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Many Trade Tinsel for the Tropics

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When old man winter blows in, a trip down South sound pretty good.
RALEIGH — In the past, the holidays have been a time for people to travel to visit with friends and family. Now there seems to be a new trend. People are looking to spend their holidays vacationing.

While most people are packing to get home for Christmas, Nicole Grover andher friends are heading to Vegas. Grover says since it's the slow season,she can get good hotel rates.

It's something she has done for the last eight years. A lot of otherpeople, including Gary Post, are following her lead.

Post admits although he loves coming home to the Raleigh-Durham area,there are times he really wants to get out of town.

Travel agent Rolo Fleming says getting out of the area is becoming moreand more common. Bookings on Florida-bound flights are up 60%. Mostflights are already full. So why are so many people leaving?

Fleming believes because the holiday falls on a Thursday, people want totake advantage of the whole following weekend.

Since most flights down South are already booked, more people are choosingplaces to travel for New Year's Eve celebrations. Many vacationers willhead to Atlanta and New York for a quick trip at a low price.

That's what Nicole grover will do. After she returns from her Christmastrip out west, she is traveling to Chicago.

Travel agents say most of the flights to Florida sold out back in September.That's a lot earlier than they sold out last year.

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