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Most Important Travel Trends of 2012

travel tips: Value

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Value

You will pay more for your hotel room and airline ticket, but save on packages and cruises.

Thanks to increased demand, limited supply, and fluctuating fuel prices, airfares and hotel-room rates are expected to rise by as much as 5 percent in 2012, according to Smith Travel Research. That’s why it’s more worthwhile than ever to lock in better rates for both through sites such as Travelocity and Expedia, which bundle your flight, room, and car rental into packages that can shave as much as $500 off the trip cost. For exceptionally good value this year, consider a cruise. “An explosion of capacity in the luxury cruise market is helping to drive never-before-seen early-bookings deals,” says Bob Levinstein, CEO of deal site CruiseCompete, citing Azamara Club Cruises’ and Seabourn’s growing fleets. Oceania Cruises’ new Caribbean and Panama sailings include free airfare if you book five months ahead, while Windstar Cruises takes 15 percent off reservations made six months before departure.

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