Travel and Leisure - Msn Feeds
Updated: 2 hours 32 min ago

This Turtle Cracked Its Shell So Veterinarians Made Him a Lego Wheelchair

Tue, 10/02/2018 - 06:18
<p>Sometimes a vet has to improvise to help an animal in need.</p><p>According to the <a href="" target="_blank">Associated Press</a>, veterinarians at <a href=";oq=the+Maryland+Zoo&amp;aqs=chrome.0.0l6.377j0j7&amp;sourceid=chrome&amp;ie=UTF-8" target="_blank">The Maryland Zoo</a> worked diligently to help a wild eastern box turtle who cracked the underside of its shell. Unfortunately, after the surgery, the doctors were plagued with the task of how to keep the turtle from injuring itself even further during the healing process.</p><p><a href="" target="_blank">The zoo’s website</a> wrote in detail that the surgery, performed back in July, left the turtle with metal bone plates, sewing clasps and surgical wire to temporarily hold its shell back together.</p><p>Zoo veterinary extern (fourth-year veterinary student) Garrett Fraess said in a release on the zoo’s website, “It was important to keep the bottom of the shell off the ground so it could heal properly.”</p><p>Since there are no turtle-sized wheelchairs or crutches out there, Fraess turned to a friend who happened to be a Lego expert for help.</p><img alt="Maryland Zoo rehabilitates turtle with lego wheelchair "src=""><p>The chair has a box-shaped frame and uses tiny wheels to lift the turtle slightly off the ground, supporting its body and legs so it can still move around. Plumber’s putty was also added to attach the chair to the edges of the turtle’s upper shell so he could move freely and keep it in place without receiving further damage.</p><img alt="Maryland Zoo rehabilitates turtle with lego wheelchair "src=""><p>Dr. Ellen Bronson, senior director of animal health, conservation, and research at the Maryland Zoo said on the zoo’s website that the little turtle will wear the device until all of its shell fragments completely fuse back together again, hopefully by the spring.</p><p>The zoo has plenty of <a href="" target="_blank">easter box turtles</a> to see in its Wilderness Area. For more information, visit the <a href="" target="_blank">Maryland Zoo website</a>.</p>
Categories: Travel

Here's What Happens When You Accidentally Tell the U.S. Government You're a Terrorist on Your Visa Form

Tue, 10/02/2018 - 06:11
<p>A 29-year-old British woman would like to remind everyone of the importance of reading documents very carefully.</p><p>While applying for a tourist visa for a bucket list trip to <a href="" target="_blank">New York City</a>, Mandie Stevenson erroneously ticked off “Yes” on an online travel application asking if she had ever engaged in terrorist activity. Obviously, her travel application was denied.</p><p>“At first I thought it was a bad dream and then I realized what I had done,” Stevenson said on BBC radio show “Mornings with Stephen Jardine.” She said she made the mistake while filling out a form on the Department of Homeland Security's <a href="" target="_blank">Electronic System for Travel Authorization</a> site. The question reads: “Do you seek to engage in or have you ever engaged in terrorist activities, espionage, sabotage, or genocide?”</p><p>“I believe I ticked ‘no’ and then when I have scrolled down to click confirm, I think it has nudged and moved. That's the story I'm sticking to,” <a href="" target="_blank">Stevenson said</a>. “A lot of people have said ‘How on earth could you do that?’ but to me I've done it really easily.”</p><p>To fix her error, Stevenson had to go to her nearby U.S. embassy, <a href="" target="_blank"><em>Mashable</em> reported</a>. At the embassy, Stevenson had to undergo a series of interviews before she was granted a travel visa for her upcoming vacation. The interviews and appointment cost Stevenson $416, and while she was ultimately approved, she had to spend even more money to change her flights and accommodations to a later date.</p><p>While pushing back travel dates may seem like a small pain, for Stevenson time is of the essence. As she explained to BBC, she is currently undergoing treatment for cancer and can only travel in specific windows of time.</p><p>“I live in 12-weekly cycles because I get scanned every 12 weeks. I book my holidays in very specific times and this New York trip was going to be before I get another set of scan results, so I was really looking forward to it,” she said. “I thought because it was a genuine error it would be quite an easy fix but I was quite wrong.”</p>
Categories: Travel

A Complete Guide to Bringing Animals On Flights

Mon, 10/01/2018 - 15:01
<p>This past year most domestic airlines tightened their rules regarding trained service animals, emotional support animals (or ESAs) and psychiatric animals on airplanes.</p><p>The move was necessary, airlines said, because too many passengers were taking advantage of lax government rules regarding the transport of these animals and, in many cases, claiming their regular pets as emotional support animals, which fly for free.</p><p>In announcing its new rules, <a href="" target="_blank">Delta Air Lines</a> noted that it was <a href="" target="_blank">carrying about 700 service and support animals a day</a> and nearly 250,000 annually. Since 2016, the airline has seen an 84 percent increase in the number of reported incidents involving untrained emotional support animals attacking passengers (and other animals) and urinating or defecating in aircraft cabins.</p><p>Airlines say the type of animals passengers claim they need with them on board for emotional support has been getting out of hand as well, citing passengers who claim they can’t fly without a turkey, peacock, pig, goat, spider or snake for support.</p><p>The airlines would like the <a href="" target="_blank">Department of Transportation</a> to clarify and tighten the overall rules for service and ESAs on planes. But while waiting for the government to act, individual airlines are rolling out their own updated policies.</p><p>Here’s a list of those policies as well as links to airline pet policies for passengers who may need to pony up the cash and fly by the rules.</p><p><strong><a href="" target="_blank">Alaska Airlines</a>’ </strong>updated policy for support animals goes into effect Oct. 1, 2018. After that date, passengers traveling with emotional support animals will be able to bring only one emotional support animal on board with them: either a dog or a cat that will always need to stay leashed or in a carrier. Documentation and a 48-hour notice are also required. <a href="" target="_blank">Details here.</a> (<a href="" target="_blank">Pet policy</a>)</p><p><strong><a href="" target="_blank">American Airlines</a>’</strong> new rules went into effect July 1 and require passengers to provide three forms of documentation 48 hours before a flight for any emotional support or psychiatric service animal. The rules also prohibit many types of animals from flying as emotional support animals, including amphibians, goats, and snakes or spiders. <a href="" target="_blank">Details here</a>. (<a href="" target="_blank">Pet policy</a>)</p><p><strong><a href="" target="_blank">Allegiant</a> </strong>addresses service, emotional support and comfort animals in its Contract of Carriage (updated July 1, 2018), which notes that passengers must provide proper documentation from a mental health professional when bringing an emotional support or comfort animal on board. <a href="" target="_blank">Details here</a> (#48). (<a href="" target="_blank">Pet policy</a>)</p><p><strong><a href="" target="_blank">Delta Air Lines</a>'</strong> updated policies for service and support animals went into effect on July 10, 2018 and require passengers to submit documentation 48 hours before a flight. Pit bull-type dogs and animals such as hedgehogs, ferrets, reptiles and rodents are not permitted to fly as service or support animals. The airline reserves the right to refuse transportation to any animal that growls, barks excessively, jumps on passengers, relieves themselves in the gate area or cabin, or eats off seat-back tray tables. <a href="" target="_blank">Details here</a>. (<a href="" target="_blank">Pet policy</a>)</p><p><strong><a href="" target="_blank">Frontier</a><a href="" target="_blank">'s</a></strong> policy for therapeutic/emotional support animals requires documentation and excludes aggressive or disruptive animals and unusual or exotic animals including rodents, reptiles, insects, rabbits, non-household birds and animals with foul odors. <a href="" target="_blank">Details here</a>. (<a href="" target="_blank">Pet policy</a>).</p><p><strong><a href="" target="_blank">JetBlue</a></strong> updated its policy for emotional support and psychiatric animals in July 2018. The policy limits emotional support animals to one per passengers and requires documentation 48 hours before a flight, including a medical or health professional’s form, a veterinary health form and a confirmation of animal behavior. <a href="" target="_blank">Details here</a>. (<a href="" target="_blank">Pet policy</a>)</p><p><strong><a href="" target="_blank">Southwest Airlines</a>’</strong> new policy for emotional support animals became effective Sept. 17, 2018 and limits ESAs to one dog or cat per passenger. Animals must be kept on a leash or in a carrier both in the airport and on the aircraft. Proper documentation is required for each animal and disruptive animals may be denied boarding. <a href="" target="_blank">Details here</a>. (<a href="" target="_blank">Pet policy</a>)</p><p><strong><a href="" target="_blank">Spirit Airlines</a></strong> requires proper documentation and 48-hour notice for emotional support animals. The airline allows passengers to travel with more than one emotional support animal, but no snakes, reptiles, ferrets, rodents, sugar gliders or spiders are permitted. <a href="" target="_blank">Details here</a>. (<a href="" target="_blank">Pet policy</a>)</p><p><strong><a href="" target="_blank">United Airlines</a></strong> updated it policies for emotional support and psychiatric service animals on March 1, 2018. Documentation must be filed 48 hours before the flight. Passengers may travel with only one emotional support animal. Animals must be trained to behave properly in a public setting and, as with most airlines, anyone traveling with an emotional support animal is not permitted to sit in an exit row. <a href="" target="_blank">Details here</a>. (<a href="" target="_blank">Pet policy</a>)</p>
Categories: Travel

