December is typically a month filled with travel plans, particularly as many of us make our way across the country (and the world) to spend time with loved ones. Unfortunately, this demand tends to drive up prices, placing limitations on additional spending, including any other end-of-year trips or last-minute adventures. But don’t put away your suitcase just yet. We found a hack for saving on some of the most popular places to visit in December, including New York City, Washington, D.C., and San Diego, so you can get away for a long weekend before the holidays go into full swing.
The Hotels.com One Key membership is a free rewards program that gives you access to exclusive travel deals and discounts. The program takes just minutes to sign up for, and you’ll immediately find significantly cheaper prices on hotel stays around the world. Right now, it’s offering a selection of VIP Access Properties — hotels with high guest experience scores and the ability to offer a hefty discount to members — for the first weekend of December, with savings up to 45 percent. That means if you’re up for a trip from December 1 through 4, you can score an excellent deal on a pre-holiday getaway.
To help you figure out where to go, we rounded up some of the best VIP Access deals below, like a New York City hotel that’s close to the holiday hubbub of midtown and a relaxing poolside retreat in Los Angeles in case you want a dose of warm weather before winter sets in.
Chicago may already be cold in early December, but it’s also the ideal place to kick off the holiday season. If you want to go ice skating at Millennium Park, start your holiday shopping on the Magnificent Mile, or admire Lincoln Park Zoo’s cheerful Zoolights show, and reserve a room at the luxurious Viceroy Chicago for less. Through One Key rewards, travelers will get 20 percent off their booking — giving a bit of wiggle room in the budget for other fun holiday festivities.
Rancho Bernardo Inn
According to one traveler, the Rancho Bernardo Inn comes with “beautiful amenities and excellent service” making this exclusive deal that much better. One Key members can save 28 percent on their trip to San Diego, where December temperatures are relatively warm and sunshine is plentiful. Along with two outdoor pools and a full-service spa, the hotel also has an on-site golf course and driving range for those who want to practice their swing.
If you’ve ever dreamed of exploring a New York City decked out in lights and holiday decorations, now’s the time to make it a reality. With rooms up to 22 percent off, the pet-friendly Arlo Midtown grants guests access to all of the classic NYC festivities for just a fraction of the cost. Spend your days perusing the neighborhood’s stores, seeing the famous window displays, and getting into the spirit of the city during the holiday season.
Bahia Principe Grand La Romana
Not sure what to get your partner for the holidays? How about a few nights at the Bahia Principe Grand La Romana, an all-inclusive resort in the Dominican Republic? Right now, you can score 45 percent off one of the junior suites, and the two of you can soak up all of the sun, surf, and sand before flying home for the holidays. The property also features a full-service spa, an outdoor pool, nine holes of golf, and a nightclub, making it the ultimate vacation destination for couples.
The St. Gregory Hotel
Washington, D.C. is another destination that takes the holidays seriously. The National Christmas Tree will be lit up, Georgetown Glow will be on display, and the District’s many charming neighborhoods create picture-perfect scenes. To enjoy all of this and more, travelers can book a stay at The St. Gregory Hotel, which has select rooms for 20 percent off. Several guests noted its “great location,” so you’ll be able to make the most of your time in the city this winter.
Level Los Angeles Downtown – South Olive
Craving a bit of sunshine? Head to Southern California, where the Level Los Angeles Downtown – South Olive is offering 30 percent off select rooms in early December. Bring your swimsuit and sandals if you want to access the outdoor pool, and pack tennis shoes if you plan to frequent the fitness center or the basketball court. Otherwise, the property’s prime location makes it easy to explore other must-see places in downtown LA — Grand Hope Park as well as the Financial and Fashion Districts are just minutes away.
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