Black Friday travel on sale from hotels to cruises

Between Black Friday and Cyber Monday travel companies are going all out with some outstanding bargains on everything from airfare to cruise vacations. It’s a time when sellers of travel hope they can get us to buy big, once, and take care of the whole family with a single purchase.

One big travel gift for the whole family is a great choice for people who don’t like to shop very much and like to travel or know people they need a gift for who do. Travel gifts don’t have to be big either, a travel gift card is a good choice for backpackers, road warriors and everyone in-between. Still, Black Friday deals are up first so lets take a look at some of the best available, Friday only.

Travelocity has savings of up to 50% off with offers that might include third night free and 40-50% off at hotels in Hawaii, Chicago, and other cities. They even have a special Black Friday Booking site.

Yuupon is offering hourly, travel deals where shoppers get sale items that can include up to 90% off airline, gas and restaurant gift cards and Vegas shows and Florida tours are also included. Yuupon also has a special Black Friday website set up.

Hotels from Red Roof Inn to Intercontinental have special offers too. Follow Intercontinental Hotel Group on Twitter for special deals announced on Friday. Orbitz lets Friday buyer save up to 50% for stays at popular hotels in Orlando, Las Vegas, San Diego, New York, Miami and Hawaii. The company also promises similar savings at international locations, including Paris; Puerto Vallarta and Cancun, Mexico;and London.

“Discounts are likely to slip away faster than the parking spaces at the mall,” Orbitz told CNN.

To get the deals, visit The Orbitz Cybersale web site. The site goes live 12:01 a.m. Friday and closes 11:59 p.m. Monday.

Princess Cruises’ first-ever After Thanksgiving Alaska Sale has travelers dreaming of savings on visiting the splendor of Alaska’s wilderness.

Running from November 25-29, the sale offers passengers up to $1,000 in savings and up to a $50 onboard credit on one of the cruise line‘s popular cruisetour vacations, which combine a Gulf of Alaska cruise with rail travel to Denali and stays at Princess’ exclusive wilderness lodges. For those who opt to see Alaska by sea only, the sale provides a free balcony upgrade and up to $100 onboard credit.

Norwegian Cruise Line will offer reduced deposits (50% off) and up to $250 in onboard credit per stateroom. The sale begins on Wednesday, Nov. 23 and runs until Nov. 29. All sailings are included in this sale with the exception of 1 & 2 day sailings and those on the Norwegian Breakaway.

Costa Cruises, Europe‘s largest cruise line, is planning a Black Friday sale that will feature its lowest rates of the season on select Mediterranean and Caribbean sailings. Cruise-only fares for 11-night eastern Mediterranean departures will start at $599 per person based on double occupancy while seven- to 11-night western Mediterranean cruises will begin at $399.

“For the third consecutive year Costa is offering Black Friday fares because they have proven to be very popular with consumers,” said Maurice Zarmati, president and CEO of Costa Cruises North America. “At these exclusive rates travelers can book one of our Italian-style cruise vacations at an incredible value.”

Costa Concordia seven-night and Costa Serena 11-night Mediterranean sailings feature a $100 per person on-board credit for balcony cabins plus huge savings on Caribbean 10-night cruises. Cruise-only fares for 11-night eastern Mediterranean departures start at $599, and seven- to 11-night western Med cruises begin at just $399. The 10-night Caribbean cruises begin at just $699.

Royal Caribbean also has a special offer, extending their usual “Tuesday Only” sale to begin on Friday and run through the weekend. See your travel professional for details and pricing on this sales event too.

Seven Black Friday and Cyber Monday hotel deals for 2011

As a holiday purist, I lament the day that “Black Friday” and its sister “Cyber Monday” supplanted Thanksgiving as November’s most anticipated event. But as a shopper, in particular a seeker of travel deals, I always look forward to seeing what kinds of discounts I can gobble up.

This year, quite a number of hotels are offering flash sales on Black Friday (November 25), Cyber Monday (November 28), or both. Here is a sampling of some of the deals that came across the wire at Gadling Labs. Discounts are not limited to U.S.-based hotels; there are also deals in Canada, Mexico, and Costa Rica. All times listed for the deals are Eastern Standard Time (EST) unless otherwise noted.

