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Travel Savings Alerts Newsletter, July 2006 Issue

Travel Savings Alerts
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In This Issue:
Smithsonian Castle, Washington, D.C.

Smithsonian Castle

  • US Airways Lisbon from $860
  • Bonus Points or Bonus Miles
  • “Summer in Staunton” Package
  • Summer Savings at PGA Resort
  • Indiana AG Bans Texas Travel Company
  • Summer Steals at Parker Palm Springs
  • Bal Harbour Summer Sojourn Packages
  • 40% Off EL AL Business Class
  • Up to 60% Off Fontainebleau Extended Stay
  • Rodeway Inn, Econo Lodge “Key-To-A-Million”
  • Look for Ethanol on Your Vacation
  • Summer Deals in the USVI
  • BVI Summer Savings
  • Paris Price Breaker $499
  • Jolly Hotels Summer Offers
  • Save $900 on 2007 Viking River Cruises
  • D.C. on a Shoe String by Nicki Chodnoff
  • Summer Dude Ranch Savings

  • US Airways Lisbon from $860

    US Airways began flights from Philadelphia to Lisbon, Portugal on June 7, 2006. The new service offers deals on summer fares from six U.S. gateways. Roundtrip fares through Aug. 31, 2006, start at $860 plus tax, when you book and buy your ticket 21 days in advance. Book online and earn an extra 500 US Airways Dividend Miles.

    Sample roundtrip fares to Lisbon from: Philadelphia $860, New York $890, Boston $1010, Charlotte or Raleigh/Durham $1070 and Orlando $1150. Fares do not include government taxes and security fees. Fares are for tickets purchased at US Airways and AmericaWest web sites. Tickets purchased through reservations or other ticketing locations incur additional fees.

    US Airways.

    Bonus Points or Bonus Miles

    InterContinental Hotels Group offers a summer promotion that allows Priority Club Rewards members to earn up to 20,000 bonus points or 5,000 bonus miles when staying at IHG properties, including Holiday Inn and Crowne Plaza hotels.

    Through Aug. 31, 2006, Priority Club Rewards members can register online or by phone to earn 2,000 points or 500 miles for every second qualifying night’s stay at any InterContinental, Crowne Plaza, Holiday Inn, Holiday Inn Express, Staybridge Suites, Candlewood Suites and Hotel Indigo hotel worldwide. The maximum earned is 20,000 bonus points or 5,000 bonus miles. The nights do not have to be consecutive and stays may be at any of IHG's more than 3,600 properties worldwide.

    Points earned at IHG properties can be redeemed for stays at any hotel in the world, even competitor's hotels (more than 500,000 properties) through Priority Club Rewards’ “Any Hotel, Anywhere” program.

    Priority Club Rewards features include Points Transfer, Points Purchase, no blackout dates on Reward Nights and no point expiration. Members can also redeem points for airline miles on more than 40 partner airlines, for auto rentals, on products and gift certificates. Priority Club Rewards offers members a personal shopper, a points exchange program for items not found in the Rewards Catalog, including gifts for friends and family.

    Enrollment in Priority Club Rewards is fr.ee.

    IHG Hotels or 877/424-2449.

    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" 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.

    “Summer in Staunton” Package

    The historic Stonewall Jackson Hotel & Conference Center, in Staunton, VA, offers hometown hospitality with a “Summer in Staunton” package, available through Sep. 4, 2006. Celebrating the hotel's original opening date of 1924, a special rate of $119.24 per night lets you experience the hotel's return to its original Southern splendor following a $21.1 million renovation.

    The nightly rate includes accommodations, breakfast for two, use of the hotel on-site fitness center, indoor pool and spa, and overnight parking. In addition, when you book this package, you will receive VIP Travel Vouchers with offers at area attractions such as the Woodrow Wilson Presidential Library, the Frontier Culture Museum and other places of interest.

    The refurbishment includes 124 guestrooms, a business center, fitness room, indoor pool with whirlpool and guest laundry facilities.