This Country Is Europe’s Fastest Growing Tourist Destination — and You’ve Probably Never Heard of It

Mon, 10/01/2018 - 14:00
<p>One of Europe’s smallest countries is growing in tourism numbers faster than anywhere else on the continent.</p><p><a href="" target="_blank">According to new data from the United Nations World Tourism Organization</a> (UNWTO), the 24-square-mile country of San Marino became Europe’s fastest growing destination last year.</p><img alt="View of San Marino city with piazza Grande from above "src=""><p>From 2016 to 2017, San Marino saw a 31.1 percent growth in tourism with more than 78,000 people visiting the country last year. That may not seem impressive, but it is considering that the population is only about 33,500. More than twice as many people visited the country last year compared to those who live there.</p><p>To be fair, San Marino’s tourism had nowhere to go but up. Last year, it was reported that <a href="" target="_blank">the micro-nation was the least-visited place in Europe.</a> But, as more people learn about San Marino, tourism is likely to soar (so book your ticket ASAP).</p><p>San Marino is situated inside northeast Italy, only about a three-hour drive from Florence. Despite being the fifth smallest country in the world, there’s plenty to keep visitors entertained. It’s the last remaining independently-governed city-state in Italy and, therefore, has a lot of fascinating history. In fact, the historic center is a <a href="" target="_blank">UNESCO World Heritage Site</a>.</p><img alt="Palazzo Pubblico (Public Palace, Town Hall) and the Statua della Libertà (Statue of Liberty) by Stefano Galletti (1876) at sunset "src=""><p>One of the nation’s biggest draws is the well-preserved collection of medieval architecture. Some citadels around town date back to the 11th century. Wander through the old walled city and spend time in one of several palazzos around town.</p><p>No matter what you intend to do in San Marino, just be sure to get there quick. The tourists are coming.</p>
Categories: Travel

The Unexpected Reason Disneyland Is Getting Rid of Chairs and Benches

Mon, 10/01/2018 - 12:01
<p>Disneyland is a busy place. In 2017, 18.3 million people — more than 50,000 a day on average — visited the park, <a href="" target="_blank">according to an indepent report</a>.</p><p>That many people can make it difficult to get around, which is why Disney taking out benches and chairs in order to widen walkways and paths for guests. The <a href="" target="_blank"><em>OC Register</em> noted</a> that the entire theme park has long been an attraction, rather than just “a collection of rides,” making it an inviting place for guests to come, sit for a spell, and take it all in. But, those benches and planters are now simply getting in the way of people making their way through the park each day. So it's either more seating, or fewer bottlenecks in crowded areas.</p><p>To compensate for the loss of benches, Disneyland is reportedly adding more seating. However, that seating is only available inside restaurants, <a href="" target="_blank">according to <em>MovieWeb</em></a>. For example, The Bengal BBQ restaurant, which is located in Adventureland, has expanded from 30 outdoor seats to 100. Disneyland spokeswoman Liz Jaeger told <em>MovieWeb</em> that the company is “always looking at ways to enhance elements such as guest flow, seating, and landscaping, which play an important part of a guest's visit to the parks.”</p><p>Beyond removing seats, Disneyland also changed its <a href="" target="_blank">pricing structure</a> to alleviate overcrowding (as is <a href="" target="_blank">Disney World</a>). It implemented “demand pricing,” increasing its admission pricing for its most popular days.</p><p>“We continue to work on managing demand by expanding the resort and adding new attractions, balancing offerings at our two theme parks, and providing seasonal pricing to help spread visitation throughout the year,” <a href="" target="_blank">Disneyland spokeswoman Suzi Brown told the <em>Los Angeles Times</em></a>.</p>
Categories: Travel

This Is the Pilot Accent That Passengers Trust the Most

Mon, 10/01/2018 - 11:01
<p>Flying on an aircraft means trusting the pilot flying it, and it turns out a pilot's accent can make a difference in how confident a passenger feels during a flight.</p><p>A new survey of 4,207 U.S. travelers conducted by Jetcost found that 54% of respondents are more or less confident in their pilot based on the pilot’s accent, <a href="" target="_blank">the <em>Los Angeles Times</em> reported</a>.</p><p><strong>Related:</strong> <a href="" target="_blank">Why You Shouldn't Freak Out If You See Your Pilot Sleeping on a Flight (Video)</a></p><p>When it came to which accents passengers trust the most, it was the Midwest and West Coast that most boosted confidence in the pilot.</p><p>Sixty-three percent of respondents said an Upper Midwestern accent made them trust the pilot's abilities, while 58% said the same of a Southern Californian accent.</p><h2>Accents That Draw the Most Amount of Confidence</h2>Upper Midwestern — 63%Southern Californian — 58%Great Lakes — 51%Central Canadian — 45%Southwestern U.S. — 37%<p>The survey also found that some accents can lower a passenger’s confidence in a pilot.</p><p>These included a Texan accent, with 65 percent of respondents saying the accent would give them the least amount of confidence.</p><h2>Accents That Draw the Least Amount of Confidence</h2>Texan — 65%New York — 59%General American — 54%Central Canadian — 45%Southwestern U.S. — 37%<p>While this seems to show U.S. passengers prefer a middle-of-the-country or relaxed West Coast accent the most, a 2010 survey in Britain seemed to find the opposite: found that British passengers felt safest with a male pilot with a “received pronunciation” Oxford accent, the<a href="" target="_blank"> <em>Daily Mail</em> reported</a>.</p><p>If you're nervous the next time you fly, first remember that flying is practically the safest it ever has been. And second, follow this <a href="" target="_blank">three-second safety trick</a> from a former airline captain so that you're prepared in the case of an emergency.</p>
Categories: Travel

