Get to the Seabreeze Jazz Festival
Thousands of jazz lovers and sun-seekers from across the nation will soon descend upon Panama City Beach for a fun-filled weekend of smooth contemporary jazz at the Seabreeze Jazz Festival, April 13-17. This family-friendly festival is held at the Aaron Bessant Park, an open-air venue located directly across the street from the famous sugar-sand beaches and Gulf of Mexico. More than two dozen artists are slated to perform. The performances kick off on Thursday night with special concerts by Roman Street, Boney James, and George Benson (performing songs from his recent release, Songs and Stories). A not-to-be-missed annual favorite is the vibrant After Party Jam at oceanfront Reggae J’s Island Grill on both Friday and Saturday nights. General admission ticket prices range from $80 for a one-day pass to $200 for access to all four days and are available for purchase at Borders in Pier Park. Spectators are invited to bring blankets or lawn chairs, though rental chairs are available.
Celebrate Spring in Colorado
While skiers and snowboarders continue to enjoy Colorado’s powder well into spring, many areas in Colorado embrace the beginning of spring with the debut of new attractions and exciting festivals celebrating everything from music and mountain biking to food, wine and more. On March 26, top touring and recording artists O.A.R. will headline the first ever FestEVOL, a new mountain lifestyle event in Crested Butte to include live music, organic food sampling and more. Spring Back To Vail, April 15-24, celebrating the beginning of spring with free concerts from national headlining music acts such as Train and Stephen Marley and the now famous World Pond Skimming Championships (downhill on cold, wet, slushy snow). On May 1, the Taste of Pearl features food and Colorado’s award-winning wines from Boulder chefs and restaurants while strolling down the beautiful Pearl Street Mall. Downtown’s Main Street will be filled with local and national jazz acts and artists and galleries will display unique works of art at the Grand Junction Art & Jazz Festival, May 6-8. The Estes Park Jazz Fest & Art Walk, May 14-15, features two days of jazz, arts and culture.
HOT Domestic & International Travel Deals will resume in the March 15 edition of Clark Howard’s e-Scapes.
Here are some Clark Smart tips for hassle-free travel abroad.
I’ve been getting so many calls from people who are planning overseas trips later this year, and I want to make sure you’re not getting ripped off when you get where you’re going. Here are some of the best pieces of advice I can give you:
Before you leave the United States, call your credit card companies and ATM companies and let them know where you’ll be traveling. Because of international crime rings, you may find your card(s) shut down if you don’t alert the issuers. You can sometimes just go directly to your issuer’s website and fill out a form to alert them about your foreign travel if you prefer not to call.
Ask your lender about their foreign currency fee. Capital One has no foreign currency on its credit cards, but other credit card issuers charge up to 5%! With ATMs, you also need to know if your bank will charge junk fees. If they do, those fees can be as much as $10 for each withdrawal. Ask if there are any partner banks overseas that might offer ATMs where that fee will be waived.
Money belts are highly advisable in many international cities. Pick-pocketing can happen anywhere. I also suggest you make photocopies of your passport before you go. Leave some copies at home and take others with you to leave in your hotel room. Be sure to carry your original passport on your person at all times. Replacing a lost or stolen passport when you have a copy of it is so much easier than if you have no copies whatsoever to show.
Never use your regular cell phone outside the United States. The charges can be ugly, especially for data. It’s not unusual for people to get thousands of dollars in data charges just to check email overseas. Internet cafes offer a good alternative. I take a laptop with me when I travel and use free WiFi.
Cool Colorado Deals
The Inn on Fall River in quaint Estes Park is offering a “Get Away Together” family package which includes a two-night stay in a two-bedroom cabin (two queen bedded rooms and a queen sleeper sofa), snowshoeing, a wildlife tour or a photography safari plus hot cocoa and S’mores. The package rate of $480 is available on stays through May 19. Fully-furnished and equipped cabins offer the comforts of home with wood-burning fireplaces, gas BBQ grills, hot tubs and views of beautiful Fall River from the patio.
The Broadmoor Hotel, a AAA Five-Diamond award winner for a record 50 consecutive years, is offering a “Spring Break Getaway” package through April 30. Starting at $90 per person, per night (a 40% savings), guest enjoy accommodations, a 50% discount at the Cheyenne Mountain Zoo, a 15% discount on retail purchases, a complimentary spa day pass and access to The Broadmoor Movie Theater. This historic Colorado Springs resort is located on 3,000 acres under the shadow of Cheyenne Mountain and offers an award-winning day spa, fitness center, two swimming pools, three outdoor hot tubs, one lap pool, 54 holes of championship golf, six tennis courts with tennis camps, children’s programs and two dozen specialty retail shops.
Now through April 17, the Boulder area offers spring escapes for as little as $67.50 per person at nearly every hotel in the city (recently rated the #1 Sports Town in America by Outside Magazine). The “Ski Escape” package offers accommodations and ski lift tickets at Eldora Mountain.
Get a free one week vacation!
Wyndham Vacation Rentals offers a buy-one-get-one vacation offer when guests book five or more nights at a ResortQuest by Wyndham Vacation Rentals beach destination now through April 30 for travel by May 30. Upon completion of the qualified stay, guests will receive a complimentary seven night resort stay valid in Europe, Mexico, Australia, Asia, the Caribbean and the U.S., subject to availability. The springtime beach getaway must be taken at a ResortQuest by Wyndham Vacation Rentals properties on Florida’s Emerald Coast, the Alabama Gulf Coast, along the beaches of Delaware, the islands just beyond Charleston, S.C. or at Myrtle Beach, S.C., and Hilton Head Island, S.C. Sample weekly rates through March are as low as $434 in Gulf Shores, Ala.; from $455 in Panama City Beach; from $600 in Hilton Head and around $700 per week on Kiawah Island. Refer to promo code WY2 when booking. Online bookings are not available for this promotion for lodging in Delaware or Northwest Florida. Call to book: Delaware (888.500.4271) and Northwest Florida (855.202.7408).
People travel to faraway places to watch, in fascination, the kind of people they ignore at home. /
Dagobert D. Runes, philosopher and author (1902-1982)
Note: Unless otherwise stated above, follow these guidelines when booking special airfares from Clark Howard’s e-Scapes newsletter:
No expiration of travel
- means the rate is valid on trips taken over the next 331 days, or the advance booking window allowed on most airlines International rates are based on mid-week travel days, or with most airlines Monday-Thursday. (one exception is Monday-Wednesday to London). Economy class airfares to
- require a minimum stay requirement of a Saturday night and a maximum stay of a month. Economy class airfare to
Asia, Africa, India and the Middle East
- typically require a 6-day minimum stay; 30-day maximum. Most
- coach class airfares, including Canada and Hawaii, are based on mid-week travel. Weekend travel days are typically $10-$30 higher, per direction, for both domestic and international destinations. All airfares shown on e-Scapes are exclusive of taxes, fees, unless noted otherwise. Fuel surcharges on international trips can add from $180-$400 to base rates shown above, varying by continent.
Clark Howard’s Travel e-Scapes Team reminds you that the information in this newsletter is researched on the same day that you receive it. It can happen that by the time you read your copy a particular airfare may already have expired, especially the “HOT” deals listed. Airlines can publish and then ‘pull’, or discontinue sales without warning. Timing is everything!
Get more of Clark’s best travel deals Mondays through Fridays on the Atlanta Travel Deals page.