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Fall/Winter Sale from Midwest Sale

Already making plans for winter? The latest sale from Midwest Airlines (tel. 800/452-2022; www.midwestairlines.com) is good for travel from October 14 all the way through February 11. All fares must be purchased by October 6, and are valid for travel on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Saturdays. Round-trip fares include:

AirTran Sale: Book an Excuse to Not Rake the Leaves

AirTran (tel. 800/AIR-TRAN; www.airtran.com) is also running a little fall/winter sale, this one good for travel through January 30. You'll find the lowest fares available for travel on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Saturdays, with sale fares slightly higher on Mondays, Thursdays, and Fridays. All fares must be booked by October 14, and include;

China Airlines Biz Class Fares from Los Angeles

China Airlines (tel. 800/227-5118; www.china-airlines.com) is offering discounted Dynasty Class fares (aka Business Class) from Los Angeles to select Asian cities. All tickets must be purchased by December 31, for departures on or before December 31. Round-trip fares include:

Southwest Airlines Coming to Minneapolis

When Delta merges operations with Northwest later this year, it's unlikely that the combined airline will operate six hubs, especially since some of them are relatively close to each other. Which ones will go? Atlanta or Memphis? Detroit, Cincinnati or Minneapolis? Will they keep Salt Lake City? Whatever happens, Norwelta will cut some routes, and there will be room for other airlines to nose into these hubs, and Southwest (tel. 800/435-9792; www.southwest.com), not surprisingly, is the first to make a move. Beginning in March, the Dallas-based low cost carrier will begin service between Chicago Midway and MSP, which will bring low cost connecting service to cities Southwest serves from Chicago Midway. Minneapolis desperately needs another low cost airline, especially if Sun Country, which is experiencing financial difficulties, doesn't survive.

Travelocity Playing Around with New Interface

No, your eyes aren't playing tricks on you. Travelocity (www.travelocity.com) is fooling around (some would say screwing around) with their airfare search user interface for flexible date searches. It's currently in beta. On the plus side, it shows fares with all taxes. But now you must choose the length of your trip to see fare results. And it only shows one month at a time. Some people will love this new feature, others (those of us who just want to see the very lowest fare between two cities, assuming we're totally flexible in our dates, over a 330 day period) will hate it. Travelocity seems to have anticipated the antipathy of the latter group (us) so there's a link at the bottom right of the calendar that you can click if you don't like this new feature. Also, if you click the "next" arrow box (in brown) at the top right, you'll eventually get to a full 330-day fare result. This beta version only pops up in some city pair searches for now, but we suspect they'll be rolling it out site-wide eventually.

Last Chance: Free London Stay

British Airways (tel. 800/247-9297; www.britishairways.com) is having one of their periodic sales that along with some pretty competitive fares throws in up to 2 free nights at select hotels in London or elsewhere in the United Kingdom. The best deals are available for departures from late October through late March with higher rates for earlier and holiday travel. The terms of this sale allows for a generous 11-month maximum stay as opposed to the more standard 30 days, and also includes decent deals to Manchester, Newcastle, Edinburgh, Glasgow, and Aberdeen, all on sale through October 3. As always, we save you the trouble of figuring out the taxes and fees and have listed the all-inclusive fares for British Airways' nonstop routes to Heathrow or Gatwick. If you're planning to make a European trip in October or November, this is an excellent opportunity to also take advantage of the current Ryanair sale that has been reincarnated beyond its original Thursday deadline and may be extended yet again or replaced by another great offer. This would involve a transfer from Heathrow or Gatwick to either Stansted or Luton airports, but at least now you'll get a free night or two in London to make your connection comfortably. Even if you don't make this sale's deadline, you can still take advantage of the many amazing deals available from these two budget hubs to practically anywhere in Europe.

Holiday Travel with the Kids: How to Deal

Ok, so as we've established in the past, carting the kids along on your travels can be a little bit of a headache. At least the getting-there part of the trip. There's the unavoidable sippy cup mishaps, the disapproving glares from other passengers, and -- for the solo travelers -- the seat kicking, and (everyone's fave) the crying. So, how can parents and passengers survive the upcoming holiday travel blitz, minus the headaches? Minus the crying? How do you keep your little angels in check on those long dull flights? What's your smooth operator approach to handling junior seat kickers? Share your parenting travel tips, tales, and advice with us here! And maybe your wise words will be of use to other folks flying with/alongside the kiddies this season.

Airline Consolidation: Will We See More?

What is it about consolidation that airlines hate so much? Why do entrepreneurs launch new airlines when most start ups are doomed to fail and the industry is not profitable? More on this over on our blog.

Additional Reporting by Bo Borre and 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.