What Space Tourists Will Get for Their $250,000 Ticket

Sun, 09/30/2018 - 13:00
<p>The new space race is on, with <a href="" target="_blank">SpaceX preparing to launch Japanese online fashion tycoon, Yusaku Maezawa, around the moon</a> in 2023. However, British billionaire <a href="" target="_blank">Richard Branson’s Virgin Galactic</a> and <a href="" target="_blank">Blue Origin, funded by CEO Jeff Bezos</a> are hoping that 2019 is the year that one of them takes paying customers to the edge of space.</p><p>At stake are supersonic speeds, a few minutes of weightlessness, and an incredible view of the curvature of Earth against the blackness of space, but just as important are bragging rights. For future astronauts, there’s a choice to be made. Which ‘spaceline’ is for you?</p><h2>What is suborbital space tourism?</h2><p>For now, it’s all about getting to the Kármán Line that separates Earth and space, which is about 62 miles/100km up. These first flights will be suborbital — they will go up very quickly, and then quickly come down again even faster. In the future, space tourism will almost certainly shift to short orbital flights and the chance to spend a week or two in a space station circling the globe. For now, suborbital is where it’s at.</p><h2>What Blue Origin space tourists will get</h2><p>If you ever wanted to blast-off to space on top of a rocket, Blue Origin’s New Shepard suborbital system is for you. A more conventional, Apollo-like method of getting to space than Virgin Galactic, Blue Origin will put six people in a capsule on top of its 60-foot-tall New Shepard reusable rocket. That’s four paying customers and two Blue Origin pilots who together will experience vertical take-off from a launchpad.</p><p>The capsule itself is designed for observing Earth, albeit briefly, with a 43x29-inch window next to each of the six reclining leather chairs. Although prices haven’t yet been revealed, it’s expected that a Blue Origin ticket will cost between $200,000 and $300,000.</p><h2>The Blue Origin travel itinerary</h2><img alt="Jeff Bezos Blue Origin "src=""><p>After just one day of training, launch will likely take place from Blue Origin’s launch facility near Van Horn, West Texas. After the vertical take-off, the New Shepard rocket engines will burn for 150 seconds and reach Mach 3 – three times the speed of sound – before the rocket and capsule detach from one another. The capsule will keep going to the Kármán Line while the rocket descends and lands back on the launchpad.</p><p>Those inside the capsule will then get three minutes of weightlessness, and a brief chance to look at Earth from space, before the capsule begins to descend, reaching terrifying Mach 5 speeds before a parachute is deployed and the capsule floats back to where it started. The total experience will last just 11 minutes.</p><h2>What Virgin Galactic space tourists will get</h2><p>For $250,000 a ticket (which initially requires a $20,000 deposit), Virgin Galactic ticket-holders will experience a supersonic flight that takes-off and lands on a runway during a trip that lasts around 2.5 hours in total. Well before that, passengers have to have medical checks, safety training, and undergo G-force and microgravity simulations. The spacecraft itself, <em>VSS Unity</em>, has eight seats — two for the pilots and six recliners for passengers — each with a small window.</p><h2>The Virgin Galactic travel itinerary</h2><img alt="Richard Branson Virgin Galactic "src=""><p>The Virgin Galactic experience is no quick joyride. Six wannabe space tourists will arrive at Spaceport America in New Mexico three days before the big day and undergo more medial checks. Finally, they’ll board the tiny carbon-composite <em>VSS Unity</em> strapped to the undercarriage of a the WhiteKnightTwo VMS Eve carrier aircraft. After being carried to 50,000ft., <em>VSS Unity</em> detaches, fires its engines for 63 seconds, and climb vertically at Mach 3.5 to the Kármán Line. Passengers will then unbuckle and experience four minutes of weightlessness, then descend rapidly at Mach 5. At about 70,000ft. <em>VSS Unity</em> will glide back to the runway for a landing.</p><h2>Why is space tourism taking so long?</h2><p>Richard Branson first promised to take people to space in 2004, and there have been several setbacks along the way. Progress was made this last July when <em>VSS Unity</em> reached 114,500 ft., or about 21 miles, after firing its engines for 31 seconds. The plan is to go for 40 seconds on the next test flight, then 50 seconds, and finally, 63 seconds. That will take <em>VSS Unity</em> to space. Also in July, New Shepard flew for the ninth time, and is surely getting close to a crewed test flight.</p>
Categories: Travel

My (Mostly) Legal, Not Sketchy at All Cannabis-based Method for Getting Comfy While Traveling