    Located in the Shenandoah Valley near Skyline Drive, the property is in downtown Staunton, an area with five historic districts. In addition to beautifully-preserved historic buildings, antique and boutique shopping, art galleries and fine dining, Staunton is home to the Woodrow Wilson Presidential Library, the American Shakespeare Center and along Virginia's Civil War Trail.

    Stonewall Jackson Hotel & Conference Center or 866/880-0024.

    Summer Savings at PGA Resort

    Summer means savings at the PGA Resort in Palm Beach Gardens, FL.

    A variety of packages, based on double occupancy, are offered and valid through Sep. 30, 2006. Rates are subject to availability and do not include taxes, gratuities and resort fee.

    The room-only package is $109 per night.

    A Bed & Breakfast package is $129 per night while the new Stay-n-Play package is $99.50 per person, per night and includes accommodations, breakfast and golf.

    The Summer Spa package is $134 per person, per night, with accommodations and one 50-minute spa service per day. Additional spa services are discounted 20 percent.

    The Golf & Spa getaway is $109.50 per person, per night, and includes accommodations plus one round of golf and one spa treatment each day. Additional spa services are discounted 20 percent.

    The Platinum Golf package is for the golf enthusiast. It includes accommodations with private balcony or terrace, breakfast daily, unlimited golf for every night you stay, advance tee times confirmed and access to the Health & Racquet Club including tennis, lap pool, steam room and fitness facility. The Platinum Golf package rate is $189 per person, per night, through Sep. 30, 2006 and increases to $315 per person, per night Oct. 1through Dec. 31, 2006.

    PGA Resort.

    Indiana AG Bans Texas Travel Company

    The door-to-door sales practices of Texas-based National Vacation’s Inc., doing business as Horizon Travel, are prohibited from operating in Indiana announced Attorney General Steve Carter. The company is also required to refund customers and pay $35,000 in investigative costs as part of the agreement.

    The investigation revealed that Arlington, Texas-based Horizon Travel and its owner, David Vavro, sold travel club services and products door-to-door. The company worked from a hotel in Hamilton county and sold travel club memberships between $2,000 and $6,000.

    Consumers were not provided with the required notice of their right to a three-day cancellation period. Sales documents provided by Horizon Travel indicated that the Indiana statute does not provide for an automatic period for cancellation, which is contrary to the law.

    The attorney general stated travel club customers were notified by mail of their ability to cancel contracts and receive refunds. Indiana law is clear about the disclosures and right to cancel when it comes to door-to-door sales and all businesses must comply. If you purchased a travel club membership, contact the Indiana attorney general’s office to determine if you are eligible for a refund.

    So far, Horizon Travel refunded more than $62,000 to 20 customers. The total amount of additional refunds is unknown. The agreement requires that the company provide refunds within ten days of receiving the customers notice to cancel. The company may continue to do business with customers that do not wish to cancel their contracts. The agreement does not constitute an admission of guilt.

    Indiana Attorney General’s office 317/232-6201.

    Fr-ee Fun San Diego
    This savings-packed FR.EE brochure features almost 40 Fun, Fr-ee Things to do in San Diego. When heading to Southern California, attend concerts or visit a State Historic Park and keep that cash in your pocket.

    To get your Fr-ee Fun San Diego brochure, for a $1 handling fee, click here to send us an email.

    Summer Steals at Parker Palm Springs

    The Parker Palm Springs hotel, in Palm Springs, CA, presents a summer spa offer. For $199 per night, you receive a $200 spa credit at the Palm Springs Yacht Club and a night’s stay at the hotel. This offer is available Sunday through Thursday through Sep. 15, 2006. For people who wants a weekend getaway, the same offer applies at $299 per night.

    Other hotel offers include Parker Pool Party rates from $175 per night Sunday through Thursday. The package includes fr.ee pool-side lemonade, a plush Palm Springs Yacht Club towel and suntan lotion and no resort fee.

    Opened Oct. 1, 2004, the Parker Palm Springs features 144 rooms, ranging from standard to lanai view plus 12 villas and the Gene Autry Residence.

    The Parker Palm Springs or 760/770-5000.

    Bal Harbour Summer Sojourn Packages

    Bal Harbour, at the northern tip of Miami Beach, Florida, offers enticing summer savings.

