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Spring break is a rite of passage for most American teenagers. It’s a time when the exams are over, the weather is getting warm and colleges and universities break for between one and two weeks. For many teenagers, this is a time to get away and party. For others, it is a time to spend with their families and friends.

This is often the first time that students have been away without the watchful eye of their parents and is their first taste of freedom. Many students traditionally like to go to a beach resort where the weather will be warm.

All this sounds great, but nothing comes cheap nowadays. And as it is traditionally students that go away on Spring Break, this usually means that it is the parents that pay for their vacation.

So, how can you enjoy a really great Spring Break without breaking yours or your parents’ budget?

 ·      Cruises – No chance you may think, cruises are far too expensive. Well, that is often the case. However, there are many new cruise companies coming into the market and with them come some great introductory deals. It is also good to be aware that not all areas have Spring Break at the same time, so it is often possible to find a heavily discounted cruise as it is not Spring Break in that area. In addition, if you can be flexible about where and when you cruise, it is possible to get some great last minute bargains.

 ·      Book Early or Last Minute – Many resorts, hotels and travel companies will offer heavy discounts for booking early, even for peak periods. The earlier you book, the better the deal.

 Conversely, if you leave your booking right until the last minute, you are likely to be able to get a great deal on rooms that haven’t been sold. Hotels and bed and breakfasts hate having rooms going unused, so they would rather sell them for a knock down price than let them stay empty. Of course, booking last minute is risky as you may not be able to get accommodation in the area you really want. However, if you can be flexible on your location and dates, then you are most likely to be able to bag a bargain.

 ·      Volunteering – Many students choose to volunteer over the Spring Break and spend their time helping others. If you choose wisely, you can volunteer in a place such as New Orleans and get the best of both worlds. Part of your time can be spent volunteering in the local community, perhaps helping to teach under privileged kids. There is also the opportunity to volunteer all over the world. When you volunteer, you will often receive reduced price or free travel and accommodation in return for your hard work.

·      Visit a National Park – Spring Break is a great time to visit one of America’s beautiful National Parks. During the summer months, you will have to fight the crowds, but in March/April you will find peace and quiet along with stunning natural beauty as well as discounts on campsites and lodgings.

 As you can see, getting away during Spring Break needn’t break the bank. If you think ahead and plan early, there are still some bargains to be had. Whether you want to party the night away or spend some quality time with family and friends, Spring Break needn’t cost the earth.

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