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Personal Finance
Travel e-Scapes: March 13, 2018
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Travel e-Scapes: March 13, 2018

Travel e-Scapes: March 13, 2018

Travel e-Scapes: March 13, 2018

DESTINATION & DEAL OF THE DAY: Cancun

Travel e-Scapes: 03312017

Round-trip from Atlanta (one-way permitted):
$336 Cancan, or $168 each way
Valid April 3-May 17 or August 21-October 31
Travel to Cancun Sundays-Wednesdays; from Cancun Tuesdays-Fridays
Purchase by March 15
Valid on Southwest Airlines , nonstop (and up to 2 free checked bags)


TRAVEL TIPS & TIDBITS

Unique Disney Tours
Disney World Orlando guests now have the chance to play conservationist for a limited time with a unique behind-the-scenes tour of Disney’s Animal Kingdom.
In honor of the park’s 20th-anniversary celebration, Disney is rolling out A Path Less Traveled,” a self-described “special collection of unique experiences that give guests a fun behind-the-scenes look at the magic of nature.”
The activities, which will only be available April 1-May 5, include a trio of behind-the-scenes animal care programs, as well as VIP waterfront seating at the Rivers of Light nighttime show.
Adventurers looking for a more intimate exploration of the park will enjoy:
A Visit to Rafiki’s Planet Watch: Take a peek at one of Disney’s state-of-the-art veterinary hospitals while learning about the theme park’s animal care program for more than 1,500 animal residents.
Birds Nest Exploration: Disney is a migratory playground for the purple martin, North America’s largest swallow. The birds travel more than 3,000 miles from their winter home in the Brazilian Amazon to their Orlando perch, where Disney has set up nearly two dozen purple martin house “resorts.”
Unforgettable Elephant Encounters: This program includes a one-hour Caring for Giants tour, observing elephants from a distance of approximately 80 to 100 feet,
Programs are scheduled throughout the day. Reserve the tour by calling (407) 939-7529.
The fee for the entire program is $59, including a snack and drink option.

Miami Food Halls
The La Centrale Miami Italian Food Hall has opened at Brickell City Centre in downtown Miami. The 40,000-square-foot dining and marketplace concept brings together 14 food stations, five bars and a wine shop stocked with more than 4,000 bottles – food and drink unique to 20 Italian regions.
The first floor features six grab-and-go counters overflowing with espresso, salads, cheeses, meats and breads, along with an all-day breakfast and lunch café, and a rustic pizza and pasta family style restaurant.
The second floor features three traditional sit-down restaurants including Carne, La Centrale’s steakhouse that prepares 48-day dry-aged steaks over a wood-fire grill. Pesce, the hall’s seafood restaurant inspired by the Italian Riviera, flies in fresh branzino from Italy every morning. There’s also a lively cocktail bar with a large performance stage, and a chocolate shop filled with two chocolate fountains, 16 rotating gelato flavors and 80 types of imported chocolates.
The top floor is all about wine with Enoteca , a robust wine bar, complete with wine flights, a small bites menu and free weekly tastings.
La Centrale joins the 18,000-square-foot Casa Tua Cucina , which offers a similar lineup of Italian cuisine, located inside Saks Fifth Avenue at Brickell City Centre. The 300-seat Casa Tua Cucina includes ten dining stations, each with a different chef and all sharing a kitchen. It’s also family-friendly, with a more casual atmosphere and affordable prices.


SPECIAL DOMESTIC & INTERNATIONAL OFFERS

Airfare offers – ones with a ticket-by date – and deals with our suggestion to HURRY!  can expire at any time.   Heed Clark’s advice: Buy that great airfare deal – and then figure out a reason to go there! Eventually, you’ll see the world at a fraction of the normal price!

3-Day Flash Sale! One-way from Atlanta, each way:
$49 Greenville, Nashville
$74 Baltimore, Chicago, Cleveland, Detroit
$80 St. Louis
$82 Boston
$83 Houston, Kansas City, W. Palm Beach
$84 Philadelphia
$86 New Orleans
$87 Washington DC-Reagan or Dulles
$92 Indianapolis, Jacksonville, Tampa
$94 Austin, San Antonio
$96 Milwaukee, Pittsburgh
$104 Denver, Minneapolis
$119 Richmond or Raleigh
$194 San Diego
A 21-day advance purchase required
Valid Tuesdays, Wednesdays or Saturdays
Travel to Florida valid Sundays-Wednesdays; from Florida Tuesdays-Fridays
Travel April 3-June 13 or August 21-October 31
Blackout dates: May 24, 25, 28; August 31; September 3
Purchase by March 15 at Southwest Airlines
NOTE: This is not a systemwide sale and not all cities served from ATL are included

How do you find these great airfare deals? Visit Clark’s Atlanta Travel Tips page for a step-by-step search and booking guide.