Charles Hotel, Cambridge, MA
This smart hotel a few steps from Harvard University is offering a one-hour flash sale on Cyber Monday. From 11:28am to 12:28pm on November 28, the Charles will offer a 50% discount off all of its room rates, including suites, good for a stay between December 3, 2011, and March 31, 2012. Booking a room during the flash sale will also net you a $50 gift card at the hotel’s new Corbu Spa & Salon. Click here on 11/28 at 11:28am and use the code CYBER11.Kimpton Hotels – DC, Maryland, and Virginia
Twelve Kimpton hotels in the Mid-Atlantic will be on sale during a 72-hour spree beginning at midnight on Cyber Monday. While upgrades last, the boutique hotelier will offer suites at standard room rates at its properties in Washington, DC, Maryland, and Virginia. As dates of travel are limited between December 15 and December 30, 2011, Kimpton’s flash sale is a great opportunity for families looking for a place to stay over the holidays. For example, the specialty bunk room at the Hotel Rouge in DC will be on sale for $119 per night, down from its typical rate of $299. Deal-seekers should visit the website and use the code SALE72.

Shore Hotel, Santa Monica, CA
Travelers with plans to vist Santa Monica between November 28, 2011, and February 28, 2012, can snag a Cyber Monday deal from the Shore Hotel, Santa Monica’s newest LEED-registered hotel. For 24 hours on November 28, the Shore Hotel will offer 30% off of a partial ocean view room. Note, however, that the hotel takes the “cyber” out of Cyber Monday by offering this deal by phone. Call 310-458-1515 to book.

Shell Vacations – Resorts in the U.S., Canada, and Mexico
From midnight on November 25 through 11:59pm on November 28, Shell Vacations Hospitality is offering 50% off resort rates for 25 properties in North America. Travelers who visit next weekend will find rock-bottom rates for ski retreats in Canada‘s Horseshoe Valley, golf resorts in Scottsdale, and beach-side inns in Hawaii. A sample Black Friday/Cyber Monday rate from Shell Vacations is a room rate starting at $65 per night at San Francisco’s Inn at the Opera.

Z NYC Hotel, New York
For those with plans to travel to New York City over the first half of next year, the Z NYC Hotel in Long Island City is having a super flash sale centered around the number 28 (Cyber Monday takes place on November 28). Beginning at noon on November 28 and running for 28 minutes until 12:28pm, rooms at the Z NYC Hotel will go for $128 per night. Guests will be able to book stays that take place over the 28th of the month for the first six months of 2012. A two-night minimum stay is required. If this isn’t enough to convince the hoards to check out revitalized Long Island City, Z NYC is also throwing in two-for-one cocktail deal. To book, call 1-877-256-5556 and use the code CYBER.

Monte Azul Luxury Boutique Hotel, Costa Rica
The deal on offer at this Costa Rican eco-resort lives up to the spirit of Black Friday. From midnight to 11:59pm on November 25, Monte Azul is offering guests two nights for the price of one. Travel must take place between January 4 and May 31, 2012. Visit and add “Black Friday Deal” in the notes section to take advantage of this discount.

JW Marriott Hotel, Chicago
Marriott’s Cyber Monday-only deal at Chicago’s JW Marriott is a chance to snag significant savings on a hotel room next month. Beginning at 8am CST on November 28 until 7:59am CST on November 29, rooms at the JW Marriott will go for $149 per night for the month of December (excluding Friday, December 2, and Friday, December 31). Visit or call 312-660-8200 to book.

FlyBuy Wednesday has the deal for air travelers: free access

Black Friday or Cyber Monday has nothing on “FlyBuy Wednesday” when Gogo, a leading provider of in-flight connectivity has a special deal for passengers traveling onboard the more than 1,200 Gogo-equipped aircraft this holiday season: Free In-flight Internet access.

If 30 minutes of free access is not enough, try special discounts and in-air only exclusives at more than a dozen top online retailers including Macy’s,, and Barnes & Noble.

It’s all aimed to give passengers traveling for the holidays the opportunity to shop high above the holiday crowds of Black Friday and get a jump on Cyber Monday.

“The holiday season can be a hectic time of year, so we’re thrilled to help travelers get ahead on their holiday shopping while they’re in the air starting on what is traditionally one of the busiest air travel days of the year: the Wednesday before Thanksgiving, or FlyBuy Wednesday,” said Ash ElDifrawi, Gogo’s chief marketing officer.

Gogo’s in-air holiday store will be available from Wednesday, November 23, 2011 through the New Year. The online store features special holiday discounts and in-air only exclusives from retailers including Barnes & Noble,,, Harry & David,, jcpenney, Lobster Gram, Macy’s, Omaha Steaks, Wine.comand more (retailers and offers may vary based on airline).

“The exclusive Gogo Fly & Buy Holiday Store is another example of the value we can deliver to passengers who have made it clear that they want to stay connected in-flight. Now they can get their holiday shopping done from 30,000 feet and use their time on the ground to celebrate the season with friends and family.”

