If your email reader cannot read HTML, please go to http://www.onthegopublishing.com/currentissue.html to view this newsletter. Travel Savings Alerts Newsletter
Travel Savings Alerts Newsletter, October 2009 Issue

Travel Savings Alerts
P.O. Box 91033
Columbus OH 43209
ISSN: 1542-801X, Copyright  2009 
All Rights Reserved.
Editor: Nicki Chodnoff

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Philadelphia Eagles boys growth chart thumb NFL Team Branded Growth Chart

A great keepsake to capture a child’s growth through the years and show your team spirit. Available for all 32 NFL teams plus the Ohio State University, the large growth chart (54" long by 15" wide) easily hangs on any surface with removable adhesive tabs. A pink version for all 32 NFL teams is available for girls. The growth chart comes with 14 removable footballs that adhere directly onto the chart. Footballs, placed at the child's measurement each year, include a place to write the date and child's age, when measured, and a place for a photo!

NFL team growth charts are available at NFL.com Search for team name growth chart. Ohio State University growth charts are available on amazon.com. Search for Ohio State University growth chart.

In This Issue:
Lake Logan, Hocking Hills, Ohio - photo courtesy of Eric Hoffman

Lake Logan

  • Georgia State Park Lodges “Lodge-ical” Rates
  • Mexico for Less at Select Fiesta Americana Resorts
  • Sandestin Snowbird Program
  • Kentucky State Parks $55-a-Night Lodge Rooms
  • Fall Costa Cruises
  • Fake Hotel Reviews Alert
  • Gold Beach, OR $10,000 Sweepstakes
  • Ultimate Thailand Explorers Contest
  • Ski Free in Jackson Hole this Winter
  • Travel Deals to Belize this Holiday Season
  • 20% off Low Season Britrail Pass
  • TSA Bolsters Explosives Detection
  • More for Less with OpenSkies to Paris
  • Zion Lodge $100 Rate & Winter Packages
  • Love Sydney, Become A Fan, Win A Trip
  • It's Rewarding To Fly Virgin Atlantic
  • St. Augustine, FL Getaway Card
  • All-Inclusive Stay From $48 at Occidental Hotels
  • Timely Travel Tips by Nicki Chodnoff
  • African Travel 2-for-1 Safari

    • Georgia State Park Lodges “Lodge-ical” Rates

      Enjoy a vacation at a Georgia State Park lodge with their lower "Lodge-ical" rates that start at $69 per night. You can get an overnight from $69 at George T. Bagby State Park on Lake Walter F. George, Little Ocmulgee State Park in McRae and Red Top Mountain State Park on Lake Allatoona.

      A Lodge-ical rate of $79 is available at Amicalola Falls State Park near Dawsonville and Unicoi State Park near Helen.

      The Lodge-ical rate applies to new reservations in a standard, double room booked Sunday through Thursday. You can start your morning with a fr.ee continental breakfast for two (full breakfast at Unicoi) which is included in the Lodge-ical rate. Rates are based on availability and cannot be combined or transferred with any other packages or promotions. All lodges offer on-site dining.

      To book the new Lodge-ical rate, call 800/864-7275.

      Georgia State Park Lodges.

      Mexico for Less at Select Fiesta Americana Resorts

      Fall is a good time to visit Mexico, with mild temperatures, less crowded beaches and deals. To help you make the most of the fall travel season, AQUA Cancun, Fiesta Americana Grand and Fiesta Americana resorts offer up to 35 percent off the nightly rate, plus 25 percent off dining, beverages and spa services at select hotels. Participating resorts include:
      • - AQUA Cancun - from $180 per night.
      • Fiesta Americana Grand Coral Beach Cancun - from $180 per night. The only hotel in Mexico holding the AAA Five Diamond Award for 15 consecutive years.
      • Fiesta Americana Grand Los Cabos Golf & Spa - from $146 per night.
      • Fiesta Americana Condesa Cancun - from $94 per night.
      • Fiesta Americana Cozumel Dive Resort - from $71 per night.
      • Fiesta Americana Puerto Vallarta - from $75 per night.
      • Fiesta Americana Veracruz - from $99 per night.

