Arthur Frommer

Reasons for traveling in October, aided by a strong dollar and lower airfares

Now is precisely the time for a road trip through New England, which will be immersed in the magnificence of fall foliage. The definitive summary of sights and attractions at that time is found in the current issue of Yankee Magazine, now celebrating its 80th anniversary. That remarkable travel publication is found wherever magazines are sold, or you can visit its website to subscribe.

▪ There’s still time to attend two monumental exhibitions, of which the longer-running is Expo Milano 2015 in Milan, Italy. The event is like a world’s fair celebrating the subject of food, its growth and production and its transformation into meals. The expo runs from now through all of October and features scores of pavilions designed by the world’s foremost architects, in addition to compelling scientific exhibits and restaurants of every type.

▪ Available only until Oct. 18 is a compelling exhibit of masterworks by the French sculptor Rodin at the Museum of Fine Arts in Montreal. This is a splendid reason for making that long-delayed trip to the colorful and dynamic French-Canadian city.

▪ While the euro and the Japanese yen have increased in value a tiny bit in recent weeks, they are still exchanged at an unusually favorable rate for American tourists to Europe and Japan. The strength of the U.S. dollar remains high, making the present year an extremely favorable time for international travel.

▪ One currency whose sharp drop against the U.S. dollar hasn’t received the attention it should is the Mexican peso, now selling at 17 to the dollar (versus an earlier rate of 13 to the dollar), making visits to Mexican resorts cheaper than in any recent times. To learn the present exchange rates for all foreign currencies, visit XE.com, the world’s finest website for learning everything you want to know about currency rates.

▪ To the amazement of travel cynics, airfares within the United States recently have fallen by 6 percent. And every indication is of a continued fall. It appears that finally, the executives of America’s airlines have grown embarrassed over their failure to pass on to the public the considerable decline in the airlines’ greatest expense: aviation fuel. Have they, in fact, realized at last that their failure to lower rates (given the drop in aviation fuel) might provoke public outrage and renewed calls for re-regulation of the airline industry?

▪ Finally, there’s been considerable attention to the announcement by Disney that it will now spend a billion dollars apiece in both Orlando, Fla., and Anaheim, Calif., to add new, 14-acre attractions featuring the forthcoming “Star Wars” films. Disney apparently is worried about the increasing competition to their parks from the “Harry Potter” exhibits at Universal Studios’ Islands of Adventure. The Wizarding World of Harry Potter has been enormously popular at Universal Studios, especially among teens.

Note to the reader: Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip. The information in this column was accurate when it was released, but prices are competitive, sometimes limited and can always change without notice.

Arthur Frommer is the founder of the Frommer’s Travel Guide book series. Find more destinations and read his blog at frommers.com.

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