A first-class package

Most elite travelers would never dream of booking a prepackaged vacation. Maybe they should.

By Barney Gimbel, Fortune writer

(Fortune Magazine) -- Most elite travelers would never dream of booking a prepackaged vacation. Maybe they should. By booking the hotel of your choice but reserving your flight and rental car through programs like American Airlines Vacations, Delta (Charts) Vacations, or Northwest WorldVacations, even the pickiest travelers can rack up big savings - particularly when flying first-class to resort destinations.

Let's say you want to take a three-night trip to Honolulu from San Francisco this December. If you booked two first-class tickets on Northwest, each would cost more than $1,700 roundtrip. Yet through Northwest WorldVacations, it's 53 percent less, or $792 each - and it includes a car. L.A. to Maui first class on Delta? The $2,037 fare is 43 percent cheaper if booked through Delta Vacations. Of course, like most travel bargains, it doesn't always pan out, so be sure to price out both options.  Top of page