      This promotion is based on single or double occupancy for travel through Dec. 23, 2009. The offer does not include taxes and gratuities and is not applicable with any other promotional or discounted rate.

      Fiesta Americana Resorts or 800/FIESTA-1.

      Sterling Silver Circle Pendent Circle necklace
      The 30 mm sterling circle pendent is nearly 1 1/4 inch wide with a pave finish to make it look like small diamonds line the circle. The back of the pendent is clad in yellow 18K yellow gold overlay while the front remains silver. The necklace is finished off with an 18-inch sterling silver box-like chain clad in the same 18K yellow gold overlay. Comes in a black faux-leather gift box.

      Priced at $75. Our price $24.95.

      Order quickly from AAA Jewelry Outlet so you won't be disappointed. Quantities are very limited. Click here to order.

      Sandestin Snowbird Program

      Senior travelers, known as snowbirds, have more reasons to go south this fall and winter, with the Sandestin Snowbird program.

      November 2009 through February 20010, monthly rental prices start at $1029 for a resort view room at the Bayside Inn, $1139 for a hotel room at the Village at Baytowne Wharf and $1199 for a one-bedroom at the Resort Classic properties which include Fairways, Heron and Harbour Point.

      Included in the discounted monthly Sandestin Snowbird rates are fr.ee bike rentals, fitness center, tennis court time, resort transportation, newspapers, local telephone service, departure cleaning, a welcome gift and exclusive restaurant, merchant and spa and salon discounts. Monthly receptions are also held for snowbird guests.

      For golf lovers, the Sandestin program offers an opportunity to become a member of the Sandestin Snowbird Golf Club. With a small membership fee, Sandestin Snowbirds receive a f.ree round of golf, additional golf rounds from $20 plus tax, free weekly clinics based on availability, and other golf discounts.

      Sandestin offers a variety of accommodations from condominiums on the beach or the bay, to villas overlooking golf fairways. Included in the Sandestin Snowbird program are personalized reservation and information services including unit selection assistance, information resources and other assistance.

      On Northwest Florida's Gulf Coast, Sandestin is a 2,400-acre resort with 30 neighborhoods featuring 1,500 condominiums, villas, town homes and a variety of hotel accommodations. The resort offers more than seven miles of beaches and bay front, four golf courses, 15 tennis courts, 19 swimming pools, a 98-slip marina, a fitness center and spa, 65,000 square feet of meeting space and the Village of Baytowne Wharf, a pedestrian village with shops, restaurants and nightlife venues.

      Sandestin Golf and Beach Resort or 850/267-8253.

      Kentucky State Parks $55-a-Night Lodge Rooms

      Kentucky State Parks celebrate their 85th anniversary this year by offering lodge rooms for $55 a night, week days through February 2010.

      The discount is good with a coupon Sunday through Thursday at all 17 resort parks. The coupon can be printed from the Kentucky State Park web or the Department of Travel site. When making online reservations for this offer, use code “BACKYARD.”

      A limited number of rooms are available at each park. The offer is not good on holidays and cannot be combined with other offers. The discount applies to leisure travel only.

      Kentucky State Parks offer scenery, adventure and hospitality. Besides lodges, most resorts also have cottages and campgrounds, and hiking trails and other recreational opportunities. All resorts have full service restaurants.

      Kentucky State Parks and Department of Travel.

      Fall Costa Cruises

      Fall in love with Europe and cruising this fall. Costa Cruise fares for seven-night sailings from Venice, Rome and Barcelona begin at $449 per person. You can sail on the Costa Pacifica, recently inaugurated in June; sister ships Costa Serena and Costa Concordia; Costa Fortuna, Costa Victoria and Costa Romantica. Fares are available through November.

      Seven-night sailings aboard the Costa Fortuna, feature fares from $449 on Nov. 9, 2009, from Venice with stops in Bari, Katakolon (Olympia), Santorini, Mykonos, Rhodes and Dubrovnik..

      Costa Cruises or 800/GO-COSTA.

