The Real Deal: Round-trip airfare, five nights' accommodations, and all meals and beverages, from $599 per person—plus taxes of up to $123.
When: Through Aug. 1, 2008.
Gateways: Miami; add $10 for New York City; $50 for Richmond; $100 for Louisville; $150 for Fort Lauderdale, Tampa; $200 for San Antonio; $210 for Philadelphia; $250 for Nashville, New Orleans, San Diego; $400 for Milwaukee, Phoenix, Sacramento, San Francisco; $420 for L.A.; additional cities are available.
The fine print: Included are all meals, beverages (alcoholic and nonalcoholic), snacks, a daily activities program, nightly entertainment, introductory scuba lessons in the pool, and use of resort facilities, such as tennis courts, bicycles, a gym, an amphitheater, a kids' club, and a disco. The promotion also covers free admission to Ocean World, including round-trip transfers from the resort to the park, two daily sea lion shows, snorkeling in the reef aquarium, snorkeling equipment, entry to the rain forest and the bird sanctuary, the dolphin encounter, and admission to various shows. Taxes are an additional $123 per person ($79 for kids ages four to 11). Kids under 12 stay free and are charged only for the airfare; those 12 and older pay the full adult rate, starting at $599. Based on double occupancy; single supplement is $679. Airport-hotel transfers are an additional $25 per person (adult or child) each way. Read these guidelines before you book any Real Deal.
Book by: May 13, 2008.
Contact: Cheap Caribbean, 800/915-2322, cheapcaribbean.com.
Why it's a deal: According to a recent search on Kayak, the lowest round-trip fares between Miami and Puerto Plata start at $353 in early June (American). For an additional $369, including taxes, Cheap Caribbean covers airfare as well as five nights' accommodations, all meals and beverages, daily activities, events, and admission costs.
Trip details: The Lifestyle Tropical Beach Resort & Spa package includes round-trip airfare to Puerto Plata on a major airline carrier (such as American, Continental, Delta, United, or US Air) and five nights in a superior category room. The low-rise Mediterranean-style property sits on Cofresi Beach, a one-and-a-half-mile stretch of sand named after the infamous Puerto Rican pirate, Captain Roberto Cofresi.
You can enjoy your unlimited food and drinks at restaurants including the Garden Buffet Restaurant, La Bella Roma, Juanito's Tex Mex, and the Beach Club for snacks and light lunches. The resort's Metamorphosis Spa has a full gym, a beauty parlor, a sauna, a Jacuzzi, and a Turkish bath. There are organized daily resort activities, nightly entertainment, nonmotorized water sports, beginner's scuba lessons in the pool, tennis courts and bicycles, amphitheater shows, and late-night discos all at your disposal.
The resort is a 10-minute drive from downtown Puerto Plata—Spanish for Silver Port—should you decide to take a break from lounging on the beach all day. Attractions include the Amber Museum, where collections of the fossilized tree resin are on display; Parque Luperon, Puerto Plata's version of Central Park; and the church of San Felipe. You can also spot the city's few remaining 19th-century Victorian gingerbread buildings.
If you're feeling adventurous, take a seven-minute cable car ride up the 2,600-foot Mount Isabel de Torres. Aside from offering postcard-worthy photo ops of the north coast, the summit is home to a statue of the Christ (a bit like the statue on Corcovado in Rio de Janeiro) and lush botanical gardens. Round out your Dominican experience by sampling the local drink of choice at the Brugal Rum Factory.
Should you wish to extend your stay, you will pay an additional $47 per person per night.
For more tips on what to do in the area, visit the official website for the Dominican Republic Ministry of Tourism. Before you go, check the latest exchange rate, the local time, and the weather forecast at BudgetTravel.com.