Sometimes it pays to procrastinate.
In the case of last-minute summer travel deals, it most definitely does. As we head out of peak season, hotels, airlines and cruises will be lowering rates across the board. With Labor Day fast approaching, here are some deals for cheap airfare and sunny beaches so you can squeeze out the very last of summer and make it through the fall.
American Airlines' European sale is going on until August 31. Depart August 14 - October 27, 2011, and return by November 24, 2011 to save big bucks on airfare. Mid-week departures and a Saturday-night stay may be required.
JetBlue's end of summer sale has cheap last minute flights to San Francisco, Puerto Rico, Baltimore, Boston, Los Angeles and more. Take advantage of these huge savings and travel last minute to your favorite destinations. This sale doesn't end until September 7, but book fast to get the best fares.
Hotels and Resorts
Expedia is offering 20% off hotel prices for Labor Day weekend (September 1-3) for all last minute bookers. The site is offering discounts at over 800 hotels across the U.S. and Canada, so book now to book your perfect destination weekend. Travel dates are between September 1-5, and early booking is encouraged.
Oglebay Resort in Wheeling, West Virginia is offering a three-night Labor Day package starting at $419 for two adults that includes a welcome reception, daily breakfast, zoo and museum admission, and many activities like mini golf, paddle boating, horseback riding and a live symphony performance.
Point Sebago Resort in South Casco, Maine is a camp-style family resort offering an all-inclusive three-night Labor Day package starting at $310 per adult. Children over the age of four are an additional $40 to $90, but they will also enjoy eight buffet meals (including one lobster dinner), mini golf, free entertainment and activities like a kids camp, arcade, family activities, discounted golf greens fees and a one-hour lake cruise.
Las Vegas, Nevada is just cheaper this time of year. The hotter-than-ever weather keeps many late season travelers away, but if you are willing to brave the (dry!) heat there are many hotels along the strip offering severely discounted Labor Day deals- some less than $100 a night. Consider spending a long weekend in Vegas and spend the extra cash on the tons of live entertainment and shows along the strip, or venture out into the desert for some natural sightseeing.
Disney World is another place to save this August, especially as schools around the country come back from their summer recess. With the nation's kids out of the parks and in classrooms, rates at park hotels drop to as low as $69 a night. While this doesn't include park admission, it sure puts a dent in the regular price tag of a Disney World family vacation.
If you are looking for a last respite of peace and quite before summer is over, many spas around the country are offering single, couple or family deals.
The Stoweflake Mountain Resort & Spa in Stowe, Vermont is offering up to 25% off family packages. The deal includes accommodations in a deluxe guest room, no resort fee, Sports & Wellness Center access with five fitness centers, sauna and steam room, use of indoor and outdoor pools with poolside cafe and outdoor Jacuzzi, 9-hole Par 3 golf course, and free parking.
The Norwich Spa at Foxwoods in Ledyard, Connecticut is discounting couples prices up to 20%. Packages include deluxe accommodations in Grand Pequot Tower, a 50-minute Swedish massage, a 25-minute manicure or pedicure and a $35 dining voucher at Scorpion Bar
Cruises are also offering big breaks this time of year. Orbitz is having a huge summer cruise sale with discounts on dozens of top cruise lines that sail around the world. If you book a cruise in August departing August 18 through December 31, 2011, cruisers get 2 coupons with no blackout dates for $100 off flight + hotel vacation package of 4 or more nights, plus $20 off a 2-night hotel stay. If you book now, you can sail on Carnival, Norwegian, Regent, Princess and other great carriers at huge savings with tons of freebies.
If you want to book now and sail later, the Celebrity Millenium is offering a four night cruise from Miami to Key West and Cozumel from $329 per person, departing October 4- that's only about $80 a day. Or, sail for five nights from Miami to Roatan and Cozumel on October 17 from only $299 per person.