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Travel Deals Peak In Time for Black Friday

I’m a shopaholic by nature, and I often participate in retail therapy.

If I have a bad day at work, I just buy a new outfit! If it’s dreary outside, some fun new eye shadow will brighten up the day! If I feel fat, it’s nothing new shoes won’t fix! (After all, my feet don’t gain weight.) Even though the act of purchasing makes me happy, I have never, will never, camp outside a retail store on Black Friday in the wee hours of the morning to snag that oh-so-great deal, but I will shop for deals online. Black Friday exists there, too!

Knowing that the day after Thanksgiving is the best day to shop for retail deals, I analyzed data from to find out if shoppers can find travel deals, too. My conclusion: it is the best time of year in terms of both availability and price to find last second deals.

According to historical data from, availability for last second deals packages typically spike to an annual high during the two weeks after Thanksgiving while prices simultaneously drop, making it the perfect time to escape the holiday stress without spending a bundle.

When shopping last second deals, here are a few things that you should know:

  • These flight, hotel and car packages can be purchased from 21-days to several hours before departure, so shop on Black Friday for an early to mid December getaway.
  • These packages aren’t necessarily designed to get you to your dream destination but rather to get you out of town for a weekend getaway.
  • These deals are a great opportunity to check out a place you’ve never been. Shop by theme such as international, beach or ski, and see what destination offers the best price.


My name: Jennifer Gaines, but my friends call me Gaines, Jenni-Dallas or just plain Jenn.

(Find me on Twitter @jenngaines)

Travel ambitions: It's my mission to visit each of the New 7 Wonders and to step foot on every continent before my next milestone birthday.

Greatest travel lesson learned: Find the local hangouts to experience the real, true culture of a place. During a trip to Europe, my friends and I spent several days with a French family in the small town of Vichy. We had a private party in their family-run creperie, feasting on cheese-stuffed crepes and sampling wine that we picked up in the Bordeaux region a few days earlier. Their English wasn’t much better than my French, which is limited to a few well-known phrases from Moulin Rouge and the question: Parlez-vous anglais? (I'm proud to say that I can spout this question off in several different languages, and luckily most Europeans do indeed speak English!) After a few bottles of wine, the language barrier was hardly noticeable (slurring actually sounds the same in French!), and we managed to swap stories about life in other places. What a slice of local flavor!

My most beloved place in the whole world is: My grandparents place in Texas. It’s a 10-acre oasis in between two sprawling cities: Dallas and Fort Worth. A creek runs through their enormous backyard, where Granddad built a deck over the water. The entire place is shrouded with all types of trees (mainly pecan), blocking the Texas sun in the summer. Dusk is the best time to sit on the deck, drink a glass of ice tea and watch baby raccoons from the spring litter surround their back porch as Gram feeds them bread (no lie!). There will be dozens of raccoons eating on any given night. In the fall, my family gathers in the courtyard in front of their house for an annual “weenie roast.” Granddad lights the bonfire, and we roast dogs and s'mores. Yes, y’all, we’re from Texas!

Favorite way to get around: Well, I’m not much of a driver. I get lost easily and my tires have never come across a curb they didn’t want to get to know a little better. But, I do enjoy cruising around and listening to music. That said, I much rather explore a place by foot (with my iPod in tow) for a more intimate encounter.

View that took my breath away: Coming from Texas (where the view is wide but there’s not much to see), scenes from my new home of San Francisco never fail to amaze me. The city is a pedestrian’s dream, but don’t forget to turn around and look behind you as you meander through its neighborhoods. You won’t realize it, but you’ll be at the tip-top of a hill and the ocean will suddenly seem to be at eye level. Take a drive through the Presidio and over the Golden Gate Bridge where even more stunning views await!



i like your sincere last minute insightful travel comments which has been sharping our last minute shopping which i suspect this December shopping will be fun.thanks to you

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