When your travels take you to Northern California there's a pip of a store in Los Gatos that specializes in travel accessories. Language books, tapes, diaries, travel alarms, diaper packs. Garment steamers (for pressing out wrinkles), a travel calculator that translates any currency to U.S. dollars (also compares miles/kilometers, Celsius/Fahrenheit), shirt pocket TVs, money belts, lightweight fans for the tropics, lead shields for film passing through airport X-rays, fold-up umbrellas, lightweight raincoats. Dozens of other items. For a free catalogue, write to The Travel Store, 56 1/2 N. Santa Cruz Ave., Los Gatos, Calif. 95039 or telephone (408) 354-9909. (Los Gatos is only a few miles from San Jose.)
For the Disabled
A bimonthly booklet/magazine for the disabled deals with a variety of subjects. Articles by travelers who themselves are disabled or persons who work with the disabled. Regular features include book reviews, consumer reports, how-to articles, reports on "accessible travel opportunities." Publisher gets testimonials. One subscriber wrote: "My disability made me a prisoner in my own home. You have set me free." For other information about "The Itinerary" (subscription rate, $7 yearly), write to P.O. Box 1084, Bayonne, N.J. 07002-1084.
Here's another one of those clubs that's dedicated to singles and couples seeking travel companions. Adele Rosen and Jeanette Bush publish their directory, "Key to Adventure," six times a year. Profiles members. Lists their travel desires/requests. Members thumb through the directory, choose a potential partner. After this Rosen and Bush send along a complete profile on the other member along with additional details. Then it's up to the individual parties to contact one another, make their own plans. Enables travelers to avoid the nasty business of the single supplement. In other words, saves you money. Contact Rosen and Bush c/o Travel Share International, P.O. Box 30365, Santa Barbara 93130, or telephone (805) 682-9955.
Mardis Gras is coming up fast in New Orleans. For those in a mood for a little excitement, All Travel is doing a five-day trip in connection with Delta Air Lines. A pretty good bargain. Figures out to $549 for the round-trip jet hop, hotel, taxes, baggage handling, a sightseeing tour of New Orleans and a welcome party. Departure will be on Feb. 28 with a return to LAX March 4. Contact All Travel, 11500 Olympic Blvd., Suite 345, Los Angeles 90064. Telephone toll-free (800) 446-5270, or (213) 312-4525.
Friends in London is shifting into gear for the new year. This is a company that arranges to meet your flight at either Heathrow or Gatwick. Simon James Anderson says: "We will meet you at the airport, take care of your luggage, help you find the best exchange rate for your money." Anderson's colleagues pour champagne for passengers while they're delivered to the city by Rolls-Royce or Jaguar. Later they discuss details of your visit, help you avoid "tourist traps." This service isn't cheap. Works out to about 15 (minimum) per person for four visitors traveling together. Friends in London also does sightseeing tours outside the city. Write to Friends in London, P.O. Box 163, London WC2N-4NJ, England.
Toronto Hotel Discount
You can save 50% on hotel rooms in Toronto between now and Feb. 28. This is a Thursday through Saturday deal. A choice of 31 hotels. Besides special hotel rates you get a coupon book good for discounts at stores, restaurants, tour agencies, theaters. Hotels include the Westin, Sheraton, Four Seasons Inn on the Park, the Holiday Inn, Howard Johnson, Loews Westbury, the Royal York. Other details by calling toll-free (800) 268-3735 or contact the Ontario Ministry of Tourism & Recreation locally, Suite 1420, 700 S. Flower St., Los Angeles 90017.
Seems the whole nation is playing the bed and breakfast game. Twenty B&B owners have gotten together to form the New Mexico Bed & Breakfast Assn. Everything from an adobe hacienda to a Queen Anne home. (These B&Bs are fully licensed/insured.) In Taos the American Artists Gallery House features fireplaces, hot tubs ($40/$65 for three rooms). Or there's El Paradero en Santa Fe near Santa Fe's famed Plaza (a dozen rooms, $46/$90). A 200-year-old adobe 23 miles southeast of Santa Fe (pool, spa, sauna) hosts guests in nine rooms ($45/$90). Or there's the Inn of the Victorian Bird 11 miles north of Santa Fe with three adobe casitas, private courtyards ($54/$74). We've heard particularly good things about La Posada de Chimayo ("fireplaces, cozy furnishings, ample breakfasts, fond memories") three miles north of Santa Fe on the High Road to Taos ($60). For a free directory describing all 20 B&Bs, send a stamped, self-addressed envelope to the New Mexico Bed & Breakfast Assn., P.O. Box 2925, Santa Fe, N.M. 87504-2925.