Travel and Leisure - Msn Feeds
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You Can Get a Super-soft Cashmere Travel Wrap for Just $30 Right Now

Sat, 01/12/2019 - 10:10
<p>Finding affordable cashmere is a feat. And finding affordable cashmere for under $50 is near impossible, but the great people at <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">Uniqlo</a> have made it happen — that is, while the sale (and supplies) last.</p><p>The Japanese fashion brand, known for its super-popular <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">Heattech collection</a> and <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">Ultra Light Down jackets</a>, have a selection of cashmere scarves on sale right now for just $30, and we’re finding it hard to not buy one in every color.</p><p><strong>Related: </strong><a href="" target="_blank">Thousands of Amazon Shoppers Are Obsessed With This Super Warm and Cozy Winter Jacket</a></p><p>Uniqlo’s cashmere stoles come in either a <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">checked</a> or <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">solid colorway</a>. Choose a light gray one that’ll go with any outfit, or go for a bold red checked scarf to amp up your winter wardrobe. Wear it as a scarf, cozy up in it as a <a href="" target="_blank">travel wrap</a>, or use it as an office blanket — the cashmere scarf possibilities are endless. And at just $30? It’s too good to pass up.</p><img alt="Uniqlo Cashmere "src=""><p>To buy: <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank"></a>, $30 (originally $50)</p><img alt="Uniqlo Cashmere "src=""><p>To buy: <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank"></a>, $30 (originally $50)</p>
Categories: Travel

This Delayed Traveler's 4-hour Dance Around the Atlanta Airport Is Going Viral

Sat, 01/12/2019 - 09:46
<p>Sometimes there’s just <a href="" target="_blank">nothing left for you to do but dance</a>.</p><p>Over the past few weeks, <a href="" target="_blank">the government shutdown</a> has caused aggravation at airports around the country. Earlier this week, Katie Gould, a law student, was stranded at Hartsfield Jackson Atlanta International Airport.</p><p>“I actually missed my flight because security was so long,” Gould told <i>Travel + Leisure</i>. “I'm used to Hartsfield-Jackson security being busy, but this was more than usual for the time of day. They had less TSA agents than they normally do, so I assumed the shut down had something to do with it.”</p><p>It was four hours until Gould could board the next flight to Milwaukee. Instead of killing time watching TV like she normally does, Gould turned the delay into an opportunity.</p><p>Whereas some people might head to the airport bar and stew over their bad luck, Gould decided to let out her feelings through the medium of dance.</p><p>After polling friends for their interest, Gould got to work. “I just decided to put my phone in random places and film myself doing little dances,” she told T+L. “My mom is a flight attendant so I know my way around the airport very well. I just spent the next 4 hours waiting on my next flight by going to different gates and dancing!”</p><p>Putting on Hall &amp; Oates’ undeniable bop “You Make My Dreams,” Gould popped, shimmied and two-stepped around the airport. She even <a href="" target="_blank">attempted a floss</a>.</p><p>And, because no dance video is complete without a guest appearance, halfway through the exuberant montage, a cat (whose name is Bowie) graces the screen.</p><p>“I was pretty frustrated that whole day with missing my flight, but doing something fun and silly really helped remind me not to take life too seriously,” Gould said. “I'm just glad it made so many people happy! Also, I hope it inspired people to travel a bit more and not be afraid to get out of their comfort zone, I think the world needs that right now.”</p>
Categories: Travel

Aeromexico Passengers Attempted to Escape Using Emergency Exits After 5 Hours of Sitting on the Runway

Sat, 01/12/2019 - 06:28
<p>Two passengers aboard an Aeromexico flight were detained at Oakland International Airport on Thursday after attempting to escape their aircraft, which sat on a runway for nearly five hours.</p><p>Aeromexico <a href="" target="_blank">Flight 622 from Guadalajara</a> was scheduled to land at San Francisco International Airport at 10:11 a.m., but due to fog the flight was rerouted and forced to land in Oakland around 10:40.</p><p>But for more than four hours after landing, the plane did not move from the runway and conditions quickly turned.</p><p>Passengers sat in the cabin for hours without air conditioning, <a href="" target="_blank">according to <em>USA Today</em></a>. Cabin crew allegedly ran out of food and water by 11 a.m., reported <em><a href="" target="_blank">The Mercury News</a></em>. Passengers fainted, were desperate for water, and some even called 911 to report that they were being held against their will in the aircraft.</p><p>“Babies were crying, people were passing out,” <a href="" target="_blank">one passenger told <em>The Mercury News</em></a><em>.</em></p><p>After hours without help, passengers got desperate. One man announced that he would open the emergency exit and slide out if the passengers were not released. According to <em>The Mercury News,</em> the pilot called the county sheriff who arrived and detained two passengers who were later released without charges.</p><p>It wasn’t until 3:30 p.m. that the passengers were allowed to disembark, <a href="" target="_blank">according to <em>The Mercury News</em></a>. The nearly-five-hour hold violated the U.S. Passenger Bill of Rights, which decrees that passengers can be held for no longer than four hours on a tarmac for international flights.</p><p><a href="" target="_blank">Oakland Airport said in a statement to <em>USA Today</em></a><i> </i>“that it is an airline's decision whether to await clearance to return to the original destination or let passengers deplane at the diversion airport.”</p><p>In a statement, Aeromexico said that the delay was due to the fact that it does not have any operations at Oakland Airport. Therefore, the plane needed special authorization from airport authorities before passengers could disembark.</p>
Categories: Travel