    The Sheraton Bal Harbour Beach Resort’s (888/627-7079,) Golden Anniversary package offers 70 percent off rates from $165 per room, per night. The package, based on a two-night minimum stay through Sep. 1, 2006, includes accommodations, daily breakfast buffet for two and a $50 resort credit. The romance package, at $200 per couple, per night, good through Sep. 1, 2006, features deluxe accommodations, daily breakfast for two, bottle of wine and cheese plate on arrival and late check-out. The rate represents a 60 percent savings.

    The 645-room resort is on 10 acres of gardens and sandy beaches and features a full-service spa, fitness center, lagoon-style swimming pool with Jacuzzis and a waterslide.

    Through Dec. 15, 2006, the Sea View Bal Harbour (800/447-1010) summer package begins at $215 per room, per night, for a four-night minimum stay. The summer package, which offers a 30 percent savings, includes accommodations, two breakfasts and two welcome cocktails. You also receive turndown service, fr.ee high-speed wireless internet and early-check-in or late check-out, based on availability. The 220-room, oceanfront resort features an Olympic-sized pool overlooking the ocean and private cabanas

    The Sea View’s two-night Golf and Beach package gives you the opportunity to play at the new Miami Beach Golf Club. It includes deluxe accommodations, one round of golf on the newly-re-designed Arthur Hills course, turndown service, fr.ee high-speed wireless internet and early-check-in or late check-out (based on availability). Available through Dec. 15, 2006, the package begins at $598 per room, per night.

    Additionally, when you check into the Sheraton Bal Harbour Beach Resort and the Sea View Bal Harbour Hotel, you receive the Village’s PASSPORT of tourist-shopping incentives worth more than $800 in merchandise and dining privileges at Bal Harbour Shops.

    40% Off EL AL Business Class

    EL AL, Israel’s national airline, offers a special platinum business class roundtrip airfare of $2,336 per person, for travel through Sep. 5, 2006. Business class fares must be ticketed 45 days prior to departure and within seven days of a confirmed reservation. Taxes and security fees are not included. Cancellation or change penalties and other restrictions apply.

    On the nonstop flights from New York (JFK) and Newark to Tel Aviv, passengers receive expedited check-in, entrance to the “King David” departure lounge in Terminal 4 at JFK with a state-of-the-art Business Center that includes private workstations with telephones and computer modems.

    At the new Terminal 3 at Ben Gurion Airport in Israel, business class passengers have an exclusive check-in area. EL AL has lounges exclusively for its premium class passengers, with the latest in communications services, a cafe, massage chairs, plasma screen TVs, showers and personalized service. In the lounge, business class passengers are served a light dinner prior to departure from Israel so they can sleep through the flight without being disturbed.

    Duing the flight, the upgraded service includes freshly prepared, healthy gourmet meals.

    On most of its 747-400 and 777 aircraft, EL AL installed high-speed wireless Internet service, so all classes of service can connect to the Internet. Internet access for the entire flight ranges from $9.95 to $29.95, depending on the plan selected. All business class seats are equipped with a computer modem.

    Along with an extensive audio selection, live TV is now available on all Boeing 777 and 747-400 aircraft. The live TV service is fr.ee for passengers who pay for wireless Internet. All classes of service have access to a fax machine.

    EL AL or 800/EL AL-747.

    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.

    Up to 60% Off Fontainebleau Extended Stay

    The oceanfront Fontainebleau Suites Miami Beach launched its extended stay program with discounted rates and special amenities valid on stays of 30 nights or more.

    Extended stay bookings receive 50 percent off nightly room rates in studio and one-bedroom suites and an additional 10 percent off nightly rates in two-bedroom suites.

    Extended stays at the 462-suite Fontainebleau include fr.ee services such as high speed wireless internet access, local phone calls, photocopying and faxing services, daily housekeeping services, cable television, utilities, room service, coffee bar, express business center, pool-side lunch service, breakfast buffet, fitness center, grocery shopping service, fr.ee shuttle bus to area attractions and preferred seating or admission at South Beach restaurants and nightclubs. All extended stay guests receive reduced parking rates in the hotel’s covered garage.