Sun, 09/30/2018 - 12:31
<p><a href="" target="_blank">Cannabis</a>, it seems, is the It beauty ingredient of the moment, showing up in everything from hand creams to face serums to lip balms.</p><p>"What's the point," you might wonder, "of putting it on the <em>outside </em>of my body?" </p><p>You'd be surprised. The applications of the cannabis plant are many, and beauty nerds are having a heyday with it, extolling its purported anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, emollient, and regenerative properties as a treatment for everything from acne to psoriasis to signs of aging. For me, one of the most exciting developments is the increasing availability of topical lotions, oils, and creams that go heavy on a compound called CBD, the common shorthand for Cannabidiol. It's become my secret weapon for getting comfy during a flight, soothing a strained neck on a long car ride, or calming my aching feet after a day of hiking. </p><p>For those who are unfamiliar, CBD is one of the many cannabinoids found in cannabis. Another cannabinoid you may have heard of is Tetrahydrocannabinol, a.k.a. THC, <a href="" target="_blank">which is responsible for the psychoactive effects associated with marijuana</a> — and is the most highly regulated compound present in the plant. </p><p>CBD, on the other hand, is non-intoxicating and its therapeutic benefits are a particularly hot topic these days. When applied topically, I've found the effect to be soothing, relaxing, numbing, warming... basically, it makes things that hurt <em>not hurt </em>and things that are tight get<em> loose</em>. I apply it on a knot in my shoulder or a stiff knee, and the discomfort dissipates with a melting sensation. Many people also opt to take CBD orally for its mood-stabilizing and pain-management effects, and there are even prescription medications for seizures that rely on CBD.</p><img alt="Assortment of CBD lotions "src=""><p>The way that CBD works — and the full range of its applications and health benefits — is still being explored, but it very broadly has something to do with the compound's natural analgesic effects and its interaction with your body's <a href="" target="_blank">endocannabinoid system</a>. For more information, pick up the forthcoming book, <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">"CBD Oil: Everyday Secrets"</a><em> </em>by wellness editor and writer Gretchen Lidicker; it's perhaps the best summary of what we know about the compound, questions for further research, and how to buy and use CBD products in our daily lives. What I <em>can </em>tell you is that it really works for me.</p><p>If you're confused by the sudden ubiquity of CBD and cannabis-based products, you're not the only one. "My state doesn't even allow <em>medical </em>marijuana," Idahoans or South Dakotans may say. "So why can I suddenly walk into my local Sephora and buy <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">cannabis oil mascara</a>?" As you can imagine, it's complicated. And claims that CBD is 100% legal in all 50 states (which appear frequently) are oversimplifying the matter.</p><p>Lidicker does an excellent job of attempting to unravel the legal jargon in <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">"CBD Oil"</a> <em>— </em>but<em> </em>still, even she notes that "the legal status of CBD is a real doozy." The main issues have to do with the (somewhat arbitrary) distinction between "hemp" and other forms of cannabis. Hemp refers to varieties of <em>Cannabis sativa</em> used mostly for industrial purposes, the THC present in most strains of cannabis specifically bred out of it. You can't smoke hemp and get high; instead, it's used to produce strong fiber for textiles, rope, and paper, as well as things like biofuels and animal feed.</p><p>Plants that qualify as industrial hemp, <a href="" target="_blank">by the standards of the 2014 Farm Bill</a>, must contain less than .3% THC. But the sale of hemp products is seemingly only permitted when derived from the stalks and seeds of the plant (as opposed to the flowers, where a lot of the good stuff is). Mix in the phenomenon known as the "entourage effect" — which demonstrates that CBD is most effective when used in combination with other cannabinoids, leading many to seek a "whole plant" or "full spectrum" version of the compound — and that's where it gets tricky. Are producers of hemp-derived CBD really only using stalks? Would that product be very effective? It remains unclear.</p><p>"The take-home message here," Lidicker writes, "is that many CBD oil companies are operating in a legal gray area, and this is made possible by the lack of specificity in the laws that govern and define hemp." At the end of the day, "CBD companies operating within currently accepted parameters are selling CBD products nationwide without significant interference. That could change in the future, but so far there has been no significant enforcement against consumers or vendors for selling CBD or hemp oil as long as it is nonintoxicating and made from a plant with less than .3 percent THC."</p><p>In <a href="" target="_blank">states where marijuana is legal or allowed for medical purposes</a>, of course, a wider variety of potent products are available. Stores and dispensaries in states like Washington and Colorado will often stock CBD tinctures, topicals, and crystals derived from hemp's more potent sister strains; these are more effective, but are also regulated (or criminalized) in the same way as "marijuana," as a drug. </p><p>So, can you take CBD lotion on a plane? Head to the TSA website and you'll get an emphatic <a href="" target="_blank">"NO"</a> in the context of medial marijuana. But widely available hemp-based CBD topicals are not classified as such — and as several media outlets, anecdotal reports, and cannabis entrepreneurs have noted, they are not a huge concern for the authorities. The prevailing wisdom seems to indicate that hemp-based CBD products are OK to bring on board, but do so at your own risk.</p><p>Here are five CBD topicals I've tried, all of which claim to be totally legal, THC-free, and ready to pack. So go ahead: get loose on your next trip, and you may never fly without CBD again.</p><h2>Charlotte’s Web Hemp Infused Balm</h2><img alt="Charlotte Web's Hemp Balm "src=""><p>Essentially, it's Tiger Balm with a kick. This apricot oil–based balm is driven by menthol and cinnamon extracts — grown sustainably, like all of its ingredients — which provide a tingly, Icy Hot–esque relief that goes deeper thanks to the Colorado-grown, Colorado-made CBD hemp oil within.</p><p>This balm is especially good for sore post-workout muscles and painful knots, providing a distracting minty sensation and prolonged relief from the CBD. The scent can be a bit much in the confines of an airplane — it’s not inconspicuous by any means — but those who rely on <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">Axe Oil</a> and the like will appreciate this as a more potent version.</p><p>Charlotte’s Web, a family-owned company that’s been on the forefront of CBD supplements and skincare, carries a range of extracts, flavored oils, and capsules, as well as more subtle topical CBD creams.</p><p>To buy: <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank"></a>, $40 for 44ml</p><h2>Khus + Khus 'Copious' Body Serum </h2><img alt="Copious Body Serum by Khus + Khus Modern Herbal Fusion "src=""><p>One main asset of this serum is the scent, a dusky, spicy confluence of rich notes like spikenard, frankincense, myrrh, and lavender. These ingredients, and more, are informed by tenets of Ayurvedic and herbalist medicine, all of which are meant to complement the effects of the CBD extract with their energizing, anti-anxiety, and analgesic properties. </p><p>I’ve found the physical sensation of this one — warm and a little tingly, thanks to additives like nettle — is especially comforting in-flight, since I have a tendency to get goosebumps in that over-air-conditioned environment. Plus, unlike other CBD skin oils that typically come with an eye dropper, this one has a nice pump bottle. (I also have a tendency to spill all over myself, on planes and in daily life).</p><p>Like all Khus + Khus products, this serum is 100% plant-based and 99% organic. They make all sorts of CBD-infused and non-CBD products, including an extended line of body serums and face oils and a CBD hand cream. </p><p>To buy: <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank"></a>, $48 for 100ml </p><h2>Leef Organics 'Revive' CBD Balm</h2><img alt="Revive CBD Balm "src=""><p>This balm is thick and ultra-hydrating, formulated with grape seed oil and cocoa butter for a heavy-duty solution to the effects of moisture-sucking airplane air. Plus, it smells like dessert, with an herbal edge and hints of dried flowers. If you find yourself wanting to take a bite, you actually can — it’s totally edible, and many people enjoy mixing it into their morning coffee to take the edge off the jitters. </p><p>The balm contains calendula and comfrey extracts to calm skin irritation, as well as the company’s proprietary CBD hemp oil, which is cold-pressed (more labor-intensive than the traditional extraction method) to maintain the maximum potency and nutrient value. In terms of effectiveness, this one is hard to match; the effect is immediate, and the absence of menthol or strong fragrances puts its power into sharper focus. </p><p>Also worth trying, the brand's skin oil uses that same cold-pressed extract in the form of a serum. Excellent CBD extracts for oral dosage, plus fun CBD-infused soaps are also available. </p><p>To buy:<em> </em><a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank"></a>, $30 for 59ml</p><h2>Lord Jones High CBD Pain &amp; Wellness Formula Body Lotion</h2><img alt="Lord Jones High CBD Pain "src=""><p>This little lotion packs a big punch. Lord Jones was founded by Cindy Capobianco, a former style editor, public relations executive, and fashion industry veteran, and the line has a sophistication and chic sensibility to match her pedigreed resume. Her CBD products have gained a cult following among influencers, with endorsements from names like <a href="" target="_blank">Amy Schumer</a> and Olivia Wilde. Plus, it smells amazing — a little floral, a little grassy, and just dank and musky enough to remind you of what's really going on.</p><p>Lord Jones has been a pioneer in the cannabis industry, crafting seriously high-end beauty products, tinctures, and edibles that are stocked in the chicest shops in Manhattan and beyond. Check out their "<a href="" target="_blank">old fashioned gumdrops</a>" — akin to a mood-stabilizing <em>p</em><em>âte</em><em> de fruit, </em>with soon-to-be-released mango chili and sugarplum flavors for the holidays — and their small-batch CBD tinctures, which come in delicious lemon and peppermint flavors. Solidifying the cool factor, Lord Jones recently launched a <a href="" target="_blank">collaboration with Sigur Rós</a>.</p><p>To buy: <a href="" target="_blank"></a>, $50 for 50ml </p><h2>Herb Essentials Cannabis Infused Body Lotion</h2><img alt="Herb Essntls Cannabis Infused Body Lotion "src=""><p>This one is far too large to be TSA-approved in your carry-on, but I don't really use this cannabis-infused body lotion for the loosening, relaxing sensation of CBD — it's not really a factor compared to the previous topicals. I use this because it's a damn good lotion. I bring it along in my checked bag to reinvigorate my dull, dehydrated post-flight skin when I start to unpack. </p><p>Herb Essentials is exploring the benefits of cannabis oils for the health of our skin, and the results are exciting. The hemp seed oil they use is not at all comedogenic (meaning it won't clog your pores). It contains antioxidants like Vitamin E, and according to the company, has an "omega3-omega6 ratio [that] perfectly mirrors the natural proportions in your skin," making for fast absorption and minimal oiliness. And they also make a <a href="" target="_blank">smaller moisturizer</a>, a green <a href="" target="_blank">lip balm</a>, and a proprietary fragrance for <a href="" target="_blank">scented candles</a> and <a href="" target="_blank">roll-on perfume</a> that combines notes of patchouli, citrus, and weed.</p><p>To buy: <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank"></a>, $48 for 235ml</p>
Categories: Travel

