Who said there's no free lunch? Vacationers flying to Britain with Pan Am are being given coupons good for free lodging, discounts on meals/car rentals in England, Scotland, Wales, Ireland. The program is called "Bonusbreaks." Up to 14 nights at more than 200 hotels, inns, manor houses. No surprises. Just give the hotel your coupon and unpack. Offer is good for economy, Clipper class, first-class passengers. Hotels are described in a handy directory, restaurants named in another. Offer is valid for a year. One of the bargains of the season! Details from your travel agent, Pan Am or Great Exchange, P.O. Box 60147, Palo Alto, Calif. 94306. Call toll-free (800) 243-8883. Outside California telephone (800) 421-0275.
It's harvest time at the Al Bussell Ranch in Bakersfield. This is the farm where visitors pick fruits, vegetables. A fun outing, especially for families. Visitors ride into fields in covered wagons, picnic under trees. Sandwiches, soft drinks on sale at a snack bar. A petting zoo for youngsters. Other home-grown produce is sold in a general store along with farm-fresh honey, jams, jellies. Bussell's is the largest pick-your-own farm in California. Owners will stage a jack-o-lantern jamboree Oct. 26/27. Prizes for the best jack-o-lanterns, scarecrows. Bussell's is on Stockdale Highway, 12 miles west of Bakersfield. Motorists on Interstate 5 take the Stockdale Highway exit, then drive east 1 1/2 miles. For other information call (805) 589-2329 or 589-0595.
If the idea of sliding back through the twilight zone to a more peaceful period seems appealing, the Kiwis of New Zealand figure they have the answer. It's a 25-day tour for rail fans. Passengers will travel on old-time trains, including one of the last steam passenger setups in the world. They'll visit railway museums, look in on engine shops and join excursions aboard vintage open-platform cars. The tab for the tours (November and March) is $1,092 for hotels, transportation, some meals, admissions to museums, etc. Air fare is an extra $896 for the November tour, $1,250 for the March trip. Details from the New Zealand tourist office, 10960 Wilshire Blvd., Suite 1530, Los Angeles 90024. Telephone (213) 477-8241.
Service is the feature of an up-and-coming auto rental company with outlets nationwide. Snappy Car Rental is challenging the big guys. Guarantees delivery of rentals to any location, any time. This includes valet service at airports (none of that courtesty bus routine). Snappy's folks show up curbside right at the terminals. Snappy operates out of 176 locations nationwide. Features rental specials (one on the books is a $99 deal for a full week of motoring in California). For reservations call toll-free (800) SNAPPY 1.
"How to Travel Inexpensively" is the title of a free catalogue containing titles and prices of books aimed at the vagabond traveling on a budget. Lots of timely tips as well. The catalogue tells how to book a car together with lodging, breakfast for only $99 a week, get a loan of a bicycle (free) in Tokyo, where to obtain discount airline tickets in Hong Kong. For your copy, write to Nomadic Books, 401 N.E. 45th St., Seattle, Wash. 98105.
England--Lorraine Holman, Costa Mesa: "A charmingly restored and modern facilitated canal-side cottage built in 1823 called Wharf Cottage, Hilperton Marsh, Trowbridge, Wiltshire, England. Within less than an hour's drive is the beautiful cathedral city of Salisbury, the Marquis of Bath's famous Safari Park at Longleat, Stonehenge, etc. Prices per night about 9."
England--Mrs. Lee Roy Steffey, Gardena: Recommends Crescent Gate Hotel, Park Crescent, Victoria Park, Manchester M14 5RE, England, and in Switzerland the City Hotel, Lowenstrasse 34, 8001 Zurich. Paid $22.75 in England and $27.75 in Switzerland.
England--Jeff Godfrey, K. Marks, Beverly Hills: "A superb country hotel, the Mill End Hotel, Sandy Park near Chagford, Devon. Phone Chagford 2282. Paid about $50 per night, which included a beautiful twin-bed room overlooking the stream flowing through the property, a full English breakfast, afternoon tea and biscuits, full dinner. Countryside is so quiet and peaceful you could hear the silence. The moors of Dartmoor are quite near."
England--Jeff and Ginger Burris, Fullerton: A B&B operated by Mrs. Kathleen Webb, 18 Rissington Road, Bourton-on-the-Water, Cheltenham, Gloucestershire GL54 2AY. "Friendlier, warmer people you will never meet. A nice big breakfast in the morning and 7 was all they charged. It was more than just a bed-and-breakfast place. It was as if we were with friends and staying in their home."
England--Kenneth W. Witaker, San Gabriel: "Recommend the Lea-Dene B&B, 34 Alphinton Road (Highway A377) in Exeter (8 per person); St. Edmund's House, 26 Wells Road (Highway A39), Glastonbury (also 8 per person); Springfield, 40 Victoria Road, Cirencester (7 per person)."