Travel Weekly's Ireland E-letter: July 15, 2004

MORE FAMS: Brian Moore International Tours (BMIT) added two departures to its series of Undiscovered Ireland Fall Fam Trips. The new trips leave New York (Kennedy) and Boston on Nov. 26 and Dec. 1, and Chicago on Nov. 26. The fam -- priced at $499, plus tax of $89, from Boston and New York, and at $559 plus tax of $89 from Chicago -- includes five nights' first-class hotel accommodations in Belfast, Derry and Mayo, and at Cabra Castle; five dinners; breakfast daily; an educational seminar; and a sightseeing program. Agents can secure space with a $100 deposit. Visit www.bmit.com or call (800) 982-2299.

AER EUROPE?: Continuing the expansion of its short-haul network, Aer Lingus will launch four routes from Dublin to Europe this fall. Service four times per week to Budapest, Hungary; daily to Liverpool, England; and each Saturday to Las Palmas and Lanzarote in Spain's Canary Islands will start at the end of October. Visit www.aerlingus.com online for more or to book.

NO BLARNEY: Celtic Tours is peddling its three-night escorted Killarney Short Break Tour, priced from $329, land only. Rates include accommodations at the Killarney Towers Hotel in Killarney; full Irish breakfast and dinner daily; and sightseeing. Weekly departures are available October to April. Roundtrip air from New York (Kennedy) or Boston is available from $278, or from Chicago from $321. Celtic pays 10% to 15% on land for individuals and up to 17% on land for groups. Call (800) 833-4373 or visit www.celtictours.com.

OFF-SEASON SAVINGS: SMI Tours is offering a series of three-, four-, five- and six-night escorted, off-season pub tours November through February, priced from $299 per person, land only, for three nights in Co. Cork, with visits to Blarney Castle, Cobh and Kinsale. In addition, the firm's best-selling Merry Ireland tour is priced to sell for winter from $699 per person. SMI pays agents 13% to 15% on land and 5% on air. In addition, agents get a $50 bonus on September motorcoach tour departures booked by July 31. Call (800) 499-1899 or click on "Off-season Tours" at www.smireland.com.

BEHIND THE WHEEL: CIE Tours International introduced new vacations to Ireland. One-week, air-inclusive self-drive holidays start at $549 from New York (Kennedy), $590 from Chicago and $705 from Los Angeles -- based on a minimum six nights -- and include B&B accommodations; breakfast daily; and rental car with standard or automatic (at extra cost) shift and unlimited mileage. Travel is available Oct. 16 to Dec. 14 and Jan.1 to March 31.

CIE ALSO unveiled the four-night Irish Getaway, priced from $698 with air from New York (Kennedy), Boston or Baltimore. The tour departs weekly on Fridays from Nov. 5 to April 29. Land-only is available from $406. Also on offer: The six-night Irish Spirit tour, priced from $998 with airfare from New York (Kennedy), Boston, or Baltimore. Departures run weekly on Saturdays and most Wednesdays, through Dec. 11. For more on CIE -- which pays agents 10% on land and varying commissions on air -- call (800) 243-8687 or go to www.cietours.com.

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