Last-minute Thanksgiving travel ideas

Find Family Freebies

Everything from cruise lines to ski resorts are doing all that they can to entice you to travel with your family including offering deals where kids are free. Disney Cruise Line is running a kids sail free promotion and ski resorts from Colorado to Canada have special deals where kids ski free Hotel chains including Holiday Inn and Doubletree have specials where kids eat free.

Go Surfing

The internet is the most up to the minute resource to turn to find a great deal. No matter where you plan to visit, there is a website operated by the visitor and convention organizations that provide a comprehensive look at what is happening across an entire destination.

Festivals, dining offers, special events and discounted admissions can be found at these places. is an example with hundreds of free offers on the site) is a one stop shop for cruises, packages, hotels and activities that specialize is last minute prices.

Today alone...on Travel Mom found Las Vegas Strip Hotels for $31 a night. She found a package with air from SFO and three nights hotel in Cabo San Lucas for $432. Four night Carnival Cruise from Los Angeles through Baja Mexico at $179 and Seven Night Carnival Cruise from Los Angeles through the Mexican Riviera for $432.

These cruise offers are good for the entire month of December including over Christmas and New Years.

Think About Off Season

There are some places that are considered off season destinations during the Christmas Time Frame. Las Vegas is famous for fun over New Years but the week of Christmas is very slow and prices drop down to as low as $32 a night for a hotel on the strip.

Cruises the week before and over Christmas are also deeply discounted with rates as low as $149 for a four night Baja, Mexico Cruise and $419 for a seven night Mexican Rivera Cruise. Beach destinations still offer mild temperatures but are less crowded than during the summer months and tend to give you bang for your buck.

Many beach resorts offer added value with on property credits to be used for things like spa, golf and dining.

Consider a daycation

Even if you can't get away for a true vacation, take advantage of all the holiday festivities taking place in the Bay Area and be a tourist on your own town. (Emily will get a good listing of events from the SF CVB)

Be rewarded for being loyal

Always join the loyalty programs for airlines, hotels and rental car companies. Many times just being a member will entitle you to special perks. Many credit card companies also have special offers for their members.

About Emily Kaufman:

Emily Kaufman is The Travel Mom. She appears on television, in print, on line and on the radio offering practical pointers and travel tips.

Emily has served as the travel contributor on Good Morning America and appears on several major market programs in Los Angeles, New York, Chicago, Boston and Atlanta.

She is a frequent contributor to Woman's Day, Redbook and various travel publications. The Travel Mom's Ultimate Book of Family Travel was published by Broadway Books.

>> Buy this book on Amazon: The Travel Mom's Ultimate Book of Family Travel: Planning, Surviving, and Enjoying Your Vacation Together

Emily is a respected travel expert that speaks at numerous trade events and consumer shows in addition to her work on air.

For more information, visit

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