This Orlando Water Park Is Even Better in Cold Weather

Fri, 01/11/2019 - 17:09
<p>It turns out a cold front doesn’t need to derail your Florida vacation plans.</p><p>Uncooperative winter weather is traditionally a cue to stay indoors and snuggle by the fire, but at Universal’s Volcano Bay water theme park, they’ve taken a different approach. When colder weather sets in, the water in its slides, pools, and splash zones is turned up to 85 degrees, making it an entertainment utopia for chillier Floridian afternoons.</p><p>I visited the water park on Christmas Eve, famously known to be one of the busiest theme park days of the year. Crowds flooded into <a href="" target="_blank">Universal’s Islands of Adventure</a> and Universal Studios Florida for roller coasters, Simpsons meet-and-greets and <a href="" target="_blank">The Wizarding World of Harry Potter</a>, yet over at Volcano Bay, I effectively had the place to myself.</p><p>Plunging through the center of Krakatau volcano — which, if you’ve never been, is jaw-dropping — on the park’s <a href="" target="_blank">state-of-the-art water coaster</a> or getting sprayed by an unsuspecting tiki statue triggered by interactive wristbands was just as refreshing as in summer, only in the complete opposite way. The Kopiko Wai Winding River, set amongst lush landscaping and scenic views, turned its lazy river path into a never-ending hot tub filled with inflatable tubes. TeAwa The Fearless River, a personal favorite with rapids-like currents so strong free swimmers are required to don life vests, became an adventure in delightful bath water and the perfect way to float away the afternoon. Even the Taniwha Tubes, which sends two-passenger rafts down a twisty covered path, was veritably steamy — an ideal escape from occasional gusts of wind up top.</p><p>Splashing into a pool at the end of Volcano Bay’s scarier rides, like Honu ika Moana — which sees multi-person rafts soar through oversized tubes — was actually comforting. Slides brimming with warm water made the call of the rides stronger. Indoor water parks often must sacrifice thrills for space, but everything from the 125-foot body plunge slide to multiple children’s water play areas were in operation throughout the day.</p><p>With its plentiful lounge chairs, enormous wave pool, and Polynesian influences, Universal’s water theme park, which opened in 2017, is obviously intended for large summertime crowds. Still, the colder it is, the better of a time you might have. As the weather outside hovered around 60 degrees, we never waited more than five minutes to ride; lines were actually so short that Universal’s TapuTapu system, which hosts “virtual queues” to keep people from waiting in line and enjoy more of their day, wasn’t in operation.</p><p>It’s unconventional to whip off a turtleneck and winter hat to visit a water park, but then again, so is frolicking in a wave pool at the base of a 200-foot man-made volcano erupting with waterfalls and winding slides. And here, only in Orlando, both can be possible.</p>
Categories: Travel

Boeing and NASA Are Working on Airplane Wings That Could Make Flights Faster

Fri, 01/11/2019 - 16:37
<p>On Tuesday, Boeing gave us a glimpse into the future.</p><p>The aircraft manufacturer revealed a new aircraft wing design it’s been working on with NASA through the Subsonic Ultra Green Aircraft Research (SUGAR) program.</p><p>The wing is not too drastically different from what we see normally on the sides of planes. But underneath the wing is a “truss” (basically a support) that holds the wing up from the bottom. The truss would allow an aircraft to fly at speeds up to 0.8 Mach (about 615 miles per hour).</p><p>The Transonic Truss-Braced Wing (TTBW, as the project is known) has been under development for several years. But previous versions of the wing only allowed speeds from 0.70 to 0.75 Mach.</p><p>The wingspan measure about 170 feet and gets incredibly thin at the tip. It’s thanks to the truss that the thin wing is able to sustain the high speeds. (<a href="" target="_blank">Current commercial jets fly at a speed of anywhere from about 460 to 570 miles per hour.</a>)</p><p>Compared to aircraft from the early 2000s, this type of plane would reduce fuel burn by up to 60 percent.</p><p>The joint research between Boeing and NASA aims to develop “innovative concepts that reduce noise and emissions while enhancing performance,” according to the manufacturer.</p><p>Although the project is still at the conceptual phase, it’s not unlikely that we could see it take to the skies within the coming years. Boeing and NASA aren’t the only entities working on a truss-based wing concept.</p><p>Comac, a new aircraft manufacturer, is developing a concept called the V1plus Truss-Braced Wing Demonstrator. <a href="" target="_blank">The plane first flew in August 2018 </a>and was deemed a success by the company. It’s uncertain whether or not truss-braced wings will become a common reality, but as more manufacturers enter the competition, it seems to become more likely.</p>
Categories: Travel

This Instagram Account Shows the Stark Difference Between First Class and Economy Airplane Food

Fri, 01/11/2019 - 11:31
<p>Love it or hate it, if you find yourself on a long flight you’re probably going to encounter some version of airplane food. And while airlines around the world are <a href="" target="_blank">trying to up their game</a> when it comes to plane food (no pun intended), reviews of it are usually mixed across the board. But thanks to a popular new Instagram account, <em>the world</em> can decide just how good your in-flight meal looks.</p><p>The account, <a href="" target="_blank">@airplanefoodselfie</a>, has a simple concept: send in your best photos of airplane food with the date and flight number, and the account might repost. Followers of the account — there are currently more than 10,000 — can then rank your meal on a scale of 1 to 10 in the comments.</p><p>While the voting component of the account is certainly fun, the true magic is getting to see the differences between meals in varying classes of cabins and airlines. For example, Etihad Airways’ International First Class option has more pieces of china and glassware than most New Yorkers have in their apartments. Plus a glass of wine <em>and</em><i> </i>champagne? Tens across the board.</p><p>But let’s be real. Most of us are more used to the nerve-wracking cries of “chicken or pasta?” echoing throughout the back of the plane, so this, er, dish from United makes us feel right at home. Is it even an airplane meal without a plastic wrapped dinner roll? Not in my momma’s house. Or as one commenter said, “3 looks like a TV dinner.”</p><p>Cabin class aside, one fun aspect of compiling photos of airplane food from around the world is the opportunity to see different cuisines and cultures manifested in a dish that can be assembled and served from a compact and utilitarian airplane galley. This Business Class Bento Box from <a href="" target="_blank">Japan airlines</a> is a great example of local customs and airline utility.</p><p>But seriously, whatever you’re eating, share so we can see what people are eating 30,000 feet above us. Unless you’re eating this British Airways dessert, because that’s just straight up bragging.</p><p><strong>Related:</strong> <a href="" target="_blank">What You Should and Should Not Order From the In-flight Menu (Video)</a></p>
Categories: Travel

This Carry-on Bag Has a Built-in Closet So You Never Need to Unpack

Fri, 01/11/2019 - 11:16
<p>As any frequent traveler knows checking luggage is the worst. Which is why we are often stuck stuffing every last bit of clothing we have into a carry-on bag, only to arrive at our destinations with wrinkled, crumpled, and worn-out outfits. Now there’s a better way: this futuristic carry-on that doubles as a wardrobe.</p><p>The new suitcase, dubbed the Carry-On Closet, was created by New York-based Solgaard Design and may solve all of your wrinkled travel woes. According to the company’s <a href="" target="_blank">Kickstarter</a>, the hardsided suitcase opens up to reveal a shelving unit that can either be removed, or hung from the extended handle on the suitcase itself. Each shelf is a different size to fit all your packing needs including shoes, sweaters, and toiletries. But, that’s not all.</p><p><strong>Related:</strong><b> </b><a href="" target="_blank">How to Pack Your Clothes to Keep Them Wrinkle Free</a></p><p>In addition to the shelving, the suitcase also comes with its own USB port and power bank to help users charge on the go. The standard suitcase measures in at 21 inches by 13.5 inches by 9 inches, making it compliant with most airlines’ carry-on requirements. This case is currently selling for $150. According to the team, the standard suitcase can fit between five and seven outfits, but we think you can <a href="" target="_blank">probably fit more as long as you pack right.</a></p><p>The company also offers a slightly larger model, which measures 22.5 inches by 14.6 inches by 9.6 inches. This case can carry up to nine outfits, however, it may be too large to put in the overhead bins and will run you $165. Both models also come with 360-degree rolling wheels, making it super easy to get through the airport and onto your plane.</p><p><strong>Related: </strong><a href="" target="_blank">The Best Carry-on Luggage, According to Travel Editors</a></p><p>And, if for some insane reason you want to use the suitcase without the shelves, they’re fully removable. Head over to the company’s Kickstarter to back the project and get your suitcase sometime in May 2019.</p>
Categories: Travel

