If there’s one thing we know at ShermansTravel, it’s deals. In this new series, “Where To Go Now?”, we help steer you towards the best money-saving offers to book right now. For our first edition, we’re focusing on short, cheap, warm-weather getaways. Got some extra cash and want to splash away a weekend in the Caribbean? You’ve come to the right place. Without further ado, here are five easy, value-packed deals you can book right now…
Saint Maarten/Saint Martin
Though it remains one of the most popular islands in the north Caribbean, there are in fact deals to be had in picture-perfect St Maarten. Both the island’s Dutch side (St. Maarten) and French side (St. Martin) offer decently priced all-inclusive trips. Plus, St. Maarten is where you’ll find some of the Caribbean’s best duty-free shopping. This spring, the 45th annual carnival will take place from April 21 – May 5, promising live music, parades, and dancing for travelers in search of a party. Flights to the island can be found for as little as $392 roundtrip from East Coast cities like Washington, D.C.. Factor in another $500 for a beach resort, and you’ve got yourself getaway.
Deal: 4 nights with air at Esmeralda Resort from $919.
Arenal, Costa Rica
Unlike coastal Costa Rica, where you find gorgeous beaches like Manuel Antonio and Papagayo, it is here in the country’s middle section where serious bargain-hunters can luck out with long weekend getaways for as little as $500. True, you won’t be able to sprawl on the sand, but the tropical paradise of Arenal offers plenty of other distractions, from deep-in-the-rainforest hikes, to horseback riding, ATV tours, bike trails, and a death-defying network of hanging bridges. Looming over the entire area is Arenal Volcano itself. It’s one of the most active in the world, and a major attraction in itself.
Deal: 5 nights with Air at Claro De Luna from $469.
West coasters in need of some sun and sand could book a flight on American Airlines’ popular San Francisco-Puerto Vallarta route, which averages around $540 round-trip for dates in mid-March. Or, for the exact same price, you could book a seven-night cruise sailing down the Pacific Coast and land in Baja California. Upon arrival, you’ll have a full day to explore the Baja California city of Ensenada, after which you’ll spend the remaining day on deck soaking up those rays.
Deal: 7-night cruise from Los Angeles to Ensenada, from $499.
Los Cabos, Mexico
We already showed you how to tackle Cancun on a budget, but on the other side of the country, there are some fantastic deals to Cabo right now, making it a top destination for a quick early spring getaway. Case in point: a last-minute deal at all-inclusive resort Sandos Finisterra Los Cabos means you could wind up in a gorgeous ocean-facing room in the heart of Cabo San Lucas for as little as $149 a night. The hotel’s cliffside location is perfect for whale watching season (March-April), though you’ll have to choose carefully between an already-full list of activities like tennis, scuba diving, snorkeling, surfing, and, of course, simply lounging by the pool.
Deal: View Sandos Finisterra’s current offers here.
Anyone who keeps a close eye on Miami and Fort Lauderdale airfare knows that most East Coasters and Midwesterners can get to south Florida for about $300, and sometimes less. Once you arrive, though, things can get pricey. For better value, and an adventure, try looking up flights to Key West, or better yet, rent a car from Fort Lauderdale for under $40 per day and enjoy a scenic two-hour ride down the causeway to Cheeca Lodge & Spa. The 27-acre private estate, which is located in Islamorada and boasts a 525-foot pier, has midweek rates in March starting at $324 per night, and offers three restaurants, a golf course, a spa, and its own private saltwater lagoon.
Deal: Book the “Trade Your Boots for Flip Flops” package, including a daily, $75 food and beverage credit and a 10 percent discount on spa services. It’s valid for stays through April 13.