Category: travel guide

Advantages and Disadvantages of Airplane Charter Services

Flying services are becoming more and more common, and they are no longer something that only the very upper crust can hire and use. The aviation market has become highly competitive, and some say that some of the companies are running in a loss, and many of these companies have turned to the common person, allowing them to hire their services in a very simple manner.

This has turned out to be a boon for small and big businesses and – even the tourists, as they can have enhance their travelling experience at a fractional increase in their cost. While many companies freely acknowledge that they do not mind the airfare that they pay to ferry their clientele and resources all over the world, many smaller businesses debate about whether the cost of hiring aircraft is worth it. Here is a brief list of the advantages and disadvantages of hiring an airplane charter service.

The first advantage is that you cut down the travelling time to just a few hours. Trips that would earlier take two or three days now would take only a few hours. Hiring planes is a private affair, and are perfect for people who wish to have privacy even during they travel. The comfort that hiring a private plane gives you will be unmatchable by any of the other travel options that you will go in.

By chartering an airplane, you can even cut through the issues like which routes to take, stopovers, etc. Once you charter an airplane, you can direct the airplane anywhere in the world, as long as it is a legal route, you have the required permissions, you have the right resources flying the plane and there is a landing strip available. This is the main reason that many companies prefer chartering planes, as they can then manage the schedule of their employees in a simpler manner.

There are some disadvantages of hiring an aircraft for travelling purposes too. For one, the prices are exponentially higher than taking a train ticket or travelling by road. The prices are not just of the aircraft booked, but also of the hosts, the pilots, the navigators, and everything and everyone who would be necessary to run the aircraft. Secondly, when one hires an aircraft, they have increased responsibility on their shoulders. Right from which route to take to the various licences and approvals, the customer has to ensure that all of them are in place.

These are some of the advantages and disadvantages of hiring aircraft to travel from one place to another. Aircraft handling is much more complicated than handling a vehicle, so one should be careful about which service they are going for. There are a few service providers, and the best way to contact them would be via the Internet, as not many of these have a local presence. Most of these services have websites, which provide you the necessary information required, right from their tariff to the services that they offer.



Source by Mekhi Vargas

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The Stages of US Airline Deregulation

I. Regulation

Although US airline deregulation was initially envisioned as leading to an increased number of carriers whose divergent service concepts, market segments, fleets, and route structures would have produced new competition, stimulated traffic, and lowered fares, it ultimately came full cycle and only resulted in virtual monopoly. Three distinct stages occurred during its evolution.

The regulation itself traces its origin to 1938 when Congress adopted the Civil Aeronautics Act. Its resultant five-member Civil Aeronautics Board (CAB), formed two years later in 1940, regulated fares, authorized routes, awarded subsidies, and approved interline agreements, among other functions.

“Regulation, by definition, substitutes the judgment of the regulator for that of the marketplace,” according to Elizabeth E. Bailey, David R. Graham, and Daniel P. Kaplan in their book, Deregulating the Airlines (The MIT Press, 1985, p. 96).

So regulated had the environment been, in fact, that an airline often had to resort to the purchase of another carrier just to obtain its route authority. Delta Air Lines, for example, long interested in providing nonstop service between New York and Florida, continually petitioned the CAB for the rights. But the regulatory agency felt that Northeast, a small local service carrier often plagued by low traffic, financial loss, and bad weather because of its route system, needed the lucrative Florida route’s revenue potential to boost it back to health and granted it the authority instead.

Undaunted, Delta ultimately resorted to acquiring the regional carrier and subsequently received approval for the merger on April 24, 1972. But these extremes would shortly no longer be needed.

A glimpse of the future could already be had in California and Texas. Devoid of jurisdiction over local air transportation, the CAB could neither exercise fare nor route authority over intrastate airlines and these carriers, usually offering high-frequency, single-class, no-frills service at half the fares the regulated “trunk” airlines were forced to charge, consistently recorded both profit and traffic growth.

Air California and PSA Pacific Southwest Airlines, for example, operating in the Los Angeles-San Francisco market, saw yearly traffic figures increase from 1.5 million passengers in 1960 to 3.2 million in 1965. Texas-based Southwest Airlines similarly provided low-fare service between Dallas and Houston and other Texas points. These airlines demonstrated that true deregulation could yield fares accessible to average-income passengers, provide greater airline and service concept choice, and stimulate traffic.

Passengers and government alike increasingly decried regulation during the mid-1970s, citing the examples set by Air California, PSA, Southwest, and other intrastate airlines as demonstrable proof that deregulation could produce mutual airline- and passenger-benefit. At least that was the theory.

Ultimately conceding to reason and democratic rule, President Jimmy Carter signed the Airline Deregulation Act on October 28, 1978, in the process eliminating the need for CAB approval of route entrance and exit and reducing most of the current fare restrictions. Even those would eventually be eliminated when the Civil Aeronautics Board, in its now famous “sunset,” was disbanded in 1985.

At the time of the event, eleven then-designated “trunk” carriers collectively controlled 87.2 percent of the domestic revenue passenger miles (RPMs), while 12 regionals, 258 commuters, five supplemental, and four intrastates provided the balance of the RPM distribution. Which would still ply the skies when deregulation’s dust settled?

II. Deregulation

Stage One: New Generation Airlines:

Like the California and Texas intrastate airlines, an increasing number of nontraditional, deregulation-spawned carriers initially infiltrated the US market. The first of these, Midway Airlines, was the first to receive certification after the passage of the Airline Deregulation Act and the first to actually inaugurate service, in 1979.

Founded three years earlier by Irwing Tague, a former Hughes Airwest executive, Midway inaugurated low-fare, high-frequency, no-frills “Rainbow Jet” service in November of that year from Chicago’s underutilized Midway Airport-which was once the city’s only airfield until O’Hare was built and which Midway hoped to resurrect the same way Southwest had at Dallas’s Love Field–with five single-class, 86-passenger, former TWA DC-9-10s, initially to Cleveland, Detroit, and Kansas City. Its low fare structure fostered rapid growth and it strategically hoped to penetrate the Chicago market without attracting O’Hare competition from the established carriers.

But, having been employed by Midway, the author can attest that it quickly learned three vital lessons, which indicated that it would have to remain tremendously flexible in order to survive under prevailing competitive market conditions:

Although it served a secondary Chicago-area airport, it first and foremost still competed in the Chicago market.

Secondly, once the incumbent airlines lowered their fares, its load factors declined.

Finally, the high-density, low-fare strategy, which had become the principle characteristics of deregulation-spawned upstarts, was ineffective when an airline attempted to cater to a specific market segment, such as the higher yield business one, where increased comfort and service were expected.

Resultantly, Midway modified its strategy by introducing a conservative cream-colored livery; single-class, four-abreast business cabin seating with increased legroom; additional carry-on luggage space; and upgraded, complimentary-wine in-flight service in exchange for higher than Rainbow Jet fares, but those which were still below the major carriers’ unrestricted coach tariffs.

The newly implemented strategy, dubbed “Midway Metrolink,” significantly reduced the number of seats per aircraft. While its DC-9-10s and -30s had respectively accommodated 86 and 115 passengers, for example, they were reconfigured for only 60 and 84 under the new Metrolink strategy.

Apparently successful, it sparked explosive growth, from an initial 56,040 passengers in 1979 to almost 1.2 million in 1983.

