Vacation packages are good deals for families

Must Try

Affordable summer resorts abound in the Caribbean and North America

By Paula Conway
Originally printed on

With summer vacation fast approaching, planning ahead can mean money savings you can’t ignore. Here’s a sneak peek at some of the best warm-weather travel packages for families to place you well ahead of the game.



Wildland Adventures has partnered with Cayuga Sustainable Hospitality in Costa Rica to offer this rare package.

Deal: 50% off vacation travel at four of Costa Rica’s most popular destination resorts.

Packages include:

* Costa Rican Family Adventure: 8 days/7 nights with three nights at the Arenas Del Mar hotel and four nights at the Lapa Rios hotel.

* Romantic Active Adventure or Family Trip: 7 days/6 nights with three nights at the Hacienda Tayutic resort, three nights at the Latitude 10 Beach Resort.

Book by: Sign up now (it’s free) and receive Wildland Adventures newsletter. Travel package details will be delivered via e-newsletter on Monday, April 23; deals are only available that week for travel May 1-Dec. 1, 2012.



Greater Fort Lauderdale has something for everyone, from sunbathing to more than 30 activities for families.

Deal: The “Vacation Like a VIP” summer promotion includes all 14 luxury hotels in Greater Fort Lauderdale’s Luxe Collection; book a stay for a minimum of two nights in any participating hotel and receive:

* Room upgrades.

* $100 resort credit applied to food/beverage, golf, spa, pool/beach cabana, water activities or kids programs.

* Complimentary valet parking.

* $25 American Express gift card.

* Super Summer Savings 2-for-1 card valued at $200.

Book by: Available now for travel June 1-Sept. 30.



Copamarina Beach Resort & Spa, an all-inclusive tropical resort in the seaside town of Guanica, lets travelers explore Puerto Rico’s undiscovered coast and unfamiliar eco-friendly regions. Bonus: JetBlue offers affordable flights to Ponce, just 40-minutes from the property.

Deal: The “Open Air Adventurer” package includes an eco-tour, snorkeling, bio bar adventure and spa treatments. Two people, four nights: $1,190, includes:

* Deluxe Garden accommodations (4 nights/5 days).

* Eco-tour through the Guanica Dry Forest, snorkeling trip and a visit to the Bio Bay (transfers included).

* Gilligan’s Island access and picnic lunch.

* Dinner at Alexandra (appetizer and entrée).

* Two 30-minute back and neck massages.

* Two welcome drinks coupons upon arrival.

Book by: April 30 for travel through December.



Maine’s Hidden Pond Resort in Kennebunkport has eclectic offerings for families, including standup paddle-boarding to nearby islands and scenic caves, watercolor classes and mixology classes using local infused liquors. Roast marshmallows by the bonfire each night with this quick package for early vacationers.

Deal: Maycation package includes:

* $50 voucher per night when staying in a bungalow for at least two nights, for up to seven days (up to $350), to be applied toward dining, spa treatments and more.

* $75 voucher per night when staying in a two-bedroom cottage for at least two nights (up to $525), to be applied toward dining, spa treatments and more.

Book by: The resort opens May 10; offer good through June 21.



Mountain Lodge, in Telluride, is an upscale resort at 9,500 feet in the San Juan Mountains. It’s pet-friendly, with lodge rooms from $139/night. Families can enjoy whitewater rafting, fly-fishing trips, mountain biking and horseback riding through the mountains.

Deal: The Daily offer is for a third night free when you book two or more nights (blackout dates: July 4, Bluegrass 6/21-6/25, and film festival 8/30-9/2).

Book by: May 16, good from May 23-Sept. 1; enter promo code DAILY when you book online.



Montreal is a short getaway with summer festivities and events in full swing by May. The restaurants are great, the Metro quick, safe and affordable, and there are 279 miles of bicycle paths to major tourist areas.

Deal: Summer Sweet Deal includes:

* 50% off your third night.

* Check-in envelope stuffed with gifts and discounts for restaurants, museums and tourist attractions.

* Transit passes for bus or Metro.

Book by: Available now for travel June 1-Oct. 15.



Hyatt Regency offers abundant activities for families. The hotel’s energetic “fun experts” create an abundance of activities and contests for guests. The resort also offers kids lessons in Papiamento, Aruba’s native language. Bonus: Aruba is outside of the hurricane belt, making this an ideal destination for spring and summer travel.

Deal: The Family Plan offers 50% off the prevailing rate on a second room for children 18 and younger, ensuring ample breathing room and privacy.

Book by: Available now through Dec. 19.