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What are your tricks for cheap travel?

Send us your smart strategies for traveling on a budget and get a chance to win free airfare.
/ Source: TODAY

Think you've got a great secret for traveling on a budget? If so, TODAY wants to hear from you. Read the rules to participate below, then fill out the form to submit your budget travel tips and you may win a chance for free airfare and possibly be included in an upcoming segment on TODAY.

Official RulesJune 26, 2008-July 3, 2008

PRELIMINARY INFORMATION:  No purchase necessary. A purchase will not improve the chances of winning. Void outside the continental United States and where prohibited.  “CHEAP TICKETS CONTEST ON TODAY Contest” begins on JUNE 26, 2008 at 11 a.m. and ends on JULY 3, 2008 at 11 a.m. All times in the Contest refer to Eastern Time. 

TO ENTER: To enter, access the Today Show website at and click on the CHEAP TICKETS CONTEST ON TODAY  icon. Complete and thereafter submit the entry form, which includes your name, address, telephone number, email address, and date of birth. All entries become the property of The Today Show and NBC Universal, Inc., 30 Rockefeller Plaza, New York, NY 10112, and Cheaptickets, 545 Fifth Avenue, Suite 1000, New York, NY 10017  (collectively, “Sponsors”), and will not be acknowledged or returned. 

Write and submit your budget travel tips. Your tips must be original (that is, written by you), typed legibly in the English language, and no more than 5 tips in length, up to a one page maximum. By entering the Contest, entrant grants Sponsors the non-exclusive, royalty-free, and irrevocable rights to use, reproduce, copy, publish, display, distribute, perform, translate, adapt, modify, and otherwise exploit the Essays and to incorporate them in other works in any and all markets and media worldwide in perpetuity.  Entrants warrant that they have the sole and exclusive right to grant such rights to Sponsors and that the Sponsors' reproduction, publishing, displaying, and/or other use of the Essays will not infringe on any rights of third parties, including, without limitation, copyright, trademark, defamation, privacy, or publicity, or create claims for false light, idea misappropriation, intentional or negligent infliction of emotional distress, or breach of contract. Any Essays containing material that is violent, pornographic, obscene, illegal, inappropriate, or racially or morally offensive or that does not meet Sponsors’ standards for any reason, as determined by Sponsors in their sole discretion, may be rejected as ineligible for consideration.  Entries must comply with all applicable laws, rules, and regulations.  Sponsors shall have no obligation to copy, publish, display, or otherwise exploit the essay.

Entries must be received before JULY 3, 2008 at 11 a.m. to be eligible for the CHEAP TICKETS CONTEST ON TODAY. You may enter once during the CHEAP TICKETS CONTEST ON TODAY Contest Period. Multiple entries received from any person or email address beyond this limit will void all such additional entries. Entries generated by a script, macro, or other automated means will be disqualified.  Entries that are incomplete, garbled, corrupted, or unintelligible for any reason, including, but not limited to, computer or network malfunction or congestion, are void and will not be accepted. In case of a dispute over the identity of an entrant who made a potentially winning entry, Sponsors reserve the right to deem that the entry was made by the registered subscriber of the email address submitted at the time of entry.  Entry constitutes permission (except where prohibited by law) to use entrant's name, city, state, likeness, image, and/or voice for purposes of advertising, promotion, and publicity without additional compensation. 

ELIGIBILITY: Open only to permanent, legal U.S. residents who are physically located in the continental United States and who are 18 years of age or older and age of majority in their state of residence as of the start of the Contest Period.  Officers, directors, and employees of Sweepstakes Entities, members of these persons’ immediate families (spouses and/or parents, children, and siblings, and their spouses), and/or persons living in the same households as these persons (whether or not related thereto) are not eligible to enter the CHEAP TICKETS CONTEST ON TODAY.  Contest Entities, as referenced herein, shall include Sponsors, Internet Broadcasting Systems, Inc., and Cheap Tickets, and their respective parent, subsidiary, and affiliate companies and administrative, advertising, and promotion agencies and any other entity involved in the development, administration, promotion, or implementation of the CHEAP TICKETS CONTEST ON TODAY.

