Travel e-Scapes: September 6, 2016



Travel e-Scapes: September 6, 2016

HURRY! Round-trip from Atlanta:
$770 Singapore
A 28-day advance purchase required
Depart by December 9 or December 25-June 9
Add $25 per direction for Friday-Sunday travel
Stay at least 7 nights or up to a year
Valid on United via Chicago
Note: Compare to Delta’s round-trip rate of $1,455


Spirit Airlines News
That personal item that you are permitted to bring aboard a Spirit flight free must fit underneath the seat in front of you and be no larger than 18 x 14 x 8 (40′ total), handle and wheels. The previously permitted size was 16 inches by 14 inches by 12 inches (42 inches total).
Better news: Starting in November, Spirit will join the TSA PreCheck program so its customers can use faster moving security lines at the airports. 

Carry-On Bags
If you’re in the market for a new carry-on bag, Consumer Reports has a heads-up!
Consumer Reports spotted complaints on Ebags and Amazon about carry-on bags people purchased that were larger than advertised. Once at the airport, the piece didn’t fit into the ‘sizers’. That means you will most likely need to check the bag at an additional cost.
Size limits vary by airline, but of the big three – American, Delta, and United – a carry-on bag can be no more than 22 x 14 x 9 to fit properly in an overhead bin.
In a recent study of 11 bags from 11 brands (February 2016 issue) — and all marketed as carry-ons, only one met its size claims exactly.
The 11 purchased bags were laser measured and to ensure that bulges might add depth, a 10-pound weight was placed atop a 21 x 10.5-inch piece of plywood.
Nine of the 11 models were larger than claimed, including brands by Kirkland, Samsonite, SwissGear, Eagle Creek, American Tourister, Victorinox, and Briggs & Riley.
A Samsonite spokesman said the company didn’t measure handles or wheels.
To avoid spending money on a carry-on bag you can’t carry-on, follow these tips:

  • Check airline websites to make sure you know what’s allowed.
  • When shopping in stores, use a measuring tape to check sizes.
  • When shopping online, read user reviews to find out whether owners have had problems taking the piece onboard.
  • Check return policies so you know your options if the ordered bag doesn’t measure up in person*.

(* Only Costco stated that it would take back its Kirkland luggage once used.)
So which bag made the cut? Lipault Paris Foldable 2-Wheeled 22-inch Carry-On, 21 x 14 x 8, $199.
The runner up: Tumi Alpha 2 Frequent Traveler 2-Wheeled Carry-On, 24 x 14.5 x 9.5 (discontinued).


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!

One-way from Atlanta, each way:
$49 Greenville, Raleigh
$79 Chicago
$84 Jacksonville, Pittsburgh
$87 Baltimore, Washington DC-Reagan or Dulles
$89 Philadelphia
$92 Orlando
$94 Dallas-Ft. Worth
$101 Akron
$103 New Orleans
$107 St. Louis
$109 Columbus, Ft. Myers, Indianapolis
$110 Ft. Lauderdale, Tampa, W. Palm Beach
$119 Detroit, Kansas City, Milwaukee
$123 Houston
$134 Denver
$136 Austin, Boston, Minneapolis, New York-LaGuardia, San Antonio
$149 Las Vegas, Phoenix
$157 San Diego
$166 Oakland
$167 Los Angeles
A 14-day advance purchase required
Valid on September 20-March 18 travel
Not valid Friday or Sunday
Blackout dates: November 22, 23, 26-28; December 21-23, 26, 27; January 1, 2.
Travel to Florida and Nevada and from Florida to Nevada is valid only on Sunday-Wednesday; Tuesday-Friday from Florida and Nevada
Valid on Southwest Airlines (two free checked bags!)
Purchase by September 19
Note: Redeem as few as 4,346 Rapid Rewards points for one-way travel

One-way from Atlanta, each way:
$117 Quebec, Quebec
$118 Calgary, Alberta
$122 Ottawa, Ontario
$147 Vancouver, British Columbia
$230 Toronto
A 21-day advance purchase required
Travel any available day of the week through April 30, 2017
Blackout dates: October 7-10
Purchase by September 13
Valid on Air Canada, American, Delta or United
Note: Delta serves Montreal and Toronto nonstop; Air Canada nonstop to Toronto​

GO NOW! Round-trip from Atlanta:
$654 Dubai, United Arab Emirates
$755 Nairobi, Kenya
No advance purchase required — go as soon as this week!
Depart daily through May 15, 2017
Blackout dates: December 10-23
Stay at least one Saturday night or up to a year
Valid on United/Lufthansa via Frankfurt
Add an optional stopover for $100 additional per stop
Purchase by September 8

Round-trip from Atlanta:
$1,000 London
Depart by May 11, 2017
Add $50 per direction for Thursday-Saturday outbound and/or Friday-Sunday returns
Stay at least 7 nights or up to a year
Valid on British Airways or Delta, nonstop
Purchase by September 15


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 purchased during the ticket 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. 

