updated 5/21/2008 8:50:59 PM ET 2008-05-22T00:50:59

Book by: ASAP
Travel by: Various through winter 2009

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The deal
If you haven’t had a chance to sail away this year, how about booking a quickie cruise at an early-bird discount? These short escapades may be just a tease but we found a handful of terrific deals that are sure to please. In fact, you can save up to 75 percent off the regular brochure prices! Choose a tropical fix in the Bahamas, Baja Mexico or eastern Caribbean with Carnival or Holland America. Rates start at just $209.

Bahamas sailing with Carnival
CruisesOnly offers early-bird savings off a four-night quickie escapade to the Bahamas with Carnival. Book a September departure of this sailing aboard Carnival Sensation and you will save 74 percent off the rack rates! Indeed, regular prices of this sea journey are listed at $849 for inside cabins but you can book your unit for only $219. Oceanview units are also on sale for these fall departures, now listed at $279. The ship departs from Port Canaveral; spends a day in Freeport on Grand Bahama Island; two days in Nassau, Bahama’s capital; and one day at sea on the way back.

Cruise to Baja Mexico next winter
For a short sail around Mexico’s Baja next winter, Orbitz has a fantastic deal. The 4-night cruise departs California’s Long Beach on several January 2009 dates at a low price of just $209! The rack rates for this journey start at $849 for inside cabin accommodation so this special saves you 75 percent. It all happens aboard Carnival Paradise, which calls at California’s Catalina Island and, south of the border, at Ensenada. Also thrown in is an entire day at sea on the way back. Oceanview cabins on the same departures next winter cost just $279; suites go for $609.

Eastern Caribbean with Holland America
Another quick and sweet cruise escape is on offer by CruisesOnly. The three-night Eastern Caribbean sailing aboard Holland America’s new Eurodam is now on sale for only $399! At this low price, the ship has only one departure next fall, on October 15. The regular cost of this sailing is normally listed at $499 in an inside unit but now these are available for $100 less, while oceanview staterooms sell for only $399. The ship departs roundtrip from Fort Lauderdale, en route stopping at Nassau and the private island of Half Moon Cay.

The dollars
The rates above are listed per person, based on double occupancy. The cost covers onboard accommodations, meals and entertainment, as well as port charges. You’ll just have to dish out extra for government taxes and fees, as well as any shore excursions you may decide to take.

The catch
Forget about intricate itineraries! These are quickie cruises.

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