What's the Deal?
The week's best travel bargains around the globe, by land, sea and air.

Sunday, February 8, 2009


· Rancho Las Palmas Resort & Spa in Rancho Mirage, Calif., is celebrating its 30th anniversary with 30 percent discounts on dining, golf and spa services. Book by Feb. 28 and stay anytime in 2009. For example, high-season greens fees are now $76 (usually $109 on weekends), and a Swedish massage is now $95 (normally $135 for 50 minutes). Activities must be scheduled at time of booking. The resort is also offering room discounts of up to 40 percent throughout the year. For example, stay a minimum of five nights and receive the maximum room discount: A five-night stay in late April, for example, starts at $1,264 double, including taxes. Info: 866-423-1195, http://www.rancholaspalmas.com.

· Tesoro Resort in Los Cabos, Mexico, is offering a Crash Pad rate of $60 per night (plus about $10 tax) "for those looking to experience all that Cabo has to offer -- nightlife, restaurants, beaches, etc. -- and really only need a place to sleep," the resort's Web site says. The rate, a savings of about 25 percent, applies through Feb. 27. Info: 866-998-3767, http://www.tesororesorts.com.

· Save up to 25 percent on lodging at the WaterColor Inn & Resort or WaterSound Beach in Santa Rosa Beach in northwest Florida. Prices vary by lodging and dates. For example, a one-bedroom in WaterColor for five nights in mid-June is $1,482 (including $192 taxes and fees), a savings of $399. Book by Feb. 16 for stays through December. Some blackout dates apply. The deal also includes 25 percent lunch discounts at WaterColor's Sugar Pies Cafe. Info: 888-775-2545, http://www.watercolorvacationhomes.com.

· Get half-price tickets on 34 off-Broadway shows for performances Feb. 15-March 1. The shows, which take place in theaters throughout Manhattan, include "Altar Boyz," Blue Man Group and the "Marvelous Wonderettes." Prices vary. For example, two tickets to the "Marvelous Wonderettes" now start at $37.50 each, plus service and handling charges of $9. Also, get a free Coca-Cola drink with the purchase of a pre- or post-theater meal at any of 11 restaurants. Info: http://www.nycgo.com/onthehouse.


· Viking River Cruises is offering half-price discounts on its Yangtze Explorer cruise. The 12-night tour round trip from Shanghai includes two nights' hotel in Shanghai and a 10-night Yangtze River cruise. Price after discount starts at $1,695 per person double, including port charges and taxes, for select summer departures. Book by March 31. Info: 877-668-4546, http://www.vikingrivercruises.com.

· MSC Cruises has discounted two Caribbean cruises from Fort Lauderdale, Fla. The 10-night cruise departing March 4 on the MSC Lirica starts at $599 per person double, plus $31 taxes; brochure rate was $1,425. The seven-night cruise departing March 7 on the MSC Orchestra starts at $479 per person double, plus $41 taxes; brochure rate was $1,025. Info: 800-666-9333, http://www.msccruisesusa.com.

· Voyages of Discovery is offering up to 50 percent off its summer itineraries, plus free airfare. For example, a 16-night St. Petersburg & the Northern Capitals trip that departs May 28 and includes two nights' hotel in London, transfers and a 14-night cruise aboard the MV Discovery now starts at $3,095 per person double (includes $295 port charges), a savings of $1,550. Fuel surcharge and taxes for flights from Washington to London are $464 round trip; priced separately, airfare would cost at least $1,048. Info: 866-623-2689, http://www.voyagesofdiscovery.com.


· Fly nonstop from Washington Dulles to Paris for $601 round trip, including $108 taxes. The Air France sale is valid for travel departing by March 26 and completed by April 2. Seven-day advance purchase required; weekend flights are $20 more each way. A minimum Sunday night and maximum one-month stay required. Other airlines are matching. Buy at http://www.airfrance.us by Feb. 18.

· Aer Lingus has sale fares from Washington Dulles to Dublin or Shannon, Ireland. Round-trip fare for travel May 1-31 is $588 (including $90 taxes); other airlines are matching. Book by Feb. 11 at http://www.aerlingus.com, or pay $32 more by calling 800-474-7424.

· AirTran is offering a systemwide sale. Fares from BWI Marshall range from $49 to $169 each way (plus taxes); from Reagan National or Dulles, fares are $64 to $140 each way. For example, round-trip fare from BWI to Burlington, Vt., is $119, including taxes; fare on other airlines starts at $140. Travel to Florida and San Juan must be completed by March 11; to all other cities, travel by May 20. Ten-day advance purchase required; higher fares for Friday and Sunday flights. Blackout dates apply. Book by Feb. 10 at http://www.airtran.com, or pay $15 more by calling 800-247-8726.


· With Pleasant Holidays, a three-night stay in Maui, including airfare from Los Angeles or San Francisco, starts at $329 per person double (plus taxes) or from $299 for Oahu. The Hawaii specials are valid for travel through April 30. Prices vary by hotel. For example, a three-night package at the Kaanapali Ocean Inn on Maui, including round-trip nonstop air from Los Angeles on United Airlines, starts at $725 per couple; priced separately, the deal would cost $1,225 for two. Extra hotel nights are $96 a night double. Book by Feb. 11. Info: 800-742-9244, http://www.pleasantholidays.com.

-- Carol Sottili

Prices were verified and available on Thursday afternoon when the Travel section went to press. However, deals sell out quickly and are not guaranteed to be available. Restrictions such as day of travel, blackout dates and advance-purchase requirements sometimes apply.

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