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United Sale to Cody, Wyoming

If you weren't among the record number of visitors to Yellowstone National Park this summer, now may be the time to go. Temperatures are cooling off, crowds are thinning out, and -- more importantly -- United (tel. 800/241-6522; www.united.com) has discounted fares to Cody. This sale is valid for travel through Nov. 16. Fares require a 14-day advance purchase, as well as a two-night or Saturday night minimum stay.

Round-trip fares include:

Sun Country's Vegas Wedding Package

Feel like getting hitched in Vegas? In, say, a group-hitching scenario presided over by a genuine Las Vegas radio personality... to be broadcast over the radio? If so, Sun Country (tel. 800/752-1218; www.suncountry.com) is offering a special wedding promotion along with WCCO-AM. For $1,498 (or $749 each, if you're going Dutch), you get three nights in the Tropicana Hotel and Casino, plus round-trip airfare for two, departing for Vegas on Thursday, Oct. 7, and returning Sunday, Oct. 10. Other frills include:

  • Access to the WCCO-AM Live Remote Broadcast on Thursday and Friday evening, hosted by John Hines and interviews with local celebrities
  • One ticket (per guest) to the Brad Garrett Comedy Club at the Tropicana at 8pm Thursday
  • A Private Gaming Lesson in the Tropicana Casino at 12pm Friday
  • Wedding/Vow Ceremony poolside at the Tropicana at roughly 7pm Friday
  • Officiating the wedding will be yours truly, John Hines
  • Champagne toast following the ceremony
  • Appetizers and cake
  • Cash bar; 2 drink tickets included per person
  • Music and dancing all night long!

This package requires a 10-day advance purchase, and must be booked no later than 11:59pm, Sept. 27.

Sure, you could possibly string together an even cheaper last-minute Vegas wedding on your own, depending of course on where you're departing from, and where you stay... but would your ceremony make the radio? Would there be "local celebrities?" And what about appetizers, hmm? Just a little something to consider, people.

Virgin America's Fares to Fly By

Virgin America's (tel. 877/359-8474; www.virginamerica.com) Fares to Fly By start at $39 one-way, before taxes. Offer is good for travel from Sept. 14 through Oct. 6. Additional sale fares are available for travel from Oct. 7 through Nov. 17, starting at $49 one-way, before taxes. Round-trip fares require a 7-day advance purchase. All tickets must be purchased by 11:59pm PDT, Sept. 13.

Other airlines (JetBlue, American, Delta) may be matching along some routes.

Delta Sale to/from Atlanta

Save on travel to/from Atlanta with the latest sale from Delta Airlines (tel. 800/221-1212; www.delta.com). Fares range from $98 to $318 round-trip, and all travel must be completed by Jan. 26. Tickets require a 10-day advance purchase as well as a Saturday night stay.

Avoid travel on blackout dates Nov. 23, 24, 27, 28, 29, Dec. 17-31, and Jan. 1-4.

All purchases must be made by Sept. 16. Round-trip fares are reversible, and include:

OpenSkies Offers Money-Back Guarantee

How was your flight? Not so good? Fine. Here's your money back (minus taxes and fees, however).

That's the new offer from OpenSkies (tel. 866/581-3596; www.flyopenskies.com), the all-business-class airline from British Airways flying to Paris from Newark and Washington/Dulles.

British Airways isn't new to the money-back offer, having had a similar program several years ago for its Club World business class product. Naturally, there are provisos and restrictions. No, you can't get your money back if a volcano cancels your flight. And yes, theoretically you could make up some lame excuse for your displeasure such as, "the flight attendant was mean to me" or "I didn't like the food." But BA/Open Skies assumes, from past experience, that passengers would only bother asking for a refund if something really egregious happened.

In addition to the money back scheme, OpenSkies happens to have very decent fares compared to other business-class service to Paris. For more, read USA Today reporter Ben Mutzabaugh's analysis.

Fare Period vs. Date Availability

From the mailbag this week: Here's a misconception that a lot of folks have about booking within the dates of a particular sale. "One of your fare listings says "travel through June 15" and I tried to book a fare leaving Friday night after work and coming back Sunday night. My itinerary falls within the dates covered in your listing, so why didn't I get that fare?! It was hundreds more!" Right, so what's the difference between the fare period and actual date availability here? We can explain!

Additional reporting by Tracy W. Stewart

George Hobica is a syndicated travel journalist and blogger whose website, www.airfarewatchdog.com, tracks unadvertised airfare wars and fare sales, including the most helpful and always updated Top 50 Airfares.

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