© Horia Varlan
Last minute getaways by car have become a budget-friendly option again as gas prices begin to drop. Summer is an excellent season for road trips, which are easier than ever with new GPS technology and built-in entertainment systems for the kids. There are also DVDs, CDs and e-books to keep them busy.
You can rent DVDs from Redbox for only $1 per day, which can be picked up anywhere and then returned to a different location. Even with the help of GPS, it's wise to invest in a good map and a set of directions. Online information sites like Road Trip USA can also be very helpful in planning your itinerary. The website Road Trip America offers useful information on where to find cheap hotel rooms and the best tours.
© freddie boy
Cheap last minute getaways can make it possible for those who have procrastinated on their summer travel plans to still snag an excellent deal. While travelers this year will all be paying a little more than in previous years due to high fuel costs, it's still possible to cut costs on other parts of your trip to make up for this fact.
The fact that oil prices remain above $90 a barrel will discourage airlines from offering major fare sales anytime soon, but some airline routes between the US and Europe may see price cuts due to some poor forecasting by the major carriers. They added too many seats anticipating large summer capacity, and so far planes have been flying with a significant number of empty seats. That means that deep price drops on business-class seats are likely to be coming soon.
Last minute vacations to Switzerland just got cheaper thanks to some unexpected sub-$1,000 round trip flight deals from the US. Switzerland is an ideal destination for summer travel anyway, due to the fact that it remains pleasantly cool thanks to its location while much of the rest of Europe swelters. A Swiss city can also be a fantastic, centrally located jumping off point for a last minute European tour.
Because there are only a handful of daily nonstop US/Swiss flights, you'll likely be connecting, which is one of the reasons that Switzerland is a relative bargain in comparison to other European airfares. Nonstop transatlantic flights typically garner premiums of $300+ round-trip, and that's on top of the already hefty base prices and fuel surcharges. At the moment the 2nd and 3rd week of July have the bets prices from dozens of US cities to Switzerland, if you're able to travel on a Monday, Tuesday or Wednesday both ways.