This week's Smart Deal from Go-Today (tel. 800/227-3235; www.go-today.com) is great for those who want to sample Italy. The nine-night package includes airfare and three nights each in Rome, Venice, and Florence for travel now through select dates in March.
Italy in winter may not initially sound like a great idea, but think about all the crowds you'll avoid by going in the off-season. Zip through the lines to see things like Florence's Duomo, the Vatican Museum, St. Peter's Basilica, and scores of other churches, cathedrals, monuments, and museums. You'll also save at least $750 -- the same trip starts at $1,849 in July and August.
Accommodations in the three cities, as described by Go-Today, are fairly basic but comfortable. You can also upgrade, starting from about $50 per person for slightly more luxurious and more centrally located digs.
Starting Jan. 1, 2011, the city of Rome has begun charging a Rome Visitor Tax to be paid at the hotel at the time of checkout; expect this tax to add €2-3 per person per night based on the type of accommodations you select.
Trip Type: Air-inclusive; independent
What the Quoted Price Gets You: Round-trip flights from New York City (LaGuardia, JFK or Newark) to Rome (returning from Venice); three nights apiece in Rome, Florence, and Venice; second-class reserved rail tickets for transportation between cities; continental breakfast daily; hotel taxes and service charges, and airline fuel surcharges.
What Else You'll Have to Pay: About $106 in additional air taxes and fees, and the Rome Visitor Tax of €2-3 per person per night
Book By: As soon as possible to ensure availability
When: Through Feb. 24, 2011, March 1-3, 8-10, 15-17, 23-24 (from $1,099); other departures from January to March start from either $1,149 or $1,199.
Other Gateways: Atlanta (add from $25), Chicago (add from $64), Los Angeles (add from $124)
More Details: All prices are per person and, if lodging is a component of the package, based upon two people traveling together (unless otherwise noted). The prices listed are general starting rates; see "What Else You'll Have to Pay" for details about associated taxes and fees. Base-prices, taxes, and fees can vary based on point of departure and time of travel. Blackout dates may apply. Trip add-ons like sightseeing tours and meal plans may also increase the price. Check with the tour operator for additional gateways and any single supplements, which is the extra cost that a solo traveler would pay to book the deal
Talk with fellow Frommer's travelers on our Italy Travel Forum.