The days are growing shorter, as is your window of opportunity for setting off on one last summer escape. So make the most of what's left of the season—and take advantage of bunches of August and September bargains—by packing your bags and heading off into the sunset. Here are 10 destinations where end-of-season deals are as plentiful as fireflies on an August evening, from discounted Labor Day packages to cut-rate hotel stays.
Within a half-day's drive from St. Louis, Tulsa, and Memphis, Branson is a convenient end-of-summer weekend-getaway spot for many a Midwesterner. Plus, there are deals galore this time of year, especially if you book a package. Here's a good one: The 2012 Labor Day Getaway Package, offered by the Branson Tourism Center, combines three nights' accommodations at select hotels, theater and attraction tickets, and a dining certificate, starting at $359 for two people. This deal is also customizable: You can choose from one of five local hotels and pick your dining and entertainment choices from a list of eligible providers.
This splendid deal is only good for travel in August, so hurry up and pack: Book the Mega Philly Overnight Hotel Package, which includes two nights' accommodations, free hotel parking, and a special Philadelphia Teddy Bear, for one low rate. Also going on this month: VisitPhilly.com is throwing in two round-trip tickets on Megabus. Prices vary by hotel, but we found package rates as low as $159/night for two people (at Doubletree by Hilton Philadelphia Center City).
Niagara Falls, N.Y. and Ontario
An easy weekend getaway from the New York area, Niagara Falls is simply gushing with deals this time of year. We like the Summer Spa Revitalization package at Marriott Fallsview, which starts at $199 per night and includes accommodations, a $40 spa certificate, breakfast for two, a $40 dinner voucher, a wine reception for two, and other goodies.
Don't want to go the package route? On select dates from August through September, travelers can save more than 60% on rates at Marriott Getaway on the Falls when booking through Travelzoo (rates start at $129/night).
Walt Disney World, Fla.
For those seeking deals at Disney World, fall is arguably the best time to travel. But Disney deal offerings at summer's end aren't bad, either. From late August through the end of September, travelers can take advantage of value-season rates at official Walt Disney World resorts. For example, at Animal Kingdom Villas Jambo House, rates start at $300 per night on weekends during value season, compared to $335 per night on weekdays during high summer and $410 per night in late winter. The same pricing structure applies at many other official Walt Disney World resorts.
Deals are available at off-site Disney resorts, too. Through September 30, save 20 percent on stays at DoubleTree Suites by Hilton in the Walt Disney World Resort.