Travel e-Scapes: April 5, 2016



Travel e-Scapes: April 5, 2016

HURRY! Round-trip from Atlanta:
$755 Paris
No advance purchase required – go as soon as this week
Travel any available day of the week
Depart through May 12; August 23-October 29 or December 16-23
No minimum stay required; six months max
Valid on American/British Airways via Chicago, Charlotte or Philadelphia


New in NYC

  • Starting in June, one car on each MTA train will start serving light fare such as coffee ($1.50), soda ($2), tea ($1.50), cereal ($2) and chips ($2), and, on 7 trains, there will even be hot dogs ($4) and ballpark nachos ($5).
  • Times Square will feature two-person wide paths just for slow walkers. Any persons caught moving slower than 140 paces per minute will be notified by a police officer and asked to move into the designated paths. The paths are also suggested for anyone insisting on walking and texting at the same time. Also, costumed street performers and mascots in Times Square (Spider-Man, Naked Cowboy, etc.) will be relegated to a 20×20 fenced-off area from passer-bys in Times Square.
  • The stage production Hamilton will be free all summer at the Delacorte Theater during Shakespeare in the Park, New York City’s only all-free professional theater. The musical is the story of Alexander Hamilton (the guy on the $10 bill), an immigrant from the West Indies who became George Washington’s right-hand man and was the new nation’s first Treasury Secretary. The show blends hip-hop, jazz, blues, rap and R&B. Free tickets are available on a first-come-first-serve basis and can only be obtained the day of a performance. TIP: At 12-noon tickets are distributed, two per person, at the Delacorte to the line of people that usually springs up early in the morning when the park opens at 6AM. People have been known to camp out at the park entrance closest to the theater, 81st & Central Park West, to get tickets for that day’s performance. 
  • Murder, anatomy, death masks, and erotic beauties in wax comes to the Big Apple through May 30. This Victorian amusement at the Morbid Anatomy Museum is a collection of dozens of detailed wax figures, death masks, ethnographic busts and anatomically correct human bodies, all of which were first sculpted over 100 years ago. These incredible pieces draw from Castan’s Berlin-based Panopticum which ran from 1869 to 1922 and drawing 5,000 visitors a day. The display combined entertainment and education with informative anatomy lessons. Now Americans have a chance to be both enlightened and entertained by the mysteries of humanity in wax at this death-centric museum exhibit. On site is a cafe and a bookshop. Admission to the exhibition is $8; $6 seniors, students. 

National Park Week
The National Park Service, which celebrates its centennial this year, is waiving admission fees during National Park Week. On April 16-24, nearly 130 parks will offer free entrance, including Yellowstone and Grand Teton (normally $50 for a seven-day pass for the pair), Everglades ($20 per car; valid for a week) and Shenandoah ($20 per car; good for a week). 

Delta News
Following the March 22 terrorist attacks in the Belgian capital, Delta Air Lines has suspended its nonstop Atlanta to Brussels service until March 2017. The carrier will continue to operate its route from New York’s John F. Kennedy International Airport once the Zaventem airport has been provided the necessary clearance for international operations. Zaventem airport is targeting it will be operating at maximum capacity at the beginning of July.
Nearly six years ago, Delta became the first U.S. airline to offer real-time customer support through Twitter via the @DeltaAssist channel, including rebooking, flight information, airport details and additional services. The team has grown from six employees to more than 40 specialists with Reservations backgrounds providing assistance in English, Spanish, Portuguese and Japanese. Effective immediately, the airline is integrating @DeltaAssist customer support into its primary @Delta Twitter handle to offer customers a seamless experience when communicating with the airline, along with access to Delta updates and travel tips.


Airfare offers – ones with a ticket-by date – and deals with our suggestion to ‘Hurry!’ can expire at anytime.   Heed Clark’s advice: Buy that great airfare deal – and then figure out a reason to go there! Eventually, you’ll see the world at a fraction of the normal price!

