See the Intrepid for Free!

Visit the Intrepid for free!
Visit the Intrepid for free!

The Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum  is is a military museum in New York City that showcases the USS Intrepid aircraft carrier and houses the submarine USS Growler, the Concorde SST, and the Space Shuttle Enterprise.

Admission tickets usually cost $33 per person, but on Saturday September 23, 2017, admission is free thanks to the Smithsonian Magazine Museum Day Live program.

This year, 1,250 museums and cultural institutions across the country are participaing in the Smithsonian program, which offers two free tickets to those who register online.

If military museums are not your thing, you can visit the City Museum of New York or the Cooper Hewitt design museum for free.  However, you must download you tickets in advance for this September 23, 2017 event.

If you’re in Washington, DC, you can get free tickets to the Kreeger Museum of modern art, the National Building Museum, or the Newseum.

Find a museum in your locale with this online search tool.

Museum Day Live! is an annual event.

2017 NOAA Fish Fry

 

2017 NOAA Fish Fry
2017 NOAA Fish Fry

Do you love seafood and live music?

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) is sponsoring the 42nd Annual NOAA Fish Fry on Wednesday June 14, 2017 from 6 p.m.to 9 p.m.

The Fish Fry will take place in the Department of Commerce Courtyard, at 14th Street and Constitution Avenue in Washington, DC.

16 to 20 chefs and vendors will display their seafood to bring awareness to sustainable marine fisheries.  The guest chefs come from locations around the United States from Alaska to the Chesapeake Bay.

Expect to sample a wide variety of fish, crab, scallops, salmon, shrimp as well as side dishes, beer and wine.

Both wild caught and aquaculture raised fish and shellfish will be served.

This event attracts some 1,500 participants and usually sells out early.

Ticket are $35.   Ticket sales begin May 10, 2017 at 1 p.m. EDT on Brown Paper Tickets.

Nice Holiday Parking Deal at Washington Dulles International Airport

Garage Parking for $12/day in December 2016
Park in Garage 1 at IAD for $12/day during December

Flying out of Washington Dulles International Airport (IAD) this coming month?

The airport is offering close-in garage parking for only $12 per day, a $5 discount off the regular rate.

Return home to covered parking now through December 31, 2016 via a special coupon offer!

The regular rate for parking in Garage 1 — near the terminal — is $17 a day.

Economy parking in the remote lots is $10 per day, so this a a nice deal!

Use this link to print a personalized coupon which you must present to the cashier when exiting the garage.

The coupon is valid for a single transaction and may not be combined with other offers.

DC Restaurant Week — Get It While It’s Hot

DC Restaurant Week Seafood
3 Course Lunch for $22 at Ford’s Fish Shack

Temperatures this August in Washington, DC have reached record highs.

Anyone who’s anyone has decamped to Martha’s Vineyard.

That means restaurateurs are trying to fill their tables by offering fixed price menu specials:  $22 for lunch, and $35 for dinner.

Over 260 restaurants in DC, Maryland, and Virginia are participating in DC Restaurant Week, which runs from August 15 – 21, 2016.  It’s a good opportunity to try some of the region’s highly acclaimed (and expensive) restaurants.  Several that are tempting me include:

  • Del Campo — Latin American in Penn Quarter
  • Dino’s Grotto — Italian in Shaw
  • Jaleo — Spanish in Penn Quarter
  • Oyamel — Mexican in Penn Quarter
  • Rasika — Indian in Penn Quarter
  • Zaytinya — Mediterranean in Penn Quarter

Restaurant Week at Ford’s Fish Shack

We snagged a great deal at a fabulous seafood restaurant in Loudoun County:  Ford’s Fish Shack.

A choice of three fixed price specials are offered at lunch and at dinner during restaurant week.

Naturally, we chose the “Eat Like a Mainer” lunch special for $22.

