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It can be hard to feel pampered on vacation when you’re trying so hard to stick to your travel budget. Scoring a great hotel deal is a big key to your budgeting success, and luckily, you don’t have to pay a premium for an out-of-this world view. Our proof: These five budget hotels, complete with downright luxurious views.

The fine print: These average prices were pulled from a random weekend in April, and reflect the prices at the time of writing.

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America’s Best Value Inn Villa Motel — Manitou Springs, Colorado | $84 per night

This motel is far from glamorous, but no one’s spending that much time in the room anyway. The Villa Motel is nestled in the foothills of the Rocky Mountains just outside of Colorado Springs in the hippy town of Manitou Springs. The town is friendly and walkable, and moments away from some of the best hiking trails in the country.

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Club Quarters Hotel, Wacker at Michigan — Chicago, Illinois | $166 per night

Look right down onto the Chicago River and out across the high-rise expanse of Chicago’s River North neighborhood from rooms at theClub Quarters. This is one of two Club Quarters in Chicago’s Loop neighborhood. Both are great values for the location (most hotels run upwards of $300 a night in this area), but this one has better views.

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Meadow Lake Resort, Glacier National ParkColumbia Falls, Montana | $76 per night

This resort has a spa, free airport transportation, restaurant and a bar, which can be a little hard to find in the wilderness of Glacier National Park, and necessary after a long day of hiking. The views are sweeping and beautiful, the price is affordable, and there’s a golf course, pool and hot tub here if too much nature isn’t your thing.Careful though, the prices may increase come summertime.

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Mountain View LodgePackwood, Washington | $85 per night

The name of this little lodge says it all. It sits in the shadow of Mount Rainier, and is close to High Rock Trailhead, among many other hikes. The lodgings are quaint but clean, and guests are likely to see some elk or deer wander into the lodge’s front yard. And if the weather turns sour, you won’t need to leave the room for beautiful views (unless the clouds cover the mountain, that is).

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Wyndham San Diego BaysideSan Diego, California | $159 per night

The beautiful bay will never escape your line of sight at this hotel. If you do manage to tear yourself away from that glorious view, the hotel offers plenty of amenities that will make it worth your while. There’s a gorgeous outdoor pool, a 24-hour fitness center and bikes to rent (though, arguably, two of these three will also lead to some spectacular ocean vistas). There’s also a Ruth’s Chris Steak House onsite, so you won’t have to walk too far in your heels or brogues for a nice meal. Just do yourself a favor and try to score a room with a patio.

CTIXblog CTA _ cheap of the week

Tagged: California, Cheap Tips, City, Family, Last minute travel, Off-season, Seasonal

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By Derek Brown

Summer’s here and you want to get away on a cheap ticket.  Flying into alternate airports is a fantastic way for families to save hundreds of dollars on summer airfare. Continue reading

Tagged: Family, Tips & advice

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Cash_jet2 In tough economic times, we’re all looking for ways to get the most for our money.

That’s why CheapTickets has teamed up with SmartMoney.com to bring you the new Cheaponomy section of our blog, devoted to saving and stretching your dollars so you can afford the things that enrich your life — whether it’s travel, fashion or dining out.

Cheaponomy is an outgrowth of our Show Us Your Cheap campaign, in which nearly 1,000 consumers shared ways to cut costs and still enjoy traveling — even in tough economic times. Tips included taking night trains to avoid overnight hotel stays and grocery shopping at a destination rather than dining out.

When CheapTickets and SmartMoney.com surveyed more than 1,000 readers to get a better sense of consumer behavior in the Age of the Cheaponomy, travel ranked No. 2 behind dining out among leisure activities consumers are trying to afford. And while two-thirds of those surveyed said they’re lowering travel expenses, they’re also more likely to cut back on other areas first.

Check back here often for regular updates, ideas and tips on getting by and leaving room for leisure travel — even in "The Age of the Cheaponomy."

CheapTickets travel resources:

SmartMoney.com tips and resources

Tagged: Uncategorized

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Smartmoneylogo In a Cheaponomy, you can still enjoy some simple pleasures.

CheapTickets has teamed up SmartMoney.com to show all the ways you can spend wisely, save, and still leave room for the things that enrich your life — whether it’s travel, shopping or dining out.

Here are some SmartMoney.com tips and resources to help get you started:

Tagged: Uncategorized

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Cheap airfares + cheap hotels = cheap vacation packages. And CheapTickets has the right equation to helpyou get away.

With vacation packages to destinations across the United States for under $500, it’s easy to travel to your favorite places.

Check out these sample prices on vacation packages:

  • West Palm Beach (from Philadelphia) — $482
  • Boston (from Baltimore) — $485
  • Denver (from Los Angeles) — $482
  • Orlando (from Indianapolis) — $415
  • Las Vegas (from Seattle) — $451

Sample prices are for travel July 14-16 and include one airfare and a two-night hotel stay(including taxes). Once you select a destination, you’ll see several airline and hotel options for less than $500.

So pick a city and find the vacation package that works for you.

CheapTickets resources:

Tagged: FREE!, Limited-time Offers, Vacation packages

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Cheap flights make it easy to plan a weekend getaway. So pack your bags, because CheapTickets has round-trip airfares starting at $153 for weekend travel in July.

Here are some sample airfares:

  • Washington D.C. to New York — $153
  • Boston to Orlando — $213
  • Denver to Los Angeles — $184
  • San Francisco to Chicago — $301
  • Seattle to Las Vegas — $261

These cheap tickets are good for travel outbound Thursdays through Saturdays; returning Sundays through Tuesdays throughout July. The airfares include taxes and fees.

Plus, with the CheapTickets Summer Sale, you can save an extra $50 when you book a flight + hotel vacation package of three nights or more. Just book your airfare by July 6 for travel by August 31.

It’s called summer vacation for a reason. Schedule your getaway today with these cheap flights.

CheapTickets resources:

Tagged: City, Flights, FREE!, Limited-time Offers