Capitol Air, another deregulation-transformed carrier of which the author had equally been a part, also experienced initial, rapid expansion. Formed in 1946 as Capitol Airways, it had commenced domestic charter service with Curtiss C-46 Commandos and DC-4s, eventually acquiring larger L-049 Constellations, and by 1950 became the fifth largest US supplemental carrier after World Airways, Overseas National (ONA), Trans International (TIA), and Universal. It acquired the first of what was to become one of the largest used-Super Constellation fleets in January of 1960, eventually operating 17 L-749s, L-1049Gs, and L-1049Hs during the 14-year period from 1955 to 1968.

Redesignated Capitol International Airways, the charter airline took delivery of its first pure-jet in September of 1963, a DC-8-30, and subsequently operated four versions of the McDonnell-Douglas design, inclusive of the -30, -50, -61, and -63 series, which replaced the Lockheed Constellation as the workhorse of its fleet.

Receiving scheduled authority in September of 1978, Capitol inaugurated New York-Brussels service on May 5 of the following year and a second, Chicago/Boston-Brussels transatlantic sector on June 19. Like PSA and Southwest, Capitol Air, a former supplemental carrier, was not regulated by the CAB and therefore conducted its own “deregulation experiment” by sublimating proven charter economics of single-class, high-density, low unrestricted and even standby fares to scheduled service in order to attain low seat-mile costs and profitability.

The scheduled concept, branded “Sky Saver Service,” consistently attracted capacity-exceeding demand and sparked considerable fleet and route system expansion. Operating six DC-8-61s, five DC-8-63s, and five DC-10-10s to seven US domestic, three Caribbean, and three European destinations from a New York-JFK hub by 1982, it attracted an ever-increasing passenger base: 611,400 passengers in 1980, 1,150,000 in 1981, and 1,824,000 in 1982.

Passengers, unaware of deregulation-molded carriers whose low fares could only attain profitability with used aircraft, high-density seating, and lower-wage nonunion employees, often voiced criticism about Capitol Air’s non-interline policy and refusal to provide meals and hotel rooms during delays and compensation during missed, other-airline connections. Nevertheless, its fares in the New York-Los Angeles market ranged from an unrestricted $149 based upon a round-trip purchase to a one-way $189, while the majors’ unrestricted tariffs in the market hovered at the $450 mark. As a result, Capitol Air’s load factors exceeded 90 percent.

By September of 1981 ten new carriers received operating certificates and inaugurated service.

“The first effects of deregulation were dramatic,” wrote Anthony Sampson in Empires of the Sky: The Politics, Contests, and Cartels of World Airlines (Random House, 1984, p. 136). “A new breed of air entrepreneurs saw the chance to expand small companies or to establish ‘instant airlines’ which could undercut fares on local routes; they could dispense with much of the superstructure and bureaucracy of the big airlines and could use their flexibility to hit the giants at their weakest points where they could make quick returns.”

Four types of airline types emerged and exerted considerable initial impact on the traditionally regulated airline industry.

The first were the deregulation-spawned upstarts, such as Air Atlanta, Air Florida, Air One, Altair, America West, Best, Carnival, Empire, Florida Express, Frontier Horizon, Jet America, Midway, Midwest Express, MGM Grand Air, Morris Air, Muse Air, New York Air, Northeastern International, Pacific East Air, Pacific Express, PEOPLExpress, Presidential, Reno Air, SunJet International, The Hawaii Express, and ValuJet.

The second were the deregulation-matured local service carriers, including Allegheny, Frontier, Hughes Airwest, North Central, Ozark, Piedmont, Southern, and Texas International, which quickly outgrew their former, regulation-imposed geographic concentrations.

The third, the boundary-crossing intrastate airlines, encompassed companies such as Air California (later AirCal), Alaska, Aloha, Hawaiian, PSA, Southwest, and Wien Air Alaska.

The fourth were the deregulation-transformed charters, such as Capitol Air, Trans International (later Transamerica), and World Airways.

Although some of these carriers, particularly Air One and MGM Grand Air, targeted very specific market niches by offering premium seating and service, the vast majority, whether spawned, raised, or matured by deregulative parenting, attained (or attempted to attain) profitability by means of several core operating characteristics, including, of course, low, unrestricted fares, single-hub, short- to medium-range route systems, high-density seating, limited onboard service, lower wage nonunion work forces, and medium-range, medium-capacity trijets, such as the 727, and short-range, low-capacity twinjets, such as the BAC-111, the DC-9, the 737, and the F.28.

All achieved high load factors, generated tremendous traffic in existing and emerging markets, and created considerable competition.

“In this respect,” wrote Barbara Sturken Peterson and James Glab in their book, Rapid Descent: Deregulation and the Shakeout in the Airlines (Simon and Schuster, 1994, p. 307), “deregulation worked like a charm.”

Stage Two: Monopoly:

Although the established, traditionally regulated major carriers temporarily lowered their fares in selected high deregulation airline-concentrated markets in order to retain their passenger bases, the established airlines, long nurtured and protected by regulation, were not structured for profitable operation with them. Yet even in those cases where they managed to eliminate competition from the market, another low-fare upstart seemed waiting in the wings to fill the void.

The incumbent carriers were thus faced with the choice of relinquishing painstakingly developed markets or dwindle financial resources to retain passengers until they themselves slipped into bankruptcy. It quickly became apparent that the deregulation-sparked fare reductions would become permanent elements of the “new” unregulated airline industry and the major carriers eventually discovered that they had to fundamentally restructure themselves or succumb to the new breed of airlines. Almost every aspect of their operations would, in the end, be transformed.

The first aspect targeted was the route system. Traditionally comprised of point-to-point, nonstop service, which had its origins in 1940 and 1950 CAB route authorizations, these route systems actually contained no inherent “system” at all, and consisted instead of unbalanced geographical encompassments that resulted in lost revenue to other carriers and inefficient, uneconomical use of existing fleets. What was really needed was a centralized “collecting point” for self-feed.

Because of bilateral agreements, European carriers actually operated the first “hubs,” channeling passengers from, say, Copenhagen to Athens by means of an intermediate connecting point such as Dusseldorf. Any passenger flying either the Copenhagen-Dusseldorf or Athens-Dusseldorf sector could theoretically transfer to any of the airline’s outward-radiating flight spokes, vastly increasing the number of markets potentially served. These European capital hubs also demonstrated increased aircraft utilization, improved traffic flow, a larger market base than traditional point-to-point service relying only on origin-and-destination traffic could have supported, and retention of the connecting passenger.

“Although passengers prefer frequent nonstop service, such service can be quite costly,” according to Bailey, Graham, and Kaplan (p. 74). “Airlines thus face strong incentives to establish hub-and-spoke operations… By combining passengers with different …

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Get the Upgrades and Luxuries You Desire When You Travel

It is easier than you think to set up luxury travel plans with great upgrades. Yet you don’t have to pay full price for them. In fact, you can often get those rewards without paying much more than you would for the basics. It all comes down to finding the best deals and putting them in motion. Rather than spending a great deal of time to do this, you can get it done through a provider.

There are luxury travel planners who love looking for specific offers and deals to match the needs of their clients. Once you share with them where you would like to go and what you are interested in, they can spend some time looking around. Once they find options, they can discuss them with you. The final say of what you do and what you pay is always up to you.

Finding a Provider

The key to getting terrific results with luxury travel planners is to find a provider you can trust and that allows you to get exactly what you need. The longer they have been in business and the better reputation they have, the easier it is for you to put the planning into their hands. Ask questions and make sure you know what other customers have to say about their experiences.

Find out about the types of methods and resources the provider uses to find you deals. The best luxury travel planners are efficient and they know where to look and what resources to use to offer you the best outcome. They are interested in offering you overall value, not just saving you money. They want you to become a repeat customer and to refer your friends to them.

