Will you give me yourself? Will you come travel with me?
Shall we stick by each other as long as we live?
— Walt Whitman, “Song of the Open Road”
Travel to a special place is one of the most romantic things one person can offer another. Valentine’s Day is less than a month away, but we have a troubling complication this year. The day of red hearts falls on the Saturday which begins Presidents Day weekend – and the start of February school vacation in Massachusetts. All flights out of Massachusetts to anywhere but Fargo will be sold out for that day (and the days before and after). If you want to fly out of Massachusetts that weekend and have not already made your flight plans, you need to move very quickly and be prepared to pay big bucks to get very far out of town.
So what is a Romantic But Not Extremely Wealthy traveler to do? I have three ideas.
Celebrate Valentine’s Day a bit early. If you can get away during the week before the 14th you will avoid the crush of travelers and benefit from better pricing. Nothing says you can only begin a special trip on the holiday itself. And if the trip is to be a surprise, it will be even more a surprise several days ahead of the calendar. You can return on or after Valentine’s Day. There is no shortage of space on planes flying to Boston that weekend. Cruise lines are eager to fill ships in the next few weeks. Good prices are available for both flights and cruise if you select a sailing date which will not compete with the mass exodus from Massachusetts.
A variation on the first option is to book your trip later than the calendar would suggest but present the significant details on the 14th (along with chocolate). This adaptation might make it look as though you were late in planning — but a delay can be a good thing. There will be significantly more daylight in London, for example, in March than there would have been in February.
Another idea would be to go someplace nearby which still meets your standards as a special occasion location for the two of you. Driving to Bretton Woods, Cape Cod, Newport, New York, or even Boston on a high demand weekend costs no more than usual. Most hotels worthy of a special occasion offer romance packages or other special amenities to make a stay truly special. Virtuoso affiliated hotels offer unique amenities and preferred rates to clients booked by a Virtuoso agent (that would be me). Or you can improve on any hotel stay by bringing along your own special treats (more bother, less cost).
Because of the vacation week, booking travel for Valentine’s Day might be a bit more challenging than usual this year. But there are great possibilities available. Let me know how I can play cupid’s assistant for you!
Boundaries divide. Travel unites.
15 January 2015