Saturday Is National Coffee Day — Here's Where to Get Free Coffee

Sun, 09/30/2018 - 11:01
<p>Whatever you call it, and however you drink it, coffee is credited with offering benefits ranging from a morning perk up to a <a href="" target="_blank">longer life</a>.</p><p>And for National Coffee Day 2018 cafés, restaurants, diners and doughnut shops around the country will be catering to caffeine cravings by offering free and discounted coffee drinks to all who stop by.</p><p>Here are some of the deals to seek out this Saturday, September 29, on National Coffee Day. Some may be restricted to participating branches or locations while there are sure to be others that pop up.</p><h2>Krispy Kreme</h2><p>Participating <a href="" target="_blank">Krispy Kreme</a> locations will offer a free coffee, any size; no purchase necessary. Current or new members of the Krispy Kreme free-to-join Rewards program get a complimentary doughnut on Saturday too.</p><h2>Dunkin Donuts</h2><p>At participating <a href="" target="_blank">Dunkin Donuts</a> (which is changing its name to simply Dunkin’), purchase one hot coffee this Saturday and get one hot coffee of equal or lesser value for free. That might give you and a friend the excuse to check out the chain’s seasonal pumpkin and maple pecan flavored coffees.</p><h2>Caribou Coffee</h2><p><a href="" target="_blank">Caribou Coffee</a> is offering a free coffee of the day, any size, to customers who purchase any food item. The offer is also good at participating Einstein Bros. Bagels stores that now serve Caribou Coffee.</p><h2>Bruegger's Bagels</h2><p>Through September 29, <a href="" target="_blank">Bruegger’s Bagels</a> will serve a free coffee with any purchase.</p><h2>Cumberland Farms</h2><p><a href="" target="_blank">Cumberland Farms</a> convenience stores in New York, New England and Florida are offering a free coffee coupon for use on Saturday, Sept 29, to anyone who texts ‘FREE COFFEE” to 64827.</p><h2>Community Coffee</h2><p><a href="" target="_blank">Community Coffee</a> is celebrating National Coffee Day all week long with an offer of 30 percent off online purchases if you use the code COFFEEDAY2018.</p><h2>PJ's Coffee</h2><p>Participating <a href="" target="_blank">PJ’s Coffee</a> shops will be offering guests a free 12 oz. Ruby Roast direct trade – light roast hot coffee.</p><h2>7-Eleven</h2><p>Customers purchasing any breakfast sandwich that costs more than $2 can get a free coffee at participating 7-Eleven locations.</p><h2>Nespresso</h2><p>Flagship Nespresso Boutiques in New York City; Austin, Texas; Portland, Oregon; and other cities around the country are holding <a href="" target="_blank">special tasting sessions</a> on September 29 and 30 and sending participants home with a commemorative box of 50 Nespresso Privé espresso capsules. Most slots are already snapped up, but there’s a waiting list at each shop.</p><h2>Holiday Stationstores</h2><p>Text COFFEE to 44022 on National Coffee Day to get a free coffee (any size) at <a href="" target="_blank">Holiday Stationstores</a> around the country. The chain is also offering free coffee on Tuesdays through October 9.</p><h2>Scooter's Coffee</h2><p>Participating locations of the Midwest-based coffee franchise <a href="" target="_blank">Scooter’s Coffee</a> will mark National Coffee Day with an offer of a free, hot brewed coffee (any size) to anyone stopping by.</p><h2>Press Coffee Roasters</h2><p>Elsewhere, <a href="" target="_blank">Press Coffee Roasters</a> has two deals ready for National Coffee Day. In addition to offering a free drip coffee (any size) at all its cafés in Arizona, the brand will offer $2 off any latte drink for those who use the code NCD2018.</p><h2>Pilot Flying J</h2><p>And, for travelers in need of a caffeine buzz on a highway, <a href="" target="_blank">Pilot Flying J</a> locations out on the interstates will be delivering coupons for free coffee Friday September 28 or Saturday, September 29 through its myPilot app.</p><h2>High Brew Coffee and Sprinkles cupcakes</h2><p>Want more free caffeine? For National Coffee Day, Austin-based <a href="" target="_blank">High Brew Coffee</a> is working with <a href="" target="_blank">Sprinkles cupcake shops</a> on a special offer (buy a cupcake, get a free High Brew) and the buzz is that there are free or discounted coffee offers lined up at Coffee Bean &amp; Tea Leaf locations around the county and at Barnes &amp; Nobel Cafes as well.</p>
Categories: Travel

New York City Airport Workers Will Soon Earn the Highest Minimum Wage in the Country

Sat, 09/29/2018 - 17:35
<p>Airport workers around New York City will have the highest minimum wage of any public agency within the next five years.</p><p>The <a href="" target="_blank">Port Authority of New York and New Jersey</a>’s Board of Commissioners approved a proposal on Thursday that would increase the airport workers’ minimum wage to $19 per hour by 2023.</p><p>The increase will affect 40,000 airport workers, including baggage handlers, security officers, wheelchair agents and terminal and airplane cleaners at New York’s John F. Kennedy, LaGuardia, and Newark airports. The three airports are among the busiest in the country, serving about 65 million passengers combined in 2017.</p><p>The raise is particularly impactful for workers in New Jersey who will begin making $8.45 more per hour. New York employees will see raises from their current minimum wage of $13 per hour. The Port Authority has said that the increases are an attempt to retain employees. New York City airports see a turn over of 30 percent every year. In other comparable airports around the country, that number could be as low as 6 percent.</p><p>“There’s no doubt that this new policy will greatly benefit the traveling public,” Port Authority Vice Chairman Jeffrey Lynford <a href="" target="_blank">said in a statement</a>. “Better wages and benefits will result in significantly reduced staff turnover, allowing for better trained and observant employees who can assist in our overall security efforts as well as in emergency situations. It also will improve workplace morale and productivity.”</p><p>The wage increase will happen in increments, beginning with the first rise on November 1.</p><p>Earlier this year, Los Angeles airports <a href="" target="_blank">raised the minimum wage for airport employees</a> to $18.99 per hour, excluding benefits.</p>
Categories: Travel

Disney Cruise Line Just Announced 2020 Sailings — Here's How to Book Your Dream Cruise

Sat, 09/29/2018 - 17:23
<p>Disney Cruise Line, one of the <a href="" target="_blank">World’s Best Cruise Lines</a>, is setting sail to new corners of the world in 2020 — and you won’t even have to leave the country to get on board.</p><p>For the very first time, <a href="" target="_blank">Disney Cruise Line</a> will sail out of New Orleans. Trips commencing and concluding in the Big Easy will visit the Bahamas or the western Caribbean, with some including a stop to Castaway Cay, the private island <a href="" target="_blank">Disney fans are obsessed with</a>.</p><p>These Louisiana sailings will be on the <em>Disney Wonder</em>, the only ship with a restaurant dedicated to The Princess and The Frog’s Tiana, who <a href="" target="_blank">calls New Orleans home</a>.</p><p>After a five-year hiatus, the highly rated cruise line will also return to Hawaii. Guests will visit the Big Island and beyond with stops at Hilo, Nawiliwili (located on the southeast side of Kauai), and Kahului on Maui. Itineraries are offered both directions between Vancouver and Honolulu, making for a convenient visit to Aulani, <a href="" target="_blank">Disney’s luxurious Hawaiian resort</a>, before or after setting sail.</p><p>The changes come in anticipation of <a href="" target="_blank">Disney Cruise Line</a>’s three new vessels, the first of which arrives in 2021, followed by a second ship in 2022 and third in 2023.</p><p>Disney Cruise Line’s famed Bahamian cruises, which include coveted Castaway Cay stops, will continue to be offered out of multiple ports including Port Canaveral, located near Walt Disney World, with select sailings also visiting Puerto Rico for a limited time.</p><p>Booking for 2020 sailings will <a href="" target="_blank">open on October 4, 2018</a>, and interested vacationers will want to move quick, as reservations can fill up rapidly.</p>
Categories: Travel

A Seal Slapped a Kayaker With an Octopus in New Zealand (Video)

