Boeing Frontiers
September 2003
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Volume 02, Issue 05
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Spain for a c-note, air fare included


Two weeks on Spain's Costa del Sol, everything included. Price: 40 British pounds—or about $100 (U.S.).

As I thumbed through the Lunn Poly catalog of package holidays that rainy November day back in 1969 in England, I thought there must be a mistake. But a look at other advertised packages in the booklet reassured me this was the going rate.

For $100, I would get a round-trip flight from Luton Airport near London to Malaga, Spain; a room in a Mediterranean beachfront hotel at Torremolinas; three meals a day; ground transportation; and even two sightseeing trips to local attractions. It seemed an answer to a prayer for me, a recent American college grad spending my second dreary winter as an underpaid journalist in an industrial town near London.

This was my introduction to package holidays—and it was a happy one. I went on the holiday in January 1970, and it was everything it was advertised to be.

Fast forward to spring 2001. I knew from my work with Commercial Airplanes European Sales that tour operators were still offering package holidays, but I had no idea if they were still the bargain of the past. When I checked catalogs, I found that prices had gone up substantially in the 30 years that had passed.

Along with English friends, I chose a one-week package tour in June 2001 to Kusadasi, a Turkish town on the Aegean Sea. For about $600 per person, we got a round-trip flight on JMC Airlines from Birmingham, England, to Izmir, Turkey, a two-hour van ride to Kusadasi and back, a room in a small hotel and daily breakfast. All tours to local attractions such as the old Roman town of Ephesus were extra. Still, it was a bargain by U.S. standards and a package well worth the money.

Nowadays, it's easy to find European package holidays from British tour operators on the Internet. The trick for Boeing people working in the United States is to find a cheap flight from the United States to London, then fly out on the package tour from there.

Among the Web sites to search for bargain holidays are www.lunnpoly.com, www.thomson-holidays.com and www.thomascook.co.uk

óCheryl Addams

 

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