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Can travel get any cheaper?

This week's airline sales are a treat, not a trick.

By Teresa Mears Oct 27, 2009 2:11PM

In the mood for a winter trip? This may be the year to take one. The airfare sales just keep coming, including some great sales this week.

 

Southwest Airlines launched a 72-hour sale today with fares as low as $25 each way for short flights. According to Tom Parsons’ Best Fares, these are the lowest fares offered by Southwest in 13 years.

 

Tickets are $25 each way for up to 375 miles, $50 for up to 549 miles, $75 for up to 999 miles, and $100 one way for more than 1,000 miles. On some routes, it’s a great deal. On others, the deals have been better.

 

The fares are good for travel Dec. 2-16 and Jan. 5-Feb. 10. Travel must be booked by midnight Pacific Time Oct. 29. The deal must be drawing a lot of interest because I was unable to check fares for specific trips and dates on the Southwest Web site.

With leisure travel down in the recession, other airlines also are offering deals to lure winter travelers. Here are some of this week’s deals:

  • JetBlue is offering an Island JOY sale, with fares to the Caribbean starting at $29. Tickets must be booked by Oct. 30. Travel dates vary, but most deals call for travel to be completed by Dec. 16.
  • AirTran has a sale going with fares starting at $39 one-way for travel through Feb. 10, with blackout dates around the holidays. Trips must be booked by Nov. 10.
  • Virgin America has a Halloween sale going, with fares starting at $31 for travel Oct. 30 and Oct. 31. Tickets must be purchased by Oct. 29.
  • Frontier is having a Spooktacular Savings Sale for travel through Dec. 16. Fares start at $44 one way and must be booked by midnight Oct. 29.

Be sure to read all the fine print about blackout dates, cost of schedule changes, bag fees and the taxes that could add a hefty percentage to these sale fares.

 

And check your routes. These sale fares may or may not be the best deals for the trip you want to take. Other airlines may match the fares on some routes, too.

 

If you want to keep up with the latest fare sales, Best Fares and AirfareWatchdog are good blogs to follow. You can also register to be kept up on fares from your favorite cites at Bing Travel and Travelocity, among others. And don’t forget to register online with your favorite airlines for news and fare sales. You can also follow your favorite airlines on Twitter and friend some of them on Facebook.

 

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