NOTE: Airline fees can and often do exceed the cost of your flight! Additional charges now apply to budget and sale rates on most airlines for a carry-on bag, checked baggage and advance seat assignments. The least expensive fees are charged when these options are purchased during the ticket booking process. Fees climb higher after flights are reserved and even higher when adding these options at airport check-in. Kayak offers the most up-to-date Fees Chart for all domestic and international airlines.


HOTELS, RESORTS & MORE

Germany’s FlixBus & Eurail Promo
Germany’s rail sector remains dominated by Deutsche Bahn, which still accounts for 99% of all long-distance rail journeys. But since last summer there is some competition!
Flixbus, known for its expansive bus network across Europe, will offer Flixtrain service between Hamburg and Cologne (via Duesseldorf, Essen and Osnabrueck) from March 24 onwards. Travelers will now be able to reach Hamburg with non-stop connections from Duesseldorf, Essen or Cologne just as quickly as with the ICE Deutsche Bahn.
Prices will start from €9.99 each way, lower than those of rival Deutsche Bahn.
Onboard features include complimentary Wi-Fi, extra legroom, low-cost snacks and drinks, numerous plug sockets and a lot of room for baggage.
Currently, travelers can ride with Flixbus to over 1,400 travel destinations in 27 countries.
If you have the time, Flixbus offers a Discover 5 European cities for €99, valid for up to 90 days.
The low-cost giant has now set its sights on the United States, where it plans to take on the iconic Greyhound Lines by launching a series of long-distance bus services in California later this year.
______
Explore more of Europe for less money with Eurail’s Extra Days Promotion . For those purchasing passes through March 31, five extra travel days can be added.
Additional benefits include discounts of up to 20% on City Cards in cities such as Barcelona, Brussels, Ljubljana and Salzburg.
Those purchasing the Eurail Global Pass can earn one extra day with both the five-day and seven-day passes.
The purchase of Global Passes for 10 or 15 days of travel within two months, earns two extra days. For those traveling 15 days on a continuous pass, two extra days are offered.
Visitors traveling on a continuous pass for 22 days can get three extra days and those traveling for one month, continuously receive five free days.
Extra days are also offered on the Eurail Select Pass and the One Country Pass.
Passes are available for purchase up to 11 months in advance.

San Francisco Getaways
Book a stay at the stylish Harbor Court Hotel which features stunning views of the Bay Bridge and Embarcadero. Onsite is a swimming pool and a fitness center and the Ferry Plaza Farmers Market is just across the street for breakfast to dinner dining options. Other amenities include a sleek, on-site Japanese restaurant and sake lounge, loaner bikes and access to an adjacent YMCA (both for a fee).
Plush, colorful rooms feature Bay Bridge, city or courtyard views and have free Wi-Fi, iHome docks, minibars and flat-screen TVs. Rooms also have yoga mats, designer toiletries, Italian linens and goose-down duvets. An evening wine hour and morning coffee and tea are complimentary for guests.
Here’s a look at sample per night rates in a Queen room with the 50% Off Weekend Promotion (3-night stay):
Friday from $150
Saturday from $210
Sunday from $90
This waterfront hotel is a 6-minute walk from the BART Embarcadero rail station.


Travel e-Scapes is brought to you by Clara Bosonetto, Team Clark Travel Editor. Follow Clara on  Twitter .


Looking for more deals?
View all current airfare offers at Clark’s Atlanta Travel Deals page or the National Travel Deals page.