Sat, 09/29/2018 - 17:05
<p>Who knows what Kyle Mulinder was doing moments before this video was taken, but rest assured: it must have been pretty bad.</p><p>Whatever he was doing was so appalling, a nearby seal grabbed the closest weapon it could find (in this case, an octopus) and slapped the kayaker across the face with it.</p><p>Mulinder was kayaking off the coast of Kaikoura on <a href="" target="_blank">New Zealand</a>’s South Island over the weekend when the seal decided it was time to put an end to his shenanigans with a good, old-fashioned octopus slap.</p><p>“We were just sitting out in the middle of the ocean and then this huge male seal appeared with an octopus and he was thrashing him about for ages,” <a href="" target="_blank">Mulinder told Yahoo7 News in Australia</a>.</p><p>According to Mulinder, the seal had actually picked a fight with the octopus before the kayakers’ arrival. They were tussling for awhile between the group of kayaks. At one point, the seal decided to take advantage of his surroundings and thrash Mulinder with the octopus itself, perhaps taking care of two problems at once.</p><p>“It was weird because it happened so fast but I could feel all the hard parts of the octopus on my face like 'dum dum dum',” Mulinder said.</p><p>But the seal did not manage to vanquish either Mulinder or the octopus. After the moment of impact, the octopus latched onto the side of Mulinder’s kayak until the seal went away. The octopus clung there for safety until Mulinder’s kayaking instructor managed to pry it away.</p><p>Or it’s entirely possible that the octopus was just on drugs. According to a recent study, <a href="" target="_blank">octopi become more cuddly after they’re given ecstasy</a>. (Yes, scientists have indeed been giving MDMA to octopi.)</p>
Categories: Travel

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle Are Finally Going to Sussex

Sat, 09/29/2018 - 16:42
<p>Prince Harry and Meghan Markle are a true jet-setting couple. Since their wedding in May, the pair has been <a href="" target="_blank">spotted in Amsterdam</a>, went on a <a href="" target="_blank">honeymoon</a> somewhere in Africa, and are planning a trip this October to <a href="" target="_blank">Australia, New Zealand, Fiji, and the Kingdom of Tonga</a>. But before they go they have one more stop to make, and it’s a fairly obvious one.</p><p>Yes, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex are finally going to Sussex.</p><p>On October 3, the royal couple will make the two-hour pilgrimage from London to their namesake town, according to Kensington Palace. There, the couple will visit the historic Sussex Declaration and open the University of Chichester in West Sussex. Next, Harry and Meghan will head to East Sussex and visit the Royal Pavilion, which was first built in the 1780s and used by George IV. There, they will meet with the Survivors Network of Britain, before wrapping up the trip with a visit to the Peacehaven Youth Centre.</p><p>For those of you who somehow missed the news during Meghan and Harry’s wedding day, Queen Elizabeth, Harry’s grandmother, <a href="" target="_blank">bestowed the titles upon them as a gift</a>, just as she bestowed the title of Duke and Duchess of Cambridge on Prince William and Kate Middleton on their wedding day.</p><p>“The Queen has today been pleased to confer a Dukedom on Prince Henry of Wales. His titles will be Duke of Sussex, Earl of Dumbarton and Baron Kilkeel,” the Palace said in a statement in May. “Prince Harry thus becomes His Royal Highness The Duke of Sussex, and Ms. Meghan Markle on marriage will become Her Royal Highness The Duchess of Sussex.”</p><p>And it’s good these two are filling the role as there hasn't been a Duke and Duchess of Sussex since 1843. Hopefully, they can live up to their title hype.</p>
Categories: Travel

LAX Will Let You Bring Marijuana in Your Carry-on

Sat, 09/29/2018 - 16:36
<p>A new memo from Los Angeles International Airport is clarifying the rules on bringing marijuana through the airport.</p><p>“In accordance with Proposition 64, the Los Angeles Airport Police Department will allow passengers to travel through LAX with up to 28.5 grams of marijuana and 8 grams of concentrated marijuana,” <a href="" target="_blank">according to the airport’s website</a>. “However, passengers should be aware that marijuana laws vary state by state and they are encouraged to check the laws of the states in which they plan to travel.”</p><p>To be clear: LAX is not saying you can fly pot back to your state where it’s illegal to possess. But if you’re flying from Los Angeles to Colorado (or another state where recreational marijuana possession is legal), you might be okay.</p><p>If you’re planning on traveling with marijuana, get to the airport early as the process to get through security may not be seamless. There's a tricky loophole those in possession of marijuana should be aware of. Carrying marijuana is still a federal crime, and Transportation Security Administration (TSA) agents are federal employees. If they find pot in your carry-on, you could be stopped for further search and questioning. If security agents find marijuana, they will “turn you over to local authorities,” a TSA spokesperson <a href="" target="_blank">told CBS Los Angeles</a>.</p><p>But local police at the <a href="" target="_blank">Los Angeles</a> airport will let you go.</p><p>“Based on our policy, we’re not going to arrest you or confiscate marijuana,” a spokesperson for the Los Angeles Airport Police, Alicia Hernandez, <a href="" target="_blank">told the <em>Sacramento Bee</em></a>.</p><p>The policy has been in place since January, when California’s new marijuana rules went into effect.</p><p>If you’re traveling with marijuana through LAX, study up on the laws in your origin and destination airport before packing your bags.</p>
Categories: Travel

This Cafe in Korea Will Make You Feel Like You Just Walked Into a Comic Book

Sat, 09/29/2018 - 12:30
<p>For those who have ever watched a <a href="" target="_blank">cartoon</a> and wondered what it would be like to step into that world, a recently-opened cafe in South Korea now allows for just that.</p><p>The tiny <a href="" target="_blank">Cafe Yeonnam-dong 239-20</a> (called YND239-20 in English), is located in an unassuming brick building in Mapu-gu in <a href="" target="_blank">Seoul</a>, South Korea.</p><p>Visitors can spot the cafe by its white gate and a tiny cutout home that sits in front of it, giving a slight taste of what they’ll find once inside.</p><p>The entire shop is outfitted in black and white designs that have been carefully crafted to make customers feel as though they’ve just stepped into a drawing, with everything from the tables to the chairs outlined in black and white to maintain the theme.</p><p>The cafe's owners created the quirky space to give customers this exact sense of walking into a cartoon and incite a sense of nostalgia, representatives from the cafe told <em>Travel + Leisure</em>. </p><p>The idea has worked, drawing in customers from around the world who come to photograph its one-of-a-kind design.</p><p>Named after its address, the space opened in South Korea a year-and-a-half ago and includes just eight seats inside and nine seats in its outdoor balcony area.</p><p>Open throughout the week (except for Mondays) from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m., the cafe serves specialty drinks and small bites in its cozy space. </p><p><strong>Related: <a href="" target="_blank">Watch: You Can Play With Raccoons While Enjoying a Latte at This Cafe in Seoul</a></strong></p><p>Even its cups are created with the same black and white design to look like someone drew them right on the spot, with the cafe’s design extended into its bathroom as well.</p><p>Selections include everything from sandwiches and yogurt fruit smoothies to green tea lattes, chocolate smoothies topped with chocolate coins, and wild strawberry lemonade.</p><p>The design of the cafe has been so successful since its opening that its owners are now looking to open similar franchises in other countries down the line. </p><p>Visitors will want to note that the space does not accept reservations and can get crowded, so it may take a few minutes to snap that perfect picture once inside. </p>
Categories: Travel

