Budget-friendly Italy this winter

Promoted through Travelzoo, Sceptre Tours is offering an amazing air and land winter package to Italy. The ten-night package includes visits to Rome, Tuscany and Venice and a rental car to explore between cities.

Enjoy a city and country experience starting in The Eternal City of Rome and then to Tuscany's gorgeous location amid vineyards where you'll stay for five nights in a 14th century estate. The final stop is in romantic Venice on the Grand Canal.

The lowest rate of $1,470 per person, including round-trip airfare and taxes, is based on double occupancy and on midweek departures from Nov. 2 through mid-February, 2011. Peak holiday blackout dates apply.  Rates are an average of $400 higher, per person, during October departures..

Included are three nights in Rome at the four-star Park Hotel Villa Grazioli; five nights in the heart of the Tuscan countryside at the Fattoria degli Usignoli and two nights in Venice at the four-star Villa Pace Park Hotel Bolognese. A manual shift rental car with unlimited mileage and collision damage waiver (CDW) is included.

Packages must be booked by May 13. Start the booking process at this Travelzoo link: http://www.travelzoo.com. (This package was made available first to Travelzoo's Top 10 VIP subscribers. Details on this package may not show available to book from Travelzoo.com until later today).

This is an exceptional offer considering airfare alone during the winter season is $1,125.  What a great gift for Mom, Dads and Grads -- or honeymoons and anniversaries!

Airfares are continually on the rise. So lock in this offer this month and then prep for the Italian adventure by immersing yourselves in the history and culture of these stunning cities all summer long!

Clara Bosonetto is a retired travel consultant.