This included:

  • Jalapeno corn muffins
  • Cup of clam chowder
  • Hot lobster roll with butter and garlic
  • Cold lobster roll in mayo
  • Shoestring French fries
  • Blueberry pie with cinnamon ice cream

Highly recommended!

$5 off $25 at Clydes Restaurants in DC Area

$5 off $25 at Clyde's Restaurants
$5 off $25 at Clyde’s Restaurants

Normally I wouldn’t blog about a $5 discount, but this deal for Amex cardholders amounts to a 20 percent savings at my favorite restaurant — Clyde’s.

Clyde’s has 14 restaurants in the metro DC area.
While each has a unique atmosphere and decor, the food is uniformly excellent.  The menu changes frequently and features locally sourced ingredients.

Through July 27, 2015, Amex is running a “Plate of Metro DC” offer.

You can get a $5 statement credit every time after you charge $25 or more in a single transaction at participating restaurants.  You can enroll here:   www.amexnetwork.com/plateofmetrodc.

July Monthly Special at Clyde's
July Monthly Special at Clyde’s

I was able to enroll both my Amex SPG card and my Bluebird card.

To maximize your savings, you can purchase $25 gift cards at Clyde’s restaurants, that can combined or be used for future meals.

Other participating restaurants are listed here:

 

 

Destination DCA: Behind the Scenes Tour

 

Happy 74th Birthday, DCA!Happy 74th Birthday, DCA!
Happy 74th Birthday, DCA!

To celebrate the 74th anniversary of Reagan National Airport (DCA), the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority (MWAA) is holding a behind the scenes tour of operations at the airport.

Destination DCA will give 25 lucky participants insight into the past, present and future of Reagan National Airport.

MWAA will randomly select 25 guests for lunch and a guided tour of the airfield at DCA.

The event will take place on June 23, 2015 from  1 p.m. to 4 p.m.

To enter for a chance to attend, go to http://www.mwaa.com/reagan/8025.htm.

Entries open open Tuesday, June 16, 2015 and close on Thursday, June 18, 2015 at 12:00 noon (Eastern Time).

This event sounds like great fun!

How to Secure a Parking Spot at DCA

Check Parking Availability for DCA Online
Check Parking Availability for DCA Online

Don’t leave things to chance.  If you are flying out of Washington’s Reagan National Airport (DCA) you can check the live parking status online before you leave your home or office.

Parking at DCA can be tight, especially on holidays.

There are only about 2,800 spaces in the economy lot, and limited offsite parking.

Even better, you can reserve a parking space in advance via ePark.  You can make your reservation online at FlyReagan.com from 24 hours to six months in advance of your trip.

Better yet, leave your car at home at take the Metro!

Guarantee Your Parking Space Advance at DCA

Reserve A Parking Space in Advance at DCA
Reserve A Parking Space in Advance at DCA

ePark customers are guaranteed a spot in their chosen parking lot, even if the signs say the lot is full.  You can open the entry and exit gate with the credit card linked to your online reservation.

There is no fee to make a reservation online!

Reservations can be changed or canceled online up to 24 hours before arrival time, free of charge.

How To Make a Parking Reservation at DCA

There are six simple steps to making a successful online parking reservation:

  • Select your date and time
  • Choose the parking garage or lot
  • Complete your personal information
  • Provide your credit card payment details
  • Print out your confirmation email
  • Bring the credit card you used in order to enter and exit the parking facility!

A 24/7 customer service center at 703-417-PARK (7275) handles all inquiries for parking customers, including ePark.

Easy, peasy, and good to know if you are traveling at a peak time!

Grab Cheap Tickets to DC Travel & Adventure Show

DC Travel & Adventure Show March 7-8, 2015
DC Travel & Adventure Show March 7-8, 2015

Goldstar, the discount ticket vendor, is offering cheap tickets to the Travel & Adventure Show in Washington DC on March 7 and 8, 2015.

“Complimentary” tickets are $3.50 each, and discounted tickets are $8.50, including the service charge.

