Look to Europe ASAP (tel. 415/750-5449; for one of the best-priced deals on the market currently for fall and winter travel to "the boot." Its "Rome Getaway" combines round-trip airfare and six night's accommodations in the Eternal City starting from $709 (for flights out New York's JFK). Your hotel at this price is the Holiday Inn Fiano, well out of the city center, but upgrades to more centrally located digs are available at additional cost. The base price does not include taxes and security fees, which vary based on your point of departure. This offer is valid for travel November 1 through December 11, 2005, then again from January 6 through March 12, 2006.

Gate 1 Travel (tel. 800/682-3333; has a special mix-and-match, two-city deals starting from $599 per person based on double occupancy that includes roundtrip air and five-nights accommodations for travel in November. Choose between Venice-Rome, Venice-Florence, and Rome-Florence. You can start in the city of your choice and end in any alternate city as well. The trip includes roundtrip to Italy, transportation from city to city, five nights in top-notch hotels, daily breakfast, and hotel and service charges. The trip does not include September 11 security fees or departure taxes which vary from $50 to $250 per person. While there is no deadline purchase date for this trip, the folks at Gate 1 advise you to book this trip early as space on this low-priced air/land special is limited and tends to go fast.

Tourcrafters (tel. 800/482-5995; has a four-night "Florence Summer Special" starting at $999. The trip includes round-trip air transportation from New York to Bologna on Eurofly (billed as Italy's "other airline"), train transportation from Bologna to Florence, four nights' accommodations at the four-star former palace Diana Park Hotel, and daily breakfast buffet. This trip departs on Sundays from June 12 to September 11, 2005. Hotel service charges and taxes are included in the package price. Airline security fees and departure taxes are additional. The land-only price for this summer deal starts from as little as $238. Extensions on the trip are also available. Three nights extra in Venice at a hotel on one of the canals will run you $311 per person with double occupancy; three nights in Ferrara, $256.

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