One of a Kind Experiences

They are experts and that means they can offer you one of a kind experiences. They can include perks and bonuses you aren’t going to be able to get on your own. The connections luxury travel planners have with various entities means they can get you those sold out tickets you wanted or they can get you a dinner reservation where you thought it was all booked up for your timeframe.

They can also provide you with all-inclusive packages. This means everything you will do for activities is included in the price. Often, this comes with some great perks including upgraded seats and even first opportunities for the best time slots. It certainly doesn’t hurt to talk to them and see what they can do for you.

Making Memories

With the assistance of luxury travel planners, your travel plans will be above and beyond what you had hoped for. You will be able to make wonderful memories and never have to stress about your travel arrangements. Most can help with last minute travel plans, but it is best to contact them as soon as you know where you want to go and when.

The more time they have to put it all together for you, the more exciting it is going to be. If you travel often, it isn’t going to be hard to forge a long term relationship with luxury travel planners. They will learn to identify what you like and prefer, and that helps them to make additional recommendations for you down the road. No more spending lots of time trying to get results on your own. Just contact them and they will do all the legwork for you. Then they can give you results and you can pick and choose what you want to take part in.



Source by Alnashir Janmohamed

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Parasailing Sites in the Philippines

The Philippines, which is known for its thrilling tourist attractions and colorful festivals, is slowly making a name for itself as a paradise for water sports enthusiasts. An emerging water recreational activity in the country is parasailing. With its rich water resources, the Philippines is an ideal place for this high-flying adventure.

Initially available in posh resorts in the Bahamas, Hawaii, Guam, and Australia, parasailing is steadily gaining more following in the Philippines due to its inclusion to various vacation packages by offered resort and vacation rental operators across the country.

Parasailing, which is also known as parascending, allows an individual to stay in the air for several minutes while strapped in nylon harnesses. A boat usually carries the parascender into the air. The sport appears difficult but experts insist that parasailing doesn’t need any special skill other than sheer courage. Enjoying the high-adrenaline experience is one of the common tips shared by experts to beginners.

Here is a guide on where to find the best parasailing sites across Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao.

Mactan Island

Situated on the southeast of Cebu, Mactan is one of the leading parasailing destinations in the country. Most accommodations in the island entice tourists with their various water recreation facilities where you can go parasailing, jet skiing, scuba diving, and sailboating. While in the air, the parascender gets a fascinating view of the islands of Bohol, Sta. Rosa, Olango, and Cebu. Pristine beaches and rich marine resources have placed Mactan on the Philippine travel map.

Boracay Island

Parasailing adventures also await holidaymakers in Boracay, which is famous for its white sand beaches. A brave soul is treated with a bird’s-eye-view of the whole island. While most resorts in Boracay arrange parasailing activities for their clients, tourists can also hire the services of hawkers who offer much lower prices. A 15-minute parasailing escapade in Boracay usually costs between Php 1,500 and Php 2,500. Parasailing allows tourists to get their energy flowing in enjoying various events and activities in Boracay.

Subic Bay

Another favorite parasailing site in the Philippines is the Subic Bay in Zambales. Since it is just a couple of hours away from Manila, most water adventurers in the metro quench their thirst for parasailing and other recreational activities in Subic. Parasailers get an unforgettable view of the Subic Bay and Grande Island. Other water activities in Subic include scuba and wreck diving, yachting, and kayaking.

Coron Island

The island paradise of Palawan has everything for every tourist, including parasailing. In Coron, a famous travel getaway in the province, one can enjoy a view of the island around 400 feet above the water. The island, which is also famous for its pleasant rock formations, is considered the best wreck diving site in the Philippines. Wreck dive sites are found in a depth as shallow as ten to 30 feet and as deep as 120 to 140 feet.

Local Philippines is your travel buddy. We have information about the destinations, how to get there, what to do while in the area and more! Destinations in the beaches or in the mountains, destinations under water, destinations right at the middle of the urban hub, name it and Local Philippines will most likely feature it.



Source by Allan Merin

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The Benefits of Educational Tours

There’s no need to say it, but there are really more than a few benefits to educational tours. From the word itself, an educational tour is something done to gain knowledge while traveling and touring to some place. It creates opportunities for people to think out of the box and see things and places that aren’t usually seen in their normal environment.

Educational trips aren’t always those that cover far distances. As already said, it is done to gain knowledge and you wouldn’t need to go very far to have it. Sometimes, an educational trip could be in your hometown.

Historic places and museums are always on top of the lists of the places to go in an educational tour. Educational tours like these would make you know your country better. Your country’s history is rich and it is the reason why you came to be. But remember that the history of other states, counties and countries are as important as your own.

When you go on a trip to another country, it is advised that you learn their culture first. Different cultures have different understanding and perspective of different acts, and it could be dangerous or offending if you cannot understand a culture.

When you go on an educational tour, it is likely that you would have the opportunity to socialize with other people. Students are encouraged to talk to locals and natives and learn from them, because it is with understanding that students gain knowledge. When students talk with local people, they are gaining insights to their life and their culture. It is said that when in Rome, act and think as the Romans do, and this is a valuable skill that not all people could do.

There are millions of people who want to travel, and an educational tour is the perfect time to do so. Traveling opens new doors and opportunities; it always makes you want to learn more. Cultures are many and widely different, and it is a very valuable talent to understand the people of different cultures.

Traveling with groups of other students is safer than traveling alone, and bulk travels like those could also be helpful on the budget. Group of friends could stay at one place and get discounts on the place that you wouldn’t get if you are traveling alone. Traveling is fun and more budget-friendly when with other people on an educational tour.

Travel abroad for a month. Try and see if you wouldn’t miss your own country. Traveling would let you see your own country in a different way. The benefits of an educational tour are all important, but this one creates patriotism in a person.

A school isn’t a place where they teach you to find the answers; it is a place where one teaches you to find the questions and learn the answers for yourself. Educational tours are valuable this way. They teach you that you are not the only one seeking for questions and that there are other people who are willing to help you on your way too.



Source by Lindsey Jenkins

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How to Use Instagram to Market Your Business

Photo sharing has been given a major social upgrade thanks to introduction of Instagram. The Instagram platform has become hugely popular with more than 80 million users, who enjoy altering their photos with special effects and cool filters before sharing them with friends and followers.

Businesses can start using this new type social media as a way to market their company and build up a following. People love strong visual images, so posting pictures of products and even employees will make them feel closer to you. This type of marketing is what helps forge brand loyalty.

So how can your business use Instagram for marketing? Here are some examples:

Geotagging

In Instagram’s latest update, users now have the option to tag a specific location with their images, which are saved to a personal photo map. These can be shared with your followers.

This is great if you have a physical location or even if you travel around the city, state or country. If you have booths at local craft fairs or other vendor events, then you can snap a photo and tag your location to let your followers know where you can be found.

Inside Look

The whole idea behind social media is sharing. Your fans and followers are giving you a chance to reach them on a more personal level so make sure you are giving them the same. Take pictures of the staff in the office. Snap shots of upcoming products to give them a sneak peak. If you’re on the road, take some pictures along the way. Give followers a real sense of how things are behind the scenes to help them feel like a part of the brand.

Use Hashtags

If you use Twitter, you know how effective hashtags can be at sharing. You can use the same on your Instagram photos. Use hash tags that relate to your business or industry to make it easy for people to find you. For instance, if you make jewelry, you can use hashtags like #rings, #customjewlery, or #necklaces. Look up popular hashtags that are being used by similar brands and add them to your images.

