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Feb 21st
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Home Travel Western Travel Buzz Latest News, Deals & Savings for Dec. 29

Latest News, Deals & Savings for Dec. 29

This week: Horizon Air now making daily flights to Mammoth from LAX, Tempe opens $1.4 billion light rail system, and Vail Resorts says it’s rolling back multi-day lift ticket prices

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Horizon Air Offering Daily Flights to Mammoth From LAX

Horizon Air is now offering daily direct flights to Mammoth Mountain from Los Angeles International Airport, giving Southern Californians a quick, easy way to access one of the nation's most popular ski resorts.

"Horizon's inaugural flight to Mammoth Mountain is one of the most pivotal moments in the history of the resort and the town," said Rusty Gregory, CEO of Mammoth Mountain. "The air service transforms a five-plus hour drive from Southern California into an hour's flight, making Mammoth even more convenient to experience."

The one-hour-and-five-minute flight departs Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) daily at 2:20 p.m. and arrives at Mammoth Yosemite Airport (MMH) at 3:25 p.m. The return flight leaves Mammoth at 4:05 p.m. and arrives at LAX at 5:10 p.m. The flight will also facilitate inbound travel from a wide variety of national and international airlines with service into LAX.

The seasonal daily service runs through April 12, 2009.

Just 15 minutes from Mammoth Yosemite Airport, Mammoth Mountain currently hosts more than 1.1 million skiers per year, making it the third most visited mountain resort in the country.

Horizon is using the airline's Bombardier Q400 for the Mammoth route. The 74/76-seat, high-speed, twin-engine turboprop is one of the most technologically advanced regional aircraft in the world.

Flight reservations are available online at
www.horizonair.com. Convenient Mammoth vacation packages are also available through Horizon Air Getaways. Packages include airfare on Horizon and Alaska Airlines, a variety of lodging choices, and several additional options (e.g., lift tickets, car rentals, spa treatments, and other features that vary by destination). Horizon Air Getaways packages are available online at www.horizonairgetaways.com or by calling (877) 359-4674.

Tempe Opens $1.4 Billion Light Rail System

The Valley METRO Light Rail, a new 20-mile light rail system serving Tempe, Ariz. and the Greater Phoenix Metropolitan Area, opened Dec. 27 with parties and celebrations all along the route.

The new rail system will serve 26,000 daily passengers from Mesa, through Tempe and into Phoenix. The $1.4 billion system includes 28 stations, nine parking locations, a maintenance facility and many trains.

The City of Tempe, with Phoenix and Mesa, celebrated the opening of light rail with parties along the entire line. At Tempe's Main Stage, Roger Clyne & the Peacemakers performed, and exhibits featuring the construction of the line and the archaeology completed were on hand. A kids' area, development showcase and green expo rounded out the event.

The new light rail line is part of Tempe's integrated transportation system connecting rail, buses and bicycles. Downtown Tempe is minutes from Sky Harbor International Airport and Tempe is surrounded by freeways, creating a synergy of travel choices.

Home to Arizona State University and the Sun Devils, Tempe is the only Arizona city to have a light rail system that runs from one city border to the other. These stations serve some of Tempe's most visited locations, including Arizona State University, Sun Devil Stadium, the Mill Avenue District and Tempe Town Lake. The trains stop in front of some of Tempe's largest business parks.

An award-winning bridge across Tempe Town Lake puts on a colorful light show each time a light rail train crosses. A LEED Gold certified maintenance facility and new Transportation Center pending LEED certification provide a seamless transition from rail to bus or bike.

Details of the rail system and schedules are available by visiting the web site at

Vail Resorts Rolls Back Multi-Day Lift Tickets Prices

Vail Resorts said that the company's five world-class mountain resorts - Vail, Beaver Creek, Breckenridge and Keystone in Colorado and Heavenly in California and Nevada - have rolled back multi-day lift tickets to 2007-2008 prices as a way to make it easier for skiers and snowboarders to take their winter mountain vacation this season.

"We recognize these are challenging times for many of our guests and we have taken numerous steps to make it easier for them to visit our world-class mountain resorts this season by addressing various components of a ski and snowboard vacation," said Rob Katz, chief executive officer for Vail Resorts.

"We are offering our best lift ticket and season pass products to our most loyal guests. We began last spring by introducing the new Epic Season Pass at $579 for adults, for unlimited, unrestricted skiing and riding all season long at a fraction of the price of a previous season pass," he added. "We're now offering our best lift ticket prices this season to accommodate those who weren't able to take advantage of the Epic Season Pass."

The company's five mountain resorts are offering last season's prices for both PEAKS advance ticket purchases and PEAKS window ticket purchase for all multi-day lift tickets for three or more days of skiing and riding.

This season's best pricing is available when guests purchase a three or more day PEAKS advance ticket seven days in advance. Three-day adult rates include $249 ($83 per day) for Breckenridge and Keystone, $267 ($89 per day) for Vail and Beaver Creek and $228 ($76 per day) for Heavenly. These rates represent up to $27 off of the lead single-day window rate which is $92 for Breckenridge and Keystone, $97 for Vail and Beaver Creek and $82 for Heavenly.

Guests can purchase the discounted multi-day rate online at
www.snow.com, through Vail Resorts Central Reservations, or at the resort ticket window. Advance lift ticket purchases are automatically enrolled in PEAKS Rewards, the free loyalty program for Vail, Beaver Creek, Breckenridge, Keystone and Heavenly.

Tickets will be loaded onto a PEAKS Reward Pass and guests can go direct to the lift when they arrive at a resort. Plus, they earn and redeem points on lift ticket purchases. For more information, go to
www.snow.com/peaks or call (800) 404-3535.