Tuesday, June 29, 2010

China for cheap!

I like to plan trips, even if we don't take them. Last night I was tinkering with the idea of going to Beijing for a couple of weeks in the fall. I got to checking airfares and hotels on the list of websites I check when I'm in the planning stages.

I found a deal on Expedia that was really reasonable, in fact the cost of  two weeks in a budget hotel and airfare was just slightly moe than airfare alone. We sometimes  fly out of Portland, Oregon, when we go to China because it's usually so much cheaper the savings more than pays for our gas and airport parking, not to mention the schedule is almost always more convenient.

Anyway, I priced a trip to Beijing from Portland for just over $1,000 which includes round-trip airfare and two weeks in a budget hotel. This is per person double occupancy. This dates I used were departing Nov. 3 and returning Nov. 17. Airfare alone is running about $1,000 per person at that time. The weather will be cool in Beijing, but the cold winter winds shouldn't have started by then. And because it's off-season, the sights should be less crowded. Play around with the dates as well as other reputable online travel agencies to see what turns up; I didn't do this, though I frequently do, and go for the best deal regardless of who has it.

We went to Beijing two years ago, returning in late October and the weather was really nice. Just a little rain on one day. Believe it or not, the Expedia price is almost $300 per person less than what we paid for that trip. That trip was one of the few where I booked airfare and hotel separately -- it turned out to be cheaper that way, especially since I negotiated a discount with the hotel.

If you book a trip to Beijing, you may want to take my mini-guide, DIY Beijing: a guide for the independent traveler, to help you get around the the city. Check out Cheryl's Guides for more of my China guides. If you have questions about travel in China, especially Beijing, please see my website, Cheryl's China, or email me.

The picture
Rubbing the gold knobs on the entrance doors to the Forbidden City is said to bring good luck. Thousands of people do it every day.

The fine print
Because I mentioned Expedia in this blog, the FTC requires me to disclose if I will receive any payment from Expedia for mentioning them. I won't.

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