* With Varig Travel Vacations, partyers can samba away 2002 in Rio de Janeiro for not much more than the cost of watching the ball drop in Times Square. The $926 New Year's Eve deal includes: round-trip air from Washington to the Brazilian hot spot (holiday fares generally start at $950); five nights at Augusto's Copacabana or Le Meridien, both near the famed beach and nightclubs, though the latter hotel is more upscale (rooms from $250); and breakfast. Book as soon as possible; travel Dec. 27. In addition, those who want to party long after the stroke of midnight can return for Carnival, Feb. 27, for $1,074 -- including round-trip air, five nights' hotel and breakfast. Book by Dec. 20. Add about $100 in taxes. 877-687-1000, www.varigtravelvacations.com.
* Toast the New Year with tequila and more than a grand in savings with Fare Deals' Puerto Vallarta holiday special. The $1,199 deal includes: round-trip air from BWI to the Mexican resort town (typical fares from $800); a week at the Melia Puerto Vallarta, double occupancy, a five-star oceanfront property where rooms go for $250 a night; and all meals, drinks and nonmotorized sports. Add about $120 in taxes; travel Dec. 27. 800-347-7006, www.faredeal.com.
-- Andrea Sachs