HURRY! One-way from Atlanta, each way:
$35 Dallas-Ft. Worth, Texas
A 21-day advance purchase required
Valid Tuesday, Wednesday, Saturday
Complete travel on or before June 29
Blackout dates: June 19, 23, 24, 26
Valid on American, nonstop

HURRY! One-way from Atlanta, each way:
$123 Sacramento, California
A 7-day advance purchase required
Valid any available day of the week
Complete travel on or before November 4
Valid on Alaska via Seattle

HURRY! Round-trip from Atlanta:
$243 Aspen, Colorado
$253 Seattle
$265 San Diego
A 7-day advance purchase required
Valid any available day of the week
Complete travel on or before March 2, 2017
Blackout dates: June 16-August 1
Valid on United via Denver or Houston

One-way from Atlanta, each way:
$276 Maui
$301 Kona
$326 Honolulu
A 14-day advance purchase required
Add $7-$12 each way for Friday-Sunday travel
Complete travel on or before May 24
Valid on Alaska via Seattle
Stopovers of less than 24 hours permitted at no additional cost
Purchase by April 15


Round-trip from Atlanta:
$813 Manchester, England
A 7-day advance purchase required
Valid any available day of the week
No minimum stay required
Complete travel on or before May 26
Valid on United via Newark or Washington DC
Purchase by April 8

Round-trip from Atlanta:
$818 Stockholm, Sweden or Oslo, Norway
A 7-day advance purchase required
Add $35 per direction for Friday, Saturday outbound and/or Friday-Sunday returns
Depart on or after May 3 and complete travel on or before June 14
Or, depart on or after August 10 and complete travel on or before February 23, 2017
No year-end holiday blackout dates
Stay at least one Saturday night 
Valid on United/SAS via Newark 
Purchase by April 19

NOTE: Airline fees can and often do exceed the cost of your flight! Additional charges now apply to budget and sale rates on most airlines for a carry-on bag, checked baggage and advance seat assignments. The least expensive fees are charged when these options are added during the flight booking process. Fees climb higher after flights are reserved and even higher when adding these options at airport check-in. Kayak offers the most up-to-date Fees Chart for all domestic and international airlines. 


The Caribbean’s Calling
Puerto Rico: The Condado Plaza Hilton is an upscale beachfront resort hotel features bright, colorful decor, custom-designed beds, and floor-to-ceiling windows, plus balconies, and free WiFi. Suites add sitting areas and ocean views. On site are five restaurants, including a fine-dining option serving international cuisine, a sushi bar, and a casual grill with patio seating. There are also four pools, a sauna, and tennis courts. Other amenities include a kids play room and a 24-hour fitness center, plus water sports rentals. The ‘Leisure Escape’ package includes a $50 resort credit per night that can be redeemed for dining or resort activities. Package rates from $184 per night.  
Jamaica: One of the island’s hippest hotels is Jakes on Treasure Beach. It’s also one of the most affordable with garden view rooms from $95 and from $115 with an ocean view. This boutique hotel on Jamaica’s quiet South features individual and unique room decor. Guests pamper themselves with spa services, dine on farm-to-table delights, take a daily yoga class, or just chill over cocktails at Dougie’s Bar. 

Gotthard Base Tunnel Tour
The 35-mile long Gotthard Base Tunnel, the longest train tunnel in the world (surpassing Japan’s 14-1/2-mile Seikan Tunnel), enters into service on December 11. Before regular operations commence, the post-construction will be more accessible than ever, but only for a limited period.
Starting August 2, a special ‘Gottardino’ train will carry visitors to a record depth in the rock of the Swiss Alps. A special stop will be made at the multifunction station in Sedrun. Here, 2,625 feet below the surface, a tour will vividly demonstrate the dimensions of the gigantic tunnel system. The special ‘Gottardino’ train runs daily, except Mondays, from Flüelen to Biasca or in the reverse direction until November 27. The number of tickets is very limited. Prices are $145 (139 Swiss Franc) in First Class; $124 (119 Swiss Franc) 2nd Class. Discounts available for Swiss Pass Rail holders.
Travelers have the option to make the return trip by the historic panorama route over the Gotthard. One item of luggage is permitted, per person. The recommended minimum age 6 years.
The new tunnel has been under construction for 17 years and financed entirely by Switzerland, at a cost of approximately $10.3 billion.
Once trains are traveling through the Gotthard Base Tunnel at a top speed of 155 mph, a stop in the middle of the tunnel will no longer be possible. Thanks to the new north-south connection, regions and neighboring countries on both sides of the Gotthard Tunnel will move closer together.
From the end of 2016, passengers will cross the Alps in the new tunnel in only 20 minutes.  

Travel e-Scapes is brought to you by Clara Bosonetto, Team Clark Travel Editor. Follow Clara on Twitter.

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