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Tanzania with a Hustler, Healing Through Travel, and a Pilgrim’s Walk in France

With a strange subject line like that, you know it’s time for a new issue of Perceptive Travel online magazine, home to some of the best stories on the web, written by wandering book authors. In the May issue, we take you to four continents through four traveling tales, long-form narratives that dig deeper and […] Want to live a better life for half the price? Sign up for the Cheap Living Abroad Newsletter.               Source: Cheapest Destinations

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How to Save on Hotels in Europe

Chapter 4: How to Save on Hotels in Europe Whether you’re planning to travel for two days or 20 days, where you stay can have a big impact on both your budget and your trip experience. We’ve spent the past 18 years hunting down the best hotel values in Europe’s priciest cities. While we’ve seen some big changes, good and bad, over the years (finally, free Wi-Fi!), there are certain bits of “Cheapo advice” that remain the same today as in 2001. Before we get started, remember: Don’t panic. High-season rates in particularly expensive destinations (London, Venice, all of Switzerland…) can cause great anxiety and all-out panic. Remain calm and remember that many websites (not including EuroCheapo, of course!), rank the hotel results to show you what they’d like you to book first. (These are often the hotels that are paying them the highest commission.) So don’t just stare at those first results and quickly assume that the city’s going to be too expensive for you to visit. It might take a little digging and further research (using tips on this page and throughout EuroCheapo), but chances are you’ll be able to find a great little hotel, B&B, or hostel…

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How to find cheap airfare to Europe

Chapter 3: Finding Cheap Flights to Europe Flying to Europe is expensive — in fact, it’s probably the largest expense facing many American travelers heading abroad. How can you actually find great deals on airfare to Europe? Here are some tips to help you fly the cheapo skies. For most of us traveling from North America, the flight to Europe is our biggest budget obstacle. While it can be easy to find great bargains on hotels, it takes a bit of effort and research to uncover cheap flights across the Atlantic. There are airfare flash sales that come and go, but those are hard to nab if you don’t act quickly. However, before you give up hope on finding a good price for your next flight, try some of the tips below. Example flight For the tips that follow, we’ll use a sample itinerary. We’ll say that we’re based in Chicago and want to visit London, Amsterdam, and Paris. We’re looking for a flight from Chicago to London. After spending a few days in London, we plan to take the train to Amsterdam (via Lille) and wind up in Paris. Then we’ll head back to London to fly home to Chicago. So…

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Creating the Best Itinerary for European Travel

Chapter 2: Best Itineraries for European Travel When putting your travel itinerary together, try to remain calm and realistic. If possible, give yourself a minimum of two nights at every stop in order to minimize travel expenses and keep everyone happy. Note: This is Chapter Two in our Ultimate Budget Travel Guide to Europe. The trip planning experience can be exhilarating. You know that you have a set number of days (or weeks!) to travel, and you look at a map with all the lip-smacking excitement of a kid in a candy store. Where do you want to visit? Where don’t you want to visit? Imagine that you’re putting together an itinerary for a 10-day trip. You could start in Paris, head to Amsterdam, then take a train to Salzburg, Venice and Rome? Wait, maybe start in Madrid instead, then drive up to Barcelona, Nice, Milan, Munich and then Amsterdam? But hold on. What about Prague?!?! If you’re only traveling for 10 days, either of those options is certain to cost you dearly (in transportation costs alone) and, without question, lead to grumpy and exhausted travelers. My epic misadventure I know, because I’ve been there. In a state of unabashed…

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Why I Try to Book Cruise Excursions On My Own

While I’m not a huge cruiser, I have been taking four, sometimes five, cruises per year these last few years. I like the convenience factor of cruising and the fact that they offer such excellent value. My kids also love cruising so much right now too, which makes it easy to book a cruise instead of other types of trips. I typically book with MSC Cruises because kids ages 11 and under are free on most itineraries and their pricing is usually the best anyway. And before anyone asks, MSC Cruises doesn’t pay me to say these things! They really do offer the best pricing. For my upcoming Norwegian fjords cruise in June, for example, our balcony cabin on the MSC Meraviglia was around $3,100 for the seven-night trip. However, competitors like Royal Caribbean and Holland America were charging more like $7,000 and up for similar itineraries! Of course, the cruise fare itself isn’t the only cost involved in cruising. You also have excursions to book at each port you stop in — or not. You don’t have to book anything at all, but I typically do. The thing is, I normally plan our own excursions instead of booking with the…

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Hilton Is Testing Confirmed Suite Upgrades

Any luxury hotel cardholder will tell you that part of the appeal of climbing the ranks of a hotel loyalty program is the guaranteed room upgrade. For members of the highest tier, that upgrade includes suites. Marriott and Hyatt are well-known for their confirmed suite upgrade awards to elite loyalty members. This is a huge perk, especially if you will be traveling with your family and need to know in advance if you will be accommodated in a suite. At last, Hilton will be joining its competitors in awarding its members the same elite benefit. The brand is currently testing a pilot program where select Diamond elite members can confirm a suite upgrade at the time of booking. If the program goes well, Hilton plans to unveil it publicly for all users later in 2019. With the absorption of SPG into Marriott Bonvoy, this new feature could give Hilton a serious edge over competitors, increasing its value and attraction to consumers. The pilot program works in a similar way that Hyatt’s upgrade benefit works. Hotel members, at the time of booking, can choose to confirm a suite upgrade. The upgrade acts as a certificate that covers stays for a duration…

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I Spent 7,200 Chase Points at a Low-End Orlando Hotel

Sometimes we get to redeem our points and miles for aspirational travel other people can only dream of. Other times, we redeem them for trips that are practical or downright boring. A recent trip from Miami to Orlando I took ended with the latter situation — as in, me cashing in 7,200 Chase Ultimate Rewards points to spend five hours at the Ramada by Wyndham Suites Orlando Airport hotel. This wasn’t a planned redemption — it was one I made the day before on a whim. But it was necessary and I’m glad I did it. Why I Love Having Extra Chase Points Laying Around The redemption in question came about due to the weird flights I had to book into Florida for our spring break cruise on the MSC Seaside out of Miami. Flights from Indianapolis to Miami were insanely expensive and I couldn’t find any award seats I liked with my favorite airlines — American and Delta. Alas, I opted to book cheap Southwest flights early into Orlando and then a flight home from Orlando the day our ship got into port. This also required me to get a rental SUV on both sides of our cruise, which…

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Travel Prices in Ecuador – Latest Update

  Every few years I do an updated post on travel prices in Ecuador, plus when there’s a new edition of The World’s Cheapest Destinations coming out I dive in deep on that research.  In reality though, prices don’t really change much on the mainland. One of the main reasons is that Ecuador converted to […] Want to live a better life for half the price? Sign up for the Cheap Living Abroad Newsletter.               Source: Cheapest Destinations

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What do you think of United’s new livery?

United has a new livery. Is it as boring and corporate as all the others? The post What do you think of United’s new livery? appeared first on Andy's Travel Blog. Source: Andys travel blog

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25 Things Travelers Couldn’t Do 25 Years Ago

Around 25 years ago, I was probably kicking back on some tropical island, staying in a $4 bungalow, wondering whether I should have rice or noodles for my next meal. I was traveling through Southeast Asia, Nepal, India, Greece, Turkey, Holland, and England on my first trip around the world. My then-girlfriend was with me […] Want to live a better life for half the price? Sign up for the Cheap Living Abroad Newsletter.               Source: Cheapest Destinations

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