Encourage User Images

People who are already using your products should be encouraged to snap a photo of themselves using it and tag it with one of your hash tags. This will show people how to use your products and show how many people are happy with your company.

Hold Contests

People love a chance to win prizes and using Instagram to hold a photo contest is an exciting way to give them what they want. You can ask fans to send in a picture of them using your product and then choose a winner from among them. You could also go a different route by asking them to send in a picture that demonstrates something more abstract, like what represents summer to them.

There are any number of ways to get creative and get more followers by holding a contest using Instagram. Your followers will share with their friends who will also want to join in the fun.

Market Your Events

If you are going to be at a trade show or convention, take pictures and tag your location to let your followers know what is going on for your business. If you are holding a big sale, snap a shot of your sales flyer for your followers to see. This is also a good way to make your followers feel more special because you can offer them a VIP discount that only Instagram users can get. Get creative with them!

Instagram was acquired by Facebook for about $1 billion. That is a sure sign that this is an important part of social media. When you implement it in your marketing strategy, it is one more important tool to have.

People love getting involved and sharing with the businesses they love. Take part in this era of sharing and you can broaden your reach and strengthen your branding with a few snaps of the camera.

Are you signed up with Instagram yet? What are you doing to market your business with the latest social app?



Source by Dawn Pigoni

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What a Tour Broker Is and How to Become One

A person who operates a tour company is a broker. A broker is a middleman. Brokers buy or arrange items or services and sells these items or services to the end buyer. Some examples of brokers are:

Independent insurance agents. These agents do not provide insurance; they arrange insurance for you from an insurance company. Insurance agents usually get a commission from an insurance company.

Stock brokers. Like insurance agents, stock brokers help you buy and sell stock. They don’t own the stock. These brokers also receive a commission based on the amount sold.

Real estate broker. Again, these brokers do not own the properties they sell and they get a commission based on the value of what they sell.

There are also tour brokers. Tour brokers serve a variety of customers. This article is about what a tour brokerage is and the basics of this business.

Here is a good description if what a tour is: A trip with visits to various places of interest for business, pleasure, or instruction.

Here travel is defined: To go from one place to another, as on a trip; journey.

A tour, then, is not only travel but it is travel with the purpose being pleasure or interest. You may think of a tour as extended travel with the object being to see and experience an area. Travel, on the other hand, is usually only about moving from one place to another.

A tour broker works with people on a continuous basis. If you are going to get involved in this type of business you should like working with people – you have to be a people person.

Tour brokers are not travel agents. Travel agents arrange for the travel needs of their customers. Usually a travel agent will only work with individuals or small groups (families, for example). Travel agents also always buy something that is already in place (air travel, car rentals, hotels, etc.), they do not originate anything.

Tour brokers originate – they arrange tours, they arrange the transportation, they arrange the lodging, they arrange the meals, and they arrange other services for their clients. A tour broker plans on what kind of tour he/she wants to operate.

Next, the tour broker makes arrangements for the various components of the tour – transportation, food, lodging, attractions, etc.

There are many types of tour companies. Some offer guided tours of a local area – tours of a city or an attraction, for example. Some offer tours in a natural setting – guided tours through the Grand Canyon fall into this category. Some offer tours to various national and state parks. Some offer tours through a large area, a multi-state tour is a good example.

IF YOU LIKE TO TRAVEL – FOR FREE – THIS IS A GREAT BUSINESS TO BE IN

You may have to do inspections of the hotels and attractions that you will be making a part of your tour. If you have been taught correctly you will know how to get “comp” (short for complimentary or Free) rooms and meals. If you will go along with the tour, you should expect to get comps again. How to set it up so that you get comps is something your mentor should teach .

NOTE THAT THE INFORMATION PROVIDED HERE ONLY APPLIES TO THE US. OTHER COUNTRIES MAY HAVE DIFFERENT RULES

As I mentioned before, this is a people business. Liking to work with people and liking to solve problems is a prime requirement.

Like a church is a church because someone calls it a church, a tour broker is a tour broker because someone says that they are a tour broker. There is no requirement for a license. If you do operate a business there may be a need for you to get a federal tax number and your county or city may require you to get a business license. As far as needing a license to become a tour broker – there is no license required. From the mid 1930’s until the 1980s transportation was strictly controlled by the Interstate Commerce Commission (ICC). Under the Deregulation Act of 1982, competition was allowed and the need for federal authority became a thing of the past.

Depending on where you are you may need some sort of business license. Call your local county office and ask for the office in charge of business licenses. This should be easy as all they really want is for you to file some paperwork and pay them a small fee.

If you are going to be making money (and why else get in the business?) you are going to have to get a federal tax number. This number is called a Tax Identification Number (TIN) and is used in business much as your Social Security number is used for benefits.

I have looked at various sites on the Internet purporting to be concerned with how to become a tour operator. Most do not seem to understand what a tour operator is or does. Those which got close to the concept either offers to teach or provided links to sites which may prepare someone how to be a tour guide. A tour guide is not a tour operator – at best, a tour guide works for a tour operator.

A tour operator runs his/her own business

It’s as simple as that – you own and run the business. If you plan to make a profit you follow this rule – buy low, sell high. People tend to make things too difficult. You buy at one price and sell at another price, easy, huh?

The real “trick” to making money in the tour business is to understand that concept of breaking even (BE). The break even point is where you don’t lose money and where you don’t make money. To help you understand this idea you have to understand that there are two types of costs in most businesses – fixed and variable. A fixed cost is one that will occur whether you have 10 clients or 46. Office rent is a fixed cost. You have to pay the rent whether or not you operate any tours. A variable cost is a cost that is dependent on something else. An example of a variable cost would be the cost an attraction (theme park). If you have 20 clients the total cost of the attraction is dependent (variable) on the number of clients you have.

The lack of good information on this business led me to believe that those in this business do not want competition or they don’t have time to write about how they run their business. A well thought out tour, advertised correctly, can bring in thousands in revenue. For example, suppose that you operate a seven- day bus tour. The tour sells for $985.00 (per person, double occupancy) and you have 36 people go on your tour. The gross revenue on this tour will be over $35,000.00 and you should be able to retain at least $10,000.00 of that amount.

IS THIS THE SORT OF BUSINESS FOR YOU?

It is possible to may some serious money in this business – you could also lose money. Here are some basic requirements that you should have before starting such a business.

You should like working with people

You should not panic when things go from good to bad to even worse

You should be able to organize things easily

You should have at least a working knowledge of certain computer programs – word processing, spreadsheet, e-mail

You should have a copy machine and a fax machine

You should have at least one telephone

You should have at least one fairly up-to-date computer

What sort of tours and what do I do next?

The world is your oyster

This is really the fun part – you can go anywhere! Successful brokers operate three-day tours from Denver into the nearby Rocky Mountains and seven-day tours to Branson, Missouri. Brokers on the east coast offer tours into New England and parts of Eastern Canada as well as longer tours into the American southwest.

Brokers in Seattle do a good business operating tours into the Copper Canyon of Mexico. Some brokers offer tours to musical events, art showings, and short trips to New York City for Christmas shopping.

Where to go is up to you as long as you keep it reasonable. Going to Iraq now may not be the best choice but there is a company in the UK offering and operating tours into Iraq – make sure that your clients sign many disclosures stating that you are not at fault in case of your death. Given the current state of the economy it may be wise to limit your offerings to North America but tours to Costa Rica seem to sell very well.

To find out more about this exciting business click here.



