Travel Vulturism

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According to a recent NYT article on travel, there are some great deals to be had this year. If you have the means, or even if you have only a few hundred dollars, you might find yourself on a 4-day trip to Hawaii for two people including airfare over a holiday weekend.

Had I known about it back in February, I'd have jumped on that in a second. But, there are still deals galore. In every travel niche, it's discounted like it's never been before. Cruises, eco-trips through the Costa Rican canopy, even bike tours run by small mom-and-pop operations: it's all on sale!

I love to travel. My vacations are lovingly planned and if I don't go on a big trip every eighteen months or so, I feel extremely sorry for myself. I adore reading travel magazines, especially the budget ones, and know most of the common ways to save: travel in the off-season, stay away from holiday weekends, fly on a Tues/Wed/Thur, but these days, it's hard not to find a good deal.

I checked out seat availability for frequent flyer miles on Continental, and they were wide open, which is not the usual case. (For example, frequent flyer tickets to Hawaii are usually sold out more than a year in advance.) I figured I'd better use my miles before they were further devalued in the inflated economy of airline miles.

Lo and behold, they were having a frequent flyer miles "sale" --- I haven't seen that since 2001, the last recession. Typically, travel to certain zones of the world are standardized: the cost of a round-trip ticket to Hawaii is 35,000 miles, while Europe is 50,000. Europe was discounted to only 35,000 miles. At this rate, who knows what the discounts will be by October, after the summer off-season.

Bon Voyage!

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