WINNER SELECTION AND NOTIFICATION: Entries will be judged by sponsors in their sole discretion.  Tips will be evaluated based on the following criteria: a) creativity (33.3%), accessibility (33.3%) and affordability (33.3%).  Sponsors reserve the right to select fewer than five (5), or no, Finalists and/or to extend the Contest Period or cancel the Contest, if an insufficient number of eligible, complete, tasteful, appropriate, or generally qualified entries are received. Sponsors will make two (2) attempts to contact the five (5) finalists on Monday July 7, 2008 at the phone number and/or email address submitted at the time of entry.  Finalists will have until Tuesday July 8, 2008 at 3PM Eastern Time to respond, otherwise an alternative finalist may be selected.  Sponsor will thereafter conduct a phone interview of the finalists.  The phone interview will be judged by sponsors in their sole discretion.  The interview evaluation will be based on the following criteria:  eloquence (33.3%), the value of tips (33.3%) and sense of humor (33.3%).  Out of these five finalists, Sponsors will select two (2) Winners who must be available for a final on-air interview on/or about July 17, 2008 between the hours of 9:30-10:30 AM Eastern Time. 

Winner (or, if Winner is a minor, his/her parent or legal guardian) may be required to execute and return an affidavit of eligibility, release of liability, and, except where prohibited, publicity release (collectively, “CHEAP TICKETS CONTEST ON TODAY Documents”) within 7 days of such notification.  Noncompliance within this time period will result in disqualification, and an alternate winner may be selected from the remaining eligible entries.  If winner cannot be reached, if he/she is found to ineligible, if he/she cannot or does not comply with these Official Rules, or if his/her prize or prize notification is returned as undeliverable, winner will be disqualified and an alternate winner may be selected from the remaining eligible entries.  Limit one (1) prize per family or household.

PRIZE: There will be 2 winners, each consisting of the following:  2 round trip tickets in the form of travel vouchers from Cheap Tickets. Each voucher is good for roundtrip domestic travel in the 48 continental United States (not including Alaska and Hawaii) The travel vouchers do not include international flights and are good for one year from the date of receipt. Blackout dates and restrictions may apply. The tickets are Coach-class.

Estimated Retail Value (“ERV”) of each ticket is $500 and ERV of all Prizes is $2,000. 

Sponsors will furnish an Internal Revenue Service Form 1099 to Winner for the ERV of Prize for the tax year in which Prize was won.   

Specifics of Prize will be determined by Sponsors in their sole discretion.  Sponsors reserve the right to substitute a similar Prize (or Prize element) of equal or greater value.  All taxes and other expenses, costs, or fees associated with the acceptance and/or use of Prize are the sole responsibility of Winner. Prize cannot be transferred by Winner or redeemed for cash and is valid only for the items detailed above, with no substitution of Prize by Winner.  If Prize is unclaimed, it will be forfeited, and an alternate Winner may be selected from the remaining eligible entries.  If a Prize element is not available for any reason, the remaining elements of Prize shall constitute full satisfaction of Sponsors' Prize obligation to Winner, and no additional compensation will be awarded.  

CheapTickets' choice of airlines may necessitate connecting flights.  Airline Ticket booking is subject to availability.  No code-share flights or upgrades allowed.  A Saturday night stay may be required and other restrictions may apply.  Black-out dates apply and include but are not limited to the Thursday before Easter through the Sunday following Easter 2009, the Sunday before Thanksgiving through the Sunday following Thanksgiving 2008 and December 18, 2008 through January 5, 2009.

