Welcome to October, Washingtonian jet-setters! In case you missed it, the biggest travel news of the week is Southwest Airlines’ purchase of AirTran, a fellow low-fare airline. We’ve always been big fans of AirTran (specifically the low-cost-upgrade opportunities on longer flights), so we’re uncertain what the merger means for the Atlanta-based airline. CNN seems to think it’ll be good news for passengers—Southwest has lower fees than AirTran and doesn’t charge for bags, in addition to being one of the top-rated airlines for customer satisfaction.
We’re suckers for fall foliage, and this slide show from Budget Travel is too good to miss. If you have amazing photos of colorful trees in Washington, we’d love to see them. E-mail them to firstname.lastname@example.org and we’ll select the best for an upcoming gallery. If you feel like going on a leaf-peeping pilgrimage, Shenandoah National Park Lodging is offering a Scenic Savings Package through November 4 at Big Meadows and through November 24 at Skyland Resort. For $150, you can get overnight lodging at either resort, breakfast for two, and a $30 retail voucher. Click here for details.
Farther afield, there are two tempting European deals this week. First, OpenSkies, the low-cost business-class airline, is offering one-way flights to Paris for $675, excluding taxes and fees (around $115 per person). Flights have no more than 84 passengers per plane and offer gourmet French cuisine and wine selections. The only catch is that the price depends on two people booking flights, so you’ll have to take a date to the most romantic city in the world, but is that such a hardship?
Second, Prague is one of Europe’s most popular cities, but it’s also often neglected in favor of the Italy-France-Spain trifecta. But as a tourist destination, Prague has something for everyone: history, culture, public transportation, sports, and lots of beer. Travelzoo has an amazing Prague deal this week, including six nights’ accommodation at the Juno Hotel, flights, breakfast, and all surcharges for $762 per person, flying out of Washington (airport taxes are an additional $155). Travel is valid from November through March, and you must mention the promo code TZPG1 when booking.
Closer to home, it’s a great weekend for events in Washington this weekend. Sunday, the Takoma Park Street Festival offers musicians, street performers, crafts, children’s activities, and food at the intersection of Carroll and Willow avenues. Also on Sunday, the 27th annual Historic Manassas Fall Jubilee features dance and music, pumpkin decorating, and more as well as a performance by sculptors the Chainsaw Chix. And the travel-themed All Roads Film Festival concludes this weekend with 11 movies Friday through Sunday at National Geographic’s headquarters in DC. See the links for more details.