11/10/11

Government Travel Woes

Goverment Travel Woes due to spending cuts

President Obamas new policies adding to Government Travel Woes in an attempt to cut spending. 

With the spotlight on goverment actions, the spending of monies on Travel, Swag and Cellphones is on the chopping block.

Ed O’Keefe from the Washington Post online has a great article detailing the changes that will be affecting how the goverment conducts business.  Although the past few years have seen a decrease in Goverment Travel, the potential for waste and fraud is still a way to cut down on expenses.  With President’ Obama’s new measures; Travel is one of the hardest hit areas along with the freebies given out by goverment agencies.

 

10/25/11

Getting into Bed with Virgin…

Getting into bed with VirginFancy getting into Bed with Virgin?  Virgin Group is well known with many products and services available like Virgin Airlines, media, music and over 300 brands, but now Virgin has started the Virgin Hotel Group with the purchase of the Old Dearborn Bank Building in Chicago, IL.

According to this report by Mark Caswell from Business Traveler; the Virgin Hotel Group “plans to convert the property into a 250-room hotel, “with restaurants, lounges and other public areas”.   According to the report the hotel is slated to open in autumn 2013.”

Virgin Hotel Group has big plans and it’s just getting started.  To learn more about what Virgin Hotel has scheduled for the future, log into their website here.

10/25/11

EU to impose new taxes for carbon dioxide emissions

EU to impose emission taxesInternational Travel from the US has always been expensive, not only because the airline needs to make a profit, but also due to additional taxes and fees.  Well, get ready for another fee to add to European travel as the EU (European Union) begins a new policy on 1, Jan 1012 to enforce a “cap and trade” program forcing air carriers to pay for carbon dioxide emissions. 

According to the Associated Press, “The European Union insisted Tuesday it will enforce a new law that imposes an emissions cap-and-trade program on airlines flying to and from Europe, despite angry opposition from the U.S. Congress.”

Countries such as the US, China, Japan and others oppose the law citing various reasons, one of which is that taxes would be paid on all emissions from departure to arrival; covering airspace that is not under EU control.  To read more check out this article here.

10/15/11

Air Canada 20% Promo Code

Air Canada Sale

 

Air Canada Sale 20% Promo Code

 

Air Canada is offering a 20% discount on certain flights but travel must be booked by 16 October.  Hurry to find your favorite location and book your tickets now.  Remember the holiday season is gearing up so check back often to find out the latest one day sales and special offers.  The Airlines are offering more and more but the availability is limited and there are time limits on the rates that apply.  .

This offer is only good until October 16th so be sure to check out all the locations and find something that is right for you.  Follow the link for more information here

These are the rules that apply:

  • Valid on Tango, Tango Plus and Executive Lowest fares.
  • Offer is valid for travel from October 14, 2011 to February 10, 2012.
  • Book by October 16, 2011 midnight, from your city of departure.
  • Blackout dates apply: December 16, 2011 to January 11, 2012.
  • This offer is valid on both Air Canada operated flights and codeshare flights.

This exceptional offer applies wherever we fly within Canada, between Canada and the USA (including Hawaii), the Caribbean, Mexico, South America and Australia.

10/12/11

Free Ticket to Japan

Intrested in a Free Ticket to Japan? 

Japan has seen its share of hardship this year with devistating and widespread destruction due to a combination of natural disaster and a nuclear plant failure.  All of this has led to a significant decrease in foreign travel while the country faces a very large rebuilding bill as shown in photos here at boston.com.  The Japan Tourism Agency is planning to help the country by increasing foreign travel this next year with an offer of 10,000 free tickets.  The Agency has plans to set up a website detailing the requirements and hope to get bloggers interested in spreading the news to the rest of the world.  People interested will need to submit a written report detailing their travel plans and what they hope to experience, if the applicant is chosen they will then be required to write a review of their trip which will be posted online.

Interested in reading more?  ABC News has an article detailing this information.  Right now the contest is still in the planning phase, but be sure to check back with TravelNewsYouCanUse to find out more as details become available.

10/11/11

Worst Honeymoon Ever.

Worst Honeymoon ever prize has to go to this couple.  Honeymoon Horror The Couple Who Survived Six Natural Disasters – YouTube

Traveling can be a hassle but when Mother Nature conspires against you there is no way to tell what is going to happen.  Here an amazing video with a couple and their child on an Around-the-World trip that had everything from blizzards, to cyclones, to nuclear meltdowns.  If there is a prize for the worst/most interesting travel trip ever…these people would win.  Watch the video and feel free to share your comments.

10/9/11

Amtrak more popular than ever.

Amtrak more popular than ever.