      Give a Jaguar -- An Amber Jaguar -- The remarkable face of a jaguar is hand-carved onto a lovely piece of cherry amber that's 33x20 mm in size. The dramatic pendent hangs on an ultra-chic 18-inch natural-colored leather necklace cord with a sterling silver clasp. Boy will this turn heads.

      High-style boutiques and jewelers charge $500 or more for this glam piece. It's yours for only $125 plus shipping & insurance. Click here to order.
      At the home page, click on the amber category.

      Fake Hotel Reviews Alert

      Does the hotel review you’re reading sound unbelievable, mentioning the brand of bathroom faucets and sheets on the bed? Or is the review so bad, it even trashes the hotel’s location.

      If the review you’re reading seems so skewed, what you’re reading may be a fake review, written to improve a hotel’s popularity ranking or to sink the rating by a competitor.

      Hotels have financial incentives to inflate their rankings on any review site. Some offer discounts or fre.ebies to travelers who write positive reviews or hire public relations companies who say they can improve the reviews.

      TripAdvisor now posts disclaimers warning about writing fake hotel reviews. The warnings read: "TripAdvisor has reasonable cause to believe that either this property or individuals associated with the property may have attempted to manipulate our popularity index by interfering with the unbiased nature of our reviews. Please take this into consideration when researching your travel plans."

      TripAdvisor says disclaimers are nothing new and have been around since 2006 and that it has a system to root out inaccurate reviews. The company says there are policies to weed out suspicious reviews by screening reviews before they are posted. TripAdvisor didn’t say how it decides a post is not legitimate. Users can also report reviews they find not credible.

      TripAdvisor is part of Expedia Inc.,and one of the most popular travel information sites with millions of visitors. Travelers use TripAdvisor as a place to find accommodations, from ritzy resorts to mom-and-pop inns. Once you find a place to stay on TripAdvisor, you’re directed to other sites such as Expedia to book rooms.

      Travel experts note that TripAdvisor can do more to eliminate fake reviews, especially verifying that travelers stayed in the hotels or bought the products they review. Right now, there is no connection between a verified reservation and payment and who's writing the review.

      How do you decide which reviews are fakes? Manipulated reviews can be overly positive, noting obscure details that travelers don’t care about or notice such as the brand of sink faucets. Or reviews can be over-the-top negative, bashing a hotel that generally gets favorable reviews.

      You can also check out the posters. Regular posters on TripAdivisorFake generally post numerous reviews. Investigate the once-in-a-while posters with only a few reviews. Check if their reviews are all bad or all glowing. That can be a tip off to a fake poster.

      When you don’t know who is writing a review, you may want to disregard what the anonymous reviewers say and reply on travel experts such as guidebook writers or journalists. These unbiased professionals know how to review hotels and resorts. Once you read some of their professionals reviews and find them on the mark, you can trust and rely on their judgments as opposed to the untested judgment of amateurs.

      Gold Beach, OR $10,000 Sweepstakes

      The coastal village of Gold Beach, OR offers an opportunity to win a $10,000 gold prize. The sweepstakes runs to Sep. 1, 2010. You can get a sweepstakes entry by staying at one of Gold Beach's hotels or vacation homes.

      Gold Beach is on the southern Oregon coast 37 miles north of the California border, where the Rogue River meets the Pacific Ocean. Things to do in this community of about 2,100 residents includes: freshwater and ocean fishing, jet boat tours up the Rogue River, rafting, recreational boating, wind surfing, clamming, tide pool explorations, beach combing, whale watching, hiking, trail riding, golf, camping and museums.

      Gold Beach Visitor Center or 800/525-2334.

      Ultimate Thailand Explorers Contest

      The Tourism Authority of Thailand invites couples to participate in a social networking competition with a top prize winner getting $10,000 cash, a $3000 holiday package to Thailand, a Blackberry, and a Handycam video camera.

      The winning couple will be selected by online voting, and voters are eligible to win a holiday package valued at $1,500, a Blackberry, a Handycam video camera, and a spa voucher.