    Fontainebleau studio suites are approximately 500 square feet with a kitchenette. One-bedroom suites, approximately 1,000 square feet, offer a living room with dining area and breakfast bar; full kitchen; two full bathrooms; walk-in closet and washer/dryer. All Fontainebleau suites feature a king bed and queen sofa bed, 32” flat-screen television, entertainment system, separate bath tub and stall shower, marble bathroom floors, work desk, large closets and balcony. All are equipped with flatware, dishware and stem-ware. Studio and one-bedroom suites connect and may be booked as two-bedroom suites upon request.

    Summer rates, through Sep. 30, 2006, start at $169 for studio suites and $269 for one-bedroom suites.

    Fontainebleau Suites Miami Beach or 800/548-8886.

    Rodeway Inn, Econo Lodge "Key-To-A-Million"

    Through Aug. 17, 2006, Choice Hotels International, Inc. and its Econo Lodge and Rodeway Inn brands, offers a chance to win $50,000. The $50,000 winner will then have a chance to pick one of 20 room keys, one of which will open the door to one million dollars.

    To enter click here.

    Look for Ethanol on Your Vacation

    With 76 percent of all vacations taken by car, motorists who use ethanol can breathe easier knowing they're doing their part to ease summertime pollution haze. Compared to unleaded gasoline, ethanol-enriched fuel reduces greenhouse gases and tailpipe carbon monoxide emissions by as much as 30 percent. Before you leave on your trip, note the locations of service stations that offer ethanol-enriched fuel.

    What is ethanol? It’s a highly refined alcohol fuel distilled from high-starch crops, primarily corn in the United States. A 90 percent gasoline-10 percent ethanol mixture known as "E-10" has been around for decades and today is widely available at gas stations around the country. E-10 will perform well in any vehicle built after 1980. All major auto manufacturers selling cars in the U.S. today approve the use of E-10 ethanol-enriched fuels.

    100% renewable - Ethanol is made from crops grown in the U.S. By 2007, a projected 125 ethanol plants will be producing nearly 6 billion gallons of ethanol per year.

    Reduces oil consumption - Motorists who use ethanol-enriched fuel reduce oil consumption by an estimated 140,000 barrels per day. With increased consumer awareness and support for ethanol, we can reduce the amount of oil we currently import from other countries.

    Reduces tailpipe emissions - Studies show fuel enriched with a 10percent blend of ethanol reduces greenhouse gas emissions by 12 to 19 percent and other harmful tailpipe emissions by up to 30 percent when compared to emissions from 100 percent gasoline.

    Improved performance - Ethanol-enriched gasoline burns cooler than straight gasoline, which helps engine longevity. Ethanol can also reduce pre-ignition knocking and pinging.

    E-85 and Flexible Fuel Vehicles - A blend of 85 percent ethanol and 15 percent gasoline (known as E-85) is gaining popularity. At 105 octane, E-85 is the highest-octane fuel available and can only be used in Flexible Fuel Vehicles (FFVs). FFVs have specially designed engines that automatically adjust to run on anything from 100 percent gasoline to E-10 or E-85. To determine if your automobile is an FFV, check the owner's manual or gas cap.

    Since there are no national standards for ethanol fuel labeling, look for a sticker on the pump with the words "Ethanol-blended fuel" or "E-10." If no label is visible, ask if ethanol is available. If you drive a Flexible Fuel Vehicle (FFV), look for a pump labeled "E-85." FFV vehicles can use E-85.

    "Ethanol-enriched fuel is environmentally friendly, renewable and is currently available at thousands of gas stations across the country," says Tom Slunecka, executive director of the Ethanol Promotion and Information Council (EPIC). "Ethanol is American-made and is crucial in helping reduce our dependence on oil."

    Click here for information about filling up with ethanol.

    Click here to find the nearest E-85 station.

    Protect Luggage with Baggage Guard Seals

    The pre-numbered, one-time use plastic padlocks are the perfect way to protect your 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.

