Book now for New Year’s bargains

New Year’s travel plans are being scaled back or were never made in the first place, according to a new survey by the Conference Board of Canada. The survey confirms what many of us know by word of mouth: most Canadians will be celebrating the dawn of the new millennium at home, with family and friends.

According to the survey, 80 per cent of Canadians say they plan to celebrate New Year’s at home or at the home of friends. The survey results show that only four per cent of Canadians plan to celebrate outside the country, while eight per cent will celebrate at a local restaurant, and a minuscule three per cent will celebrate at a hotel in their home town. In Toronto, many upscale restaurants have canceled plans for expensive, elaborate dinners, due to a simple lack of demand.

“The millennium travel hype hasn’t lived up to expectations,” says David Redekop, author of the report. The good news for the travel industry is that many Canadians will be travelling later in the year to celebrate the millennium. About five million Canadians plan to make a special trip next year in recognition of the year 2000, with more than half of them planning to stay within Canada.

Even bettenews is that for the adventurous, last-minute traveler, bargains abound, and they will only get better as hotels and tour operators confront the reality of empty beds and seats come New Year’s Eve. If you’re considering a true