      Known as the “Ultimate Thailand Explorers," the competition is targeted to travelers who will raise Thailand’s online presence, across blogs, social-networking sites, chat-rooms, and web sites. The intent is to publicize Thailand's five top tourist destinations: Bangkok, Phuket, Pattaya, Chiang Mai, and Koh Samui.

      Contestants must apply as couples, regardless of their relationship. Five couples will be chosen to travel on a fully-paid, five-day itinerary to the five Thai destinations, one couple per destination. During their five-night, six-day tour, couples will tell about their experiences on social networking sites and blogs, focusing on what they enjoy about Thai culture, Thai cuisine, and all the places they visit.

      Online visitors will view the couples’ online postings and vote for the one they think is best. Voters must register, which will make them eligible for their prize to be given at the end of the contest.

      The couple with the most votes will win the grand prize.

      To be selected for the five-day trip and competition, couples must submit a one-minute video clip in English, indicating why they should be selected, which of the five Thai destinations they would like to visit, and how they plan to narrate their stories. Their entries will be analyzed by a panel of Tourist Authority of Thailand judges on the basis of creativity and story-telling ability. Applications must be submitted by Oct. 15, 2009. The welcome party for the final contestants will take place on Dec. 9, 2009 and the winners will be announced in January 2010.

      The tour will include a combination of the popular tourist spots, and off-the-beaten track places. Couples will be provided with the “Ultimate Thailand Explorer” T-shirts and will have to file daily online reports, including sending e-cards to friends, micro-blogging on Twitter, and communicating across other sites such as Facebook.

      They will also have to find ways to get digital citizens to view their postings and vote for them.

      Ultimate Thailand Explorers Contest.


      Chicago Bears flashcard thumb NFL Team Branded Math Flash Cards - - Sold in sets, a set includes addition, subtraction, multiplication and division, available for each of the 32 NFL teams. A proven learning tool that helps reinforce and build math skills, NFL Team branded math flash cards go anywhere and they can be used alone or with others. Math flash cards are a great way to interest your child in math and make learning fun. The large, 3 1/2 x 5 1/2 cards make it easy for kids to handle and read.

      The perfect gift, team branded math flash cards are perfect for girls and boys plus one size fits all.

      To purchase NFL team branded math flash cards, search key words team name and flash cards on NFL.com or amazon.com

      Ski Free in Jackson Hole this Winter

      One of Jackson Hole’s top resorts, Spring Creek Ranch, gives you a chance to downhill ski on the Grand Teton range with its “Ski Free” package. You can hit the slopes at Grand Targhee Resort or Jackson Hole Mountain Resort, both prime locations for making the powder fly.

      Starting late November 2009, through Apr. 1, 2010 Spring Creek Ranch’s “Ski Free” package starts at $87.50 per person, per night, based on double occupancy, a savings of more than 50 percent. The price does not include tax, resort fees and gratuities. Holiday rates and dates in February and March may be higher.

      The package includes up to two lift tickets per day to Grand Targhee Resort or Jackson Hole Mountain Resort, accommodations, breakfast for two daily at the Granary restaurant, shuttle service to town and to Jackson Hole Mountain Resort.

      For added flexibility, you can personalize a package by choosing your length of stay and ski areas with Spring Creek Ranch’s Build Your Own program.

      Spring Creek Ranch or 800/443-6139.

      Travel Deals to Belize this Holiday Season

      To avoid the holiday hustle and bustle, including overspending on gifts, more families are opting to get away to tropical travel destinations such as Belize, in Central America. The English-speaking country offers plenty to keep parents and kids entertained. Belizean travel deals include tours and activities. Here’s a sample of winter travel deals to Belize.

      From sailing, snorkeling and kayaking, Belizean travel deals include special tours and activities, and can be customized to fit any family budget. The following is a sampling of winter travel deals to Belize.

      Costa Maya Beach Cabanas - Ideal for active families, the cabanas in Caye Caulker feature the Reef and Ruins package. It includes seven-night accommodations, meet and greet service, two full-day snorkeling tours and two full-day Maya site tours, which includes cave tubing. Costa Maya provides free use of kayaks and bicycles. Price: $170 per night for two adults and two children.