You Can Spend the Night on a Glacier and Spot Polar Bears From Your Room

Fri, 01/11/2019 - 10:46
<p>A summer camping trip is so much better with polar bears.</p><p>Instead of opting for a sweltering campground this summer, experts at adventure travel company <a href="" target="_blank">Off the Map Travel</a> suggest spending a night on a glacier – the perfect spot to see Norway’s polar bears.</p><img alt="Basecamp Explorer adventure by Off the Map travel in Svalbard "src=""><p><strong>Related: </strong><a href="" target="_blank">The Best Places to See Penguins, Polar Bears, Narwhals, and More</a></p><p>Off the Map Travel’s “Night on a Glacier” program allows guests to stay at the exclusive Nordenskiold Lodge, located at the foot of the blue glacier, on the <a href="" target="_blank">island of Svalbard</a>. There, guests can enjoy a perfectly quiet atmosphere that will help them hear the glacier movements as well as get a prime view of the island’s wildlife, including polar bears.</p><p>“This is a spectacular opportunity for adventure lovers,” Jonny Cooper, adventure travel expert and founder of Off the Map Travel, said in a statement. “Svalbard is one of the world’s best spots for seeing wildlife, with May to September the optimal months as the snow has melted. And at the expedition lodge, you’ll enjoy all manner of amenities and comforts with the chance to see polar bears.”</p><img alt="Polar Bear in Svalbard "src=""><p>In addition, guests can enjoy summer dog sledding and a guided Zodiac boat cruise around the coast to the lodge. Not only will polar bears likely be spotted along the way, but also walruses and whales.</p><p>And if viewing one of the world’s most spectacular (and endangered) species isn’t enough, the program also includes a guided glacier climb, kayaking, and a photo walk among the magnificent scenery. The lodge also offers incredible meals with local delicacies, a traditional sauna, and lots of cozy places to enjoy your travel partners’ company and view the wildlife.</p><img alt="Camp in Svalbard "src=""><p>The program is only offered from May to September of 2019, and each itinerary is customized to your needs and interests. This also means that costs can vary.</p><p>The summer polar bear expedition itinerary begins at <a href="" target="_blank">$1,500</a>. For more information on booking a trip, visit the <a href="" target="_blank">Off The Map Travel website</a>.</p>
Categories: Travel

This $27 Device Helps Me Avoid Getting Sick While Traveling

Fri, 01/11/2019 - 10:00
<p>Traveling is the absolute best, but one downside that often accompanies packing up my bags, hopping on a plane, and spending the night in a hotel is dry air. Waking up with a stuffy nose, a dry throat, or scratchy skin can really put a damper on any vacation or travel experience. But since I’ve been using the <a data-ecommerce="true" href=";tag=tlhumidifier-20&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;creativeASIN=B01I3Z33TS&amp;linkId=a0a8832c2123c7034a50f20f70789539" target="_blank">Fancii Cool Mist Personal Mini Humidifier</a>, I’ve kissed my dry-air worries goodbye.</p><p>The little device is the epitome of convenience. The circular, travel-size humidifier can fit into the palm of your hand and it weighs hardly anything — clocking in at just under four ounces — so you can easily toss it in your <a href="" target="_blank">carry-on tote bag</a>. It works with pretty much any standard 16- or 20-ounce water bottle (like Evian, Fiji, Dasani, etc.) and it can work for up to 18 hours at a time. So even when you need that jet lag–induced zombie sleep, you’ll be set with clean, moist air. And honestly, it just feels fancy to travel with your very own personal humidifier.</p><p>You can power the Fancii humidifier with three AA batteries or by plugging it into a USB — I just plug it into my iPhone cube. It features three timer settings (a two-hour, four-hour, or eight-hour stream of continuous humidified air) and it’ll shut off automatically. In my experience, one water bottle can last about a week, but this really depends on how often you use it.</p><p>In the package, you can expect to find the humidifier, a USB cord, and a little cap adapter that attaches the water bottle to the base of the device. There's a <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">filter</a>, too, which is easy to swap out and should be replaced every two or three months.</p><p>Amazon's product description boasts a silent stream of air, but I’ve noticed that there’s a barely-there hum, which I sort of like — a little <a href="" target="_blank">white noise</a> can be great, especially if you’re sleeping in a hotel or near other people. Either way, it’s my one-way ticket to sweet, humidified dreams when I’m on the road, especially in the dry season.</p><h2 id="title">Fancii Cool Mist Personal Mini Humidifier</h2><img alt="humidifier travel-size "src=""><p>To buy: <a data-ecommerce="true" href=";linkCode=ll1&amp;tag=tlhumidifier-20&amp;linkId=78c6d36b600181c52baa8b90bf1cc103" target="_blank"></a>, $25 (originally $40)</p>
Categories: Travel

Tickets to Hawaii Are About to Get Seriously Cheap Thanks to More Competition (Video)

Fri, 01/11/2019 - 07:19
<p>In 2018, Southwest Airlines announced it would <a href="" target="_blank">soon begin service to the islands of Hawaii.</a> At the time it was heralded as a major breakthrough and one that would bring more competitive pricing for flights to and from the Aloha state. But now, this just got even better because Sun County Airlines announced it too will be entering the Hawaiian market.</p><p>According to <em><a href="" target="_blank">The Points Guy</a></em>, Sun County will add new Hawaii-bound flights departing from San Francisco to Honolulu, which will support the airline’s already existing routes from Portland and Los Angeles to Honolulu. The fares for the new flight, <a href="" target="_blank">Bloomberg</a> reported, will start at $259 one-way. Peak summer pricing will cost an average of $339 for a one-way ticket.</p><p>These flights are just a small part of a larger service announcement by Sun County. On Tuesday, it announced its “largest network expansion in its history” with the addition of 19 new routes including a route from Minneapolis, three from Las Vegas and Nashville, Tennessee, and two from both Dallas-Fort Worth and Portland, according to Bloomberg.</p><p>Meanwhile, Southwest’s plans have continued to stall as the airline awaits its extended operations (ETOPS) certification from the Federal Aviation Administration. This process, Southwest said, “typically takes 12-18 months to complete.” However, it seems to be dragging on and on and will continue to drag <a href="" target="_blank">due to the government shutdown</a>, which has shut down all “nonessential” FAA work.</p><p>“Employees who have a direct, imminent mission to ensure public safety, like air traffic controllers and the technicians who maintain the air traffic control system, remain on the job,” an FAA spokesperson told <i>The Points Guy</i> in an email. “The ETOPS certification process is not a part of those duties being performed during the partial shutdown.”</p><p>Still, this new Sun County route is reason enough to celebrate, and an excuse to <a href="" target="_blank">start planning your Hawaiian vacation</a> right now.</p>
Categories: Travel