Airport Workers Around the World Will Protest October 2 — Here’s Why

Sat, 09/29/2018 - 12:00
<p>On October 2, airport workers all over the world will take part in demonstrations for better working conditions, better pay and union rights.</p><p>According to the <a href="" target="_blank">Service Employees International Union</a> (SEIU), workers from more than 40 airports in 13 countries, which control a staggering 36% of world air travel where nearly 4 million people pass through each day, will be participating. Airports like LAX, JFK, Charles De Gaulle and Flughafen are expected to have workers involved in the protests.</p><p>Airport workers, such as janitors, baggage handlers, wheelchair attendants and security officers are heavily relied upon by their employers and by travelers every single day, but are often given low wages and unsafe work environments.</p><p>According to the SEIU, nearly half of all airport workers in the U.S. are paid so little that they have to skip meals or go hungry and nearly 30% are forced to rely on public assistance for basic needs like food, housing, and healthcare. And the issue is the same, or worse, around the world. In Thailand, some airport workers are paid just $10 a day, which is half of the living wage for that country. Meanwhile, the airline industry reports bigger profits, including an expected $38.4 billion this year, that often do not go towards paying staff better wages or benefits.</p><p>“I work hard cleaning United Airlines’ planes, but I'm paid so little that I have to live with my grandmother,” said Alicia Cooper, Lead Cabin Cleaner at Newark Liberty International Airport in a press release by the SEIU. “My dreams are on hold. I want to go to college, get my own apartment, and buy a car so I don't have to take two buses to get to work. On these wages, it's not possible right now.”</p><p>According to <em><a href="" target="_blank">The American Prospect</a></em>, workers’ wages have dwindled over the last couple of decades since 9/11. Between 2002 and 2012, the average pay for baggage handlers fell from $19 an hour to $10.60, the magazine reported.</p><p>One (anonymous) customer service worker told <em>The American Prospect</em> that before 9/11, she had been receiving benefits from her employer. After the attacks, the airline switched contractors—“[and] with this one, we don’t have anything but a paycheck.”</p><p>In addition, the SEIU is raising the issue that this is not only an economic problem, but also a civil one, focusing on United Airlines in particular.</p><p>“Subcontracted workers are paid a fraction of what most direct employees are paid. And while nearly 100% of United’s non-managerial employees are represented by a union, a majority of its contracted workers — who are mostly people of color and immigrants — do not have those same rights and benefits,” the SEIU wrote in a press release.</p><p>Mary Kay Henry, President of the SEIU, hopes these demonstrations will improve the quality of life for all airport employees. “In city after city all across the country, airport workers have won raises — doubling their income in some cities — and the right to form a union. They've done it by coming together to elect leaders who work for all of us, no matter our skin color or zip code, and calling on those elected officials to hold greedy corporations accountable. We won't stop until all working people — white, black and brown — can join together in unions for the power in numbers to win higher wages, affordable healthcare and a better life for their families.”</p>
Categories: Travel