How do you find these great airfare deals? Visit Clark’s Atlanta Travel Tips page for easy to follow steps…


New Vermont Resort
The Lodge at Burke Mountain is a new four-season adventure hub with the options to ski-in / ski-out, bike-in / bike-out.
This area of Vermont, the Northeast Kingdom, offers natural beauty, skiing on 50 trails and glades, mountain biking over 100 miles of trails on and around Burke Mountain Resort, hiking, paddling, swimming, snowshoeing, cross country skiing, and fat biking.
Lodge amenities include: 
Studio Suites to 1, 2 and 3 bedrooms with balcony options 
Kitchenettes to fully equipped kitchens 
Complimentary WiFi
The Gap Pub for family dining lunch and dinner and Edmunds Coffee Shop
Year-round outdoor heated pool and hot tub.
Family Arcade, Fitness Center
Ski Rental & Repairs 
Coin operated guest laundry facility
Retail stores including groceries, sundries, gear, locally crafted souvenirs
The timber-framed day lodge links the east and west wings with views from every window of the Willoughby Gap or Burke Mountain.
Special September rates from $109 with average room nights from $169 thereafter.
East Burke, Vermont is about a 2-hour drive east of Burlington (BTV).

Jazz Fest near Birmingham
Renaissance Ross Bridge Golf Resort & Spa offers two new packages designed to welcome festivalgoers during the 9th Annual Preserve Jazz: Over The Mountain Music Festival on September 17. The annual jazz celebration will be held in Hoover’s Preserve neighborhood, a Southern community just outside of Birmingham and a short drive from the Renaissance Ross Bridge Golf Resort & Spa.
Through September 16, guests who book the Preserve Jazz Package 1 are treated to a Friday night stay at the hotel on September 16, breakfast for two the next morning and two festival tickets for $279, plus tax.
The Preserve Jazz Package 2 includes accommodations for Friday and Saturday nights, two festival tickets and two tickets to the Renaissance Ross Bridge Sunday Jazz Brunch for $498, plus tax.
On September 18, the resort will host a Sunday Jazz Brunch from 9A-2P, $39 per person; $19.50 ages 5-12.  
Tucked among the Alabama hills and a short drive from the sights of Birmingham, the resort offers a tranquil spa to championship golf and on-site dining. Guests enjoy picturesque resort views from private balconies, as well as luxury hotel comforts such as pillow top bedding, flat-screen TVs, marble bathrooms and Aveda amenities.
This Robert Trent Jones Golf Trail’s Resort Collection property was recently named one of the top golf resorts in North America by the editors of Golf Digest magazine and ranks as the fifth longest golf course in the world. And, bagpipers perform at sunset.
Resort amenities include a fitness center, whirlpool and indoor and outdoor saltwater pools, outdoor water slide and separate children’s pool, biking trail, jogging/fitness trail, tennis courts and badminton on the resort lawn. 

Stay Two: Earn a Free Night
Choice Privileges, the guest-loyalty program for Choice Hotels, offers an autumn promotion, Stay Twice, Earn a Free Night. Members of the Choice Privileges rewards program must book and complete two separate qualifying trips through November 11 to earn up to 8,000 points, enough to redeem for a free night at more than 1,500 hotels.
Stay 4 times and receive points for 2 free nights at 1,500 hotels at the 8,000 point level or 1 free night at over 4,300 hotels, at the 16,000 point level.  Stay 6 times, 8 times, etc for more free night options!
The promotion is available at participating brands of Choice Hotels including Comfort Inn, Comfort Suites, Sleep Inn, Cambria hotels & suites, and the Ascend Hotel Collection.
To participate in the fall promotion, register at before check-out, and then book via, the Choice Hotels mobile app, or 800-4-CHOICE. 

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

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