 

Amtrak more popular than everAmtrak has been an alternative mode of transportation for years and is an essential part of commuter traffic in the Northeast corridor.  For some people when you take a trip to another state it requires a car trip of hours or more, but traveling between the smaller states up and down the eastern seaboard is easier and better connected using Amtrak.  Most people don’t know that Amtrak is a government owned corporation that has been run from our tax dollars since it’s beginning in May of 1971.  Another fact people may not know is that Amtrak has NEVER made money.  The government has subsidized the losses every year with funding from Congress, and although people are turning to Amtrak as an alternative to traveling the airlines, it is still running at a loss.  Here’s an interesting article written in 2009 by Rush Loving  Jr. that covers the reasons why Amtrak can’t and won’t make money.  Although the article is old, the information is still accurate and if anything the reasons behind his analysis is correct and has been shown to be correct as more than 2 years have passed with overall increased usage of Amtrak.

Train vs. Airplane

It would make sense to think that traveling via the airlines is more expensive with fuel costs, employees and other expenses, but because the plane can travel several routes and make multiple trips in a 24 hour period, it is much more profitable than the rail system.  Trains are much slower and are hampered by access to a given rail line.  With the trains running once or twice a day, the profit margin is extremely low and the costs are greater.  This is one of the major reasons that Amtrak has never been profitable and may never be.

Rising cost of Gas increases Amtrak travel

Fluctuations in gas prices, the long line at the airport security and the general hassle to get on an airplane has increased Amtrak’s current capacity, but even with this influx of travelers the profit generated doesn’t begin to meet the cost expended.  Congress has had to do some cutting in the recent years and it looks like Amtrak is going to have to be considered as well.  Rob Lovitt penned an interesting article that can be found here.  In it, he speaks of the increased numbers of travelers on Amtrak and the decisions that need to be made by Congress.  What are your ideas on this subject?

10/8/11

Things to do this Fall – Oktoberfest! to Haunted Houses

Things to do this Fall

From Oktoberfest to Haunted Houses, October is a happening month.  This is the start of Fall in many places and a time for change means there are things to do that can’t be done during the summer months, like watching the trees change colors, celebrating Octoberfest, or scaring yourself silly at a haunted house.  Whether you want to spend some time picking apples or gas up your hog for one last ride through the hills before snow, there are tons of things to get you moving in the month of October.

The month starts out with Ocktoberfest or Octoberfest and it is celebrated from it’s home in Munich Germany all the way to Fredericksburg, Texas.  This year marks the 200th anniversary of the original Oktoberfest in Munich and celebrations abound in various places from the first of the month until October 18th all over Germany.  This is the largest festival in Germany and if you are lucky enough to attend then you’ll have the opportunity to taste the finest beer brewed in the city limits of Munich.  If you aren’t lucky enough to find yourself in Deutchland, then count your blessings that this festival has been adopted all over the world from Tokyo to Las Vegas, Nevada!

Fall Foliage

The Fall Season is a wonderful time of year for many in the Northern Hemisphere as the foliage changes into a dazzling array of colors. Taking aFall Foliage camera with you as you hike the Appalachia trail through somewhere between Georgia and Maine will offer a variety of environments and endless photo ops but as the season goes on, the weather will play a major part in what parts of the trail are accessible.

Haunted Houses

Don’t forget to visit your local Haunted House to keep that heart rate up.  From Nightmare on Grayson in San Antonio, Texas to  The Beast in Kansas City, Missouri, the nights belong to Creepy Clowns and Spooky Ghosts.  From Warehouses and Hayrides, the options are spooktacular and the action is deadly!

If you’re looking for more adventure in October, check out the Travel Channel and this great article.  Feel free to leave a comment with your plans for October – we’ll be waiting for the invite.

10/7/11

Southwest Airlines Holiday Sale

Southwest Airlines is starting a Holiday Sale.

Now is the right time to start considering your holiday travel and planning.  With the holiday season just around the corner, expect rates for travel to increase with sporadic sales from all the major airlines.  One such sale was listed today by Southwest Airlines and is for travel between Dec 13 and Jan 5.  There are rules and regulations to get the lower fares and some blackout dates exist for Dec 23/26/30, but for these rates it’s understandable.

The changing Face of Southwest Airlines and what it means for you.

Southwest Airlines and Air Tran are scheduled to begin merging soon, but until they are one company they will still offer competitive fares and that’s exactly what Air Tran did this week.  To view the post on the Air Trans sale click here.  Don’t delay in making reservations on these airlines as flights fill up fast.  Check for super saver rates for travel on off dates like Tuesdays and remember advance notice means lower fares.