Save 20% on Alaska Airlines and Horizon Air flights in the select markets listed below when traveling between January 8 and February 28, 2008*. Simply enter the Discount Code EC07407 when you make your reservation and ticket at alaskaair.com. Hurry, this Discount Code offer ends December 23, 2007.
Newark, Juneau, Santa Barbara
* The following blackout dates apply to the discount offer: January 18, 21-22; February 15, 18-19, 2008.
How much can you save by booking directly on Air Canada's site compared to, say, Orbitz? A lot. We checked Washington to Toronto leaving Feb 9 and returning Feb 16, to cite one example, nonstop on Air Canada using Orbitz. Total fare with taxes and fees: $489 RT(US).
On Aircanada.com? $262.72 RT (US).
New York to Toronto same dates: $271 on AC vs. $483 on Travelocity (see, were not picking on Orbitz, it's just that airlines are increasingly selling their best deals on their own sites).
That's mind boggling. Airlines big and small continue to make an end run around online travel agencies, and these fares will not be listed on other fare comparison or fare forecasting or fare alert sites.
Here are today's AC WebSavers which must be booked by today for travel through February 29.
American's latest exclusive deal nets you 20% off flights from the US to select destinations in the Caribbean and Mexico. The following destinations are included:
Grand Cayman (GCM)
St. Maarten (SXM)
La Romana, Dominican Republic (LRM)
Cancun, Mexico (CUN)
Cozumel, Mexico (CZM)
Ixtapa, Mexicao (ZIH)
Puerto Vallarta, Mexico (PVR)
As always, certain restrictions apply. Travel is valid from Jan 8, 2008 through May 21, 2008 with blackout dates Feb 15-18, Mar 14-23 and Apr 18-21. You must book your tickets by Dec 27. There is also a one night minimum stay, and the base fare before discount must be at least $125.
To book through this promotion, head on over to the American Airlines website, and use promo code DFMXCBSPRING when booking your reservation.
Eddie Mikell thought he had planned the trip of a lifetime with his wife and another couple: renting a house for a week in the French countryside. But on the way from Paris Charles de Gualle to their idyllic retreat last June, a truck clipped their rental car. Mikell escaped with minor scratches, but the others weren’t so lucky. After extensive treatment at a local hospital, doctors warned that his wife and friends, all of whom were in body casts, could only be transported home by commercial airline in seats that reclined to fully flat.
So the party had to buy last minute seats on Air France for $6700 each (to add insult to injury, US Airways, the airline that flew them to France, refused to refund the unused portion of their return flight). Then there were the medical bills in France ($12,000), the $3200 ambulance ride back to Paris, the $3000 in damages to the rental car, and the value of the vacation that never was. “It has amounted to over $50,000, depleting all my savings, and most of my retirement,” says Mikell.
Actually, Mikell got off lightly. Although most travelers correctly believe that something like this will never happen to them, emergency medical evacuation from a foreign country back home can sometimes cost $100,000 or more, depending extent of the illness or injury.
Several companies specialize in emergency medical air charters and annual memberships are surprisingly inexpensive considering the potential losses.
The best known are two Birmingham AL-based membership programs: Medjet Assist (www.medjetassistance.com), and AirMed (www.airmed.com). As long as you’re 150 miles or more from home, once you’re medically stabilized either will fly you to whatever hospital you or your family request at no cost.
MedJet charges $225 per year for a single membership for individuals up to 75 years of age or $350 for a family of up to two adults and five minor children. A “Diamond Plan” for travelers aged 75-85 costs $395 per year. Coverage for individual trips is also offered. AirMed charges $250 per year for single travelers up to age 75 or $350 for a family of seven. One distinction between the two firms is that AirMed owns and operates its own fleet of three custom-designed aircraft whereas MedJet charters aircraft from air ambulance firms as needed.
Both companies are careful to state that they do not provide “insurance”: rather, they are membership programs, in much the same way that the AAA offers services for its members. As such, neither company would have paid for the Merkel party’s medical bills in France. For that, there is standard travel insurance, from companies such as TravelGuard (www.travelguard.com). This travel insurance specialist recently introduced a “medevac” policy that includes $25,000 in insurance for medical expenses as well as medical evacuation coverage with no cost limit. Rates for travelers under 75 years of age range from $69 for a trip of up to ten days in duration to $185 per year for an annual plan ($119/$370 respectively for those aged 75-85).
Many health insurance policies, such as those issued by Blue Cross or Aetna, will pay for emergency medical care overseas, but there still may be standard deductibles and copayments, and the insured may have to pay costs out of pocket and get reimbursed later. (Medicare and Medicaid will not cover you overseas, however, unless you’ve bought supplemental coverage.) But they will not pay for medical jet transportation back home.
And in Mikell's case, the doctors who treated his party only spoke French, and all the medical reports were also in French, so his health insurance provider back in the US is giving him a hard time about reimbursement and so far has paid nothing. Had Mikell bought travel insurance, and contacted the provider immediately, the insurer would have coordinated directly with the French hospital to manage payment and care (obviously, travel insurance specialists deal with this sort of thing all the time).
Something to think about next time you travel outside the US.
We can't be sure how long this sale will last, but Northwest has reduced fares on many routes nationwide for travel through March 9. We're listing and testing as many of these fares as we can. Even Honolulu is included. We'll see if other airlines match, but this is the first significant fare reduction we've seen in a while. See fares from your local airport.
Virgin America is adding Seattle to their quickly expanding route map. Effective March 18, 2008, they will begin nonstop service to Seattle from San Francisco. In short order, on April 8, nonstop service commences from Los Angeles to Seattle as well. For a limited time, tickets will be offered at low introductory fares. Fares will start at $77.00 each way from San Francisco for Main Cabin seating and $177.00 each way in First Class. On the Los Angeles to Seattle route, fares will start at $99.00 each way in the Main Cabin and $199.00 in First Class. Tickets are available for purchase from now through Jan. 17, 2008, subject to availability. Taxes and fees are additional. Advance purchase restrictions apply and tickets are nonrefundable and non-transferable. Connecting service between Seattle and New York (JFK) as well as Washington, D.C. (Dulles) will be available as well, with fares starting at $298.00 and $278.00 respectively. Bookings must be made directly on Virgin America's website, www.virginamerica.com.
From now through January 31, 2008, Continental Airlines OnePass members can earn 9,999 miles when renting a car at Budget for five consecutive days or more. This offer is valid on all car groups at any participating Budget airport location in the US. Be sure to enter U072506 in the "Discount Code" (BCD) box when making the reservation. To receive this offer, reservations must be made at least 24 hours in advance and members must provide their OnePass number at time of rental or check-in. You’ll also get a 20% discount off of normal rates.
The airline's WebSavers represent significant savings over the same route bought on Orbitz, Travelocity, or any other site/online travel agency, and do not show up in automated fare data such as ITASoftware or ATPCO.
Purchase by midnight Sunday and travel through the end of February.
On sale this weekend, all one-way (double for round-trip) plus tax:
Spirit is having another $9 Fare Club sale, and a couple of routes are even better than free (they actually pay you to fly). This sale is only open to members of the Club. Plus, on fares of $49 or more, you can save $10 when you pay with your MasterCard. There are also some non-member fares, but they're not as good.