    Summer Deals in the USVI

    It’s vacation time and to celebrate, the U.S. Virgin Islands offer the “Fr.ee Fall” promotion, a sweepstakes and hotel discounts.

    With the “Fr.ee Fall” promotion, book a stay of five nights or more at participating properties with your American Express card and you’ll receive a $100 American Express gift card and a coupon booklet with $500 in savings at island restaurants, activities, and retailers. You must book by Oct. 15, 2006, through Travel Impressions, for travel Aug. 1 to Oct. 31, 2006.

    "It’s Just Easier to Vacation in the US Virgin Islands Spa Sweepstakes" will give the winner and a companion airfare on American Airlines, from their nearest gateway, to St. Thomas. Wyndham Sugar Bay Resort & Spa offers fr.ee accommodations, his/her massages and a spa gift basket. Other prizes include a sampler session at Caneel Bay's Self Centre plus ferry transfer on their boat, lunch at the Westin St. John, a European facial at Frenchman's Reef & Morning Star Marriott, his/her massage from Holiday Inn’s Shangrila Spa, a sunset sail on Bolongo Bay Beach Resort Heavenly Days catamaran, fr.ee entrance to Coral World Ocean Park, Paradise Point Tramway and Atlantis Submarine, and $1,000 for duty-fr.ee shopping. Enter the contest through Sep. 30, 2006. Winners can travel Oct. 1 to Dec. 15, 2006 or Apr. 15 to Sep. 30, 2007. Rules and restrictions apply. To enter the sweepstake, click here.

    Divi Carina Bay Resort & Casino in St. Croix, 877/773-9700, offers a Sun, Sand and Sea package. The deal includes five nights in a beachfront room, roundtrip airfare on American Airlines, airport transfers and daily continental breakfast. Rates begin at $948 per person, based on double occupancy, for travel through Dec. 21, 2006. Blackout dates apply..

    "If the Shoe Fits" package from Frenchman’s Reef & Morning Star Marriott, 800/524-5000, and local custom sandal maker Zora Galvin of Zora’s includes a four-night stay, two pairs of Zora sandals, daily buffet breakfast, unlimited water ferry tickets to Zora’s, two shopping tote bags, two pedicures, a welcome gift and fr.ee drinks upon arrival. The rate, including taxes, is $363 per night, double occupancy room. The completed sandals are mailed to you in three to four weeks.

    The 12-room Inn at Villa Olga, 340/715-0901 or email villaolga@bolongobay.com, in Frenchtown, on St. Thomas, offers a nightly room rate from $100 per couple plus the option to use the facilities at its sister property. Valid for travel through Dec. 22, 2006, a harbor view room is $100 per night, ocean view room is $125 per night. Tax and service charge are additional while full housekeeping service is $10 per day and laundry is $5 per load for wash and dry.

    The Westin Resort St. John Summer Carnival, 888/627-7206, savings promotion is $189 from Aug. 20 to Nov. 1, 2006. The rate includes a $200 resort credit.

    BVI Summer Savings

    Visitors to the British Virgin Islands in the Caribbean will find savings with rates at The Jewels of the BVI between $75 to $200 per night. The Jewels of the BVI are locally owned intimate inns, villas and cottages on the islands of Tortola, Virgin Gorda, Jost Van Dyke and Anegada, which range from modest to deluxe villas. Some even offer vehicles allowing you to cruise the coast during your stay.

    The British Virgin Islands remain undeveloped with no high-rise hotels, no casinos and no traffic. The islands are know for their clear waters, diverse sea life, extensive coral reefs and underwater shipwrecks.

    Jewels of the BVI or 866-Go-To-BVI.

    Paris Price Breaker $499

    Gate 1 Travel offers a six-day independent travel package to Paris from $499.

    The package includes roundtrip airfare from New York to Paris, fuel surcharge, four nights’ accommodations in your choice of two-star hotels and breakfast daily. Travel dates are Nov. 29, Dec. 6, 2006; Jan 10, 17, 24, 31, Feb 7, 14, 21, 28, 2007.

    Airport taxes, security and other fees and optional tours are not included. Additional nights, sightseeing tours and transfers can be added to the package.

