The Real Deal: Round-trip airfare, six nights' accommodations, and continental breakfast daily, from $899 per person—plus an estimated $130 in airport taxes and fees.
When: April 7-May 15, 2008; add $10 for Sept. 8-Oct. 25, $320 for July 15-Aug. 25, and $400 for May 16-July 14 and Aug. 26-Sept. 7.
Gateways: New York City; add $30 for Boston, $50 for D.C., $170 for St. Louis, $220 for Seattle, $260 for San Diego, and $430 for Dallas; additional cities available.
The fine print: Airport taxes and service charges are about an additional $130 per person. Prices are per person and are based on double occupancy and a 21-day advanced purchase; single supplement is $150. Travel is on Tuesday and Wednesday; it may be an additional $50 per person each way for travel Thursday through Monday. Air carrier is based on gateway and availability at time of booking, and multiple connections may be necessary. Read these guidelinesbefore you book any Real Deal.
Book by: April 17, 2008
Contact: Virgin Vacations, 888/937-8474, virgin-vacations.com
Why it's a deal: In a recent Kayak search of Monday through Wednesday departures in mid-April, the lowest round-trip airfare between New York City and Paris was $641 (Delta). Rooms at the Comfort Hotel Davout Nation run about $160 per night, not including taxes. That puts the total around $1,121, including estimated airfare taxes, but without hotel taxes. You'll save $92 by booking the Virgin Vacations package instead ($1,029 including airport taxes)—and you'll have your hotel taxes covered.
Trip details: The Paris At Its Best packageincludes round-trip airfare to Paris on a major carrier, most likely United Airlines. You'll stay at the Comfort Hotel Davout Nation, located in the 20th arrondissement, an outlying residential and culturally diverse neighborhood on the Right Bank.
The hotel is near the Père-Lachaise Cemetery—the resting place of luminaries such as Edith Piaf, Marcel Proust, and Oscar Wilde—as well as Giverny and the Palace of Versailles. You can read about the newly renovated Hall of Mirrors in our recent story Face-lift: Versailles.
Disneyland Paris, accessible by the A4 motorway or public transportation, is also an easy day trip.
If you feel like splurging, there are multiple upgrade options in this package, from an additional $10 at the Comfort Hotel Lamarck to an additional $2,990 at the Ritz.
We all know that the dollar is weak, but there are ways to see things on the cheap. You can find 10 money-saving tips in our story Stretching the Dollar in Europe. Here's one for Paris—use a bike to get around. The city has about 20,000 bikes for short-term rentals that start at €1. (Besides, it's just such a romantic idea.) Get details on how the program works by reading Rent a Bike in Europe for Nearly Nothing.
Copyright © 2012 Newsweek Budget Travel, Inc.