Planes, trains, & automobiles

Your guide to winter-weekend escapes at any price
By NINA SCHWARTZ  |  March 1, 2006

DRINKING ONE OF THESE isn't the same without the tropical backdropBoston in winter: makes you wonder why you live here, right? Sure, sure, New England charm, blah blah blah, but let’s be real. Old Man Winter definitely keeps a condo around here somewhere. But you can deal. You just need a weekend away. And no matter what your budget or chosen mode of transportation, we’re going to help you get it.

Less than $200: Fly me to the moon. Or maybe to Tampa
You heard the airline industry’s on the skids, right? Never mind. With Travelocity’s low-fare alert working for you, you can sit back and enjoy your complimentary bag of six pretzels and your choice of Coke, water, or nothing and you’ll like it, bitches. But you will like it, because you just found a round-trip ticket to Tampa or West Palm Beach for $143 — or $130 if you’re willing to fly out of Providence. Though you will have to work around some blackout dates, you do get your choice of airlines. And with prices like that, you’ll have plenty of dough left over to feel great about those poolside Pina Coladas. Not that you wouldn’t anyway.

If beaches aren’t your thing, you can fly JetBlue to our nation’s capitol for the weekend for as little as $115 round-trip. With its warm(er) weather, myriad historical buildings and museums, restaurants, shopping, and one hell of a public-transit system, the District of Columbia is perfect for a short getaway. Roam the same hallowed halls as our country’s leaders, put your ear to America’s political heartbeat, learn a lot of important stuff, and finally experience what it’s like to live in a city where happy hour isn’t illegal. The fun never stops, and neither will your cash flow.

Fly away at

Less than $100: Baby, you can drive my Zipcar
It’s tough to keep a car in Boston. The roads are pretty much undrivable, the drivers unbearable, and parking spaces a myth. So you ditched your car. And now you’re stuck, aren’t you? Zipcar’s car-sharing service to the rescue (if you’re 21+). Sure, you’ve seen the little cars puttering around and thought they were shooting a VW commercial or something. But think again, immobile friend. For a $25 application fee and only $60 a day, you could be a member of the Zipcar car-sharing network — freewheeling all over the Eastern Seaboard in a vehicle from the Zipcar fleet, conveniently scattered in neighborhoods throughout Greater Boston. And don’t forget that your daily fee cover gas, insurance, and designated parking, plus there are no added fees for drivers under 25.

So grab your skis and head north to New Hampshire or Vermont, grab your . . . ah . . . parka and head west to upstate New York, or grab your dancing shoes and hit NYC for the weekend. You could even drive to Canada. Just be sure to let them know three days in advance and be willing to pay an extra $20 for special insurance and other international niceties. Now look at you in your Zipcar, not a care in the world. Then look at your poor neighbor circling the block for the 14th time in 10 minutes. Bet you’re feeling pretty smart after all.

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  Topics: Lifestyle Features , Pina Coladas, Newton Centre, Edith Wharton,  More more >
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