Where To Spend Your Tax Return

by  Alex Schechter | Mar 17, 2014
Atlantic City, NJ skyline
Atlantic City, NJ skyline / AppalachianViews/iStock

Depending on the size (or existence) of the check coming your way post taxes, you could be looking at extra vacation money. And if you're anything like us, money like that burns a deep, deep hole in your pocket. We thought you'd appreciate a few tips on ways to blow your tax refund on a trip in late April/May. Consider it a reward for getting them done in the first place.

Bike the Chesapeake Bay
Considering just $342 can get you from San Francisco to Baltimore (and back), west coasters have a unique opportunity this May to catch the nation's most famous estuary at the peak of spring. Bike-tour group VBT is offering a 6-night trek throughout the coastal islands, including the chance to sail on a traditional 'skipjack,' stop in at the Eastern Neck National Wildlife Refuge, and sleep in an original (but luxurious) colonial inn. For all bookings made by April 28, travelers can receive $150 off the cost of "Cycling the Chesapeake Bay" for departure on either May 4 or May 11 – the price covers all hotels, meals, and, best of all, roundtrip airport transfers. Book here.

Warm Up in Miami
Get run of Miami in June as the NBA championships are kicking off, and busy winter crowds have mostly died down. The pre-season lull is a perfect opportunity for a rejuvenating long weekend on the beach. And speaking of beaches, boutique property Sense Beach House  is including a $120 discount for all guests who book a room after June 1. Normally, rates at the chic, 18-room hotel go for $359; book the "Solo Traveler" package for just $239 per night, including accommodations, pool chair reservations, breakfast, and a glass of wine. Use promo code SOLOUNA when booking (valid on stays June 1 through September, 2014).

Treat Yourself to Acapulco
Flights from New York to Acapulco, on Mexico's western coast (about 4 hours south by car from Mexico City), start under $400 roundtrip this May; and when you arrive, you can take advantage of a pair of deals currently on offer from Fairmont. The worldwide hotel chain has sweetened the deal at both Fairmont Acapulco Princess and Fairmont Pierre Marques with packages like "Recharging Batteries" (1P8SOL) and "Don't Forget Your Smile" (1M8RIE), both of which include daily breakfast, complimentary room upgrade, and resort-wide discounts – spa, golf, food, you name it, – from $91 (per person per night; 3-night minimum), representing a 20% discount on normal rates. Book and travel now until July 11; blackout dates apply.

Bask On a Private Beach In the Dominican Republic
The 34 suites at bright, sunny Eden Roc at Cap Cana are known for their bold colors and (yes) private swimming pools, but the resort's certainly got the bones to back it up: guests have exclusive access to a pristine palm-lined private beach along the Dominican Republic's eastern tip, and have access to five restaurants and bars. Roundtrip airport transfers are included in the "Romance Getaway", from $864 per night in a Garden Junior Suite (they normally go for over $1,000), lending a substantial discount on one of the most pampered getaways you've likely had in a way. That must explain why they've extended the travel period from April 30 all the way until October 31, 2014. Book here.

Test a New Route To Atlantic City
Until now, Spirit Airlines has been the only airline servicing Atlantic City International Airport. But starting April 1, the airport will also be served by United, which will begin routes from Chicago (from $350 roundtrip) and Houston (from $525). This ought to make casino visits easier for Star Alliance members looking to save a little cash – in mid- to late-April, you'll find rates as low as $89 per night at the city's newest and most in-demand property, Revel. Direct boardwalk access, not to mention a sprawling pool area and one of the best taco trucks around, will have you living it up, AC style, in no time.

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