Travel contest season is in full swing

travel contest seasonJanuary brings cold weather, post-holiday blues, dreams of travel and travel contest season every year. With few exceptions, sellers of travel roll out some of their best promotions during this time too. Aimed to make those dreams reality and have us focus on whatever travel product they are selling, travel companies want to bring our attention to their options over another.

Amble Resorts’ Life-Changing Travel Contest has travelers looking at their new travel blog, The Ambler, for a chance to win a free flight anywhere in the world. Launched in mid-December, the contest is quickly gaining momentum as globetrotters from around the world share their most life-changing travel moments in the hopes of fulfilling resolutions to travel in 2012.

This contest asks visitors to reflect on their own life-changing travel experiences and draw inspiration from the stories of others, encouraging people to broaden their travel horizons and explore the world in 2012. The contest will reward one commenter with a trip to the destination of their dreams, in the form of a $1,500 travel voucher (OK, maybe not anywhere in the world) on the airline of the winner’s choice, valid any time in 2012.Getting serious, Travel+Leisure has the Dream Of A Lifetime $25,000 Spain + Venice sweepstakes where the grand prize winner gets a travel package worth up to $30,000 or can take a $25,000 cash option as well.

Even non-travel companies are getting in on the January travel mania with Fisher Boy frozen food company giving away a Caribbean vacation at one of Beaches Resorts worth $8,000. You’ll have to tell them why you like their products (fish sticks) as part of the entry but liking them on Facebook is not required as many contests are.

The cruise industry has “wave season“, that time of the year when everybody wants to buy a cruise, going full speed ahead. In addition to some of the best values of the year, multiple lines are having contests that result in someone winning a cruise. Holland America, Celebrity Cruises, Carnival Cruise Line, Disney Cruise Line and Royal Caribbean all have their versions

One of the best payouts comes from a contest run by TripFilms, a travel website that brings destinations to life through video. Their Watch and Win contest grants one entry for each video watched from start to end. The prize? A trip for two people that the winner may select from a bunch of destinations as well as a travel stipend of $500 per person ($1000 total).

The choices include Costa Rica Natural Paradise, Guatemala with Tikal, Panama Canal Cruise & Tour, the Grand Canyon, Mount Rushmore & Yellowstone, California Coast & Yosemite and others.

Most of these contests end January 31, 2012. Many of these and other contests can be found at TravelOnion where most current travel contests are rounded up and updated frequently.

Not feeling lucky? How about some money-saving tips if pay you must?



How to See London For $15 a Day



Flickr photo by Tostie14

Win the trip of a lifetime from Lonely Planet and Bing

bing lonely planet sweepstakesYour dream vacation could become a reality through a new holiday sweepstakes hosted by Bing and sponsored by Lonely Planet.

The Grand Prize winner and a guest will work with Lonely Planet staff and authors to devise a customized 15 day/14 night itinerary exploring up to four destinations around the world, up to a value of $30,000.

The sweepstakes kicks off on December 29th at midnight PT/3 am ET and lasts for 24 hours. To enter, just log onto Bing’s Magical Holiday Calendar, which is offering sweepstakes and giveaways throughout the month of December.Not sure where you’d go if you won? To spark your imagination, LP’s U.S. Travel Editor Robert Reid put together five dream itineraries based on specific interests.



Music:

  • Memphis and the Mississippi Delta, home of Graceland and the blues
  • Havana, Cuba, for a taste of the son music scene
  • Liverpool, England, birthplace of the Beatles
  • Berlin, Germany, for underground cabaret
  • Yakutsk, Russia, home to Ysyakh, a surreal festival filled with teepee-like structures and throat-singing contests



Outdoors:

  • Rocky Mountains, Canada, for a two-day tour of the Canadian Rockies by train
  • Valley of Fire State Park, Nevada, for out-of-this-world landscapes
  • Coastal Wales, to walk the new All Wales Coast Path, opening May 2012
  • Salar de Uyuni, Bolivia, to stay in an upscale salt hotel 3656m above sea level
  • Sal Salis Ningaloo Reef, Australia, Lonely Planet’s #1 ‘glamping’ spot for 2012



Movies:



Art:

  • Arles, France, to step into a post-impressionist Van Gogh painting
  • Barcelona, Spain, to take in Gaudi’s whimsical genius
  • Bristol, England, where Banksy has left his mark and is rumored to live
  • Mexico City, where Frida Kahlo and Diego Rivera lived and worked
  • French Polynesia, for a glimpse of Paul Gauguin’s tropics



Food:

And that’s just a taste of the possibilities! Mark your calendars for December 29th and don’t miss out.

[image via Colin Grey on Flickr]

Would you get married in the nude?

hedonism How would you like to win a free wedding in Jamaica and be on national television? Well, now you can. The only catch is you have to exchange vows in the nude.

Hedonism II, a resort that is well-known for “shattering inhibitions and provoking the kind of behavior people don’t talk about in polite circles”, is currently looking for 10 couples to get married in the buff for a major network documentary on Valentine’s Day, 2012 (don’t worry, your parts will be blurred on air).

Not only will couples receive a complimentary 4-night stay at the all-inclusive resort, but also a “Dream Wedding”. Funny, every time I’ve pictured my dream wedding I’m wearing a dress. The resort does have a lot of perks for couples, like the on-site Blue Mahoe Spa, beach and garden view rooms, en suite Jacuzzis, private terraces, 5 bars, and onsite entertainment and dining.

If you’d like to be considered as a contestant, fill out of the form here and submit. The deadline for applications is January 6, 2012.

Enter to win a trip to New Zealand’s Rhythm & Vines Music Festival

STA Travel is hosting their Ultimate Break Sweepstakes which gives travelers the chance to win a trip for two to New Zealand to ring in the new year at the three-day Rhythm & Vines Music Festival. The winner will receive round-trip airfare, luxury campervan rental, grounds pass, and tickets to the festival.

To enter, click here to enter your information. Want to learn more about the music festival? Check out this 2011 line-up announcement video:


Win your dream trip to Canada

canadaLonely Planet is currently hosting a contest that gives travelers the chance to explore the world’s second-largest country however they please. Whether you enjoy winter skiing or summer hiking, this contest can help you have the experience your dreams in Canada. First prize is a $10,000 travel voucher towards the Canadian trip of your choice, while the second place winner will $500 worth of Lonely Planet books.

You can enter by going to Explore Canada like a local and browsing their featured trips. Select your favorite destination/activity and then copy the URL of your choice into the form on the Lonely Planet Facebook page. After filling in your information, you will be asked to explain in 200 characters or less why this trip is your dream Canadian experience.