Thursday, January 19, 2012

Snow Dogs: Dogsledding in Haliburton, Ontario

In my lifetime, exactly two gifts have brought me to tears. The first was two years ago, when Jay presented me with my KitchenAid stand mixer. As soon as I realized what it was, I was a blubbering mess. ("Guess what Jay got me for my birthday?" I eagerly prompted my mom later that night. "A ring?" she guessed, dubious.)

The second time was this year at Christmas, when Jay told me that he was taking me dogsledding.

Best. Present. Ever.

Sometimes, I think that when you're dreaming of and saving for foreign locales, you can forget about the travel opportunities that exist closer to home. 

If You Go: Winterdance Dogsled Tours offers dogsledding packages that range in length from two-hour to multi-days tours. If you're looking for a deal, the weekday tours are considerably cheaper.

Getting There: From Toronto, Haliburton is roughly a three-hour drive so transit-users (like us) will need to rent a vehicle.
  • If you're going up north for more than one day, the cost of an AutoShare rental is roughly $80/day. While that may seem high, it's actually comparable to that of your typical rental agencies since gas and insurance are included. It's also a heck of a lot more convenient.*
  • However, if you're making a day trip (like we did), renting a car with the big rental agencies may be your best bet. To save money on car rentals, be sure to Google online coupon codes and see if you can pre-pay online for instant discounts. (With a coupon code from RetailMeNot combined with a prepay discount, our daily rate for Budget before taxes was only $30. Since I have coverage on my Aeroplan AmEx card, not only did I save on insurance, I also collected Aeroplan and Airmiles points on the rental.) 
*Full disclaimer: Although I work on a part-time contract basis with AutoShare, I am in no way being compensated for writing this. I just think AutoShare is awesome and it's what I use as my rental of choice when I'm driving up north for a weekend getaway.

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