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Rundown for the Week of December 5, 2003

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What's Fresh in Powder

For many skiers and snowboarders, winter means one thing: snow! But how do you make sure there's fresh snow where you're going? And, how do you get a good winter flight/hotel/lift-ticket package for when you get there? The experts tell us how to find thrills without breaking our necks, and we have the latest on guaranteeing snow before you head to the mountain of your dreams.

Web resource: Click here for tips to get great winter snow travel bargains.

Winter Sports Roundup

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Is the ski lift a thing of the past? From heli-skiing to snowshoeing, today, there are a variety of options available to snow enthusiasts who want to escape the crowded slopes and try something a little different this winter season. Savvy Traveler host Diana Nyad sits down with Jeff Galbraith, publisher of "frequency, the snowboarder's journal" and Evelyn Spence, the managing editor of "Skiing" magazine, to talk about the latest trends in snow sports.

Web resources
www.frequencysnowboarding.com: frequency, the snoboarder's journal"
www.skiingmag.com "Skiing" magazine

As suggested by Evelyn and Jeff, check out these ski/snowboard resorts:
www.grandtarghee.com: Snow Cat skiing
beavercreek.snow.com/winterhome.asp: Snow shoeing
www.media-coloradoski.com/mountains/parksandpipes.cfm: Terrain Parks

How to Guarantee Your Snow
by Jeff Tyler
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It's getting to be that time of year when temperatures drop and skiers begin to think about hitting the slopes. If you are anything like contributor Jeff Tyler, you might give some thought to where you could expect to find the best fresh snow. But will Mother Nature be on your side? Jeff hit up some experts for advice on where to predict good snow.

Online ski reports:
www.onthesnow.com: OnTheSnow.com
www26.brinkster.com/am1/snowreports/report.asp: Snow Reporter
www.snocountry.com: SnoCountry.com Mountain Reports

Tips to Get Cool Deals on Winter Sports Travel

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You know what really allows you to enjoy the great outdoors in wintertime? A great deal. That's why our Travel-Expert-in-Residence, Rudy Maxa, has hot tips to get you some cool bargains -- to really get you in on the action.

Web resources: Click here for tips to get great winter snow travel deals.

Web resource: More info. on getting cool winter deals

photo: J. Mitchell
Oaxaca Cultural Exchange
by Jonathan Mitchell

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If you're a curious traveler and you love to immerse yourself in another culture, you need to meet Culture Xplorers. The group takes you into communities, worldwide, where you can live the local life -- and not stick out like a sore thumb. You can stay with a family or in a hotel room and meet up with the locals to not only eat, pray and play, but also to help them with projects to improve their lives. Contributor Jonathan Mitchell traveled to the Mexican province of Oaxaca with the president of Culture Xplorers, Jim Kane, to get the firsthand experience he was looking for.

Web resource: www.culturexplorers.com: Culture Xplorers Web site

Music with Bob Duskis
Egypt and Vienna

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Bob Duskis, co-founder of Six Degrees Records in San Francisco, is our world music guide. This week, Bob features two groups that span the globe from Sudan to Sarajevo and Germany, and mix sounds to form a musical pastiche of different cultures and genres.

Click here for detailed info. about the artists

Web resources:
The Rough Guide to Ali Hassan Kuban - Ali Hassan Kuban (label: World Music Network )
Gran Riserva - dZihan & Kamien (label: Six Degrees)
Available at the Public Music Radio Source. Your purchase helps support The Savvy Traveler.

Interested in other music you've heard on The Savvy Traveler?
Click here for music selected by Savvy producer Ben Adair.

Sound Travels
One Man Banda, Paris Metro

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"Sound Travels," where we travel with just our ears as our guide, takes us to Paris -- where we discover there is no quality-control of busking. Sometimes, you luck out and you see a truly amazing street performer acting out a Shakespearian scene or playing a concerto on violin. And sometimes, you get what Jake Warga heard on the Paris Metro: a $10 Casiotone, a tambourine and the worst version of "La Cucaracha" France has ever heard.

Click here for more "Sound Travels" segments.

Traveler's Aid
The Lowdown on Low-Cost Air Carriers

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Joe Sharkey, the business travel columnist for "The New York Times," covers the latest develops on the business travel scene. He's back with us this week to talk about the latest trend in the airline business: the onslaught of new low-cost air carriers. After 9/11, it was the Southwests and the jetBlues of the world that remained profitable. Now, it seems, all the major airlines are trying to get in on the act. Joe tells host Diana Nyad how these new airlines, run by the old airlines, are different and whether this really is good for travelers.

Web resource:
www.nytimes.com: Archive of Joe's articles on The New York Times Web site (registration required)

Deal of the Week
Caribbean Escape!

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Sure, it's cold outside. That means, you can go enjoy what the winter weather has to offer, like our contributors at the top of the show this week -- or you can explore a hot-weather alternative just for the sun worshippers! Our Dealmeister Rudy Maxa has a warm deal in the balmy clime of the Caribbean.

The setting is the idyllic Caribbean island of Nevis, a lush, hilly postage-stamp of an island not far from St. Kitts. It's small and there might be a chicken or two on the runway at the island's tiny airport, but this is not some backwater, uninhabitable place: There's a Four Seasons hotel on the island with a spectacular golf course and there's also a family-owned resort called Mount Nevis Hotel and Beach Club. It has 32 rooms, all of which have been renovated to the luxurious four-star level.

Until the last day of January, the hotel will match your stay, night-for-night, with a free room if you book a superior suite for $300 a night. That's based on a three-night minimum. So, if you stay three nights, you get another three nights free; stay four, get four on the house, and so on.

But there's more: Fly to St. Kitt's and the resort will pay for two tickets per room for the short hop to that little airport in Nevis on Winair.

Web resource: Click on www.mountnevishotel.com for details and photos, or call (800) 75-NEVIS for details and to make reservations.

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