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Fairness in Air Fares

June 19, 1988|ERIC FRIEDHEIM | Friedheim is editor/publisher of Travel Agent magazine.

Question: With all the different computerized reservations systems now in use, how can I be sure my travel agent is getting me the best flights and fares?

Answer: Although its own flights may appear first on an airline's reservation computer, government rules require that competitive flights and fares also be shown. Be sure your agent gives you information on all the alternatives available.

Q: As Israel is promoting tourism again, are any cruises scheduled?

A: Some ship lines are resuming calls this summer and fall, including Chandris, Costa, Cunard, Epirotiki, Princess and Sun Lines.

Q: We'd like to do some shopping on our coming trip to China. What items and handicrafts are of particular interest?

A: Many antiques and artworks are national treasures and can't be taken out. However, there's a thriving industry in antique reproductions, furniture, costumes, bamboo items, jewelry and silk. For details on what to buy, plus stores and prices, pick up "Shopping in China." You can obtain the book for $10.95 through China Books, 2929 24th St., San Francisco 94110.

Q: We will be vacationing in Italy and want to play golf. Will we find any courses there?

A: Italians are going for golf in a big way, with nearly 40 courses now available. Alitalia Airlines offers various golfing packages.

Q: We'd like to visit Wales but have found information about hotels and attractions difficult to come by. Don't they have a tourist bureau in the United States?

A: Wales Reservation Center, 140 East 56th St., New York 10022; (800) 444-9988, handles bookings for 500 hotels and B&Bs, farmhouses, castles and inns.

Q: Where and when is the celebration that brings together various tribes of native Americans?

A: The Inter-Tribal Ceremonial is a four-day festival in Gallup, N.M., starting Aug. 14 and featuring many events and attractions for tourists. For more information, call (800) 242-4820.

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