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 Like Clark Smart Travel on Facebook
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The Latest News Headlines

  • A federal judge in New York sentenced President Donald Trump’s former long-time attorney Michael Cohen to 36 months imprisonment on Wednesday after he pleaded guilty to several charges earlier this year. >> Read more trending news Cohen, 52, admitted to lying last year to Congress in connection to a Trump real estate deal in Russia after prosecutors with special counsel Robert Mueller’s team charged him with making false statements. >> Michael Cohen pleads guilty to making false statements to Congress He also pleaded guilty in August to eight charges including multiple counts of tax evasion and arranging illicit payments to silence women who posed a risk to Trump's presidential campaign. >> Trump was implicated in two felonies: What does that mean? Update 12:45 p.m. EST: U.S. District Judge William Pauley said Wednesday that Cohen’s cooperation with prosecutors 'does not wipe the slate clean' of his crimes. Pauley sentenced Cohen to serve three years in prison for crimes including tax evasion, lying to Congress and arranging illicit payments to silence Daniels and McDougal. Cohen’s former attorney, Lanny Davis, said in a statement released Wednesday that Cohen “continues to tell the truth about Donald Trump’s misconduct over the years.” “Mr. Trump’s repeated lies cannot contradict stubborn facts,” Davis said. “Michael has owned up to his mistakes and fully cooperated with Special Counsel Mueller in his investigation over possible Trump campaign collusion with Russian meddling in the 2016 election.” Trump has accused Cohen of lying to authorities in order to get a lighter sentence and denied any wrongdoing. >> Cohen pleads guilty to 8 charges, says Trump told him to pay off Stormy Daniels, Karen McDougal Update 12:15 p.m. EST: Cohen will be required to surrender to authorities on March 6 to serve the 36-month sentence handed down Wednesday, Bloomberg News reported. U.S. District Judge William Pauley III also required Cohen forfeit $500,000 and pay $1.4 million in restitution and $50,000 in fines, the news site reported. >> More on Robert Mueller's investigation Update 12:05 p.m EST: U.S. District Judge William Pauley III sentenced Cohen to 36 months imprisonment and three years of supervised release after he pleaded guilty to eight charges in New York over the summer, Newsday reported. He was sentenced to two months for lying to Congress. The sentence will run concurrent with the New York sentence. “Cohen pled guilt to a veritable smorgasbord of fraudulent conduct,' Pauley said before handing down the sentence Wednesday, according to CNN.  Pauley credited Cohen for his cooperation with Mueller's team, however, he added that as an attorney, 'Mr. Cohen should have known better,' Newsday reported. Update 11:50 a.m. EST: Cohen said he takes “full responsibility” for the charges he's pleaded guilty to while addressing the court Wednesday. “This may seem hard to believe but today is one of the most meaningful days of my life,” he said, according to CNN. “I have been living in a personal and mental incarceration ever since the day that I accepted the offer to work for a real estate mogul whose business acumen that I deeply admired.' Update 11:45 a.m. EST: Assistant U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York Nicolas Roos said Wednesday that Cohen's crimes carried a 'tremendous societal cost,' CNN reported. “In committing these crimes, Mr. Cohen has eroded faith in the electoral process and compromised the rule of law,” Roos said. Update 11:35 a.m. EST: Jeannie Rhee, an attorney for special counsel Robert Mueller's team, said in brief comments in court Wednesday that Cohen provided investigators with 'credible information' related to the investigation into Russian election meddling, Newsday reported. 'Mr. Cohen has sought to tell us the truth, and that is of utmost value to us,' Rhee said. Update 11:15 a.m. EST: Cohen's attorney, Guy Petrillo, said in court Wednesday that Cohen cooperated with special counsel Robert Mueller’s office 'knowing that he'd face a barrage of attack by the president,' according to the Courthouse News Service. Petrillo said Cohen “offered evidence against the most powerful person in our country,” CNN reported. Update 10:55 a.m. EST: Cohen arrived at the federal courthouse in Manhattan early Wednesday ahead of an 11 a.m. sentencing hearing before U.S. District Judge William Pauley III. Original report: Federal prosecutors in New York have asked that Cohen receive a “substantial prison term” of around four years, saying in a court filing last week that he'd failed to fully cooperate with investigators and overstated his helpfulness. Cohen’s attorneys have argued for leniency, arguing that some of Cohen's crimes were motivated by overenthusiasm for Trump, rather than any nefarious intent. >> From Cox Media Group's Jamie Dupree: Feds: Manafort lied to prosecutors, Cohen should get jail time The president has denied that he had affairs with either McDougal or Daniels, but prosecutors said Cohen orchestrated payments to the women at Trump’s direction. On Monday, the president wrote in a tweet that the payments were “a simple private transaction,” and not a campaign contribution. Trump said that “even if it was” a campaign contribution, Cohen should be held responsible. “Lawyer’s liability if he made a mistake, not me,” Trump wrote. “Cohen (is) just trying to get his sentenced reduced. WITCH HUNT!” >> From Cox Media Group's Jamie Dupree: Denouncing Cohen, Trump disputes campaign link to payoff of women A sentence of hard time would leave Cohen with little to show for his decision to plead guilty, though experts told The Associated Press that Wednesday's hearing might not be the last word on his punishment. Cohen could have his sentence revisited if he strikes a deal with prosecutors in which he provides additional cooperation within a year of his sentence, said Michael J. Stern, a former federal prosecutor in Detroit and Los Angeles. 