Source by Arthur Lincoln Elliott

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Discover the Advantages and Disadvantages of Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) vs Pay Per Click

You’ve just launched your new website (or launched the redesign) and now you’re sitting back waiting for the orders to roll in. But wait a minute, something’s wrong… there don’t seem to be any. It’s as if your site doesn’t exist.

Well, I hate to burst your bubble, but unless you have either a well publicised site or many websites linking to yours, you’re going to have to rely on the search engines. And if your site doesn’t rank in the first three result pages, it’s more than likely you won’t be found at all.

So… you know what’s coming next; that’s right, you need a good dose of search engine marketing (SEM) to make sure your site gets listed on the search engines’ results pages. Do this and the traffic to your website will soon follow.

“Right”, I hear you say. “Let’s do some search engine marketing then…”

Well that’s certainly a good start! But first you have to work out your approach to maximise your returns. Let’s call this your search engine marketing strategy. In order to create an effective strategy you need to understand a bit more about how search engine marketing works. Currently, we can roughly-speaking separate search engine marketing into two different approaches:

  1. Organic: including search engine optimisation, links from other websites and offline marketing.
  2. Paid: including pay per click, paid submission and online advertising (banner ads).

So to help you further, I’ve listed below the advantages and disadvantages to each approach to SEM and outlined my recommendations.

Organic: Advantages

  1. The majority of the work behind search engine optimisation (SEO) is a one-off activity, and so is usually charged out at a set upfront fee.
  2. The changes made to your website will probably still be relevant and driving traffic to your site a year from now.
  3. Credibility: most people (research indicates between 60 and 80 percent) will click on the organic results rather than the sponsored (paid) results.
  4. If you rank well in one of the major search engines (Google/Yahoo/MSN), you will most likely show up in the majority of the search engines worldwide.

Organic: Disadvantages

  1. Changes must be made to your website’s code. Normally the changes are invisible to visitors. However, if you have invested heavily in a search engine-unfriendly site, the process can be time-consuming and costly; and occasionally significant changes may need to be made to your site’s copy, navigation or design. Of course ultimately, you’ll see returns if you commit to the necessary changes.
  2. Results (rankings and traffic) start slowly. You will normally see results within 3-4 months.
  3. There can be no guarantee. As the search engines themselves have the final say, you can’t predict how many rankings you’ll get for a particular search term or engine; nor can you predict how much traffic you’ll get to your site.

Paid: Advantages

  1. Pay per click (PPC) advertising programs are fast to implement. It usually takes two to three weeks to set up and run. Google AdWords are up-and-running as soon as you start the campaign, and Overture listings are live within 3-5 business days (after an editor reviews them).
  2. Nothing has to change on your web site, although I would recommend you create targeted landing pages for each advertisement as they’ve been proven to increase conversions (but that’s another subject for another time!).
  3. There is no limit to the number of terms or keyword phases you can bid on.
  4. PPC is good if you intend to run promotions through your site, as you can turn the PPC campaign on and off whenever you choose.
  5. You can dictate where the listing appears on the result’s page (within the sponsors’ ads area) and determine what the ad says.
  6. It’s very easy to test all your different search terms and offers etc, and to measure the results.

Paid: Disadvantages

  1. Clicks can be expensive. Bidding wars often erupt.
  2. You must keep paying for the clicks every month. If your budget is ever cut, your listings will disappear, along with your search engine traffic.
  3. Most people (research indicates between 60 and 80 percent) will click on the organic results rather than the sponsored (paid) results.
  4. It requires a time investment to monitor and adjust listings on a constant basis, or budget to outsource this activity.
  5. Listings are subject to editorial acceptance. With SEO, you can state whatever you like on your website (which is where the search engines pull your page title and description). But with PPC, editors insist that all listings be factual and that you not compare your company with others. This means that even if you are the “largest” provider, you can’t state that.

Now you know a bit about the advantages and disadvantages of both organic and paid search engine marketing, you must decide how to approach your online marketing campaign.

Organic marketing is probably best if:

  1. You want to spend some time on search engine marketing upfront and have it pay off in the future, on conceivably every search engine there is around the world.
  2. You have a budget to do some work now, and want to save money later on.
  3. Your site is fairly simple, without a lot of complicated bells and whistles.
  4. You can afford to wait a month or two for results.
  5. You don’t want to have to manage or maintain anything on a daily, weekly or monthly basis.

Paid advertising may be for you if:

  1. You want to get up-and-running quickly.
  2. You have a promotion where you want to be able to turn a PPC campaign on and off.
  3. You want to be able to test search terms, products or offers and quickly see results.
  4. Your site is search engine-unfriendly and you don’t want to invest in changing it.
  5. You’re confident you’ll have the budget to spend for the long haul, and you have time to maintain positions on a regular basis.

Of course many companies and businesses tackle both organic and paid SEM at the same time, and this is what I would typically recommend to maximally attract qualified traffic to a website.

If you are currently designing your site, or redesigning an existing one, make sure your developer knows how to create search engine optimised code or is working closely with a SEO consultant. Getting it right from the beginning will save you time and money in the long run. And it needn’t cost a fortune either if you tackle this upfront

If you have an existing site you wish to optimise, you may have a hard decision to make if your current site is not search engine friendly. If your site has been built using extensive use of frames or dynamic pages (your URL may look like: http://www.yoursite.com/page.asp?id=8), the cost to rectify these problems can be discouraging. If this is the case, now may be the time to seriously consider redesigning your site earlier than you’d planned.

Either way, the use of a small paid (pay per click) advertising campaign before optimisation can be a great way to nail down those essential keywords to use throughout your site’s copy by recording which keywords customers respond to the most in your campaign.



Source by David Crowther

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Places to Visit in New York

New York is a buzzing, vibrant city which attracts thousand of tourists each and every year who come to experience its huge buildings, fantastic museums, quality restaurants and world-class shopping. New York is a place where you can find various multicultural and diverse populations, also it varies from desperately poor to the height of excess. This diversity and variation ensures an interesting and lively atmosphere and brings its own unique flavor in each district.

New York City boasts more for its amazing sights than anywhere else in the US, New York has a charm to make people feel as if they know the city before they’ve even been there. In my article I have mention the top-most places to visit and things to do in New York, so that the visitors can easily figure out the most important places to see. So if you are in USA planning next visit to New York then book visit us and book cheap airline tickets. So buy cheap flights to your travel destination now and save more money.

The Statue of Liberty: A lovely gift given by the people of France stands for what New York is all about. The best place to start exploring New York is from visiting The Statue of Liberty. It is one of the most prestigious as well as famous monuments in the world. For the visitors climbing up to 354 steps to reach the statue’s crown is a life time memorable experience and it is completely different from a postcard or photograph of the statue. The Statue of Liberty is situated in New York Harbor with standing on 12-acre Liberty Park. For a panoramic view of the city u must visit the observation deck. And in order to cherish the amazing engineering structure, you can tour the national monument. Viewing this beautiful statue is one of the moving experiences for the visitors.

Central Park: For providing some very much-needed open area for Manhattan’s fast growing expanding population, this 843-square-mile have been designed in the mid of 19th century. In the heart of concrete jungle the construction of Central Park have became a peaceful sanctuary among the New Yorkers. The park contains 58 miles of pavements and is encircled by a six mile loop. You can send your entire evening by taking a stroll along the park, Central Park is a major place of attraction for tourists and residents because for everyone of all ages the park has something to provide, beside walking and jogging you will also come across a marionette theater carousel, restaurants a zoo and an observatory. In the month of November and March you can see the famous ice rinks. For more added fun you can rent a boat from the Loeb Boathouse on the Central Park Lake.

