Enterprising individuals and businesses are using online auction giant eBay to sell thousands of travel-related items, yet another way for consumers to ferret out bargains.

On a recent weekday, for instance, almost 29,000 such items were listed on eBay. Almost 19,000 were luggage items, and 4,500 others included whiskey flasks, travel clocks, mileage upgrade awards (see caveat at the end of this column) and a book on slot-machine secrets. Items more directly related to travel - airline tickets, cruises, lodging and vacation packages - represented about 5,500 of the 78 million items listed for sale on eBay.

To list travel services on eBay, sellers must be licensed to sell travel in all 50 states, said eBay spokeswoman Catherine England, unless that person or business is providing the service sold. In other words, if you own a bed-and-breakfast in Vermont, you can sell rooms at your inn but not airline tickets to get there - unless you are a licensed travel agent.

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