'Few things spark a defendant's renewed interest in cooperating faster than trading in a pair of custom Italian trousers for an off-the-rack orange jump suit,' he said. The Associated Press contributed to this report.
  • According to court documents filed on Friday by New York prosecutors and the office of special counsel Robert Mueller, President Donald Trump not only knew about hush money being paid to two women whom he allegedly had affairs with but also directed his personal attorney to pay the women for their silence. The allegations implicating Trump surfaced last week in sentencing recommendations filed in criminal cases against Michael Cohen, Trump’s former attorney. The filings indicated that Mueller and prosecutors from the Southern District of New York believe that Trump was an accomplice in the payments to the two women, payments that are felony violations of federal election laws. >>Who is Michael Cohen, personal attorney for Donald Trump? How can money spent to quiet someone rise to the level of a federal felony? Here’s a look at the two portions of Friday’s filings that implicate Trump in unlawful activity. What do the filings in the Cohen case say? Prosecutors are alleging that violations of federal campaign finance law took place when Cohen made payments to silence porn actress Stormy Daniels and former Playboy model Karen McDougal. Both women alleged they had extramarital affairs with Trump. Trump has denied their claims. According to prosecutors: Cohen negotiated an agreement with American Media Inc., which publishes the National Enquirer, to pay McDougal $150,000 to keep quiet about an alleged 10-month relationship with Trump. According to the plea, McDougal transferred the rights to her story to the Enquirer which did not publish the story. Cohen paid AMI to compensate the company for payments made to McDougal.  Cohen’s $130,000 payment to Daniels, also over an alleged affair with Trump, was made with funds drawn on a home equity line of credit he took out. The plea said Cohen paid Daniels “by making and causing to be made an expenditure, in cooperation, consultation, and concert with, and at the request and suggestion of one or more members of the campaign (identified as Trump, though not by name) … to ensure that she not publicize damaging allegation before the 2016 presidential election and thereby influence that election.' Cohen said during the plea that he “participated in this conduct for the principal purpose” of influencing an election and did it at the “direction of a candidate for federal office.”  What are the violations? The crimes include a charge of making a campaign contribution in excess of the $2,700 individual limit set by federal campaign law and unlawful corporate contributions. The violation of the $2,700 contribution limit came when Cohen paid Daniels $130,000 to keep quiet about the alleged affair with Trump. The unlawful corporate contribution charge refers to Cohen’s promise to pay the parent company of the National Enquirer which purchased the rights to McDougal’s story of an affair with Trump but never published it. How does money paid to keep someone quiet become a campaign contribution? Under federal campaign finance law, individual campaign contributions are limited to $2,700 per individual, or $5,400 for a couple, for each election cycle. Federal law bars direct corporate contributions to federal candidates. The money paid to Daniels – $130,000 – was moved through a limited-liability company called Essential Consultants. Cohen created the company a few weeks before the election. The payment to Daniels was a campaign contribution, according to Cohen, who said in court that when he paid Daniels off, he was acting on behalf of the campaign with the aim of helping Trump win the presidency. In McDougal’s case, Cohen paid AMI to compensate the company for payments made to McDougal.  Cohen testified at his August plea hearing  that he orchestrated payments to McDougal and made payments to Daniels weeks before the 2016 presidential election so that the affairs would not become public, and that he did so “for the principal purpose of influencing the election.” He also said Trump knew about the payments. Both of those payments far exceed the $2,700 limit. Trump, on the other hand, said the payments were “simple private transactions” not campaign contributions, and that the payments were meant to spare his family embarrassment, not influence an election. If Trump were to be charged, prosecutors would have to prove that he knew certain campaign finance laws prohibited what he was doing and that he then willfully violated those laws. Cohen originally said he acted on his own and had not been reimbursed by the Trump Organization, or by the campaign for the payments. He recanted that statement in August, saying he was reimbursed for the payments by Trump who had directed him to make them. “I used a company under my control to make the payment (to Daniels)” Cohen told the judge, adding that “the monies used were later repaid by the candidate.”  