all the national parks, national historic sites, and national marine conservation areas it operates.

That includes Alberta’s Banff National Park, which is Canada’s first national park, and the Alexander Graham Bell National Historic Site in Nova Scotia.

Quebec City’s Winter Carnival is underway through February 12, with more than 200 activities, including snow sculpture contests, night parades, ice-skating, an ice palace and, for the very hardy, an end-of-festival snow bath.

When temperatures are warmer, between June 29 and August 20, about forty tall ships will be visiting coastal cities in Quebec to mark Canada’s 150th anniversary. The flotilla convenes in Quebec City July 18 to 23 for a celebration including ship tours and maritime activities.

Located at a National Historic Site that served as the gateway to Canada for one million immigrants between 1928 and 1971, the Canadian Museum of Immigration at Pier 21 in Halifax, Nova Scotia, will be presenting an expanded version of “Canada: Day 1,” an exhibition about immigrants’ experiences on their first day in the country, from April through October, 2017.

2017 marks Montreal’s 375th anniversary and the city is celebrating with a year’s worth of events and celebrations, including Cité Mémoire, featuring a nightly display of characters from the city’s history projected on the walls, streets and trees of Old Montreal. Montréal Avudo, a multimedia program honoring the St. Lawrence River, includes installations and giant projections and will be performed 100 times between May 17 and September 2 in the Old Port of Montreal.

With its To Canada with Love line-up, Toronto is marking Canada’s 150th anniversary with a year-long schedule of celebrations, commemorations, horticultural installations, and exhibitions, including Doors Open Toronto (May 27 & 28), when about 150 architecturally, historically, culturally and socially significant buildings across the city open their doors and back rooms for tours and special events — all for free.

Canada Place in Vancouver hosts a major Canada Day (July 1) celebration each year and is planning an extended three-day celebration from July 1-3 with a fireworks show and other highlights to mark the country’s 150th year.

And from June 21 to July 1 Victoria, B.C. will present Spirit of 150 Victoria, which will include 11 days of free outdoor events in the Inner Harbor topped off on July 1 with a grand finale main stage programming and a giant fireworks display.

Ready to Head North?

The data crunchers at Priceline found that for weekends through the end of March (depending on your originating city) it’s possible to take a weekend trip to one of Canada’s major cities for under $500, including roundtrip airfare and 4-star hotel rates.

For example, New Yorkers can fly to Toronto for an average $183 roundtrip and stay at a 4-star hotel for $85 per night (total cost $438). Chicago-based travelers can fly to Montreal for about $300 and stay in numerous 4-star (and some 4.5 star hotels) for under $100 a night.