BargainsTime, as the saying goes, is money.And if you are...

In Brief

April 04, 1999

Bargains

Time, as the saying goes, is money.

And if you are an airline passenger with extra time, you could get a free flight or big money off your next flight.

This is perfect for laid-back folks who don't absolutely, positively have to get somewhere by a certain hour, and don't mind waiting for a later flight.

This is the art of getting bumped. More than 1 million people got free or discounted air travel in 1997 just because they volunteered to get bumped, according Bestfares.com, a discount travel magazine that has outlined the strategy.

Getting bumped is a particularly easy tactic these days because so many flights are running at or near capacity. Here's how to do it:

* Get to the airport early -- 90 minutes is good; two hours is better.

* Try to get to the gate before it opens and be the first in line.

* Ask the gate agent if the flight is oversold. If so, ask what you will get if you volunteer to be bumped -- round-trip vouchers, transportation vouchers, dollar-value vouchers.

* Ask what flight you'd be protected on. If the airline can't guarantee you a seat on its next flight, ask them to guarantee you a seat on another airline.

* If you like the deal, go for it.

* Check to make sure you're confirmed on the new flight.

* Sit down, relax and think of a place you'd like to go to on your free flight.

Fast solutions

You can now buy advance tickets in the United States to the Louvre museum in Paris, avoiding waits in line upon arriving. The Oakland, Calif.-based TicketWeb, Internet http://www.ticketweb.com, sells the tickets for $8 (entrance before 3 p.m.) and $5 (entrance after 3 p.m. and on Sundays), plus charges of $1.60 per ticket and $1 per order. You can also call for tickets at 510-594-1400 or fax 510-594-1401. The tickets are good for any date through Jan. 31, 2000.

Seniors

The "49 and Holding" package at the Orlando, Fla.-area Holiday Inn Hotel & Suites Main Gate East is being extended through 1999. The package for guests 50 and older offers a room rate of $49 a night along with a number of amenities. Grandchildren traveling with seniors stay and eat free, and there is a state-licensed camp program on the premises for children ages 3 to 12. Call 800-FON-KIDS.

Pub Date: 04/04/99

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