      Midas Resort - In the heart of the Cayo District, Midas Resort’s Midas Touch package includes accommodations, roundtrip transfers from the Belize International Airport, a visit to the Belize Zoo or Old Belize Museum, daily breakfast and dinner, full-day tours and half-day excursions. From $415 per night, per person.

      The Lodge at Chaa Creek - The eco lodge in San Ignacio is set within a private 865-acre nature reserve. The Christmas package includes four nights of cottage accommodations, all meals, roundtrip airport transfers (with visit to Belize Zoo), choice of two full-day tours, unlimited onsite activities, two spa treatments and a gift package. Cottages start at $445 per night for adults and $109 for children.

      Hamanasi Adventure & Dive Resort - In Hopkins, the boutique eco-adventure resort has 21 tree houses, beachfront rooms and honeymoon suites. Their Family Getaway package includes a seven-night stay in a beachfront room (double occupancy); return flights and ground transfers; daily continental breakfast, lunch and three-course dinner; and choice of five adventures. From $1695 per person for seven nights Nov. 30 to Dec. 18, 2009.

      Belize Travel Deals.

      Face-It Luggage Tags -- Your Face on Your Luggage
      There's no mistaking your luggage with the Face-It Luggage Tag. The durable, laminated tag displays your face and the phrase `This Face Belongs With This Luggage.`

      A Face-It Luggage tag makes it less likely for a stranger or thief to walk off with your luggage and helps you recognize your luggage at a glance in hotels or airports. Face-It Tags are also available for briefcases, portfolio books, backpacks, sporting equipment, musical instruments, bicycles and more. Face-It Luggage Tags.

      20% off Low Season Britrail Pass

      As winter approaches, budget savvy travelers plan their British getaway. Low season brings savings on flights and hotel accommodations, plus BritRail offers 20 percent off their popular passes. The discount applies to BritRail Passes purchased by Feb. 15, 2010 for travel Nov. 1, 2009 to Feb. 28, 2010. You must buy your BritRail pass before taking flight as BritRail Passes cannot be purchased in Britain.

      A BritRail Pass can provide flexibility, by allowing you to hop on and off trains at your leisure throughout England, Scotland and Wales. Choose a BritRail Flexi Pass or a BritRail Consecutive Pass, depending if you wish to travel for consecutive or non consecutive days within the pass's validity. First Class passes offer larger seats, picture windows, more leg room, free extras and the advantage of avoiding rush hour crowds.

      A Flexi Pass will allow you to travel for a select number of days within two months. If you prefer to be on the move, a Consecutive Pass will suit your itinerary with valid days from three days to one month.

      BritRail or 866/BRITRAIL.

      TSA Bolsters Explosives Detection

      The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) adds tools to screen powdered substances at checkpoints, to bolster existing explosives detection capabilities.

      TSA acting administrator Gale Rossides said. "These enhancements are part of TSA's efforts to stay ahead of emerging threats while continually strengthening our layered approach to security."

      Transportation Security Officers (TSOs) are experienced in identifying items that may pose a threat by using explosives detection tools. TSA knows certain powders could be used in improvised explosive devices. While there is no specific threat at this time, TSA is deploying powder explosives detection kits to airports around the country to enhance existing explosives detection capabilities. TSA piloted these kits in late 2008.

      Common powders are not prohibited, but a small percentage may require additional screening. Typical security checkpoint procedures will remain the same. The majority of commonly-carried powders, such as medications, infant formula and makeup, are unlikely to need further screening.

      Officers will use X-ray technology to determine which substances may require additional screening with a powder test kit. If the substance requires additional screening, officers will use a powder test kit to collect a small sample and apply a solution to it to test for traces of potential explosives. If a particular powder is determined to be a potential threat, it will not be permitted into the secure area or checked baggage.

      More for Less with OpenSkies to Paris

      OpenSkies, an airlines that offers business class travel between Paris and New York, operates daily nonstop flights between Kennedy and Newark airports and Paris (Orly).A subsidiary of British Airways, OpenSkies is the first airline created as a result of the E.U. /U.S. Open Skies Agreement, which allows airlines to fly between any U.S. and E.U. destination.

