If you can afford to travel, you'll find bargains

What's The Deal

March 22, 2009|By MICHELLE DEAL-ZIMMERMAN | MICHELLE DEAL-ZIMMERMAN,michelle.deal@baltsun.com, twitter.com/suntravelblog

Spring break is right around the corner, and the summer travel season is not far behind. You wouldn't know it by the number of ongoing airfare sales and bargain-basement ticket prices. Airlines have not been this desperate for passengers in a long time. That's good news for travelers - there are deals to be found right and left and every which way in between.

If you've always wanted to visit England, Ireland, Russia, Australia or a host of other international spots, now is the time. Airfare prices for overseas travel seem to get better (or worse from the airline's point of view) each week. I recently found a British Airways flight from Baltimore to London for $136 roundtrip on Orbitz.com. Unfortunately, the fees were almost twice the ticket price, bringing the total close to $500. Generally, fuel surcharges have dropped this year, but they haven't totally gone away.

A sale popped up last week for roundtrip airfare from Washington to Moscow for just $244, including all fees. Needless to say, it was snatched up within hours. But more such deals are likely to return.

Earlier this month, Sceptre Tours offered a six-day "Blarney Resort Package" in Ireland with prices starting at $749 per person from Washington, including hotel, rental car and airfare. It was based on a group of four traveling together in April or May. Last year, that price might not have covered the airfare alone.

Qantas Vacations last week had airfare from New York to Australia for $399 each way. Over at BestFares.com, a summertime family vacation to Australia, including airfare and a five-night hotel stay was starting at $1,129 per person.

So the deals are out there. For those who still have the will and the means to travel, the world is your oyster - as long as you have a passport.

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