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Five major carriers now offer last-minute travel bargains, as much as 70%-80% off regular fares, on the Internet. American Airlines NerSAAver, for example, recently had round-trip fares from New York City to D.C. for $69, and L.A. to D.C. for $269.
Every Wednesday, consumers who have sent their e-mail addresses through the airline’s Web site receive a listing of discounted fares from American (www.americanair.com), US Airways (www.usair.com), TWA (www.twa.com) and Continental (www.flycontinental.com). Users are then placed on a free subscriber’s list. Travelers on Northwest (www.nwa.com) must check the Web site for discounts. You can also book online through American Express (www.americanexpress. com/travel), which offers discounted flights on Continental, hotels, cruises and vacation packages.
Find out about restrictions. Your travel options will be limited to what’s available that weekend.