      The OpenSkies' new Best Fare Guarantee promises that if you find a lower fare on the same itinerary elsewhere, OpenSkies will honor the difference. The fare adjustment will be a voucher for future travel. OpenSkies' commitment to provide the best fare in business class continues, with a 20 percent discount from legacy carrier fares.

      If within 24 hours of purchasing the lowest published OpenSkies fare you find and advise OpenSkies of a competitor's lower, published business class fare for nonstop service between New York (JFK or Newark) and Paris (Orly or Charles DeGaule) on the same dates of travel, OpenSkies will refund the difference (up to $500), plus a $100 electronic voucher for future travel on OpenSkies.

      OpenSkies' two cabins offer business class that combine comfort and personalized service at competitive rates, for more value for less money.

      The Biz Bed cabin has up to 12 seats and offers six-foot long electronically-powered seats that recline to 180 degrees and transform into lie-flat beds. The Biz Seat cabin holds up to 72 seats in a 2x2 configuration with seats that recline 140 degrees and a 52" seat pitch.

      Flights have fewer travelers than other airlines, which means more time savings in boarding and deplaning.

        Both cabins offer the following amenities on every flight:
      • Plated dining service with a selection of wine and champagne
      • Individual Archos video players loaded with more than 50 hours of entertainment and equipped with top of the line Sennheiser audio headphones
      • Simplified access to the gate through "fast-track" check-in
      • Exclusive Concierge service available around the clock to assist with reservations, hotel, car rental, restaurants, theater, florists and child care
      • Advantage of joining the "British Airways Executive Club" customer-loyalty program allowing you to accumulate miles on OpenSkies and British Airways.

      OpenSkies or 866/581-3596.

      Protect Luggage with Baggage Guard Seals

      The pre-numbered, one-time use plastic padlocks are the perfect way to protect luggage since they cannot be reinstalled once removed. That feature lets you instantly know if someone tampered with your luggage. Yet when TSAs at airports need to inspect your luggage, Baggage Guard Seals can be easily removed. A package of 10 Baggage Guard Seals is still only $9.95.

      Click Here to Order from On The Go Publishing.

      Zion Lodge $100 Rate & Winter Packages

      Xanterra Parks & Resorts, operator of Zion Lodge in Zion National Park, offers the “Zion-Tennial” $100 room rate Oct. 28 through Nov. 24, 2009, in celebration of the park’s 100th anniversary as part of the National Park system. The rate is for single or double occupancy in the lodge’s standard rooms and does not include taxes. The rate is normally $159.35 per night. Reference the promotion code “100FOR100” when making reservations.

      Zion was established as Mukuntuweap National Monument by President William Taft in 1909. In 1919 the monument was expanded and renamed Zion National Park. Zion Lodge offers 81 rooms, 40 cabins, a restaurant, café and gift shop. The park is renowned for its sightseeing and hiking and is open year round. Most hiking trails are open throughout the winter.

      Zion Lodge will also offer its “Zion in Winter” and holiday packages this year.

      Dec. 1, 2009 through March 31, 2010, the Zion in Winter rate for a Sunday-through-Thursday stay is $89 for a standard room, $99 for a western cabin and $119 for a suite. On Fridays and Saturdays, the rate is $99 for a standard room, $109 for a western cabin and $129 for a suite. The western cabins will not be available January through March as they undergo a remodel.

      The Zion in Winter package features breakfast for two. The “Zion in Winter” rate is based on double occupancy and does not include taxes or gratuities. Each additional person in the room is $10 with breakfast available for purchase separately. This offer is not available on Dec. 31, 2009. Mention promotion code “WNTR” when making reservations.

      Zion Lodge offers its “New Year’s Eve Dinner” package with overnight accommodations on Dec. 31, 2009, New Year’s Eve dinner and late-night reception to welcome the new year and breakfast on New Year’s Day. Rates begin at $156 plus tax and gratuities for two people in a standard room. Reference the promotion code “NYE” for the New Year’s Eve package.

      Zion Lodge or 888/297-2757.

