As we all feel the weight of the recession upon us, we may wonder if we should be planning a mom vacation with our mom friends this year. Some of us may not have the discretionary income to take a vacation. Others will certainly choose to take a vacation with their family over their girlfriends, if limited to one vacation. The economy is affecting everyone, even the Housewives of Orange County! Although they still seem to go on vacation, perhaps they are not staying at the Ritz. Or maybe they're just really good at scoping out the travel deals! Travel deals are everywhere, as the travel industry is trying to recuperate in this dismal economy.
You may think that you don't have the money this year to take a mom vacation. I'm here to give you a few ideas on what you can do to take a break from your family without spending loads of money. I scope out travel deals daily and am noticing some trends.
The first trend I've observed is that travel companies are removing black-out periods from their published deals. Often, the advertised deals are only good during certain days of the week, mostly week days. However, in order to fill the low occupancy rate in hotels, rates are usually good through the weekend days. This is good news for moms who cannot get away during the week, due to family commitments. There is a new website called Yapta
which tracks the fluctuation in hotel and airline prices. Sign up and receive alerts when a rate goes down after your purchase. Yapta will help you get a refund for the difference.
The cruise industry is also slashing rates. Did you know that you can go on a 4 day Royal Caribbean cruise to Mexico for $179! Cruise lines are also sweetening the deal by giving you up to $100 on-board credit for certain sailings. Where else can you stay, eat and drink for that amount? Cruises also cater to groups and are perfect for mom vacations. Each sailing has a certain amount of GAP (Group Ammenity Points) which can be traded in for ammeneties such as on-board credit, spa discounts and other special favors. Cruise lines offer state-of-the-art meeting facilities for mom groups who want to hold private meetings.
Another trend that I've picked up on is the "staycation" phenomenon. It's not necessary to go very far to actually take a vacation. Why not check in to a local hotel for a 2 night stay with some of your girlfriends? You save on gas, you get to discover your own town and do the things you can't normally do with your kids in tow. Go shopping at some of your favorite shops, visit a museum or simply just lounge by the hotel pool. Large and boutique hotels with spas are now offering great packages. For example, you can stay at the Se San Diego for $99 per night. That's $330 off their nightly rate! The Marriott just announced a worldwide weekend sale, where they've slashed their prices 20-40%.
The whole point of taking a mom vacation is to get away from your family for a little while and give you a chance to re-discover yourself admist the chaos of changing diapers and carting kids to soccer practise. You don't need to go very far or spend a lot of money to achieve this goal. Maybe you can afford to take a mom vacation after all in 2010! Happy New Year!