TSA Agents Are Quitting and Pilots Are Concerned About Safety As the Government Shutdown Continues

Fri, 01/11/2019 - 07:03
<p>As the federal government shutdown continues through its third week, airport workers are getting hit hard as they are expected to work without a paycheck.</p><p>As “essential” federal employees, <a href="" target="_blank">TSA agents have been showing up for work</a> without payment for nearly a month at one of the lowest paying and most thankless jobs in the airport industry, according to <em><a href="" target="_blank">Money</a></em>. Even though what they do is crucial to keeping us safe, they still have to deal with long hours, difficult customers, and hard work conditions in order to do their jobs.</p><p>And, up until a few days ago, many agents have powered through the shutdown. But working without a paycheck tends to lower morale, and at an extreme rate as time goes on, <a href="" target="_blank">reported <em>Forbes</em></a>.</p><p>Many TSA agents began calling in sick in record numbers in lieu of the government shutdown gouging their paychecks. As a result, the shortage of TSA staff has created longer wait times and extremely long lines at some of the nation’s busiest airports, according to Forbes.</p><p>Travelers should be advised to plan ahead if they do not want to miss their flights. And it’s also just a good policy to be calm, polite, and courteous to airport workers who are helping you, especially knowing that they’re doing it without pay.</p><p>And now, agents are going one step further as the government shutdown seems to have no end in sight, according to <a href="" target="_blank">CNN</a>.</p><p>According to the <a href="" target="_blank">American Federation of Government Employees (AFGE)</a>, more than 50,000 TSA officers and staff will most likely miss another paycheck during this shutdown.</p><p>"Every day I’m getting calls from my members about their extreme financial hardships and need for a paycheck. Some of them have already quit and many are considering quitting the federal workforce because of this shutdown,” AFGE TSA Council president Hydrick Thomas said in a statement on the <a href="" target="_blank">AFGE website</a>.</p><p>According to the AFGE, the TSA once had a workforce of around 47,000 dealing with 740 million passengers a year, but now has 44,000 workers servicing 851 million passengers a year.</p><p>“The loss of officers, while we’re already shorthanded, will create a massive security risk for American travelers since we don’t have enough trainees in the pipeline or the ability to process new hires,” Thomas added.</p><p>“It is completely unacceptable that the women and men who risk their lives safeguarding our airports are still required to report for work without knowing when they’ll be paid again,” AFGE national president J. David Cox Sr. said in a statement. “TSA Officers already have the least amount of rights of any federal officer, some of the lowest pay and highest attrition rates in government, and among the lowest morale of any federal agency. Working for weeks on end without being compensated — while already being short-staffed — only makes their situation worse.”</p><p>And beyond the security risk, a recently retired <a href="" target="_blank">American Airlines pilot warned CNN</a> of potential safety risks if the shutdown should continue. Air traffic controllers (also considered essential federal employees) will be fighting fatigue and long hours due to being short-staffed — which could lead to more, and possibly disastrous, mistakes on the job.</p>
Categories: Travel

JetBlue Is Giving Away Trips to Puerto Rico to See Lin-Manuel Miranda in 'Hamilton' (Video)

Thu, 01/10/2019 - 17:57
<p>Don’t throw away your shot.</p><p>For those who missed seeing Lin-Manuel Miranda in “Hamilton” on Broadway, JetBlue is giving away the chance to see him revive the titular role in <a href="" target="_blank">Puerto Rico</a>.</p><p>As part of its “Hamilton in Puerto Rico” ticket giveaway, JetBlue will fly a handful of winners and their friends to the island to watch Miranda perform the role that made him a household name.</p><p>Much like the Hamilton lottery on Broadway, winners are chosen at random. If you want to win tickets, <a href="" target="_blank">navigate to JetBlue’s website</a> and enter your information. Submissions open every morning at 9 a.m. ET every day Jan. 10-16.</p><p>Prize winners will depart from New York City at 5:40 a.m. on the day of their “Hamilton” performance. The prize includes two premium tickets to see the show and a one-night stay at a San Juan hotel before flying back to New York the following day.</p><p>Clear out your schedule for Jan. 12-17 for a surprise last-minute ticket out of town. After entering, be sure to stay by your phone. If you win, you will have one hour to accept the prize or else it will be passed along to someone else.</p><p>Miranda is <a href="" target="_blank">bringing “Hamilton” to Puerto Rico</a> to raise money for relief efforts (the island is still recovering from the impact of Hurricane Maria in October 2017) and arts funding across the island.</p>
Categories: Travel

United Is the First U.S. Airline to Get the Massive New 787-10 Dreamliner Planes — and You Need to See the Polaris Business Class Seats

