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

Sunday, March 29, 2009

LAND

-- Intercontinental and Crowne Plaza hotels throughout Japan will offer 50 percent savings off their best flexible rates during a three-day sale starting 11 a.m. April 1 and ending 11 a.m. April 4. The promo at the 16 participating hotels applies to stays April 2-June 30, except May 1-7. Prices vary. For example, a night at the ANA Intercontinental Tokyo in early June, usually $335 with taxes, will be $167. Info: 888-424-6835, http://www.ihg.com/japan72h.

-- Country Inns & Suites by Carlson is offering a one-third discount on three-night stays through April 30. The Spring Break 1, 2, Wheee! offer applies to more than 450 hotels in North America. Prices vary. For example, a three-night weekend stay at the chain's San Diego property, usually $435, is $290, including taxes. The promo also includes a coupon from T.G.I. Friday's for either a buy-one-get-one-free entree or a half-off appetizer with purchase of an entree. Info: 888-201-1746, http://www.countryinns.com/springbreak2009.

-- You can leave your clubs at home with the Just Bring Your Swing package from Horseshoe Bay Resort, a 7,000-acre property in central Texas Hill Country. The deal, starting at $170 per person per night (plus $18 taxes and resort fee), includes lodging, unlimited golf on any of the resort's three Robert Trent Jones Sr. courses and club rentals. Priced separately, rooms start at $233 a night, greens fees are $120 weekdays and $160 weekends, and club rentals are $50. Deal is good through April 30. Info: 877-611-0112, http://www.hsbresort.com.

SEA

-- A companion flies free on 2009 air-inclusive Avalon Waterways' European river cruises booked by April 21. The promotion applies to several itineraries, and rates vary. For example, a 12-night European Splendor cruise between Amsterdam and Vienna departing May 31 starts at $3,817 per person double (including $168 port charges), plus airfare from Washington, which typically starts at about $925 round trip plus $116 taxes. During the promotion, the second person pays cruise fare and air taxes only, saving at least $925. Info: 877-380-1535, http://www.avalonwaterways.com.

-- Variety Cruises is offering discounts of up to $1,500 per cabin on its 2009 Greek Island itineraries, plus two free nights in a four-star Athens hotel and a half-day sightseeing tour. The deal applies to specific cabin categories on several itineraries, including the Aegean Odyssey cruise, which travels round trip from Marina Zeas, near Athens; cruise, after $750 per person discount, starts at $1,540 per person single or double, plus $230 port charges. Value of hotel stay and shore excursion is about $295 per person. Info: 800-319-7776, http://www.varietycruises.com.

-- Costa Cruises has discounts on several of its Far East cruises. For example, a five-night China, Japan and South Korea cruise round trip from Shanghai departing Aug. 10 starts at $899 per person double, a savings of $390 per person; taxes are an extra $21. Info: 877-882-6782, http://www.costacruise.com.

AIR

-- United has launched a Spring Is Here sale for travel to select cities throughout the United States. For example, fare from BWI to Denver on nonstop flights is $219 round trip, including taxes; other airlines are matching. A 14-day advance purchase is required; travel must be completed by Aug. 12. Sale applies to Monday-Thursday flights. Book by April 6 at http://www.united.com, or pay $25 more by calling 800-864-8331.

-- Fly three round-trips between Washington Dulles and New York or Boston on JetBlue, and get a free round-trip flight to either city. Qualifying flights must be booked and completed by June 17. Free flight certificate will be issued on or after July 1 for travel through Dec. 15; taxes of $21 round trip are extra. Round-trip fare to New York starts at $149 with taxes, and $163 to Boston. You must be a member of JetBlue's TrueBlue frequent flier club and must register for promo at http://www.jetblue.com before booking flights.

PACKAGES

-- Qantas has sale fares to the Australian cities of Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane, and to Auckland, New Zealand, which can be combined with Qantas Vacations' $299-per-person hotel package. Round-trip airfare from Los Angeles to the four destinations starts at $717 round trip, including $119 taxes. Add $299 per person for five nights' lodging (taxes included) and total is $1,016 per person. Sale fares are also being offered from New York and Washington, but it's cheaper to book airfare to Los Angeles separately. Other airlines are matching airfares; savings vary by hotel. For example, the Medina Executive Hotel in Brisbane typically costs about $718 per couple for five nights in shoulder season. Travel by Oct. 24; sale airfares are sold out on some dates. Buy by March 31. Info: 800-641-8772, http://www.qantasvacations.com/a380.

-- Take the kids to Tahiti with a deal from Air Tahiti Nui. Children ages 2-11 fly, stay and eat free for travel through May 31, Aug. 19-Sept. 7 and Nov. 1-Dec. 10 (deal is also available at higher price for departures July 10-17, returning July 20-29). Flights depart from Los Angeles; one child per adult qualifies. Prices vary by resort. For example, a family of four staying at Manava Suite Resort for five nights pays $1,698 per adult, plus $94 taxes (children pay taxes only); priced separately, package would cost $5,798 for four. Meals are free for children ordering from the kids' menu; adult breakfast is included during value seasons. Book by May 15. Info: 877-824-4846, http://www.airtahitinui-usa.com/family.

-- 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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