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Why packages are always the better deal

Why packages are always the better deal ( LIBERTYVILLE, Illinois - It’s relatively easy these days to make a hotel reservation and book an air ticket online. After all, you can read hotel reviews on Trip Advisor, there are web sites that offer discounts, and this year many hotels are offering “twofers.” You might think, therefore, that you’ll get the best deal by booking a trip yourself.

But how many hours will you spend doing this? How will you get from the airport to the hotel? Where can you buy a bus or train ticket, or will the taxi driver speak English? Is the hotel clean and conveniently located? Oops, is breakfast included or will you have to pay an extra US$25 a day for breakfast? What about sightseeing? How will you get around to see the important sights?

Tour operators who have high-volume purchasing power get discounted prices you can only dream about. Even if they include airport to hotel transfers, a sightseeing tour and daily breakfast in an air/hotel package, they can still beat any price you can get — probably by hundreds of dollars.

TourCrafters, for example, a company of Italy experts known for affordable packages (who have checked every hotel), is currently offering a 4-night Rome City Break that costs US$1,252 until May 15 and again from September 1 to October 31. Of course, the price goes up in summer (high season), but let’s zero in on that US$1,252. It includes the round-trip flight from New York, the fuel surcharge (a big expense this year), airport transfer, hotel accommodations, daily buffet breakfast, a half-day sightseeing tour, service charges, taxes, and even an ice cream cone in an historic gelateria. (Air fare from other departure cities is additional.)

If you were to book these elements yourself (in addition to hours spent at the computer), you would pay US$815 for air fare, US$420 for fuel surcharge, US$99 for airport transfer, US$316 for hotel, US$72 for breakfast, US$49 for sightseeing, US$62 for service charges and taxes, and US$3 for the ice cream cone — a total of US$1,836 and a difference of US$584.

This is why smart people take the fast, easy, money-saving way out… and buy a package.

For more information about TourCrafters’ variety of packages (note that they offer packages and tours to France, Spain, Greece, and Turkey, as well as photography tours in Italy), go to and click the destination of choice or Hot Deals of the Week. For reservations, call 800-482-5995.

MEDIA CONTACT: Barbara Gillam, BGPR, Phone: 212-288-1405, Email:

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