Travel e-Scapes: December 1, 2015

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DESTINATION & DEAL OF THE DAY: Milan, Italy

Travel e-Scapes: December 1, 2015

Round-trip from Atlanta:
$1,012 Milan, Italy
Travel any available day of the week
Depart May 17-August 22, 2016
A 7-night minimum stay required; three months max
Valid on Delta via Paris
Stopovers not permitted
Purchase by December 3
Note: Compare to peak summer season rates of $1,823 to Rome
Photo: Bergamo, Italy — located less than an hour’s drive east of Milan (see FlixBus below)



TRAVEL TIPS & TIDBITS

Europe by Bus
Travel between cities all around Italy from just one euro, thanks to new routes from Europe’s biggest long-distance bus company.
FlixBus, the Megabus of Europe, began in 2013 with a few routes in Germany and has rapidly expanded to become the biggest long-distance bus company in Europe, connecting some 400 destinations in 15 European countries, with tickets typically starting at €5 (about $5.28).
Routes are mostly to Switzerland, Belgium, Germany, France, Austria, and the Netherlands. But FlixBus is expanding into Italy with domestic routes starting from €1.

Sale prices are valid for travel through early spring 2016.
Popular deals include €1 between Rome and Florence, between Bologna and Naples, and between Milan and Pisa.
FlixBus also offers travel to these cities:
Ancona, Bari, Bergamo (see featured airfare above), Bologna, Brescia, Brindisi, Ferrara, Florence, Foggia, Genoa, Grosseto, Lecce, Livorno, Lugano, Milan, Modena, Naples, Novara, Padua, Pescara, Piacenza, Pisa, Reggio Emilia, Rimini, Rome, Turin, Trento, Trieste, Verona, and Venice.
If you can’t score a one-euro deal, every day rates are still affordable. Sample rates between Rome and Florence average €11 and Milan to Venice averages €9 each way. To compare, rail travel on Trenitalia range from €19–€29.
FlixBus offers a generous baggage policy, free WiFi, snacks and drinks for sale, onboard toilets, plug sockets and central bus stop locations within cities. 

Delta Grounds Pets
Delta will no longer allow pets to be checked as baggage starting March 1, 2016.
Facts and stats prove that dogs and cats flying in cargo holds is simply a danger.
The U.S. Department of Transportation reported that Delta had the highest number of recorded pet deaths between May 2005 and September 2015. Seventy-four pets have died during that decade, while 14 had been lost.
The number of lost pets and those that perished is a small percentage of pets that have flown on Delta safely. But more than 5,000 animals are killed, lost or injured on commercial flights every year, according to the Airline Transportation Association. Pets who didn’t survive succumbed to lack of oxygen, stress, extreme temperature changes and irresponsible handling.
Animals small enough to fit in a carrier under their owner’s seat can still be carried on board, and Delta will also still allow certain military pets and documented service and emotional support animals to board inside the cabin.
As an alternative, Delta points out owners can also pay for Delta Cargo’s pet shipping service. This comes with a couple of travel inconveniences compared to checking a pet as baggage: Pets must be dropped off three hours before flight takeoff at a different location than human travelers’ departure point, and Delta says it can’t guarantee that pets will arrive at their destinations at the same time as their owners. However, pets are held in climate-controlled areas and vehicles before and after their flights, and are under the care of customer service staff while they travel. The service costs $200-$400 one-way (domestic).


SPECIAL DOMESTIC & INTERNATIONAL OFFERS

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:
$44 Miami
A 7-day advance purchase required
Valid Tuesday, Wednesday or Saturday
Complete travel on or before February 10
Valid on American, nonstop

One-way from Atlanta, each way:
$58 Miami
Valid Tuesday, Wednesday or Thursday
Start travel on or after February 11
Complete travel on or before March 31
Blackout dates: March 13, 20, 28
Purchase today, December 1
Valid on American, nonstop

One-way from Atlanta, each way:
$58 New York-LaGuardia
A 14-day advance purchase required
Valid Tuesday, Wednesday or Saturday
Add $20 per direction for other travel days
Complete travel on or before February 10
Valid on American, nonstop
Purchase today, December 1

One-way from Atlanta, each way:
$59 Denver
Valid Tuesday, Wednesday or Saturday
Start travel on or after December 7
Complete travel on or before February 10
Valid on Frontier, nonstop
Purchase today, December 1

