Hotwire Reveals Best Holiday Deal Destinations in a Special Edition of the Travel Savings Indicator Travelers can Take Advantage of Deep Savings Anywhere from Warm Weather Escapes like Florida and Southern California to Winter Wonderlands like Chicago and Denver

SAN FRANCISCO, Dec. 18, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Hotwire.com®, a leading discount travel site, today released the December 2012 Hotwire® special holiday edition of the Travel Savings Indicator, which features the top five cities in North America where hotel, air and car rental rates have dropped the most as compared to the holiday season last year. With overall average hotel prices up 7 percent and air prices up nearly 2 percent over Christmas (travel December 22-26), those looking for a great deal this season can use Hotwire's extensive pricing research to find the best destinations for maximizing their travel dollars.

"Rising holiday travel costs are putting Americans in a real bind this season, but savvy travelers can still score some great deals to many popular destinations," said Clem Bason, president of the Hotwire Group. "In fact, with folks traveling back to hometowns during this time of year, several larger cities and warmer leisure destinations are seeing a drop in prices in order to attract vacationers. That means those looking for a last-minute getaway instead of a traditional holiday at home can take advantage of the savings and enjoy festive attractions at some prime locales."

Hotel Price Drops
Our nation's capital tops the list of hotel price drops during the holidays with an 11 percent drop. During the holidays, Washington, DC turns into a winter wonderland of lights, Christmas trees – including the national tree – and even ICE!, an interactive world of colorful ice sculptures at the Gaylord National Convention Center.

If you're feeling lucky and hoping to come out of the holiday with a little more money in your pocket, Las Vegas, our number two destination, might be the city for you. Convention business is slow during December, resulting in a 10 percent drop on already great hotel rates. But Vegas isn't just for gamblers; the Bellagio's Conservatory & Botanical Garden hosts their annual holiday exhibit through early January and their famous dancing fountains perform to classic holiday songs like "Carol of the Bells".

In Denver, our number three city with a six percent drop, folks can enjoy a variety of holiday activities that are sure to put you in a cheerful mood, such as the Denver Zoo's "Zoo Lights" or the Blossoms of Light at the Botanic Garden, plus performing arts favorites like "The Nutcracker" and "A Christmas Carol". Or visitors can use Denver as a home base to access world-class ski resorts like Vail and Breckenridge.

Houston and Chicago round out this list with five and four percent drops, respectively. Visitors to Houston can enjoy a variety of theatrical performances from the Houston Ballet, Alley Theater and Stages Repertory Theater, or head less than an hour away to Galveston to visit the well-known Festival of Lights at Moody Gardens. And though it may be off-season in Chicago, the Windy City has a lot of holiday activities to offer—from a Christmas tree exhibit at the Museum of Science and Industry to ice skating on The Magnificent Mile.

When compared to this time last year, the top five hotel price reductions for December 2012 include:

Rank

Hotel Market

Price Drops

Average Hotwire Hotel Price

1

Washington, DC

- 11%

$65

2

Las Vegas, NV

- 10%

$68

3

Denver, CO 

- 6%

$75

4

Houston, TX

- 5%

$58

5

Chicago, IL

- 4%

$62

Air Price Drops
Airfares this Christmas are up around 2 percent overall, but travelers can still score deals to destinations like Memphis (15 percent), Oklahoma City (13 percent) and Orange County (12 percent). Each of these cities hosts a myriad of holiday festivities including parades, lights displays, holiday villages and ice skating rinks in their respective downtown neighborhoods. Meanwhile, folks visiting Austin, in fourth with an 11 percent drop, can get their last-minute holiday shopping done at the Armadillo Christmas Bazaar, or enjoy a holiday movie in the park at the Alamo Drafthouse. Visitors to Tampa, rounding out the list in fifth with a 10 percent drop, can go on some wild rides with a festive atmosphere at Busch Gardens, which has extended holiday hours and special programming, or check out a holiday show at the David A. Straz, Jr. Center for the Performing Arts.

When compared to this time last year, the top five airfare price reductions for December 2012 include:

Rank

Air Market

Price Drops

Average Hotwire Airfare

1

Memphis, TN

- 15%

$324

2

Oklahoma City, OK

- 13%

$337

3

Orange County, CA

- 12%

$330

4

Austin, TX

- 11%

$327

5

Tampa, FL

- 10%

$345

Car Price Drops
Airfare isn't the only deal in Tampa; it also tops the car rental list with a steep 29 percent drop. Meanwhile, Newark follows in second with a 21 percent drop, so if you're thinking of renting a car in the NY Metro Area for the holidays, the savings could be worth it to use this great alternate destination to access New York City. Memphis comes in third with a 17 percent drop, followed by another Floridian entry, Miami Beach, in fourth with a 15 percent discount. Milwaukee, a great destination for a white Christmas in the city's Historic Third Ward, rounds out the list in fifth with an 11 percent drop.

When compared to this time last year, the top five car rental price reductions for December 2012 include:

Rank 

Car Rental Market

Price Drops

Average Hotwire Car Rental Price

1

Tampa, FL

- 29%

$39

2

Newark, NJ

- 21%

$51

3

Memphis, TN

- 17%

$23

4

Miami Beach, FL

- 15%

$39

5

Milwaukee, WI

- 11%

$28

For over 12 years, Hotwire has worked with hotels, airlines and car rental companies to fill unsold inventory. As a result, Hotwire offers travelers amazing deals, every day of the year, across a variety of markets. Through Hotwire's deep understanding of the industry and unique relationships, consumers have been able to save millions of dollars on all their travel needs.

About the Hotwire Travel Savings Indicator
Results are calculated by looking at Hotwire booking data for select regions during the time period of December 22 - 26, and comparing prices during that period against Hotwire prices in the same period last year. Prices are compared within the same categories (e.g., star rating, class of car) for consistency, and the percent change in price for each region is generated as an overall average of the changes in those categories. The hotel prices in the charts above are examples for a particular Hot Rate® deal within that market. The airfare and car rental prices are average prices based on bookings across all car and seat classes. Actual prices may be higher or lower than the examples that are provided.

About Hotwire
Hotwire.com is a leading discount travel site with low rates on airline tickets, hotel rooms, rental cars, cruises and vacation packages. Launched in 2000, Hotwire, Inc. obtains deep discounts from its travel suppliers to help travelers book unsold airline seats, hotel rooms and rental cars. Hotwire.com is an award-winning website and Hotwire, Inc. is an operating company of Expedia, Inc. CST # 2029030-50. NST: 20003-0209. For more information, visit http://www.hotwire.com. Hotwire.com operates sites in 8 countries worldwide: www.hotwire.com, www.hotwire.com/uk, www.hotwire.com/ie, www.hotwire.com/au, www.hotwire.com/nz, www.hotwire.com/se, www.hotwire.com/no and www.hotwire.com/dk. In addition to Hotwire, The Hotwire Group of websites includes: www.hotwire.com and www.carrentals.com

Hotwire, Hotwire.com and the Hotwire logo are either registered trademarks or trademarks of Hotwire, Inc. in the U.S. and/or other countries.  All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners. © 2012 Hotwire, Inc.  All rights reserved. CST # 2053390-50.

Contact:
Andrew Reynolds
Atomic PR
(323) 648-5425
Andrew@atomicpr.com

SOURCE Hotwire.com



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