What does the law say about this case? What we know is that prosecutors believe Trump directed Cohen to violate campaign finance laws. What we don’t know is if Trump knowingly violated the law. According to the Federal Election Campaign Act, while individuals are limited to making donations of $2,700 to presidential candidates, candidates can use or loan their personal funds for campaign use. While those contributions are not subject to limits, they must be reported on campaign finance forms filed with the Federal Elections Commission. Companies may not make campaign contributions, and it is a felony to conspire to make a campaign contribution that exceeds $25,000. What is the statute of limitations for these crimes? For the violations cited in the filings, there is a five-year statute of limitations. Will Trump be charged? Trump will not likely be charged with crimes while he is a sitting president.Legal opinions that have directed Justice Department procedure say a sitting president will not be indicted because criminal charges would undermine the job he or she does. A president could be charged after he leaves office as long as the statute of limitations on the crimes the person is alleged to have committed have not expired. Will he be impeached? Bringing articles of impeachment and impeaching a president are two different things. The U.S. House drafts articles of impeachment, but the U.S. Senate, with the chief justice of the Supreme Court presiding, holds a trial to examine the charges and votes on whether a president is impeached. It requires a two-thirds vote of the Senate for impeachment. It is possible that the House could start impeachment proceedings against Trump. Rep. Jerrold Nadler, D-New York, has suggested that Trump’s actions, according to what was revealed in the filings, would rise to the level of an impeachable offense. “Until now, you had two different charges, allegations, whatever you want to call them,” Nadler of New York, the incoming Democratic chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, said in an interview on Saturday. “One was collusion with the Russians. One was obstruction of justice and all that entails. And now you have a third — that the president was at the center of a massive fraud against the American people.” The House Judiciary Committee would be the committee that would draft impeachment charges against Trump if it came to that. What does the White House say?  The White House said Friday's news has nothing to do with them. Trump said “thank you” in a tweet on Friday, saying he had been exonerated concerning campaign finance.
  • Mayport-based USS Fort McHenry is leaving for a seven-month deployment in support of maritime security operations in Europe and the Middle East.  A spokesperson for Naval Station Mayport says more than 4,500 Sailors and Marines serving in the Kearsarge Amphibious Ready Group (ARG) and 22nd Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU) will deploy next week.  The 22nd MEU is comprised of approximately 2,500 Marines and Sailors.  It includes a command element, ground combat element, aviation combat element and logistics combat element.  The Kearsarge ARG consists of the amphibious assault ship USS Kearsarge (LHD 3), the amphibious transport dock ship USS Arlington (LPD 24), the dock landing ship USS Fort McHenry (LSD 43), Fleet Surgical Team (FST) 2 and FST 8, Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron 26, Tactical Air Control Squadron 21, components of Naval Beach Group 2 and the embarked staff of Amphibious Squadron 6.
  • People in the Southeast were woken up by an earthquake early Wednesday.  >> Visit WSBTV.com for complete coverage of this developing story The U.S. Geological Survey reported the quake happened about 4:15 a.m. near Decatur, Tennessee. It had a magnitude of 4.4. A 3.3-magnitude aftershock followed happened about 15 minutes later. Atlanta’s WSB-TV received dozens of phone calls in the minutes following the quake. >> Read more trending news  The earthquake happened along the New Madrid Fault Line, which is along the Arkansas, Tennessee, Mississippi state lines.  The earthquake was the second strongest on record in east Tennessee, according to the USGS. The strongest was a magnitude 4.7 near Maryville in 1973. There have been several small earthquakes in northwest Georgia over the past few years, including a 1.9-magnitude quake near Villanow, in Walker County, in August.  A 2.7-magnitude quake was reported in Catoosa County, near Fort Oglethorpe, in January, and a 2.3 hit Trion, in Chattooga County, in November 2017. In July 2017, a 2.2-magnitude quake was registered just north of LaFayette in Walker County.
  • After another cold morning in NE Florida with an inland freeze and frost all the way to the beaches, we’re beginning a warming trend. Action News Jax Chief Meteorologist Mike Buresh says temps are in the mid-60’s this afternoon, and into the 70’s for Thursday and Friday.  Mike is tracking a storm system that brings rain by late Thursday and much of Friday.  We could see some isolated strong storms but very heavy rainfall is the greatest threat. 

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