Chelsea Galleries: Chelsea has become the art capital of New York during the nineties, as huge number of galleries has moved into the area. Chelsea Galleries is now an important stopping place for anyone having interest with the latest from the city’s contemporary art scene.

Visitors with the love for museum will find New York as a heaven, as New York offer a large number of world-class contemporary museums. Museum lovers will consider The Museum of Modern Art as one of the finest museum, which display more than 100,000 sculptures, paintings, photographs and prints. Pieces by Picasso, Van Gogh, and Claude Monet’s Water Lillies generally attract the visitors. The museum has about 30 million artifacts in its collection house. At the museum of Natural History the three halls for dinosaur are also highly impressive.

Sunset at Riverside Park South: On Riverside Boulevard at Riverside Park South there is a new 600-ft pier. You can bring your camera to capture the view up and down the Hudson; people find the place very romantic, spectacular and sweeping. People from all areas of the city gather over here to enjoy the spectacular views of sunset. You can also find outdoor restaurant, barbecues, bar and good music which goes well with the atmosphere.

Astroland Amusement Park: Situated at Coney Island offers various kind of adventurous games and wonderful rides. Cyclone Roller Coaster will bring thrills and chills to the kids as well as to the grown ups. The park has arcade game room where you can play all kinds of video games.

Even though New York can be very different but, it is quite clear that New York has a wide number of attractions to satisfy all tastes and this is without mentioning the New York Yankees Stadium, Chinatown, St Patrick’s Cathedral, New York Aquarium or the Radio City Music Hall. Being a big business city, you can still find many places to visit for both natives and tourists. You can come across many beautiful places to relax and refresh numerous parks, cars and skyscrapers, splendid beauty of nature.



Source by Harry Lee

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A Ten Year Insider’s Review of Market America – Pros and Cons

My review of Market America comes from firsthand experience. I spent 10 years of my life investing time and energy into Market America as an independent “Unfranchise” owner at the Professional Coordinator level. I was a certified trainer, internet certified trainer, motives consultant and a two-time Presidents Challenge award winner. This opportunity yielded incomes that ranged from $4500 to $7500 dollars a month.

My time spent with Market America was a worthwhile experience. I respect this company and am grateful for what it taught me. Over 10 years, I believe I earned great deal of reward for my efforts. I am an advocate for Market America’s models for research, but I would insist you get all of the facts first. Like any business effort, it is not fool proof. Here are the areas that I feel are the most important areas of the business that you should be concerned with before making a decision in investing and partnering with Market America

Products

“Mall without walls” is truly a concept that Market America has embraced as you can see on their website. Since they do not manufacture any products rather they find exclusive products made by companies that have strong product development and research. The “Unfranchise” brings the product to the user via the owner’s network.

International Expansion

Market America does business in four countries. However, I feel they should have the ability and resources to expand. The products they offer are varied and should have international appeal. With products ranging from anti-aging, beauty and personal care, health and nutrition, cell phones, print center to your own shopping portal where you can access affiliates like Best Buy, Apple Store, Victoria Secret and thousands more. They have the ability to offer customers and owners what they demand.

Market America requires networking to succeed.

Binomial Marketing

Binomial Marketing System with the Management Performance Compensation Plan MPCP is a mutation from binary marketing. In order to make money, In order to make you must enlist two people. One recruit on your left side and one on the right. That’s called activating. To qualify your business must be able to accumulate The top level of investment averages around $750 worth of product at distributor cost.

Commission cycles at $1500 with the opportunity for a management bonus of $600 if you help two other “Unfranchise” owners in your organization.

Requirements To Make Money?

Market America imposes many requirements on the “Unfranchise” owners. That broke the mold for the perfect business which would allow for someone to put the plan in motion and then make commissions from its output. Required meetings also sour the deal because of the explicit and implicit personal expense that is involved. Airfare, hotel stays, meetings, monthly seminars and weekend trainings, cost money of which come out of your revenue.

So is Market America a scam or legit?

Market America is not a scam. In fact, it is a legitimate business opportunity with a solid compensation plan and unlimited products. As with any business, your results are based on your efforts and abilities in marketing your business.



Source by Ciro Gamino

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Fabulous Destination Birthday Party Locations For 30th, 40th and 50th Celebrations

Destination birthday parties have become very popular, especially for milestone birthdays like 30th, 40th and 50th.  For a destination party, guests typically pay their own travel, rather than giving a gift.  Guests spend a festive birthday vacation together for an intimate and unforgettable celebration.

Budget and location figure prominently in searching for a destination birthday party location.  In the midwest and eastern United States, long weekend trips to the Caribbean are popular.  There are direct flights, minimal time change if any, and a great selection of hotels and resorts that are perfect for this type of event. Popular options include the Dominican Republic, Puerto Rico, the Bahamas and the Cayman Islands.

Similarly, Mexico is a wonderful destination where the scenery is beautiful and the price of accommodations often runs less than in the United States.  Whether you’re looking for relaxation on the beach, or experiencing fascinating cultures, Mexico offers anything you could want.  Check out places like Cancun, Cabo San Lucas, Merida and Mexico City, all of which have direct flights from the United States.

Las Vegas, Nevada has always been a destination party hotspot, and offers lots of great deals on flights and hotels.  However, if it’s been visited by most of your guests, or they aren’t interested in gambling, there are plenty of other options.

What about renting a fabulous house in a gorgeous location for the week or weekend?  Arrange for a luxurious home with maid service, a chef and enough bedrooms for all of your guests.  With lots of room to spread out, you can enjoy each other’s company in a laid back environment.

Finally, as they say, “getting there is half the fun.”  Another low-stress option is a long weekend or week long cruise.  Guests enjoy the amenities of the boat, stopping at a few destinations.  It’s a hassle free, all-in-one option where you can often negotiate a group discount for your party.

Another lovely and reasonably priced option is off-season destinations.  For example, ski resorts offer beautiful landscapes and reduced rates during the summer months.  Look into places like Mont Tremblant in Quebec, Beaver Creek, Colorado, or Taos, New Mexico for stunning scenery, better deals and fewer crowds than you’d find during ski season.



Source by Sarita Haines

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Trade Show Models For Your Booth – Make Sure to Weigh the Cost Versus Benefit

Trade show models can be a great addition for any convention or trade show, but you want to make sure they are the right fit for your company. There are two main factors to consider here; one, you must weigh the cost versus benefit, and two, you want to make sure the models portray your company in the right light. The cost versus benefit will be discussed here.

Cost Versus Benefit:

In other terms, the ever valuable (ROI) return on investment. In some cases this decision will be made very easy. If your company is on the East coast, and you have an expo to attend in Las Vegas, then convention models may be beneficial. After calculating the cost of the plane tickets, the hotel rooms, the food, and time and money lost by pulling the employees out of the office, you may be surprised just how much this adds up to.

Then take a look at the cost of hiring trade show models. For about $45/hr per model, one can expect to pay $1,500-$2,000 for an entire 3 day event. This is about the same as the plane fairs and hotel rooms only. All talent is local, so there are no boarding or travel expenses.

The more difficult decision will be whether or not promotional models will bring in the same amount of leads as if you had your own employees present. If you have a very technical product that must be fully understood to convey to potential buyers, it will be too much to expect a promo girl to relay this all to your booth visitors.

However, often times highly technical employees are not exactly the most outspoken individuals, and will have trouble attracting anyone into your display. Here it may be worth hiring trade show models to entice visitors to stop at your booth, then have a system in place where the model can hand the visitor off to a more knowledgeable member of your staff.

It is very important not too just jump into the trade show scene without ample thought and planning. These can be a huge source of business for your company, or they can be a huge drain.