Thu, 01/10/2019 - 15:32
<p>United began flying its new Boeing 787-10 Dreamliner between Los Angeles and Newark this week, and will commence service between Newark and San Francisco in February. Aviation geeks will rejoice to see a new type of aircraft in the skies over the U.S. this winter. But all travelers should also enjoy being able to book the airline’s nicest business-class seats on these flights, as well as trying out United’s new Premium Plus seating.</p><h2>There’s a 787-10?</h2><p>United is one of only <a href="" target="_blank">three airlines</a> to have received the largest type of Dreamliner so far. The other two are <a href="" target="_blank">Singapore Airlines</a> and Etihad. United will eventually have 14 of the jets in its fleet, and is also the only airline in the world to have all three variants of the aircraft: the 787-8, 787-9 and 787-10.</p><p>The next-generation 787-10 fields all the <a href="" target="_blank">same features</a> as its <a href="" target="_blank">smaller siblings</a>, including better fuel efficiency than conventional jets, quieter engines, higher cabin pressurization and humidity for enhanced passenger comfort, advanced lighting systems to help travelers adjust their circadian rhythms easier, and larger windows to let in more natural light.</p><img alt="United Boeing Dreamliner 787-10 "src=""><p>However, the 787-10 is 18 feet longer than the 787-9 and 38 feet longer than the 787-8. Those might not seem like major differences, but it means United’s 787-10 can carry 66 more passengers than its 787-9, and 99 more than the 787-8.</p><p>Just because there will be more passengers on board doesn’t mean that fliers will give up any creature comforts, though. In fact, the 787-10 features the same <a href="" target="_blank">flagship Polaris business-class seats</a> fliers will find on select international routes, and the airline’s all-new Premium Plus section (its recently introduced version of premium economy).</p><h2>Cabins and Classes</h2><p>United’s 787-10 has 44 seats in a single business-class cabin, 21 in the Premium Plus section, 54 Economy Plus seats, and 199 regular economy seats.</p><img alt="Accommodations aboard United Boeing Dreamliner 787-10 "src=""><h2>Pleasantly Polaris</h2><p>In business class, the 11 rows are arranged in a staggered 1 – 2 – 1 seating pattern so that every passenger has direct access to the aisle. Each seat is 20.6 inches wide and reclines to <a href="" target="_blank">a fully flat bed</a> that is 78 inches long.</p><p>Similar to international flights, passengers in transcontinental Polaris receive Saks Fifth Avenue bedding items including a blanket and small pillow. The pared-down amenity kits include Soho House &amp; Co. Cowshed Spa lip balm, ear plugs, a toothbrush, toothpaste and an eye mask. Passengers are also given noise-canceling headphones to use with the 16-inch in-flight entertainment screens.</p><p>Thanks to the airline’s <a href="" target="_blank">partnership with the Trotter Project</a>, meals are created by chefs like Delia Gossett of Spago, Michael Rotondo of Parallel 37, and Bill Kim of urbanbelly Restaurants. On the inaugural flight from Los Angeles on Monday, dishes included a starter of Greek yogurt with granola and fresh fruit, and a choice of either cheese blintzes with mixed berry sauce and pork sausage, or chicken chorizo chili verde with tortilla chips, scrambled eggs and Colby Jack cheese.</p><p>Polaris passengers can order complimentary wine and beer, and a selection of spirits that includes a signature Old Fashioned created for the airline by On The Rocks Cocktails with Knob Creek bourbon and a candied orange peel.</p><h2>The Premier of Premium Plus</h2><p>Just behind business class is the section with United’s <a href="" target="_blank">new Premium Plus</a> seats. There are 21 places total in three rows of seven seats each, arranged in a 2 – 3 – 2 layout. With two fewer seats per row than in regular economy, each of them is 19 inches wide, has 38 inches of pitch, and six inches of recline. They also have adjustable leg and footrests for a more ergonomic ride.</p><p>The entertainment screens are 13 inches wide, and each seat has its own USB and power ports. </p><p>Passengers seated in Premium Plus and Economy Plus can also count on free “coastal-city-inspired” meals that include a hot entrée, dessert, fruit and a pre-arrival snack as well as complimentary alcoholic beverages.</p><img alt="Coach seating aboard United Boeing Dreamliner 787-10 "src=""><h2>Characteristics of Coach</h2><p>Just behind Premium Plus, there are five rows of Economy Plus seats (yes, it’s different than Premium Plus, and it’s confusing). These 54 seats are basically regular economy seats with extra legroom. They are laid out in a 3 – 3 – 3 pattern, just like the normal economy rows. Each is 17.5 inches across and has 35 inches of pitch, compared to 31 inches in regular economy. Both these and regular economy seats recline up to three inches, and have USB ports for each passenger, but only two power plugs shared per three-seat bloc, so claim yours quickly! These seats have 10-inch entertainment screens.</p><p>Speaking of the entertainment systems, the ones on the 787-10 are the latest from United, and have a variety of innovative elements. There is a split-screen feature so passengers can watch content while also monitoring the flight map. The system provides film and television recommendations based on remaining flight time, and offers advanced accessibility features to accommodate passengers with mobility, hearing, and vision issues.</p><img alt="Screen aboard United Boeing Dreamliner 787-10 "src=""><h2>Flights and Fares</h2><p>United operates over a dozen daily non-stops on each of its routes between Newark and its two West Coast hubs, Los Angeles and San Francisco. So if you would like to fly the 787-10 yourself, be sure to double check the flight numbers and aircraft type before you purchase an itinerary. Flight schedules are subject to change, and the airline plans to add the 787-10 to more transcontinental frequencies, but this information is current at time of publication.</p><p>The 787-10 now operates United flight UA 2418 from Los Angeles to Newark, departing at 8:15 am and arriving at 4:19 pm; and United flight UA 275 from Newark to Los Angeles, departing at 6:00 pm and arriving at 9:06 pm. In April, some of these flight times will shift, and the airline will begin operating an additional daily flight in each direction with a 787-10.</p><p>Meanwhile, starting Feb. 14, United will begin flying the 787-10 between San Francisco and Newark. United flight UA 637 will depart Newark at 9:00 am and arrive in San Francisco at 12:16 pm. On the return, United flight UA 2319 will depart San Francisco at 2:00 pm and arrive in Newark at 9:59 pm. These flight numbers and schedules will change later this year as we head into the peak summer travel season.</p><p>One-way fares on both routes start at $127 for basic economy, $157 for regular economy, $271 for Economy Plus, and $659 for business class in January and February.</p><p>Did you notice something missing there? Unlike international routes, the airline is not selling separate Premium Plus airfares on domestic flights. Savvy travelers can simply purchase an Economy Plus fare, and then if a larger Premium Plus seat is available on your flight, you can select that as your option and enjoy all those extra inches of space.</p><p>If you do not plan to fly between the East and West Coasts, United also plans to put its forthcoming 787-10s into service from Newark to several international destinations as well.</p><p>Starting March 30, the 787-10 will begin flying from Newark to Frankfurt and Tel Aviv. On April 29, it will begin service to both Paris and Barcelona, while on May 22, passengers will find the jet on flights to Brussels and Dublin.</p><p>The debut of the Boeing 787-10 Dreamliner with United’s nicest business-class seats and its new Premium Plus section is an exciting step forward both for the airline and domestic passengers on transcontinental routes. It marks the next round in the <a href="" target="_blank">competition</a> to woo premium passengers between United, American and Delta, and hopefully fliers can reap the benefits of additional choices and better seats.</p>
Categories: Travel

