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Top fall destinations offering bargains

September 21, 2009 12:00:00 AM PDT
Need to get away? Think of fall as the time to travel. It's when many popular destinations experience a break after the busy season. That means fewer crowds and loads of price cutting, freebies and special offers.Whether you have your heart set on heading overseas, or plan to stay stateside, there are deals to be had. Here are some of the top fall bargain destinations of 2009.

Cynthia and Ian Narcisi are gearing up for a cross-country road trip.

"We're big nature buffs, so we love to see the different national parks and whatever the state has to offer," said Ian.

Along the way, they're keeping their eyes peeled for a deal, especially in this economy. One pit stop they plan to make is Colorado.

Anne Banas, a travel editor for SmarterTravel.com, says prices at ski resorts are heading downhill.

"Through October this year, places like Aspen, Colorado, are offering 50 percent off hotel rates," said Banas. "Plus, there's also an Aspen Pass that can save you a lot of discounts on activities and food and beverage."

Cynthia and Ian found steals and deals by logging on to the Denver Tourism Board.

"Which had a lot of really good deals, like coupons for 15 percent off, you know, like local shops and museums, and there were deals for restaurants," said Cynthia.

In Orlando, Disney is offering discounted hotel and dining packages. Plus, flights are a steal right now. Banas says travelers can find roundtrip tickets from many U.S. cities for less than $200.

The top trips aren't solely stateside. Overseas in Ireland, Banas found week-long packages for less than $200 per person per night.

Banas recommends travelers purchase a Dublin Pass for 35 euros, which provides access to more than 30 attractions in Ireland, including the Old Jameson Distillery and Guinness Storehouse.

Or try your luck in Germany. Banas says many European carriers are offering roundtrip deals for less than $500 per person.

"Right now Rail Europe is offering a deal for $65 per person per day and you can save even more if you bring a friend," said Banas.

Visit a traditional German festival for beer, food and local tours.

Rounding out the list is sunny Curacao. This Caribbean island is below the hurricane belt.

"To attract people in the off season is what's called the Curacao Now promotion, which has rebates on airfare, discounts on hotel, car rental and even diving packages," said Banas.

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