Deals reveal luxurious experience of smaller ships

February 19, 2012 by  
Filed under Travel Deals

Azamara Club Cruises

Azamara fares include gratuities, wine with lunch and dinner, sodas, bottled water and
specialty coffees and teas. Other alcoholic beverages are extra. The line also has English butler
service for suite guests. An airfare credit is offered on some cruises.

Current deals

Azamara Quest, 12 nights, Singapore to Mumbai, April 12, $2,399

Azamara Journey, nine nights, Stockholm to Copenhagen, June 27, $2,799, air credit

Call 1-877-999-9553 or visit

Crystal Cruises

Crystal Cruises has not included gratuities and alcoholic beverages in its fares, instead
offering onboard spending credits of as much as $1,000 per suite. But starting in March, it will
include gratuities and alcohol in its fares and reduce onboard credits. Fares include free air and
two-for-one deals, and some have other savings. Like Regent, it revisits prices every month, so
early bookers get the best deals.

Current deals

Crystal Serenity, seven nights, Piraeus (Athens) to Venice, June 12, $3,120, all-inclusive,
$300 onboard credit

Crystal Symphony, 12 nights, Istanbul to Barcelona, April 27, $3,720. $300 shore excursion
credit, $200 onboard credit

Call 1-866-446-6625 or visit


The line’s three Queen ships each have three levels of accommodations, from mainstream to
luxury, each with its own restaurant and amenities. Most luxurious are the Queens Grill suites,
whose guests dine in the Queens Grill and have an exclusive lounge, butler service, concierge
service, complimentary bar setup and free soft drinks, beer and bottled water. Fares do not include
gratuities or alcoholic beverages other than beer.

Current deals

Queen Mary 2, seven nights, New York to Southampton (trans-Atlantic, one-way), May 4, $3,780
Princess Grill fare

Queen Victoria, seven nights, Southampton-Norway-Southampton, Aug. 17, $4,195 Princess Grill

Call 1-800-728-6273 or visit


Oceania ships provide complimentary soft drinks and bottled water. Its fares include free air
but not gratuities or alcoholic beverages. The line, however, has just inaugurated new options
offering house wine and beer at $29.95 a day per guest or open-bar privileges at $49.95 per day.
One of its four ships, the Insignia, will be leased to another cruise line for two years starting
in May, when the line’s new Riviera enters service.

Current deal

Marina, 12 nights, round trip from Miami, March 7, $1,999

Call 1-800-531-5619 or visit

Regent Seven Seas Cruises

Regent fares include free air, one night in a hotel, gratuities and alcoholic drinks, and
almost all shore excursions are now free. Excursions include a tour of gothic and medieval
Barcelona that previously cost $119; a tour of the Roman ruins of Ephesus in Turkey that had cost
$199; and a tour of the French Riviera towns of Cannes, Grasse and St. Paul de Vence that had cost

Current deal

Seven Seas Navigator, 10 nights, round trip Fort Lauderdale, Fla., March 19, $4,999

Call 1-877-505-5370 or visit

Seabourn Cruises

Seabourn-size ships can get into ports that larger ships can’t. Seabourn fares include
alcoholic beverages and gratuities.

Current deals

Seabourn Sojourn, 15 nights, Fort Lauderdale-Monte Carlo (trans-Atlantic one-way), March 8,

Seabourn Odyssey, 12 nights, Barcelona-Venice, April 9, $3,499

Call 1-800-929-9391 or visit

Seadream Yacht Club

Fares on these 112-passenger ships, which include gratuities and alcoholic beverages, have
been discounted up to 60 percent. Water sports and mountain bikes also are included as well as some
crew-led informal excursions.

Current deal

SeaDream1, seven nights, from Civitavecchia, Italy, May 12, $3,599

Call 1-800-707-4911 or visit

Silversea Cruises

Silversea fares include alcohol, gratuities and onboard credits.

Current deal

Silver Shadow, seven nights, round trip from Singapore, March 29, $2,999

Call 1-800-722-9955 or visit


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Deals: Princess Cruises

February 19, 2012 by  
Filed under Travel Deals

Direct Flight

Climb aboard for a trip around the world of travel

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Travel deals in New Hampshire, Florida and Italy

February 19, 2012 by  
Filed under Travel Deals

The deal: The Rosewood Country Inn and the Candlelite Inn in New Hampshire are offering the “Inn to Inn Snow Shoe Getaway.”

Cost: Starting at $299 per person based on double occupancy.

What’s included: Accommodations for two nights (one night at the Rosewood and one night at the Candlelite); hearty country breakfast each morning (two); fireside dinner each evening (two); guided snowshoe trek; trailside lunch on Saturday; luggage transfer between the two inns.

When: March 9 to 11.

Information: 800-938-5273 or

The deal: The Gasparilla Inn Club in Florida is offering the “Pete Dye Golf Getaway.”

Cost: Rates start at $329 per room, per night based on double occupancy.

What’s included: Accommodations in a deluxe room; 18 holes of golf and cart daily; unlimited use of driving range and practice facilities; nightly club storage and cleaning.

When: April, May and June.

Information: 877-403-0599 or

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Tips for spring-training travel: Heading south with less hassle – Louisville Courier

February 19, 2012 by  
Filed under Travel Deals

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For the best room rates, consider traveling at midweek. Tourist hotels generally charge less from Tuesday through Thursday. If you can fly only on weekends, look to big chain hotels that cater to business travelers, rather than resorts. The corporate hotels may have more rooms and better rates on weekends.

Consider time-share properties, vacation-home rentals and condos as a way to get more space for your dollars. Dining out can be one of the biggest expenses of your trip, and having a kitchen or kitchenette to prepare some meals can cut costs significantly. Visit,, or, which stands for vacation rentals by owner.

If you haven’t tried a name-your-own-price site such as Priceline or Hotwire, now might be the time. You can get bargains of up to 60 percent off if you’re OK with knowing the neighborhood and number of hotel stars, but not the specific hotel, when you book.


Team websites often offer package deals that can include accommodations, game tickets, rental car, gift bag, perhaps even a chance to take batting practice at the ballpark.

Check resorts and hotels, too, for packages that can cover such items as meals, spa treatments, golf fees and water-park passes.


Buy tickets as early as possible, especially for popular teams with big fan bases.

Order through individual teams’ websites, the Major League Baseball site or, for Arizona games only, Some hotels sell game tickets, too.

Be prepared to dig deeper than you might expect if you want a good view of the action. Field-level box seats commonly run $25 to $30 or more. At the Boston Red Sox’ brand-new JetBlue Park in Fort Myers, Fla., it costs $35 to sit on the faux Green Monster — a replica of the famous left-field wall in Fenway Park — and $46 for a home plate dugout box.

The good news for last-minute planners, families and the frugal: Most teams have unreserved lawn seating for less than $10. You’re still out at the ballgame, at least.

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