Something To Declare: Florida via Iceland; Ramadan; sleep your way to Scotland

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The Independent Travel

One of Europe's smallest airlines is set for rapid expansion - which will increase choice and should reduce fares for transatlantic travellers.

Destination of the week: Florida or California via Iceland

One of Europe's smallest airlines is set for rapid expansion - which will increase choice and should reduce fares for transatlantic travellers.

The Icelandair network is designed so that travellers from London Heathrow and Glasgow can connect at Keflavik airport to a range of US destinations, from Boston to Orlando. The airline (0845 758 1111; www.icelandair.co.uk) is to increase its services to the Florida theme-park capital from the end of October.

Next summer, a new link to San Francisco will allow travellers to combine California with Iceland. Fares in the peak season of July and August are likely to be lower than on direct flights from Britain to San Francisco.

Travellers from Glasgow can take advantage of the free "Blue Lagoon stopover", in which flights are scheduled to allow enough time for passengers to board a bus, travel to the nearby lagoon and take a dip in the warm waters before travelling on to America.

Warning of the week: Ramadan

The Islamic holy month of Ramadan (right) is expected to begin on or about 16 October (the exact timing depending on sightings of the moon) and last 30 days. The month of fasting during the hours of daylight can have significant effects on travellers to countries where Islam prevails. Transport is often disrupted, and hotel facilities may be limited.

Canada's official travel advice points out that: "In addition to the Middle East, there are large Islamic populations in Africa, Burma (Myanmar), Central Asia, China, India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Mongolia, Pakistan, Russia and Turkey." The Canadian government says visitors "should respect Islamic customs, adhere to local laws related to this month of fasting, exercise caution and avoid large crowds".

Bargain of the week: sleep your way between London and Scotland

In the seven years since ScotRail took over the sleeper services linking London Euston with Aberdeen, Edinburgh, Fort William, Glasgow and Inverness, some fares have fallen by 80 per cent. The cheapest deals are on "Bargain Berths". These are standard-class bunks, but are sold at prices that compete with no-frills flights. They cost between £19 and £49 each way; fares tend to be lowest to or from Edinburgh and Glasgow, for bookings made several weeks in advance. You must buy online at www.scotrail.co.uk: click on "Bargain Berths" for details.

ScotRail (08457 55 00 33) has also introduced a Sleeper Family Ticket, priced at £260 from Edinburgh or Glasgow and £290 from other stations. This buys an interconnecting pair of twin-berth cabins, and is valid for groups of up to four, with a maximum of two adults and a minimum of one child.

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