Travel may commence anytime after 6/26/08, and must be completed by 6/26/09. Travel arrangements will be determined by Sponsors in their sole discretion. Sponsors reserve the right to provide ground transportation in lieu of air transportation. Travel must occur on dates and times designated by Sponsors or Prize will be forfeited and an alternate winner may be selected from the remaining eligible entries.  Once determined, no change, extension, or substitution of travel dates and/or times is permitted, except by Sponsors in their sole discretion. Winner and Guest must travel together on the same itinerary.  Prize consists only of the elements set forth above.  No other travel elements (including, without limitation, ground transportation, insurance, gasoline, meals, gratuities, and souvenirs.) are included in Prize.  All taxes and fees assessed at the time of ticketing are the responsibility of Winner. Baggage charges may apply. Tickets are non-refundable.  Reservations are subject to availability.  Tickets are not valid for business-related or group travel.  Tickets are valid only for travel on airline chosen by Sponsors in their sole discretion.  A Saturday night stay-over may be required.  All travel must be completed by 11:59 P.M. on 6/26/09.  Tickets will be issued only to Winner and Guest.  Tickets are void if sold for cash or other consideration.  Winner is responsible for any tax liability (including applicable departure taxes or fees), inspection charges, and security charges.  Once issued, tickets are non-transferable and may not be reissued once travel has commenced.  Open tickets may not be issued and stopovers are not permitted.  Travel arrangements must be made through Sponsors.  Winner and Guest must have valid travel documents (e.g., valid, government-issued photo identification and/or passport) prior to departure.  Failure to do so will result in forfeiture of Prize.  Sponsors shall have no responsibility or liability for cancellations, delays, or any other change by any company or person providing any element of Prize due to reasons beyond Sponsors’ control, and are not responsible or liable for any expenses incurred as a consequence thereof.  Travel may not be combined with any other offer and may not qualify for frequent flyer miles or hotel points.  All travel will be at the risk of Winner and Guest.  Sponsors will not replace any lost or stolen tickets, vouchers, or certificates.  All elements of Prize must be redeemed at the same time.  In the event of an act of God or an unforeseen, uncontrollable event, Sponsors reserve the right to reschedule all travel for a later date.  If Winner chooses to travel with no Guests, the remaining elements of Prize shall constitute full satisfaction of Sponsors’ Prize obligation to Winner and no additional compensation will be awarded.  Guests, if any, may be required to execute and return releases of liability and, except where prohibited, publicity releases (collectively, “Guest Documents”), which must be returned with the Contest Documents, or Prize will be forfeited and an alternate winner may be selected from the remaining eligible entries. If any Guest is a minor, Winner or one of the other Guests must be such minor’s parent or legal guardian and must execute and return the Guest Documents on such minor’s behalf.

CONDITIONS: By entering the CHEAP TICKETS CONTEST ON TODAY, each entrant agrees for entrant and for entrant’s heirs, executors, and administrators (a) to release and hold harmless CHEAP TICKETS CONTEST ON TODAY Entities and their respective officers, directors, and employees (collectively, “Released Parties”) from any liability, illness, injury, death, loss, litigation, or damage that may occur, directly or indirectly, whether caused by negligence or not, from such entrant’s participation in the CHEAP TICKETS CONTEST ON TODAY and/or his/her acceptance, possession, use, or misuse of Prize or any portion thereof; (b) to indemnify Released Parties from any and all liability resulting or arising from the Contest and to hereby acknowledge that Released Parties have neither made nor are in any manner responsible or liable for any warranty, representation, or guarantee, express or implied, in fact or in law, relative to Prize, including express warranties provided exclusively by Prize supplier that are sent along with Prize; (c) if selected as a Winner, to the posting of such entrant’s name on and the use by Released Parties of such name, voice, image, and/or likeness for publicity, promotional, and advertising purposes without additional compensation, and, upon request, to the giving of consent, in writing, to such use; and (d) to be bound by these Official Rules and to waive any right to claim any ambiguity or error therein or in the CHEAP TICKETS CONTEST ON TODAY itself, and to be bound by all decisions of the Sponsors, which are binding and final.  Failure to comply with these conditions may result in disqualification from the CHEAP TICKETS CONTEST ON TODAY.