Traveling With Your Kids Will Make Them Better in School, Study Suggests

Thu, 01/10/2019 - 11:30
<p>A new survey suggests that if you want your kids to be more successful in school, you should take them on vacation more.</p><p>A survey of almost 1,500 U.S.-based teachers, <a href="" target="_blank">commissioned by the Student and Youth Travel Association (SYTA)</a>, found that 74 percent of educators believed that travel has “a very positive impact on students’ personal development.” A majority of teachers (56 percent) also believe that travel’s positive impact can extend to a student’s education and career.</p><p>Travel can have far-reaching impacts on kids. Teachers agreed that children who traveled to experience cultures other than their own have increased tolerance and respectfulness, willingness to learn and a willingness to try new things.</p><p>Not only do teachers believe that travel is useful in the classroom, it can also help on the playground. Kids who traveled were more likely to have higher independence, self-esteem, confidence, adaptability and sensitivity. They were also more likely to be more outgoing and have better self-expression than kids who stayed at home.</p><p>In more pragmatic terms, 42 percent of teachers thought that a well-traveled kid looked more attractive to college admissions recruiters.</p><p><strong>Related: </strong><a href="" target="_blank">How Hotels Are Making Family Travel Way More Fun</a></p><p>However, impactful travel doesn’t necessarily have to be jaunts around the world to explore cultures vastly different from a kid's hometown. Even traveling domestically but to a city where things are slightly different can kickstart a child’s global learning and understanding.</p><p>But, there’s one statistic that might give parents pause. Much like giving a mouse a cookie, taking a kid on a trip will only make them want more. Of the teachers surveyed, 76 percent said that they saw <a href="" target="_blank">kids wanting to travel more</a> after being taken on one trip.</p><p>There are certainly worse things, right?</p>
Categories: Travel

Air Tahiti Nui’s New Dreamliner Planes Are the Perfect Excuse to Finally Book That Trip to Paradise

Thu, 01/10/2019 - 11:15
<p>Air Tahiti Nui is the latest airline to receive its long-awaited <a href="" target="_blank">Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner jets</a>, and the airline showed off one of them in a preview at Los Angeles International Airport.</p><p>Back in 2015, the <a href="" target="_blank">French Polynesian</a> airline placed an order for two Dreamliners with the option to lease another two, and the first one was delivered back in October. Since then, <a href="" target="_blank">Air Tahiti Nui</a> put the aircraft into service from its hub in Papeete to <a href="" target="_blank">Los Angeles</a> and <a href="" target="_blank">Auckland</a> three times weekly on each route. Another of the jets will go into service between Papeete and <a href="" target="_blank">Tokyo Narita</a> starting Feb. 4, 2019.</p><p>The planes will eventually replace the airline’s less fuel-efficient Airbus A340s completely with the phase-out scheduled for completion by September 2019 to coincide with the airline’s 20th anniversary. The airline’s CEO, Michel Monvoisin, noted that using Dreamliners instead of A340s will reduce carbon emissions by up to 30%.</p><p>Perhaps more exciting for passengers in the short-term, though, is the fact that the freshly delivered Dreamliners feature Air Tahiti Nui’s all-new business-class, a refreshed economy cabin and the carrier’s first premium-economy seats. The decor’s tropical palate is pretty dreamy, too. Here’s our first look at the jet.</p><img alt="Economy Cabin on board Air Tahiti Nui Dreamliner; Paul Gauguin artwork is used on the section dividers, as seen in the back of the photo "src=""><h2>A Flag Carrier</h2><p>Air Tahiti Nui ordered the 787-9 variant of the aircraft, as opposed to the less-common 787-8 and 787-10. The colorful livery on the exterior of the jet includes two red lines representing the flag of French Polynesia and its 118 islands.</p><p>The patterns toward the back of the fuselage are a reference to <a href="" target="_blank">Tahiti’s</a> heritage of tattoo arts, including images of a manta ray representing wisdom and protection, and a fish hook symbolizing prosperity and luck.</p><p>One interesting feature to note is that airlines flying international routes are assigned registration codes. The first two letters denote the country of origin, FO in this case, while the last three are unique to each plane. Air Tahiti Nui used this opportunity to designate their planes with words that are significant in Tahitian. The four planes will have individual designations TOA, MUA, NUI and VAA, meaning, “The warrior going forward in the great canoe.”</p><p>This particular Dreamliner, MUA, also bore the name Fakarava, which is an atoll that has been designated as a <a href=";code=FRA+01" target="_blank">UNESCO Biosphere Reserve</a>.</p><h2>Uncommon Cabins</h2><p>The Dreamliner’s new Poerava Business Class consists of five rows in a 2 – 2 – 2 pattern, for a total of 30 seats.</p><p>These are Rockwell Collins B/E Aerospace Parallel Diamond seats like you’ll find on United Dreamliners as well as other airlines like KLM and Air China. Each is 20.5 inches wide and has 60 inches of pitch. They recline to fully flat beds that are 78 inches long (six feet, six inches).</p><p>Each seat has its own power and USB ports as well as a personal 16-inch IFE screen.</p><p>Passengers are treated to duvets, full-size pillows and amenity kits with skincare products for the long flights.</p><img alt="Business Cabin on board the Air Tahiti Nui Dreamliner "src=""><p>The airline’s new Moana premium-economy class is located within a small cabin just behind business class with just five rows.</p><p>There are 32 Zodiac Aerospace Z535 seats total in a staggered 2 – 3 – 2 layout. The airline’s Managing Director, Mathieu Bechonnet, pointed out that many other airlines squeeze an extra seat into this space, and Air Tahiti Nui’s do feel relatively spacious.</p><p>Each premium-economy seat is 20.4 inches wide, with a pitch of 38 inches and reclines up to eight inches.</p><p>They all feature in-seat power plugs and USB ports, and 13-inch touchscreen in-flight entertainment screens.</p><p>Folks who book these seats also get a fleece blanket, a large pillow and a pared-down amenity kit.</p><img alt="Premium Economy seating on. board the Air Tahiti Nui Dreamliner "src=""><p>Moana economy class is spread across two cabins with a total of 232 seats laid out in 3 – 3 – 3 rows.</p><p>Each seat is only 17 inches wide but has 31 inches of pitch plus a six-inch recline.</p><p>Though they do not have individual power plugs, passengers can keep small devices charged with USB ports.</p><p>Each seat has its own 12-inch touchscreen high-definition entertainment monitor – the same size screen as is currently available in business class aboard the airline’s A340s.</p><p>Passengers will also notice the new Panasonic eXConnect satellite broadband providing in-flight Wi-Fi connectivity – a new amenity for the airline.</p><p>One final design touch – replicas of famous paintings by Paul Gaugin of his time in French Polynesia adorning the divider walls between cabins.</p><p>The bright colors and other accents are meant to convey a Tahitian sense called <em>mana</em>, or spiritual energy that transports passengers to the destination as soon as they set foot on board.</p><img alt="Boarding the new Air Tahiti Nui Dreamliner "src=""><h2>Timing is Everything</h2><p>If you want to experience Air Tahiti Nui’s new Dreamliners for yourself, the airline currently operates them on the following flights:</p><p>Air Tahiti Nui flight TN102 departs Papeete at 11:59 pm on Mondays, Wednesdays and Saturdays and arrives in Los Angeles at 10:10 am the following days.</p><p>Air Tahiti Nui flight TN101 departs Los Angeles at 10:55 pm on Tuesdays, Fridays and Sundays, and arrives in Papeete the following days at 5:05 am.</p><p>Air Tahiti Nui flight TN101 departs Papeete at 8:45 am on Mondays, Wednesdays and Saturdays, and arrives in Auckland at 1:05 pm the following days.</p><p>Air Tahiti Nui flight TN102 departs Auckland at 4:55 pm on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Sundays and arrives in Papeete a day earlier at 10:40 pm (gotta love that international date line).</p><p>The airline will also begin flying between Papeete and Tokyo Narita using Dreamliners twice weekly each direction in February.</p><p>On other days, flights operating with these same numbers will be flown with the airline’s Airbus A340s with older business-class and economy seats, and no premium economy cabins. So if you are thinking of booking a flight, double check your aircraft type before checking out.</p><p>Now through spring, economy fares specifically on the flights operated by Air Tahiti Nui’s Dreamliners are going for as low as $1,187 round-trip. Premium economy currently starts at $2,214 round-trip. Business-class tickets are pricing out as low as $4,654 round-trip.</p><h2>Award Advice</h2><p>If you want to save cash on airfare to spend on your Tahitian vacation instead, you can use a variety of different airline miles to book an award ticket on Air Tahiti Nui, including American Airlines AAdvantage miles, Delta SkyMiles, and miles from Flying Blue, the frequent-flier program of Air France/KLM.</p><p>American Airlines AAdvantage charges 40,000 miles each way in economy and 80,000 miles in business class, plus about $50-$110 in taxes and fees each way. Delta SkyMiles, which is a transfer partner of American Express Membership Rewards, charges 55,000 miles each way in economy and 115,000 miles in business class, and taxes and fees can be about $200 each way. If you want to use either of these options, you’ll have to call each airline’s mileage desk directly to book an award.</p><p>Flying Blue is a great new option for booking award tickets on Air Tahiti Nui, not least of all because you can do so online via either Air France or KLM’s websites. Flying Blue is a transfer partner of American Express Membership Rewards, Chase Ultimate Rewards and Citi ThankYou Rewards, so if you have a credit card that earns any of these types of points, you can use them to top up your account quickly. The program charges 25,500 miles plus $60-$110 each way in economy, and 73,500-89,000 miles plus $90-$140 each way in business class.</p><p>With non-stop flights from San Francisco to Papeete <a href="" target="_blank">on United</a> and new <a href="" target="_blank">low-cost carrier French Bee</a>, plus Air Tahiti Nui’s new Dreamliners going into service between Los Angeles an Papeete, there are more ways than ever to get to Tahiti in comfort.</p>
Categories: Travel

