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Travel to Europe remains high on our readers' list, despite poor conversion rates for the American dollar against the pound and the euro. Just in the last week, we've received news of several packages to points across the pond, that, while not really budget vacations, still represent pretty good values.
Handed out each year by the mile hounds at InsideFlyer Magazine, the Freddies celebrate the best in frequent-flier and frequent-stay programs. Coincidentally, we stumbled upon two interesting frequent-flier promotions this week -- one from America West, and one from United.
Folks who can't sit still will appreciate Cathay Pacific's latest "Deal of the Month," sending you to Hong Kong, Singapore and Bangkok for $799. There's just one catch -- you have to visit all three cities, in that order.
It's an excellent idea to visit Mexico while it's in the fullness of spring, before it gets too darned hot, before the rainy season is in full force and especially before the risk of hurricanes along the Yucatan and southern Pacific coast is at its height. With that in mind, here's a fiesta of vacation savings south of the border through May and into June.
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Bike through Bath, England
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Reader's Voice
From Pete Leonard: "Dates: April 27th through May 1st, 2004. First let me say that we had a wonderful time in Cancun. I want to add a little bit to pool of experiential knowledge for others to benefit from as I have from them."
From robertlorenson: "Just returned from a trip to Cusco, Machu Picchu and the Sacred Valley. Trip was highly successful in a significant part because of the Torre Dorada Hotel. Small 18 room hotel in a quiet residential neighborhood about 5 minutes from the center of town. Place is new, prices are reasonable and the best part is the services provided. You get transportation, great breakfast and assistance with tours, rail travel etc. Owner has had work experience in the US and Europe and treats guests like family."
From Sheryl Dixon: "As of March 2004, passports are required for Americans to visit Barbados. Previously you could just use your birth certificate (like Mexico). We are going in May and received this notice from our hotel."
From Clarice: "My husband is interested in using a camper van (actually he wants us to sleep in the back of a regular van and the camper van is a compromise) to travel through Florida with two small children. Has anyone done this or do you have any suggestions? We're flying from Alaska, so we're pretty clueless at this point. My first thought was we might miss the a/c at night."
From Kingly: "Why is Apple Vacations so late and disorganized? We traveled with our sons 2.5 and 4.5 to Ixtapa/Zihuatanejo from Detroit, air-only, during the first week of March. Our flight was delayed 4 hrs there and back! With little kids -- that does not make things easy! Ten years ago, Apple was really a top notch tour operator, but now their quality has definitely degraded! It seems other passengers traveling to other destinations also experienced significant delays. I wrote several email letters and snail mail letters and never received a response. I would highly recommend using scheduled air to reach these destinations, especially when travelling with young children."

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