This year’s speakers include PBS personality Rick Steves, Patricia Schultz (author of 1,000 Places to See Before You Die), Travel Channel host Samantha Brown, budget travel expert Pauline Frommer and Josh Gates (Expedition Unknown).

I went a couple of years ago and picked up a ton of information from tourist bureaus near and far.

This post contains affiliate links.  Thanks if you choose to use them!

Stuck at BWI? Go Take a Bike!

Rent a Bike at BWI
Time to kill at BWI? Take a bike ride.

Did you know that you can rent a bike at Baltimore-Washington International (BWI) airport for just $5 a day?

If you find yourself at the airport with time on your hands, you can take a bike ride on the BWI Bike Trail.  

The 12.5 mile bike trail encircles the airport passing through pine forests and Andover Park, where the Thomas A. Dixon Observation Area offers a great vantage point for plane spotters.

Rent a Bike at BWI for $5 a Day

Zagster rents bikes outside the airport’s International Terminal, near the BWI Marshall Airport Light Rail stop.

You can reserve one of ten self service bikes for a daily rate of $5 for up to 12 hours.  This has got to be the deal of the century!

Bikes come with seven gears, front and rear lights, a bell, and a front basket.  Riders can make reservations with Zagster via an app available from the App Store or on Google Play.

The BWI Bike Trail

BWI Trail
Thomas A. Dixon Observation Area.
Photo from accounty.org

The BWI Bike Trail begins at the Linthicum light rail station, runs past a historic property on the grounds of the airport, the Benson-Hammond House.

The trail continues along Aviation Boulevard to the Stewart Avenue Bridge.

At the bridge, continue traveling west to the Thomas A. Dixon, Jr. aircraft observation area where there is a playground, bike racks, and restrooms.

Most of the trail is paved, with some boardwalk areas over wetlands.

This trail seems to be a favorite for bikers and plane spotters alike.  Now you can enjoy it even if you don’t have a bike.  BWI, which was originally named Friendship International Airport, is indeed the friendliest airport around!

 

What’s Coming to Dulles Airport in 2015

IAD Flyers
Dulles Flyers: Expect Great Things in 2015

2014 was a great year for Dulles Flyers, with the opening of Metro’s Silver Line and the Silver Line Express Bus to the airport from the Reston station.

Construction has already begun on the extension of the Silver Line to Dulles International Airport (IAD) and beyond.  Completion is slated for 2019 but I’m not holding my breath.

2014 Service Expansions at Dulles International Airport (IAD)

The most exciting development for Washington, DC area budget travelers was the arrival of Frontier Airlines low cost service to Miami, Orlando, Fort Lauderdale, Las Vegas, Cancun, and these additional cities:

  • Atlanta, GA
  • Charlotte, NC
  • Chicago-O’Hare, IL
  • Cincinnati, OH
  • Detroit, MI
  • Fort Myers, FL
  • Memphis, TN
  • Minneapolis/St. Paul, MN
  • Orlando, FL
  • St. Augustine/Jacksonville, FL
  • St. Louis, MO
  • Tampa, FL

Another welcome service expansion is Southwest’s new daily, nonstop  service to Las Vegas and San Diego.

On December 20, 2014, United Airlines initiated seasonal weekly service to San Jose del Cabo in Mexico, and seasonal service to Jackson Hole, Wyoming and Colorado Springs, Colorado.

We also saw the inauguration of Air China’s nonstop service to Beijing, with four nonstop flights per week, and British Airways upgraded service to London on a new Airbus A380 aircraft.

What’s Coming to Dulles International Airport (IAD) in 2015

In 2015, we will continue to see expanded service from IAD.

Beginning March 11, 2015, you can look forward to daily nonstop service to Seattle on Alaska Air.

On May 1, 2015, Are Lingus will launch nonstop service to Dublin, Ireland four times a week.

Earn Frequent Flyer Miles Without Flying

Southwest, Frontier, and United often offer large bonuses of frequent flyer miles for opening a new credit card account — sometimes enough for two free round-trip tickets.