One-way from Atlanta, each way:
$63 Los Angeles
A 7-day advance purchase required
Valid Tuesday, Wednesday or Saturday
Complete travel on or before February 24
Purchase today, December 1
Valid on American, nonstop

HURRY!  One-way from Atlanta, each way:
$112 Colorado Springs
A 14-day advance purchase required
Travel any available day of the week
Complete travel on or before February 9
Valid on United via Denver

HURRY!  One-way from Atlanta, each way:
$122 Salt Lake City
No advance purchase required
Travel any available day of the week
Complete travel on or before February 9
Valid on United via Denver
Also valid on American (via Dallas-Ft. Worth) on travel completed on or before March 2

Round-trip from Atlanta:
$379 Palm Springs, California
Valid Tuesday, Wednesday or Saturday
Start travel on or after January 5
Complete travel on or before March 2
A Saturday night minimum stay required
Purchase by December 7
Valid on Delta via Salt Lake City – or – American via Phoenix

Round-trip from Atlanta:
$504 Guayaquil, Ecuador (gateway to the Galapagos Islands)
Travel any available day of the week
Start travel on or after January 17
Finish trips on or before June 25
Valid on American via Miami
One free Miami stopover permitted
Stay at least one Saturday night or up to a year
Purchase today, December 1

Round-trip from Atlanta:
$818 Shannon, Ireland
Travel any available day of the week
Depart January 10-March 31
Stay at least one Saturday night or up to a month
Valid on United via Newark
Purchase today, December 1

Round-trip from Atlanta:
$932 Frankfurt, Germany
Add $50 per direction for Thursday-Saturday outbound and/or Friday-Sunday returns
Depart December 24-March 17
Add $50 per round-trip for December 16-23 departures
Valid on Delta, nonstop
Purchase today, December 1

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 and preferred seat assignments.  You will pay the lowest fees when these options are added during flight booking and payment.  Fees climb higher when options are added after flights are purchased, 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.


SPECIAL HOTEL & RESORT DEALS

Cozy Mountain Retreat
Three Bear Hollar is a short drive from Asheville and near to scenic hiking, riding and rafting. This off-the-grid retreat was featured on an episode of FYI’s Unplugged Nation.
The property offers three recently renovated rustic log cabins (circa 1880 and 1920) with old-fashioned charm.
In the Baby Bear cabin, reclaimed and original hardwood floors, antiques, patchwork quilts and iron beds complement the surrounding countryside.
The upgraded Momma Bear cabin feature an open studio floor plan with one queen bed.
The Poppa Bear cabin contains a large sleeping loft upstairs with a queen bed, plus one full and one twin bed.
Pack your own groceries and bring a book to read by the wood-burning fireplace or on the porch in a rocking chair. Rates from $190-$215 per night. Discounts occasionally offered for stays of more than one night. We’ve seen rates of $149-$169 (minimum two-night stay) at Secret Escapes (free sign-up).

No Snow Getaway
Travelers in search of an endless summer can start planning their winter escape with a new deal at Renaissance Indian Wells Resort & Spa. The #NoSnowHere California Dreamin’ package from the Indian Wells resort puts greater Palm Springs‘ legendary ‘high season’ within reach for the winter weary and those anticipating the need for a pool chair and umbrella drink. Stays start from $169 a night in December and from $259 January through April.
Included in the Indian Wells golf resort’s deal are:
Deluxe overnight accommodations
Two poolside drinks poolside or in the GLO Lounge
Two pairs of just-for-fun sunglasses
Refer to promo code WNT. Blackout dates may apply.
High season in the Coachella Valley allows guests to explore the Southern California desert when sun is plentiful, skies are blue and temperatures are mild. Featuring one of the most inviting experiences in the region, the Indian Wells resort offers swimming pools, cabanas, whirlpools and waterfalls along with a sandy beach perfect for sandcastle architects and coastal aficionados. Additionally, the resort’s Spa Esmeralda offers award-winning treatments and its own relaxing outdoor spa pool.
Area seasonal highlights include the Palm Springs International Film Festival, Modernism Week, BNP Paribas Open tennis tournament at Indian Wells Tennis Garden, Fashion Week at El Paseo, Humana Challenge golf tournament, Tour de Palm Springs bike race, Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival and the Stagecoach Country Music Festival.  


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


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