Source by Stephen J Adams

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The Pros and Cons of Travelling Around the World

We have many outlets to spend our free time fruitfully. One of them is travelling. It is a marvelous experience in anyone life even though it has got its own pros and cons. We are going to discuss about the advantages and the disadvantages of travelling here. Let us list out the advantages first.

The main advantage of travelling is visiting attractive places and meeting new people. It helps you to know different culture and traditions which is certainly valuable. Each journey gives different experience to you. Generally travelling educates you and it makes your knowledge wider. We become experienced and our mind can cope up with any kind of environment and the surrounding people. More over, travelling is a wonderful solution for those who are suffering from monotony, dullness, tediousness in their business. They can experience a great adventure. It is a kind of restarting their minds. They can switch off all the concerns for a while and have a wonderful experience by travelling to any new atmosphere they want to be.

Generally, journeys give great fun and absolute joy to people. It also makes your dreams come true. Travelling is not restricted to certain age group. Anyone can travel, even a small children travels with their parents to another city or even another country. It gives pleasure to everyone. When we travel with our family and friends, it would be a wonderful get together. It gives us the opportunity to renew our love and the relationship apart from our personal works and business. Now days, lot of people prefers spending time on travelling. They want to be relaxed from doing their routine tasks, business and the stressful atmosphere at least for few days. They can give “PAUSE” to their routine work and they opt for travelling. Hence, travelling is a marvelous recreation which takes you to various places from your monotonous tasks.

On the other hand, let us discuss about the disadvantages we have while travelling. Of course, the cost of travelling is quite high. Journey to foreign country is risky and causes many diseases or some times it causes even death. The other disadvantage of travelling is fatigue. Most journeys are long and it would make us tired. There are chances for us to face terrorism, violence or robbery while we travel. We may face problems with food. Food habits and the variety of food vary from people to people and country to country. Hence, it’s our responsibility to arrange things wisely before starting a tour. Generally, you cannot expect the comfort you get from your home while travelling. So, you must take extra precautions while you travel.

On the whole, travelling is a wonderful way of spending time. It gives sweet memories and nice impressions apart from the disadvantages. It provides all together like fun, adventure and the excitement of seeing a new place. In my point of view, all the disadvantages can be curable. Hence, prepare far before you start your tour to a foreign country. I wish you all to have a fabulous journey!!



Source by Tracy Barb

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Top 10 Romantic Getaways For Under $5,000

Looking to just get away from it all? And you don’t have an entire checking account to splurge? Well no worries my friends, we all can’t be millionaires, unfortunately. But when it comes time to sharing that special vacation with somebody that you love, many us draw blanks come time to book and plan that special trip. However, this does not mean that there are not plenty of great places that you and your lover can escape to. To better help you decide, here are the top ten romantic getaways for under $5000!

1. Maui, Hawaii: enjoy relaxing on the romantic beaches of Maui while you stay at the Kihei Bay Vista Resort-a fully featured and amenity rich resort that offers high thread count sheets and plenty of great room service eats. Online packages, which include airfare and four days/four nights, start at about $765 per person-that’s around $1500 bucks and all you pay for is food and a rental car once on the island.

2. Cancun, Mexico: one of the most pristine, clean and beautiful barrier reef islands beckons you and your lover to come stay on the strip-like resort, beachside environment packed with ample night-doings and plenty of history. Online packages will run you about $850 per person, which includes airfare and hotel accommodations for four nights.

3. Miami, Florida: take your significant other to one of the most popular and romantic places in the world, and catch a day at Disney World, without the kids. Miles from hundreds of islands, Miami is a destination city. Online packages will run about $600 per person, including flight and a nice hotel room.

4. Aspen, Colorado: for a different, snowy romantic retreat, head to the Rocky Mountains and go on a romantic skiing trip. Lodging at a signature, mountainside resort, including lift passes, will only eat your wallet out of about $600 per person for a four day trip-including flight.

5. Newport Beach, California: perhaps one of the most inexpensive ways to get away from it all-you can easily find dozens of great vacation packages to beachside resorts, including airfare and logging for four nights, for about $500 per person online.

6. Acapulco, Mexico: a cheaper destination perhaps than Paris or Venice, you can easily find plenty of great deals online for all-inclusive trips to destination resorts. Packages range from about $600-800 per person, including airfare for a four night esplanade in the Mexican Riviera.

7. San Diego: one of the most popular romantic vacation destinations in the world awaits you. You will not find better deals to anywhere else online than here. Five day packages, which include your flight, a rental car and nice resort hotel room, start at around $600 per person.

8. San Francisco: the city by the bay is just a few hundred dollars away, where culture, nice beaches and five star eateries beckon you to come say hello. Enjoy a romantic trip for two here for about $600-$800, which includes your plane trip, and your hotel room for five nights.

9. Paris, France: perhaps one of the most romantic destinations in the world, a culture rich, and vibrate society will entice nearly anybody. Of course such an exotic destination never comes without an exotic price tag attached. Online packages, including airfare and hotel stay-for seven days and seven nights- start at about $1850 per person.

10. Venice, Italy: it does not get anymore romantic than taking a stroll through one of the oldest cities in the known world. Of course riding down the many, water filled canals and being serenaded also stack up in great many reasons-art galleries included-why you should head to Venice. It will cost you however to enjoy Italy, to the tune of about $1900 per person, including airfare and hotel for a week.



Source by Anita Hodzic

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Benefits of International Travel

International travel can be a great experience; it allows you to witness many new cultures and lifestyles. International travel has many benefits which make it better than your traditional domestic vacation. Depending on your destination, traveling abroad can also save you money because of the current exchange rate. These rates change and may not be available in the future. A good exchange rate or activity that you would like to see may not be available if you put off planning the vacation. Another benefit of planning an international trip today is the current technology, which makes booking a trip easy. Technology can help eliminate the hassle of finding the best prices and locations based on your budget.

Traveling, whether for a long weekend away to a nearby country, or clear across the globe, is invigorating, refreshing and expands so much in one’s life that it is something that more people should do. Traveling abroad can greatly change your life for the better because there are many cultures and lifestyles to experience. These cultures can provide you with an entirely new perspective on life. Once you begin experiencing the beauty of the world, you may even begin planning yearly international vacations.

Currency rates fluctuate regularly and, as stated before, this may be a good reason to plan an international vacation today. Money is necessary if you are planning to travel and see the sights the country has to offer. If your currency can be exchanged at a reasonable rate, this can greatly improve your vacation experience. This is an important reason for traveling internationally now since you can get the most out of your trip. If you put the trip off the exchange rate may change for the worse and you can lose money after arriving at your destination.

Practical reasons

However, let us get down to the more practical reasons for traveling internationally. Frankly, it is understandable why most people would be hesitant to travel now. The economy appears to be in bad shape and many people are trying to save money. However, in some instances, this can be beneficial for travel, the airlines may lower their prices in order to get your business and this can save you money. Airline prices also fluctuate between airlines and by looking around you may find a special promotional vacation package that may not be available in the future.

Vacations are meant to be fun and enjoyable and this is another reason for traveling abroad today. There are many locations to visit from the beaches of the Caribbean to the beautiful and exquisite city of Paris, France. Experiencing something new is always the best way to live and an international vacation provides just that. This can spice up your life by allowing you to find things that you would not normally consider trying.

In fact, these days traveling is so much easier, more efficient and less time consuming than it used to be. We can travel across the globe faster and it requires much less energy than was required years ago. It is also possible watch TV, movies or listening to music while traveling. On some airlines, you can even follow the path of your airplane via satellite!