This Marathon in Scotland Has Stunning Views and a Whole Lot of Whisky

Thu, 01/10/2019 - 10:42
<p>If you’ve ever even considered <a href="" target="_blank">running a marathon</a> but wanted to ensure you were handsomely rewarded for doing so, we have a race for you.</p><p>In Scotland, runners will find the race to end all other races—the Dramathon. And, in case you didn’t guess from its name, it includes a whole lot of whisky.</p><p>According to the race’s site, the third annual Dramathon race will take place this October in Speyside, Scotland. There, runners can choose to run a full or half-marathon distance, a 10k, or choose to split it up into a relay race with four participants. All of the routes use mainly forest tracks with some occasional short sections on minor roads, along with just a bit of hilly terrain. And, as <em><a href="" target="_blank">Lonely Planet</a></em><i> </i>pointed out, the routes also take the runners through some of Scotland’s most historic distilleries.</p><p>But, here’s the best part: All runners will receive samples of the single malts that correspond to the distance they ran at the end of the race. While there isn’t any whisky drinking along the way there will be plenty of water stops to help people get to the distillery faster. And, according to the race, the last portion of the race promises “a few surprises in store” for the runners.</p><p>Truly, this race is an international affair. According to <em>Forbes</em>, the Scottish Running Guide <a href="" target="_blank">reported </a>that 20 percent of last year’s participants flew in from overseas. Countries represented included Sweden, Germany, Hungary, Netherlands, France, Italy, Hong Kong, Japan, South Africa, and the United States.</p><p>If you’re hoping to take part in the event you better act fast as the 2017 race sold out quickly. Click over to the <a href="" target="_blank">race’s website</a> and register now. Then, once you finish, have a drink for us.</p>
Categories: Travel

This Ridiculously Comfy Bra Is the Only One I'll Ever Fly in Again

Thu, 01/10/2019 - 10:31
<p>I don’t have the best track record with bras. See, I find them uncomfortable on account of I hate underwire, I’m fussy about straps that dig into my shoulders, and I’ve never found a cup size that actually seemed to properly fit me. The search got so exhausting that I gave up. Bralettes became my standard intimate of choice, even though they sometimes lack the support I feel I need.</p><p>This was, until I started seeing the same supposedly comfy bra advertised literally everywhere I looked on the Internet. It came up in sponsored photos on my Instagram feed; it popped up in various ads when I was scrolling online. Eventually, I did a little bit of reading and found only good things being said about the allegedly legendary <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">ThirdLove Bra</a>. </p><p>And I’m here to report that they were all right. It <i>is</i> legendary.</p><p>Let’s start from the beginning: the <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">Fit Finder</a>. ThirdLove offers a very thorough online test of sorts that takes you through about one minute of very specific questions about your shape, favorite bra type, and typical issues (i.e. straps dig or cups gape). After the quiz, ThirdLove recommends a bra — and what really sold me was that they offer half-cup sizes, so A½, B½, and so on. This solved my cup issue — I’m 100 percent a half size, which I didn’t even know existed.</p><p>Next, two words: memory foam. I think this is a big part of the magic — settling into a material like memory foam ensures not only support, breathability, and comfort, but it’s <i>so</i> comfortable that the bra itself goes unnoticed, and the cups really form to your own shape. The bra I tried was the <a href="" target="_blank">ThirdLove 24/7 Classic T-shirt Bra</a>, which features the (ultra-thin) memory foam cups, which are great for gals like myself who don’t love a lot of padding.</p><p>Then, there are the no-slip, pleated straps with a soft interior that eliminates digging; a super-soft microfiber lining; and underwire that is nylon-coated, seemingly making it invisible and unnoticeable. The bra is available in sizes ranging from A-G (including all those glorious half sizes) and there are eight neutral shades available. I opted for the color that best matched my skin tone so that I could wear this bra under everything, and it’s looked seamless under every outfit I’ve put on so far.</p><p>Welcome to the era of no more bra-induced discomfort during long-haul flights, ladies.</p><h2>ThirdLove 24/7 Classic T-shirt Bra</h2><img alt="most comfortable t-shirt bra "src=""><p>To buy: <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank"></a>, $68</p>
Categories: Travel

