“Doing taxes” and “going on vacation” usually live at opposite ends of the enjoyment spectrum. While saying “I’d rather do my taxes” is reserved to describe unpleasant activities like dinner with your in-laws, “having a drink on a beach in Florida” is used a generic way to describe doing anything but work.
This year, Orbitz is somehow putting them together, and saving you money in the process.
As April 15 looms large over American taxpayers, Orbitz is giving you a reason to get excited about Tax Day. If you book a hotel or hotel and flight package using Orbitz on April 15, Orbitz will refund you all of the taxes and fees associated with your purchase. If you’re not big on reading the fine print, that’s often up to 25 percent of your total cost.
Much simpler than filing a 1040, no?
While you may stress or agonize over the changes in the tax laws, and aren’t sure if you’ll get a nice refund or have to write a painful check, Orbitz’s offer is pretty straightforward. Log onto its website, set up an Orbitz rewards account (or log into one you set up four years ago and forgot about), and shop away.
Once you make your purchase, check your Orbitz account 48 hours later and you’ll have Orbucks — Orbitz’s currency used to make purchases on the site — equivalent to your taxes and fees. No, it’s not straight-up cash, but at least with this refund, you won’t have the temptation to do something silly with your money like save it or pay down debt.
Better to use the refund for a trip somewhere like Florida or the Cayman Islands, which, at 17 percent and 21 percent, have two of the highest travel tax rates in the world. Read between the lines there, and you’ll get the most money back if you book trips to those destinations. Bermuda (19 percent), Turks and Caicos (18 percent), and Sri Lanka (19 percent) will also net you some pretty nice refunds.
Doing your taxes may not be fun, but once you’re done you can reward yourself with some good old-fashioned vacation planning — and you’ll be getting a refund you won’t have to wait weeks to receive.