      Love Sydney, Become A Fan, Win A Trip

      Australia's Tourism New South Wales launched a Sydney Facebook Life Points Contest. Life Points is a new Facebook application which records your life goals and life experiences.

      Hosted on the official Sydney Australia Facebook Page, it’s a resource for young Americans interested in deals on flights and accommodations in Sydney. The contest gives U.S. travelers the chance to win a vacation including roundtrip airfare on V Australia and staying at the Sydney Harbour YHA.

      Through Oct. 31, 2009, Facebook members can enter the Sydney Facebook Life Points Contest by becoming a "fan" of Sydney, Australia. Fans complete their entry by choosing their favorite Sydney Life Points experience and posting it on the Sydney, Australia wall. You can also add the Life Points application - a forum to share Sydney adventures - to your profile. Two winners will receive a vacation for two to Sydney where they will experience all that the city has to offer.

      The vacation will include two economy roundtrip flights from Los Angeles to Sydney; seven nights' accommodation at the Sydney Harbour YHA, a new development featuring budget accommodation; a hands-on archaeological and heritage education experience and views of Sydney's famous harbor.

      Sydney Facebook Life Points Contest.

      It's Rewarding To Fly Virgin Atlantic

      Flying on Virgin Atlantic Airways is rewarding with their fall promotion. You can earn an American Express branded rewards card valued up to $300 for every qualifying roundtrip flight you take before the end of November.

      Through Nov. 30, 2009, fly between the U.S. and London in Upper Class, Premium Economy or Economy (in booking classes J, D, W or Y) and you will receive an American Express branded rewards card for each way you fly to and from London. No matter how many times you fly, you can earn an unlimited number of reward cards through Nov. 30.

      Upper Class passengers will receive a $150 rewards card each way; Premium Economy passengers will receive a $75 rewards card each way; and Economy passengers will receive a $25 rewards card each way.

      To qualify, you must join or be a member of the Virgin Atlantic Flying Club and register for the 'Never Been So Rewarding' fall promotion before taking your first qualifying flight.

      In addition to earning unlimited American Express branded rewards cards, Flying Club members will also earn miles, get the latest sale fares, and receive updates, exclusive offers and invites to special events.

      Virgin Atlantic fall promotion details.

      St. Augustine, FL Getaway Card

      St. Augustine, FL, America's oldest city, offers a new way for vacationers to St. Augustine, Ponte Vedra and the Beaches of St. Johns County, Florida to receive deals and special pricing.

      The Getaway Card provides an array of discounts to some of the area's most popular attractions, restaurants, hotels, resorts, golf courses and shopping venues.

      By going online, you can print a fr.ee Getaway Card and preview a list of participating outlets and offers. In addition, a Getaway Card logo will be clearly visible in the windows of all participating businesses so you can identify participants in the savings program.

      Getaway Card. For information on St. Augustine, Ponte Vedra and the Beaches, call 800/653-2489.

      Silky Travel Jewelry Roll
      A must have for travelers. Our silky travel jewelry roll comes in a random assortment of single-color jacquards, solid colors and two-color brocades. This handy travel jewelry roll measures 8 1/2 x 11 inches when open and closes to a compact 8 1/2 x 4 inches. Our exclusive design offers a place for everything with one deep pocket, a ring bar and three zippered compartments. Price $40. Click here to order from On The Go Publishing.

      All-Inclusive Stay From $48 at Occidental Hotels

      Occidental Hotels & Resorts allows you to escape dropping temperatures and shorter days with all-inclusive rates from $48 per person, per night at resorts in Aruba, Costa Rica, Dominican Republic and Mexico.

      You can take advantage of value-added offers such as kids stay f.ree and fr.ee nights, available through Dec. 24, 2009. Occidental vacations are all-inclusive, so all meals, snacks, beverages (including alcohol) and most resort activities are included.

      Fall rates are per person, per night, based on double occupancy at these resorts:

      Allegro - Children age 12 and under stay free - one child per adult. Allegro Papagayo, Costa Rica from $54; Allegro Nuevo Vallarta, Mexico from $50; Allegro Playacar, Mexico from $55; Allegro Cozumel, Mexico from $48.

