The Caribbean and Hawaii from US$99
GRAND CAYMAN It’s 35 kilometres long and eight kilometres at its widest: certainly not “grand” by any means. What the island lacks in size, however, it makes up for with hotels, malls and restos. April to December is the diving mecca’s off-season. In addition to discounted hotel rooms, cheaper flights can be had (around August 15, a return flight from TO on Air Canada is an average of $270 cheaper than February 15, 2010). For a special stay, consider the Turtle Nest Inn in Bodden Town, 15 kilometres from the airport and the capital, George Town. The beachfront inn is Spanish in style and has eight units. All, except one, have an adjoining bedroom, full kitchen and can accommodate at least four. Between August 16 and October 31, rates start at US$99 (kitchenette), US$129 (full kitchen), double occupancy. (345) 947-8665; www.turtlenestinn.com
DOMINICAN REPUBLIC Canadians, particularly Quebecers, have always been smitten with “Little Spain,” and rightfully so. Its beaches look like postcards and it’s almost always hot, hot, hot, and sunny, sunny, sunny… except during hurricane season, which peaks in September. Around August 1, Air Canada’s direct flight from Montreal will run you, on average, $585 (return). Six months later the same flight is $730. There are bargains to be had on hotels too, though many are inexpensive all year. Case in point: the Coco Boutique Hotel in historic Santo Domingo. Built in the 1920s, the colonial house was converted to a four-guestroom hotel in 2008. The decor is individual to each room, and each has its own bathroom. Single rates start at US$80, doubles at US$100, breakfast included. (809) 685-8467; www.cocoboutiquehotel.com
OAHU $370. That’s how much more you’d have in the bank if you flew AC to Honolulu from Vancouver (return) around August 15 compared to February 15 next year. And that’s per person. Bikini packed? We thought so. When it’s time to trade in the trunks, turn in at the Best Western Coconut Waikiki Hotel. We know it’s a chain, but its deals are good by Honolulu’s standards, and it’s close to the airport and convention centre. Art-Deco inspired, the hotel was renovated in 2008. Each of its 81 rooms comes with microwave and mini refrigerator as well as a flat-screen TV and Wi-Fi. Currently, August and September’s nightly rates are listed as starting at US$100, breakfast included. This will change with demand, however, and rates could skyrocket to US$240. (866) 971-2782; www.aquaresorts.com/coconut-waikiki-hotel
This article was accurate when it was published. Please confirm rates and details directly with the companies in question.