tampabay.com

Briefs: Free airline ticket

Compiled by JANET K. KEELER
Published June 19, 2005


Travelers who load one of the new American Express Travelers Cheque Cards with at least $300 or buy $1,000 in regular Travelers Cheques can receive a certificate for a free companion ticket on American, Continental, Delta, Northwest, United or US Airways. To qualify, a ticket must be bought for at least $349 for travel between Sept. 15 and Jan. 15 or at least $379 from Jan. 16 to Sept. 14, 2006. Reservations must be made through Airline Promotions. Call toll-free 1-888-723-3297; www.americanexpress.com/companionair

BE A FILMMAKER

Guests who sign up for the Tribeca Grand Hotel's "Director's Cut" package - www.tribecagrand.com - can borrow a Sony HandyCam Digital Video and make their own movie about Manhattan. Computers at the hotel allow you to add special effects, cut unwanted scenes and lay a soundtrack. Packages start at a pricey $339 a night. For more information, go to the Web site or call toll-free 1-877-519-6600. Maybe you can get a producer to finance your effort.

YOUR WAKEUP CALL

Thirty-three percent of travelers say they take their own alarm clocks to a hotel because they don't trust the wake-up call to rouse them, according to an online Orbitz.com poll of 2,745 adults, conducted by Harris Interactive.

HUNTING FOR HOSTELS

The Web site www.hostelworld.com has come up with a list of 10 "Best Places in the World" offering suggestions based on a traveler's interest in specific activities. For instance, for hiking in Ireland, it recommends five hostels, including the Glendalough Youth Hostel in County Wicklow. The hostel is newly renovated with 10-bed dorms at $23 - at $1.28 to the euro - a person, per night in an area known for forest trails and rock climbing. To view the list, go to www.hostelworld.com and click on Infozone.

MOST LIKELY TO

Superlatives USA (Capital Books, $16.95) covers the largest, smallest, longest, shortest and wackiest sites in the country. Author Melissa L. Jones makes no attempt to be comprehensive - in a country so vast, how could she? - but she does revel in the nation's diversity. Florida makes the book. The smallest post office in the country is in Ochopee. Sure it's goofy, but it's also great fun.

- Compiled by JANET K. KEELER from staff and wire reports. You can reach her at 727 893-8586 or krieta@sptimes.com