Winter is warmer this year in Europe and now may be the best time to lock in those traditionally low winter season air fares. The United Nations’ World Meteorological Organization reports the Alps have as little as one-third the seasonal average of snow, and temperatures from Norway to the Mediterranean are up to 5 degrees warmer than normal.  A French nursery salesman reports fruit trees are already in bloom, while Geneva’s official chestnut tree has sprouted leaves and flowers. If your plans don’t include outdoor activities involving snow, this is great news.

You can take advantage of these warmer conditions to explore city life or hop a train and enjoy the countryside. For instance, American Airlines will fly you from Boston to Frankfurt, London, Brussels, Zurich, or Paris from $318US round trip; or from Chicago to these same cities for as little as $354US round trip. If you’re on the west coast, Los Angeles to these cities starts at $368 round trip. Check out the American web site under ‘NetSAAver Fare Sales‘ for these and other deals.