Friday, November 21, 2008

For Cash-Strapped Vacationers, SmarterTravel(R) Offers Tips for Free Travel

/PRNewswire/ --'s new "Free Travel Special Report," uncovers free (or nearly free) travel deals and offers a comprehensive list of attractions at top destinations around the world that won't cost the consumer a single penny.

"Given the current state of the economy, we at SmarterTravel want to make sure we're giving people the most up-to-date money-saving information," said Executive Editor, Anne Banas. "Our list spans activities in the most popular destinations with tips on free travel benefits that can make a vacation a little easier on the wallet."

Top free (or nearly free) travel deals of the season:

-- Escape to Tropical Bliss: Air Tahiti Nui is offering a kids-fly-free deal to French Polynesia; from now through the end of the year, when you book two adult Air Tahiti Nui fares from Los Angeles to French Polynesia you'll get two free fares for kids ages 11 or younger.

-- Surf a Couch: Sometimes hostels just aren't cheap enough, so why not crash for free with one of the nearly 800,000 members of the Couch Surfing Project, a worldwide network that helps travelers link up with hosts offering free accommodations. The mission of the network is to promote cultural exchange through free hosted overnight stays.

-- Travel Like Honeymooners: Club Meds' "Seven-Day Weekend" package is back, promising seven nights for the price of three at eight of its all-inclusive resorts. You must book by December 15 and travel by February 13 to take advantage of the promotion.

-- Head to Truly Budget Hawaii: Families staying at ResortQuest Hawaii hotels can take advantage of free meals and free attractions and admissions for kids year round. There are 26 participating hotels and condo resorts located on Oahu, Maui, Kauai, and the Big Island.

SmarterTravel's list of free attractions:

-- History and Government in D.C.: Washington is truly a city where you can enjoy the highlights without ever reaching for your wallet. In addition to the Smithsonian Museums, many government buildings are also free. For an experience you'll never forget, tour the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum.

-- London Museums and Tours: The Tate Britain and Tate Modern art galleries are both free to visit. For more priceless works of art and history, the British Museum doesn't charge for admission. Also, London For Free has put together 10 self-guided free walking tours.

-- First Sundays in Paris: The key to free is visiting on the first Sunday of the month. By planning your visit this way, you can visit the Louvre and the Musee d'Orsay for free (any time of year), as well as the Arc de Triomphe, Pantheon, and Sainte-Chappelle (October 1 through March 31).

-- Orlando Amusement Parks and Green Spaces: Old Town Orlando, a complex of amusement park rides, restaurants, and shops, offers free parking and admission. Also, a free stroll around the University of Central Florida Arboretum can be good for overall health as well as the purse.

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