Best Vacation Deals 2009

by Bob Payne


What does Hawaii have in common with a kid's playground? Recently, the big slide. Since the recession began, visitor numbers and room rates in the Aloha State have tumbled by double-digit percentages. Hawaii is still hardly a destination for the destitute, but it is certainly more affordable than the last time Barack Obama was able to visit there anonymously. There is even talk of the previously unimaginable—free parking around Waikiki Beach. At the high-rise Outrigger Waikiki on the Beach, rooms are going for as little as $159 a night (although at that price, the only water you're likely to see out your window is rain). An even better deal, if you don't mind being a stroll from the sand, is the recently renovated Courtyard by Marriott Waikiki Beach, where rooms start at $109. Vacation packagers are also bundling just about everything but parking tickets. Pleasant Holidays offers three-day packages including air, hotel, and all taxes for as little as $349. Make it five days and they'll throw in up to $100 off a rental car. Incentives are everywhere: resort credits, free breakfasts, even popcorn in the room. But if that doesn't fill you up, top off a day at Waikiki with a stop at Teddy's Bigger Burgers on Kapahulu Avenue (the name, in these value-conscious days, says it all).

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Information may have changed since date of publication. Please confirm details with individual establishments before planning your trip.

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