      Occidental Grand - Fourth night is fre.e. when you book Royal Club accommodations. The first child age 12 and under stays free at Occidental Grand Xcaret and children ages five and under stay free at Occidental Grand Aruba (one child per adult). Occidental Grand Aruba from $180; Occidental Grand Papagayo, Costa Rica from $87; Occidental Grand Cozumel, Mexico from $68; Occidental Grand Xcaret, Mexico from $61; and Occidental Grand Punta Cana, Dominical Republic from $52.

      Royal Hideaway Playacar - Fourth night is f.ree at the Five-Diamond, adults-only resort. Fall rates from $300.

      Occidental Hotels & Resorts or 800/858-2258.

      Timely Travel Tips by Nicki Chodnoff

      With the holiday travel season fast approaching, travelers will return to the skies to visit family and friends or take a vacation. With a decrease in seats and flights but still a robust flying demand, flying during the holiday season doesn't have to leave you feeling like a Grinch. Here are some things you can do to make holiday travel saner. BEFORE YOU GO

      • Fly on alternate dates instead of peak travel days, days immediately before and after a holiday. You’ll encounter fewer crowds and better fares.
      • Fly early in the day. If your flight is delayed, you stand a better chance of getting on a flight that day and not having to stay overnight.
      • When possible depart and arrive at alternative airports -- they will probably be less crowded.
      • Alleviate stress by having someone drive you to the airport.
      • Save time and avoid long lines by checking-in at home. Most airlines offer online check-in within 24 hours of travel, and you can print your boarding pass at home.
      • Travel light. You can avoid checked luggage fees and save some embarrassment going through security if your overstuffed bag spills out when being inspected.
      • Remember 3-1-1 for carry-ons to speed up security inspections. That means each passenger can placed in the screening bin one-quart-size, clear, plastic zip-top bag for liquids. Bottles must be 3.4 ounces or less and liquids are limited to what can fit into the one-quart bag.
      • If checking luggage, pack a change of clothes in your carry-on. Clean underwear and a toothbrush will make you feel better if you get stuck overnight.
      • Have metal items, such as keys and loose change, handy so you can easily place them in the screening bin. If you keep them in your pocket, you’ll trigger the metal detector and slow your progress through the security checkpoint.
      • Have your government-issued photo ID ready along with your boarding pass.
      • Send presents ahead or check them in your luggage.
      • Carry on unwrapped gifts only.
      • Don't wear clothing or accessories with metal (i.e. a belt with a heavy metal buckle). They can set off the metal detector and slow you down. You may be asked to remove them.
      • Don't stray too far from the gate if your flight is delayed. Flight plans can change quickly as do departure gates. Your flight may board without you knowing it.
      • If delayed, have a charged cell phone to call the airline while waiting in line at the airport counter. You may also need to call relatives or friends awaiting your arrival.

      African Travel 2-for-1 Safari

      African Travel, Inc., a company specializing in journeys throughout the African continent, offers a two-for-one “Last Refuge” Botswana safari. Botswana is a well-known destination within a small circle of safari connoisseurs.

      The well-managed wildlife reserves and the small and intimate camp sites offer a personalized and active game viewing adventure. The secluded camps attend to all comforts in a unique African style. Travelers will discover one of Africa's last wilderness areas with game viewing in three different ecosystems. Other highlights include freshly prepared meals in the 'bush,' searching for wildlife in specially-equipped open safari vehicles with guides and local trackers, small bush plane transfers between camps so you can see Botswana wildlife from the air.

      With African Travel’s two-for-one offer, nine days of land arrangements are from $6595 for one person and the second person goes at no additional cost on the Lion Level of “The Last Refuge.” Valid for new bookings only, this offer is good for travel through Dec. 20, 2009. It is not valid with any other promotions.

      African Travel or 800/421-8907.

      Had a good experience on a plane recently? Stumbled across the perfect place to stay, eat or drink? Tell us about it, email us here.

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      Information & Credits

      The Travel Savings Alerts Newsletter, P.O. Box 91033, Columbus OH 43209, edited by Nicki Chodnoff, is published monthly.

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