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What's the Deal?: New Air Service, New Bargains

Carol Sottili

We don't know how long these fares will last, but AirTran has announced new nonstop service from BWI to Los Angeles, Seattle and Dallas beginning May 6, and, as of last night, was offering cheap introductory fares.

To Los Angeles, fare started at $219 round trip, including taxes (United, the only other carrier offering nonstop service from BWI, was charging $413 for flights in May). Airtran's daily flight to Los Angeles departs 9 a.m, arriving 12:30 p.m. and return flight departs 12:53 p.m., arriving 8:25 p.m.

To Seattle, round-trip fare was $229 including taxes (no other airline offers nonstop flights from BWI to Seattle). Nonstop service to Seattle will be seasonal, ending at the end of October. Flight to Seattle departs 7:50 p.m., arriving 10:38 p.m. Return flight is a red-eye, leaving at 11:30 p.m. and arriving 7:30 a.m.

To Dallas, round-trip fare was $199 including taxes. AirTran will be going head-to-head with American, which offers six daily nonstop flights to Dallas. As of last night, American's fare was $244 round trip for May travel. Service to Dallas will be seasonal, ending by mid November. Flight to Dallas departs at 10:50 a.m., arriving at 12:54 p.m. Return flight departs 8 a.m., arriving 12:09 p.m.

In other new service news, Virgin Atlantic announced it will add a second daily flight from Washington Dulles to London Heathrow beginning April 20 and running through October. The airline is offering sale fares for travel from Dulles to London through Sept. 5. The summer economy fares aren't all that cheap: about $872 round trip with taxes. But fares through March 18 are great: less than $500 round trip including taxes. Also, take a look at sale fares for premium economy: Those fares cost about $348 more round trip than economy through March 18, but the seats are 21 inches wide and you get about seven inches more legroom than economy. For high rollers, Virgin is also offering a good sale on upper class seats, about $2,728 round trip for high-season travel.

if you want a peek at this week's best deals, check out the Travel page later today when the What's the Deal? column is posted.

LATE BREAKING NEWS: AirTran announced today that it will start nonstop service (three flights daily) from BWI to Burlington, Vt., on May 21. Price right now is incredible: $139 round trip, including taxes. The only other airline that offers nonstop service to Burlington from the Washington area is United from Dulles: Price is $419 round trip.

By Carol Sottili |  February 15, 2008; 6:45 AM ET  | Category:  Airline Industry , Carol Sottili , Deals
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i was just told yesterday (by a USAir-super-frequent-flier) that USAir decided to drop its 500 minimum for award miles ... meaning all those short east-coast hops people take around this area will now only earn a fraction of the miles they used to ... so those of us who almost exclusively fly in this area will have a really hard time earning awards on USAir in the future.

However, if you fly United (whose miles count towards your USAir total) you still get the 500 mile minimum (apparently).

Just thought some of your readers might want to know ... you might want to fly United for your east coast trips from now on, if you like those frequent flier miles.

Posted by: ffx | February 15, 2008 8:46 AM

Other lines are basically matching the high season London fares including BA for their New ClubWorld business class.

Posted by: Glenn | February 15, 2008 9:22 AM

Yeah, but then you have to fly AirTran. Ugh.

Posted by: Liz | February 15, 2008 6:09 PM

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