    A $300 per person, non-refundable deposit is required at the time of booking.

    Gate 1 Travel or 800/682-3333.

    Cheap Tix Chart
    Buy Tickets at a Discount -- Special ticket outlets sell discounted day-of-performance tickets to theater productions, films, and sporting events. Discounts can be 50 percent or more. On The Go Publishing’s Cheap Tix Chart, still only $14, lists outlets in the U.S. and eight foreign cities that sell discounted, day-of-performance tickets. Click here to order the Cheap Tix Chart from On The Go Publishing.

    Jolly Hotels Summer Offers

    The leading Italian hotel chain offers weekend rates at its 45 hotels in Italy and abroad. These packages, valid Friday, Saturday and Sunday, are available through Oct. 31, 2006. Plus during summer months, from July 21 to Sep. 3, 2006, Jolly summer rates are valid every day of the week. There are four rates to choose from, all with special savings.

    The Week&Jolly Summer rate includes an overnight stay and breakfast. The hotel will provide information on tickets for museums, exhibitions and special events. From 79 Euros per night in a standard double room.

    The Week&Jolly Family package offers two nights bed and breakfast in a standard double room with one lunch or dinner (excluding drinks) and one child's menu item with fr.ee gift. One child up to the age of 16 sharing the parents' room is fr.ee. There’s a 50 percent discount on a second room for children. Prices start at 105 Euros per night.

    Week&Jolly Love includes two nights in a double standard room, in-room breakfast, champagne, flowers, and welcome gift. From 104 Euros per night, per room.

    Week&Jolly Food offers two nights bed and breakfast in a standard double room with welcome drink, one lunch or dinner and a bottle of regional wine. From 104 Euros per night in a double room. The hotel can provide a recommended gastronomic itinerary.

    Jolly Hotels or 800/221-2626, 800/247-1277 in New York state.

    Save $900 on 2007 Viking River Cruises

    Viking River Cruises offers an early booking discount with their best savings of the year, up to $900 off per cabin on 2007 sailings.

    You can choose from 17 itineraries from the 2007 Europe, Russia and China schedules.

    Viking River Cruises offers a three-tiered early booking discount, with the greatest savings the earlier you book. Book and pay for a cruise in full by July 31, 2006, you save $450 per person with $900 savings per cabin maximum. Book by Oct. 18, 2006, you save $350 per person ($700 per cabin maximum). Book by Dec. 18, 2006, you save $250 per person ($500 per cabin maximum). When booking, ask for the “EBD offer.”

    Viking River Cruises offers seven to 14 night cruise in Europe and Russia and nine to 15 night cruises in China.

    Viking River Cruises or 877/668-4546.

    D.C. on a Shoe String by Nicki Chodnoff

    Smithsonian CastleThe Washington D.C. Convention and Tourism Corporation reminds us of ways to visit D.C. on a budget.

    Some of the most expensive hotels in the United States are in Washington, D.C., yet there are reasonably priced bed and breakfast inns (that include breakfast) that will save you money. Rooms at the Adams Inn start from $89 per night, and the Kalorama Guest House in Adams Morgan start from $55 per night. Cherry Hill Park, the closest RV park to D.C., in College Park, MD, is priced at $38 per night. The park provides fre.e transportation for the 10 mile ride into the city many times a day.

    Dining out can take a big bite out of your budget, but there are low-priced alternatives. For low-fat, low-priced vegetarian meals, pasta and sandwiches, try Café Luna at Dupont Circle. Sunday through Thursday, you can get a half-priced pizza, pasta or bottle of wine.

    At Ben’s Chili Bowl on U Street, a family-owned business since 1958, you can get a $3 chili dog, $4 burger and a few vegetarian options.

    You can get bargain bites at happy hour at Ella’s Pizza downtown. Drink prices start at $3 and f.ree wood-fired pizza is served at the bar from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. McCormick & Schmick’s Seafood Restaurants’ two downtown locations offer a $1.95 bar menu that includes burgers, tacos, dip and oysters. Chef Geoff’s, near the White House, prepares large burgers with a mound of fries for about $5.