Connect with GoGoAir on Facebook and Twitter. Black Friday and Cyber Monday hotel deals

Still thinking about ways to get away this holiday season? One of the best things about the Thanksgiving holiday is what comes after – Black Friday and Cyber Monday. To help buyers celebrate, will launch one of their biggest sales of the year during the busiest shopping weekend of the year.

In addition to 50 percent off nightly room rates, the first 500 customers who book the® 4-Day Sale and use code “4DAY” will receive a Flip™ Ultra camcorder.

The 4-Day Sale goes live at midnight on November 26 and ends at 11:59 p.m. CST on November 29. Some Black Friday and Cyber Monday hotel deals include:

The Hard Rock Hotel Chicago: The hotel is located in the center of Chicago Loop and close to the shopping district on Michigan Avenue. This four-star property has rates as low as $134 a night and is just one block from the Chicago Theatre and Grant Park.

Hotel Erwin, Venice, California:

Some of the best one-of-a-kind shops and restaurants can be found in Venice, California. With rates starting at $239 a night, the property is within two miles of fantastic shopping in Santa Monica and Marina del Rey. The hotel’s open-air rooftop lounge, High, provides panoramic views of the beach and Los Angeles

Le Meridian, Dallas:

The four-star Le Meridian in Dallas has weekend room rates starting at just $79 a night. Conveniently located across from Galleria Dallas, where signature stores, dining venues and an ice-skating rink are sure to bide your time, the Le Meridian is a perfect spot to stay while you shop for cowboy boots, bling and 10-gallon hats for the entire family.

Five chilling facts about Cyber Monday Shopping

Okay, your goal should be NOT to conform to what you see below. The travel industry, riding something of a recovery this year, is set to come out with some solid sales on Cyber Monday, the biggest online shopping day of the year. So, as you click among hotel, airline and online travel agency sites, it will pay for you to be aware of the biggest risks you face.

Despite the many risks associated with online shopping – and the fact that they have been shoved in the public’s face since the early days of internet commercialization – people still roll the dice with their financial security. When you get excited about cheap tickets or a real bargain on the excursion of a lifetime, take a moment to make sure you aren’t getting scammed. Your savviest purchase may be the one you never make.

So, what are the risks? Let’s take a look at five scary facts from web security firm Webroot:1. Don’t trust page one: a high placement in Google search results shouldn’t be a sign of trust. According to Webroot, 59 percent of survey respondents trust the results they get in the first few pages, up from 39 percent last year. Unfortunately, this placement is “a target for malicious links.” Interestingly, the number of people using search engines is falling: “48 percent of online shoppers frequently if not always use search engines to find gifts online, compared to 52 percent in 2009,” Webroot reports.

Solution: Watch brand. If you recognize the company’s brand, you can be more comfortable with the purchase. Also, watch where the link sends you. For an extra layer of protection, enter the company’s address into the browser yourself instead of clicking the link in Google.

2. Risky wifi behavior: 18 percent of shoppers are likely to use public wifi for holiday shopping, Webroot reports, up from 12 percent in 2009. This can be risky, especially with 23 percent of respondents feeling comfortable using free public wifi.

Solution: Do your online shopping at home or at work. Stealing wifi from your neighbor so you can toss your credit card number onto the web is probably pretty stupid.

3. New site, new password: are you planning to jump on a deal from a company you haven’t used before? Well, this is the point of many of the Cyber Monday travel deals you’ll see: companies want to lure you away from your ol’ stand-by sites. Do take advantage of the hot promotions, but be smart. Using the same password everywhere is like hiding a house key under your doormat.

Solution: Use a new password every time you create an account with a travel website. Also, be one of the 72 percent of online shoppers who uses a “complex” password – i.e., a mix of letters, numbers and symbols.

4. Social should be personal: 26 percent of respondents to the Webroot survey indicated that someone else had used their social media or email accounts to send friends messages in their names. With travel companies increasingly turning to social media platforms to market their deals and bolster their brands, expect a lot more interaction this year … which brings hefty doses of risk with it.

Solution: Take a look at your sent messages from time to time, and look at your Twitter stream from the perspective of another user. Make sure you recognize everything you’re putting out into the world.

5. Look for safety: 52 percent of Webroot’s respondents don’t check to see if a site uses SSL, and 50 percent don’t look for the padlock in the lower right corner of the web browser. This is like not twisting the doorknob after you lock it.

Solution: pay attention to where you make purchases online. In addition to getting comfortable with the company website, you also want to be aware of the security in place. If something feels off, play it safe: don’t buy. No deal is worth the consequences of risky online purchasing behavior.

[Via Insurance Information Institute, photo by InfoMofo via Flickr]