More People Than Ever Visited the Louvre in 2018 — and the Museum Is Thanking Beyoncé and Jay-Z

Thu, 01/10/2019 - 08:57
<p>We now have one more reason to be thankful for Beyoncé: She's inspired more of us to visit the most famous museum in Paris.</p><p>The <a href="" target="_blank">Louvre Museum</a> reported a new record in visitor numbers in 2018, and it's crediting music superstars Beyoncé and Jay-Z, AKA The Carters, according to <a href="" target="_blank">Reuters</a>.</p><p>The Carters’ 2018 music video, "APES**T," was filmed in the historic museum, featuring some of the museum's key works of art. The video has been viewed nearly 150 million times on YouTube since its release.</p><p>Reuters reported that the Louvre announced their visitor numbers in 2018 had soared to 10.2 million over the course of the year, which is not only a 25-percent increase from 2017, but also breaks its previous record of 9.7 million visitors from 2012.</p><p>In 2012, Reuters reported, the museum held exhibitions for the artists Leonardo da Vinci and Raphael as well as opened a new Islamic art section.</p><p>This part year, however, despite Paris being bogged down with political protests, the Louvre (as well as other Parisian tourist sites) has still managed to keep its visitor numbers high. This is, no doubt, partially due to the museum’s special <a href="" target="_blank">Beyoncé and Jay-Z themed tour</a>, in which <a href="" target="_blank">visitors can view all the artworks</a> featured in the “APESH**T” music video.</p><p>As Reuters points out, about three-quarters of visitors at the Louvre are from the U.S. (1.5 million) and China (1 million). Since The Carters are from the U.S. and international superstars, it’s not hard to infer that they have strongly influenced their fans.</p><p>And in this case, The Carters’ artwork inspires millions to educate themselves on both history and world art as well.</p><p>“It is good to see that these American artists, creators of today, are interested in a museum of archaeology and ancient art,” Louvre director Jean-Luc Martinez told Reuters.</p>
Categories: Travel

Why the U.S. Passport Keeps Getting Weaker (Video)

Thu, 01/10/2019 - 08:36
<p>The American passport is losing its strength.</p><p>Every few months, <a href="" target="_blank">the Henley Passport Index</a> ranks the world’s different passports, based on how many places each passport allows visa-free or visa-upon-arrival access.</p><p>Last year, <a href="" target="_blank">the United States placed fifth</a>, tied with four other countries. But according to this year’s rankings, the United States has slipped. It is now in sixth place, tied with six other countries: Austria, the Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, Switzerland and the United Kingdom. Citizens of each of these countries can access a total of 185 other countries around the world without a visa or with a visa-upon-arrival. Last year, the U.S. and U.K. both had visa-free access to 186 countries.</p><p><strong>Related:</strong> <a href="" target="_blank">How to Get a New Passport as Quickly as Possible</a></p><p>While the United States may be slipping, Asian countries are gaining a strong foothold in the rankings. For the second year in a row, Japan has the most powerful passport in the world. Japanese citizens can use their passports to easily cross the border into 190 different countries.</p><p>South Korea and Singapore share the number two spot while the Chinese passport is currently sitting in 69th place. The Chinese passport has seen one of the most dramatic leaps in the ranking, jumping about 20 places in only two years.</p><p>But Asian countries don’t have total domination of the list. France and Germany share the third most powerful spot, though back in 2015 the duo shared the top slot. Denmark, Italy, Finland and Sweden all share the fourth spot.</p><p><strong>Related:</strong> <a href="" target="_blank">Why You Should Get Global Entry and How It's Different Than TSA PreCheck (Video)</a></p><p>It’s important to remember that this ranking is not necessarily a competition, but rather a way of demonstrating which countries are the most likely to promote international open doors.</p><p>"The general spread of open-door policies has the potential to contribute billions to the global economy, as well as create significant employment opportunities around the world," Henley &amp; Partners Group Chairman Christian Kalin said in a press release.</p><p>And less restrictive borders are much better for people trying to see and understand the world, too.</p>
Categories: Travel

Hawaii's Volcanic Eruption Created a Stunning New Black Sand Beach

Thu, 01/10/2019 - 08:08
<p>In May 2018, the <a href="" target="_blank">Kilauea Volcano erupted</a> on the <a href="" target="_blank">island of Hawaii</a> causing severe destruction in the area. According to <a href="" target="_blank">CNN</a>, the volcano not only caused catastrophic loss to homes and businesses on the island, but also caused the island to lose out on about $480 million in tourism dollars. However, if there’s ever a silver lining to this tragedy this is it.</p><p>As CNN reported, that lava flow also created a brand new black sand beach on the island — along with two new surf breaks — located at Isaac Kepoʻokalani Hale Beach Park. And it’s something island officials are hoping visitors will flock to in celebration of the island’s big comeback.</p><p>"We hope our community and visitors can make new memories with loved ones at this special place, and always remember the island of Hawaii's unique ability to be ever-evolving,"<b> </b>Hawaii Visitors Bureau's executive director Ross Birch<b> </b>told CNN.</p><p>How did this new beach even come to be? Tina Neal, scientist in charge at the USGS Hawaiian Volcano Observatory, explained to the <em><a href="" target="_blank">Los Angeles Times</a></em>, “Hot molten lava interacting with cold ocean water produces explosions. Part of that is wave action breaking up the new lava. All of that produces a source of sand, and that sand is carried by the ocean current down the coastline to the places where it will naturally accumulate.”</p><p>Travelers are already allowed to visit the new beach, however, Birch noted that all visitors should use the same caution they would while spending time at any recreation area. Swimming isn’t advised at the beach, according to the county of Hawaii's Department of Parks and Recreation, as there are extremely strong currents present. There is a lifeguard on duty just in case. One thing the park is missing is drinking water, as the area water lines were damaged during the lava flow. But, as long as you pack water, a blanket, and stay on the sand, you’ll certainly be in for a day to remember.</p>
Categories: Travel