ADDITIONAL TERMS: Sponsors reserve the right to permanently disqualify from any promotion any person they believe has intentionally violated these Official Rules. Any attempt to deliberately damage the CHEAP TICKETS CONTEST ON TODAY or the operation thereof is unlawful and subject to legal action by Sponsors, who may seek damages to the fullest extent permitted by law. The failure of Sponsors to comply with any provision of these Official Rules due to an act of God, hurricane, war, fire, riot, earthquake, terrorism, act of public enemies, actions of governmental authorities outside of the control of Sponsors (excepting compliance with applicable codes and regulations), or other “force majeure” event will not be considered a breach of these Official Rules. Released Parties assume no responsibility for any injury or damage to entrants’ or to any other person’s computer relating to or resulting from entering or downloading materials or software in connection with the Contest. Released Parties are not responsible for telecommunications, network, electronic, technical, or computer failures of any kind; for inaccurate transcription of entry information; for errors in any promotional or marketing materials or in these Official Rules; for any human or electronic error; or for entries that are stolen, misdirected, garbled, delayed, lost, late, damaged, or returned.  Sponsors reserve the right to cancel, modify, or suspend the Contest or any element thereof (including, without limitation, these Official Rules) without notice in any manner and for any reason (including, without limitation, in the event of any unanticipated occurrence that is not fully addressed in these Official Rules). In the event of cancellation, modification, or suspension, Sponsors reserve the right to select Winners in a random drawing from among all eligible, non-suspect entries received at the time of the event warranting such cancellation, modification, or suspension. Notice of such cancellation, modification, or suspension will be posted at Sponsors may prohibit any entrant or potential entrant from participating in the Contest, if such entrant or potential entrant shows a disregard for these Official Rules; acts with an intent to annoy, abuse, threaten, or harass any other entrant, Sponsors, or Sponsors’ agents or representatives; or behaves in any other disruptive manner (as determined by Sponsors in their sole discretion). 

DISPUTES: The Contest is governed by, and will be construed in accordance with, the laws of the State of New York, and the forum and venue for any dispute shall be in New York, New York. If THE controversy or claim is not otherwise resolved through direct discussions or mediation, it shall THEN be resolved by FINAL AND binding arbitration administered by JUDICIAL ARBITRATION AND MEDIATION SERVICES, INC., in accordance with its Streamlined Arbitration Rules and Procedures or subsequent versions thereof (“JAMS Rules”).  The JAMS Rules for selection of an arbitrator shall be followed, except that the arbitrator shall be experienced and licensed to practice law in new york.  All proceedings brought pursuant to this paragraph will be conducted in the County of new york.  THE REMEDY FOR ANY CLAIM SHALL BE LIMITED TO ACTUAL DAMAGES, AND IN NO EVENT SHALL ANY PARTY BE ENTITLED TO RECOVER PUNITIVE, EXEMPLARY, CONSEQUENTIAL, OR INCIDENTAL DAMAGES, INCLUDING ATTORNEY’S FEES OR OTHER SUCH RELATED COSTS OF BRINGING A CLAIM, OR TO RESCIND THIS AGREEMENT OR SEEK INJUNCTIVE OR ANY OTHER EQUITABLE RELIEF.

WINNER ANNOUNCEMENT: For the name(s) of the winner(s), available after JULY 17, 2008, visit, or send a self-addressed, stamped envelope to be received by August 14, 2008, to: Cheapticket Contest on Today, 30 Rockefeller Plaza, New York, NY 10112

NO PURCHASE NECESSARY.  Void where prohibited.  Open only to permanent, legal residents of the Continental United States who are 18 or older and the age of majority in their state of residence.  Contest runs from June 26, 2008 to July 3, 2008.  Prize restrictions apply.  To enter, and for full Contest rules and prize details, go to: