The Real Deal: Round-trip airfare, three nights' accommodations, airport-hotel transfers, and hotel taxes and fees, from $248 per person—plus an estimated $87 in taxes.
When: Monday departures through Oct. 27, 2008.
Gateways: Fort Lauderdale; add $71 for Orlando, Tampa; $101 for Atlanta, Atlantic City, Boston, Chicago, D.C., Detroit, Myrtle Beach, New York City.
The fine print: Use promo code FPO200. Does not include airfare taxes and fees of about $87. Based on double occupancy; single supplement is $105. Up to two children 12 and under can stay for free with two adults; children ages 13 to 17 are surcharged about $70. Remember that U.S. citizens arriving by air are required to have a passport to visit the Bahamas. Read these guidelines before you book any Real Deal.
Book by: Oct. 25, 2008.
Contact: Spirit Vacations, 407/583-5216, spiritvacations.com.
Why it's a deal: The package cost includes an instant $200 rebate. Normally, round-trip airfare and a three-night stay would cost you $448, but with this offer, you'll automatically save $200. A recent search on Kayak produced a $173 flight on Spirit Airlines in early October—so for an additional $162 per person, Spirit is throwing in three nights' accommodations and transfers. Consider also that the trip cost breaks down to $112 per person per night including taxes.
Trip details: The Bahamas-Save $200 Instantly promotion begins with a flight on Spirit Airlines into Freeport, the largest city on Grand Bahama Island.
After landing, you'll transfer to the Sheraton Grand Bahama Island Our Lucaya Resort, your base for three nights. The 478-room hotel offers a pool with a spiraling waterslide, a fitness center and spa, and more than seven acres of sandy beaches along sparkling blue waters. A few miles away, you can take advantage of a casino and two golf courses. There's also an activity camp for kids available, plus kayak rentals, snorkeling, and boat excursions for additional fees.
Grand Bahama Island has one of the world's largest underwater cave systems and gorgeous coral reefs that make it popular among divers. You can also explore three national parks, including Lucayan National Park, about 25 miles east of Freeport.
If you'd like to add the hotel's all-inclusive plan (which includes meals), you can do so for an additional $150 per person.
The fall is still warm in the Bahamas, with temperatures ranging in the upper 70s to mid-80s. September is the rainiest month of the year, with 10 inches on average. You can expect short bursts of rain—after all, hurricane season in the Caribbean lasts through October. Spirit Airlines offers Hurricane Buster Protection: Through November 15, if there's a hurricane watch in effect for your destination, it will waive trip-change fees.
For more ideas on what to do, visit the Bahamas' official tourism site.
Copyright © 2012 Newsweek Budget Travel, Inc.