Your questions


I want to take a week-long break at Easter but I believe it's peak season at that time. I've been thinking about the Whitsundays, Hamilton Island, Tasmania and New Zealand but the prices seem to rocket come April. What would be the best-value destination to have some fun with nature and relax with my girl?

- Ajay Bhatt, Burwood, Victoria


Easter is traditionally a peak period but you can expect good deals this year due to the economic downturn. There are some great air fare sales on at the moment (try Flight Centre, phone 133 133, see, or compare airlines at and accommodation deals are on their way.

All the destinations you mention should be good options if you grab cheap flights now, then hunt around for accommodation packages. For example, you could get a return flight to Auckland from $360 or Tasmania for about $180 return.

Getting to the Whitsundays is a bit more expensive but you have the option of two airports: Hamilton Island and Proserpine. Because the Whitsundays is suffering a bit, there will be free nights and other accommodation deals on offer, both on the mainland and on Hamilton Island.

Aim to travel midweek, such as Wednesday to Wednesday, when you will get cheaper flights. Avoid the Thursday before Easter and Easter Monday, as that's when most people will be trying to travel.

Another option for accommodation is to wait for last-minute specials, through websites such as and

- Jane E. Fraser

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