Technology and travel

Due to the technology available, planning a vacation can be stress-free as well. By using the internet to purchase your international flight tickets, you can plan your trip, get travel advice, and shop around for great deals. Technology has come a long way especially for finding the best travel packages. You can book your hotel, car, flight, and even your entertainment all on one website. If you are unsure of your destination, you can browse through the millions of videos and pictures of different locations to find which location best suits you. Planning an international trip can be an enjoyable experience when compared to the hassle involved years ago.

It is highly recommended to travel abroad at least once in your life and there are many benefits to planning your trip now. Saving money is the main reason for planning your trip today. When traveling abroad, you may have to exchange your money for the local currency. Currency exchange rates change frequently and this can have a large impact on your vacation. Since you do not know what the rates are going to be in the future, it is best to plan your trip while a good rate is available. You should also consider planning a trip because of the cultural value. Experiencing new cultures and lifestyles can help provide much value to your life. It may even change your life completely because you may find something new that you like. If you are planning an international trip, you should consider these suggestions because they can help you get the most out of your trip.



Source by Lisa P Parker

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Things to Avoid When Looking for Vacation Homes

Renters beware. Fraudulent vacation home listings have become increasingly popular. Scammers have grown highly skilled in hacking into legitimate real estate databases and even drafting real lease agreements. Unfortunately, websites like Craigslist simply aren’t aggressive enough in challenging the tricks and techniques today’s sophisticated scammers use. Here are some typical traps and tricks scammers use to defraud vacation home victims:

Too Good to Be True. If the vacation home rental appears too good to be true, you could be its next victim. If the price is far lower than other listings or the amenities seem too palatial for the price, you can expect a scam. Legitimate vacation homes are usually market priced competitively with other similar properties.

Bait and Switch. Scammers love to post glamorous photos of vacation homes and their surroundings. The photos show large expansive rooms, ultra modern kitchens, lavish pools and spas, and manicured landscaping with beautiful tree-lined streets. These properties will always somehow be unavailable, and the vacationer will then be diverted to another, less desirable property. So always ask for the specific address and house number, then use tools like Google Maps to find actual photos of the property and neighborhood. Better still, ask the agent to use web tools like FaceTime or Skype to show you the property live.

Double Book Scam. Scammers will double-book a property, then send the vacationer who arrives last to a second-rate backup, along with sincere apologies.

Wire Money Now and Save Scam. Scammers will often ask for money up front, often in the form of a “security deposit.” And they’ll want you to use money transfer systems like MoneyGram, or ask you to wire money to a specific bank account. If you must send in money to “save the property,” use a credit card or PayPal-both allow you to dispute any fraudulent charges.

No References or Phony References. Scammers won’t have legitimate references to give you. They’ll either offer you the “privacy excuse,” saying their previous renters want to maintain their privacy, or they’ll simply give you the phone numbers of their buddies who are in on the scam. So before you decide to book, give the owner or property manager a call and ask for references. You can also check out reviews linked to Facebook.

Fake Positive Reviews. Fake or disingenuous reviews are a problem in some vacation home listings. “Non-disparagement” clauses are beginning to appear in vacation rental contracts, which means renters are not allowed to post negative reviews of a property. So read these reviews with a grain of salt. Use Google Maps and Street View to weed out any false claims of “stunning property,” or great location just steps from the beach, resort or convention center. Call the owner or property manager and use tools like FaceTIme to reveal actual home interiors.

Inaccurate Online Calendar. The online calendars for many vacation homes can be poorly maintained. Most are an afterthought for some property owners. Even if the listing shows the calendar has recently been updated, call or email the owner/manager and make sure the property is available on the date you need it.

No Professional Property Manager. According to Trip Advisor, 37% of consumers are concerned they won’t have an emergency contact if something goes wrong in a vacation home. Property managers ensure that a vacation home is kept up to date and in good condition. They have relationships with reputable sub-contractors that can handle any property problem that arises. A property manager can ensure the property will be as advertised and that a deposit for a property will be securely handled.

Hidden Fees. Most vacation rentals require a non-negotiable “cleaning fee,” and some even require renters to pay for utilities, cable and/or Internet. So make sure you know all the actual and potential fees before you finalize your booking.

Unprofessional Listing. Beware of listings or emails that are poorly written with bad grammar. These can be red flags. The same holds true for foreign phone numbers, or if the owner/property manager fails to promptly respond to emails.

Avoid Craigslist. Don’t use sites like Craigslist. Check out and book properties direct from reputable vacation home rental sites.



Source by Brenda U Avila

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8 Reasons Why To Have A Bar/Bat Mitzvah Website

A Bar/Bat Mitzvah is a milestone event and a cause for much celebration. There are so many details to consider when planning a Bar/Bat Mitzvah party. Creating a website dedicated to your Bar/Bat Mitzvah, that can be easily updated and customized, will help you make your Mitzvah celebration a true success.

Here are 8 reasons why to have a Bar/Bat Mitzvah website:

1. Ability to share and update details of events

A Bar/Bat Mitzvah usually consists of a whole weekend of events including Friday night Shabbat dinner, synagogue services, the party, and a brunch or get together the following day. Your Mitzvah website will provide your guests with the details pertaining to the events, including date, time and location. Your website can include a map to all locations to direct guests. Having a Mitzvah website is a good way to keep your guest informed as they can easily be notified about any last-minute updates or changes.

2. Manage out-of-town guests

Relatives and friends from out-of-town will often travel far distances to be part of your family celebration. To facilitate the travel planning for your guests, you can post links on your website for various accommodation and travel options. Having a travelers page on your Mitzvah website will inform your traveling guests about weather conditions, provide maps to locations, have a list of things to do in your city as well as economical choices for hotel, air and car reservations.

3. Send Invitations and RSVP online

You can invite guests to your Bar/Bat Mitzvah by mailing out invitations or you can save time and money by inviting guests online by broadcast email. Regardless of the way you send out your invitations, guests should be encouraged RSVP online. You can customize your RSVP form to inquire about anything including dietary restrictions.

4. Share photos and videos

You can further personalize your Bar/Bat Mitzvah website by displaying photos and videos of you as a baby, with family and friends, on vacations, etc. Friends and relatives should be encouraged to post photos as well. Pictures can also be posted of your Bar/Bat Mitzvah and following the celebration. Photos and videos are a great way to reminisce.

5. Explain Torah reading

Your Mitzvah website can provide viewers and your guests with the English translation and significance behind the Torah portion being read on the date of your Bar / Bat Mitzvah. Being able to understand, will make it more meaningful for your guests.

6. Explain Mitzvah project

Your Bar / Bat Mitzvah website is the best place to describe to guests the good social deed you will be completing as part of your Bar / Bat Mitzvah preparation. You can explain why you chose that particular project and why it is important to you. If you are raising money for a particular cause or organization close to your heart, you can ask your guests to donate to the cause online directly from your Mitzvah website. Your guests will be more inclined to donate as it is simpler and more convenient to donate online with a credit card.

7. Gift Registry

You can make it easier for your guests by providing them with options for potential gifts. You can set up a gift registry directly on your Mitzvah website, with details and a direct link to your online registry. Not only does this save your guests search time, but it also assures that you will receive gifts that you will enjoy.

8. Message board / Quiz

In order to make your Mitzvah website more fun and interactive, you can include a quiz about yourself and see how well your relatives and friends know you. You can also communicate with guests before and after your Bar / Bat Mitzvah using a message board on your website. You can involve your guests by asking them their opinions about potential themes, music and activities to have at the party.



Source by Robert Hirscheimer

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