    There are lots of fresh, local flavors you can bring back to your hotel room. FRESHFARM operates markets in Dupont Circle (Saturday mornings year-round) and downtown in Penn Quarter (Thursday evenings Apr. through Sep.). On weekends, you can rub elbows with locals and sample fresh produce at Capitol Hill’s Eastern Market.

    During Restaurant Week, held in August (14 to 20) and January, you can get a three-course meal at one of the city’s top eateries for $20.06 for lunch or $30.06 for dinner.

    Public transportation is one of your best bets in getting around congested Washington, D.C. The Metrorail one-day pass costs $6.50 for unlimited rides. The DC Circulator offers bus connections between Georgetown, Union Station, the Washington Convention Center, the Southwest Waterfront and the National Mall for $1 per ride.

    Doing and seeing in D.C. is also easy on the budget. Fr.ee is the operative word as all of the city’s famous monuments are fr.ee as are the 15 museums in the Smithsonian system and the National Gallery of Art. At the National Mall, you can take a fr.ee, self-guided tour on one of Cultural Tourism DC’s neighborhood heritage trails.

    You can take a fr.ee tour and watch money come hot off the press at the Bureau of Engraving and Printing. On the Millennium Stage at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, a fr.ee concert or performance is offered nightly at 6 p.m.

    Each Monday night at sundown, from July 17 to Aug. 14, you can view a f.ree Hollywood classic at the National Mall (between 4th and 7th streets) during the Screen on the Green movie festival.

    Since Sep. 11, 2001,individuals can no longer wait outside and enter the White House. Public tours of the presidential mansion are open only to groups of 10 or more people who request entry at least a month in advance of the tour date.

    Fr.ee self-guided tours are scheduled 7:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday, if you are a U.S. citizen and contact the office of a member of Congress (Senator or Representative) from your home district. Their staff will submit a White House tour request for you or hook you up with other visitors and form a group. Tour bookings are first come, first served, so get your request in six months ahead. If you don't manage to get on a tour, it's still worth stopping by the visitor center, which houses exhibits about White House architecture, furnishings and history. The center is free and open seven days a week 7:30 a.m. to 4 p.m.

    On very limited occasions, the White House opens its gates to public garden tours. You don’t get inside the White House, but do have a rare opportunity to stroll the grounds. Tthe National Park Service distributes fr.ee timed-entry tickets (one per person) at the Ellipse Visitor Pavilion (15th and E streets) for the free garden tour events.

    Washington D.C. Convention and Tourism Corporation or 800/422-8644.

    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.

    ummer Dude Ranch Savings

    There’s selection of savings on family dude ranch vacations from Colorado to Canada. Here are a few examples.

    A year-round working and guest ranch in Alberta, Canada’s high cattle country, Home Place Ranch, 877/931-3245, offers specials in Oct. that includes $280 off a week-long stay and a two-night “appetizer” package for $432.

    The Drowsy Water Ranch, 800/845-2292, in a private Rocky Mountain valley west of Denver, offers15 percent off the weeks of Aug. 20, 27 and Sep. 3, 2006.

    The Historic Pines Ranch, 800/446-9462, in southern Colorado’s Sangre de Cristo Mountain Wilderness, offers a High Cost of Travel discount on reservations booked through Aug. 20, 2006. Save $150 off the adult rate and $100 off the child’s rate at this 125-year-old ranch.

    Designated as a National Natural Landmark, Echo Canyon Guest Ranch, 800/341-6603, in southern Colorado offers 30 percent off the week of Sep. 10, 2006.

    Latigo Ranch, 800/227-9655, 130 miles west of Denver, offers $400 off during Sep. 2006.

    Mountain Sky Guest Ranch, 800/548-3392, in Montana’s Paradise Valley, offers a getaway package at $315 per night Aug. 27 to Sep. 3 and fall honeymoon packages at $595 per couple.

    Just 60 miles from Jackson Hole, WY, Triangle C Ranch, 800/661-4928, offers a three-night Fall Adventure for $950 per person.

    Dude Rancher’s Association or 866/399-2339.

    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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