Hallmark Has 36 New Christmas Movies This Year — Here’s When You Can Watch Them

Sat, 09/29/2018 - 11:16
<p>The leaves have yet to start fluttering to the ground. Your puffiest winter coat is still nestled deep in storage. And those 11 pipers aren’t even <em>thinking</em> about piping yet. But it’s already time to start plotting how you will possibly manage to watch all of Hallmark’s 2018 holiday movie offerings. It’s a(nother) record-breaking year for Hallmark Channel and Hallmark Movies &amp; Mysteries — together the two networks will air 36 sugar-crusted, gooey-middled, it-all-somehow-magically-works-out-in-the-end TV movies, with the first one debuting on… Oct. 27. (Eat it, Halloween!) Don’t worry, there are plenty of familiar Hallmark holiday faces on the holiday horizon. (Candace Cameron Bure! Lacey Chabert! Lori Loughlin! Danica McKellar! Daniel Lissing!) And make room on the sled for some new ones. (Chad Michael Murray! LeAnn Rimes! Christina Milian!) Here, EW exclusively brings you the news on which movies are being stuffed into your stocking — and when you can watch them.</p><h2>"Christmas at Pemberley Manor"<em> </em>(Oct. 27 on Hallmark Channel) </h2><p><strong>STARS:</strong> Jessica Lowndes, Michael Rady</p><p><strong>CONTAINS:</strong> Attractive billionaire, estate in jeopardy</p><p><strong>OFFICIAL SYNOPSIS:</strong> “As Christmas approaches, Elizabeth Bennett (Lowndes), a New York event planner, is sent to a quaint, small town to organize their holiday festival. When she arrives, she finds William Darcy (Rady), a high-profile billionaire lacking in holiday spirit, in the process of selling the charming estate she hoped to use as a venue. Determined to make her event a success, Elizabeth persuades the reluctant Darcy to let her hold the festival on the historical estate once known for its holiday cheer. When they wind up working together to arrange the festivities, the unlikely pair begins falling for each other. But when complications arise and the festival is unexpectedly shut down, the couple parts ways and Darcy moves forward with his plans to sell the estate. On the night before Christmas, a wistful Elizabeth hopes for a Christmas miracle to revive the festival, save the estate, and rekindle her holiday romance.”</p><h2>"Christmas Joy"<em> </em>(Nov. 3 on Hallmark Channel)</h2><p><strong>STARS:</strong> Danielle Panabaker, Matt Long</p><p><strong>CONTAINS:</strong> Homecoming, reignition of old flames, intense baking competition </p><p><strong>OFFICIAL SYNOPSIS:</strong> “Joy Holbrook (Panabaker) is a keenly intelligent market researcher with an eye on her company’s top account and garnering a sweet promotion just in time for the holidays. Just as Joy is capturing the attention of the account’s CEO, she receives a call from her Aunt Ruby’s best friend back home in Crystal Falls. Ruby has broken her ankle and needs surgery. Though the timing couldn’t be worse, Joy immediately comes to her aunt’s bedside only to be reunited with former crush, now hospital administrator, Ben Andrew (Long), son of Ruby’s best friend Shirley. Joy also must reconcile Ruby’s stubborn determination to be in control of everything, including the town’s legendary baking competition known as the Cookie Crawl. To keep Ruby focused on healing, Joy volunteers to take Ruby’s place much to the amusement of Ben who knows Joy has no idea of the Herculean task before her. Though Joy initially refuses Ben’s attempts to ‘co-captain,’ she begins to soften and let him in, all the while remembering that there truly is no place like home. Based on the best-selling novel by Nancy Naigle.”</p><h2>"Road to Christmas" (Nov. 4, Hallmark Channel)</h2><p><strong>STARS:</strong> Jessy Schram, Chad Michael Murray, Teryl Rothery</p><p><strong>CONTAINS:</strong> Secret plan, family reunion, Vermont</p><p><strong>OFFICIAL SYNOPSIS:</strong> “Los Angeles television producer Maggie Baker (Schram) unwittingly falls for Danny Wise (Murray), the son and former producer of his mother’s (Rothery) popular annual Christmas special <em>Julia Wise Lifestyle</em>. When Maggie’s secret plan to reunite Danny and his two brothers with Julia during the live broadcast in Vermont goes awry, Maggie is reminded that above all, it is the love for family and friends that makes the merriest of Christmas.”</p><h2>"Marrying Father Christmas" (Nov. 4, Hallmark Movies &amp; Mysteries)</h2><p><strong>STARS:</strong> Erin Krakow, Niall Matter, Wendie Malick</p><p><strong>CONTAINS:</strong> Search for biological father, mysterious visitor, wedding drama</p><p><strong>OFFICIAL SYNOPSIS:</strong> “When Miranda Chester (Krakow) sets off to find information on her biological father two Christmases ago, she never imagined her investigation would lead her to both the love of her life, Ian McAndrick (Matter), and the family she had always longed for, including Margaret Whitcomb (Malick) and step-brother Peter Whitcomb (Jim Thorburn). After her romantic engagement last Christmas, Miranda prepares for a Christmas wedding surrounded by this new family. While Miranda finalizes the details of her big day, Margaret forges a surprising romance with a friend from the past. Miranda’s wedding plans are quickly complicated when a mysterious visitor who claims to have ties to her late parents reaches out to her just days before her wedding. As Miranda’s wedding approaches, she must decide if she wants to spend one of the most momentous days of her life with this new family connection, and must carefully navigate the first steps into the next chapter of her life with Ian.”</p><h2>"It’s Christmas, Eve" (Nov. 10, Hallmark Channel)</h2><p><b>STARS:</b> LeAnn Rimes, Tyler Hines</p><p><b>CONTAINS:</b> Multiple Rimes performances, school budget trims, internet crowdfunding</p><p><b>OFFICIAL SYNOPSIS:</b> “As interim school superintendent, Eve (Rimes) trims budgets and now she’s in her hometown where it’s personal. Her handsome neighbor Liam (Hines) is a music teacher and Eve feels his program must be cut. But luckily her friend is married to an IT guy, who’s created a website for donations directly to save the arts program. Launched during the tree-lighting ceremony where Liam’s students will perform, the website could provide the Christmas miracle the town needs. Already the universe is cooperating. Eve is back home and she, Liam, and his daughter look like they might be celebrating many a future Christmas.”</p><h2>"Christmas in Love" (Nov. 11, Hallmark Channel)</h2><p><strong>STARS:</strong> Brooke D’Orsay, Daniel Lissing, Mary-Margaret Humes</p><p><strong>CONTAINS:</strong> Quaint bakery, threat of layoffs and automation</p><p><strong>OFFICIAL SYNOPSIS:</strong> “Ellie Hartman (D’Orsay) is an aspiring crafter working in her small town’s bakery making famous Christmas Kringles. When the new, big-city CEO Nick Carlingson (Lissing) visits the bakery, he arrives filled with modernization ideas destined to lay off many employees. During his visit, Ellie is to teach Nick how to make a Kringle, and determined to show him it’s the <em>people</em> who make the business a success, not machines. Nick meets more of the employees and townspeople, visits the food bank and begins to see all the kindness that is shared, and he begins to soften — though not convinced automation isn’t better. Struggling with chasing her own entrepreneurial dreams, Ellie begins to fall for Nick but not before feeling betrayed when she inadvertently sees Nick’s laptop filled with automation plans. When Nick finally tells the employees his future ideas for the company, Ellie must decide if she should trust him, but more importantly, whether to take a leap of faith in making her own dreams come true.”</p><h2>"A Soldier’s Christmas" (Nov. 11, Hallmark Movies &amp; Mysteries)</h2><p><strong>STARS: </strong>Eloise Mumford, Sean Faris</p><p><strong>CONTAINS:</strong> Small-town stranding, possible reunion with a canine, likely romance between decorated war vet and judge</p><p><strong>OFFICIAL SYNOPSIS:</strong> “Captain Grace Garland (Mumford), a decorated U.S. veteran, returns home after two tours of Search and Rescue in Afghanistan. After being separated from her beloved K9 partner, Grace must rediscover the magic of Christmas. When she finds herself stranded in the town of River’s Crossing a couple weeks before Christmas, the local judge, Joe Peterson (Faris), offers her a place to stay on his property and takes it upon himself to show Grace everything she has been missing; Christmas, family, community, and love.”</p><h2>"Christmas at Graceland" (Nov. 17, Hallmark Channel)</h2><p><strong>STARS:</strong> Kellie Pickler, Wes Brown</p><p><strong>CONTAINS:</strong> Reignition of old flames, bank acquisition, Memphis blues</p><p><strong>OFFICIAL SYNOPSIS:</strong> “Laurel (Pickler), a Chicago-based business executive travels to Memphis to secure one of the city’s oldest family-owned banks. While in Memphis, Laurel reunites with old flame Clay (Brown), a local music promoter with loftier aspirations. Though Laurel tries to keep her eye on the prize of the business acquisition, Clay is very persuasive reminding her of the days when they were a performing duo on the brink of stardom. Now Laurel’s focus turns to the home of the Blues and dreams of making music again.”</p><h2>"A Godwink Christmas" (Nov. 17, Hallmark Movies &amp; Mysteries)</h2><p><strong>STARS:</strong> Kimberley Sustad, Paul Campbell, Kathie Lee Gifford</p><p><strong>CONTAINS:</strong> Multiple trips to Nantucket, an engagement that doesn’t feel right, a Hoda-less Kathie Lee Gifford </p><p><strong>OFFICIAL SYNOPSIS:</strong> “As Christmas approaches, Paula (Sustad), a St. Louis antique appraiser, reluctantly accepts a marriage proposal from her boyfriend, Daniel (Giles Panton, <em>Chesapeake Shores</em>), a career-focused attorney. When her Aunt Jane (Gifford) senses she has mixed emotions over the engagement, she invites Paula to her Nantucket home. Upon her arrival, Paula plans a trip to the nearby island of Martha’s Vineyard where she meets Gery (Campbell), a charming inn owner. When bad weather prevents her from departing, Paula winds up staying at Gery’s inn and enjoying local holiday festivities alongside him. They begin to have feelings for each other but when the weather clears up, they part ways and Paula returns to Nantucket. Sensing she’s fallen for Gery, Aunt Jane shares with Paula her belief that their meeting was God’s way of “winking” at her to help determine which direction her life should take. When Daniel surprises her by spontaneously arriving in Nantucket, Paula decides to move forward with their marriage plans. But back in St. Louis, Daniel soon returns to his all-business ways and a fed-up Paula finally realizes they’re not compatible. When Jane invites her back to Nantucket for Christmas, Paula accepts, unaware that Jane has devised a plan to bring her and Gery together. From author, SQuire Rushnell of the <em>God Winks</em> book series.”</p><h2>"Mingle All the Way" (Nov. 18, Hallmark Channel)</h2><p><strong>STARS:</strong> Jen Lilley, Brant Daugherty, Lindsay Wagner</p><p><strong>CONTAINS:</strong> Dating app, super-busy professionals, unexpected romance </p><p><strong>OFFICIAL SYNOPSIS:</strong> “<em>Mingle All the Way</em> is a new networking app designed to pair busy professionals together for upcoming events, without long-term romance. Molly (Lilley), founder of the app, is determined to prove to her family that it is a success. Therefore, she joins the app, and meets another busy professional, Jeff (Daugherty). When Molly and Jeff are matched, they are both horrified to realize they’ve already had not one, but two disastrous previous encounters. Nevertheless, they agree to stay matched for all their respective upcoming holiday engagements. As the pair gets closer, perhaps their business arrangement might turn into something more this holiday season.”</p><h2>"Return to Christmas Creek" (Nov. 18, Hallmark Movies &amp; Mysteries)</h2><p><strong>STARS: </strong>Tori Anderson, Stephen Huszar, Steven Weber, Kari Matchett</p><p><strong>CONTAINS:</strong> Holiday homecoming, romance with childhood friend, family feud, unconventional toy deliveries</p><p><strong>OFFICIAL SYNOPSIS:</strong> “As Christmas approaches, Amelia Hughes (Anderson), a career-focused Chicago app developer lacking in holiday spirit, returns to her small hometown of Christmas Creek to rediscover the meaning of Christmas. There, she reunites with her childhood best friend Mike (Huszar) and her estranged uncle Harry (Weber), whose mysterious rift with Amelia’s father divided her family during the holiday season when she was a child. As she engages in local holiday festivities — and begins falling for Mike — Amelia finds herself feeling the Christmas spirit and looking forward to Harry’s Christmas Eve tradition of delivering toys to needy children in his small, private airplane. Meanwhile, Harry begins repairing his damaged relationship with his ex-girlfriend Pamela (Kari Matchett). But as she helps prep Harry’s airplane for the toy delivery, a shocked Amelia learns her parents have unexpectedly shown up in town for the holiday and is crushed when her father and Harry resume their longstanding feud. On Christmas Eve, disappointed by her family’s continued fighting, Amelia prepares to return to Chicago and leave behind Christmas Creek and her budding romance with Mike along with it. But just as she’s about to leave, she feels a burst of inspiration that just might turn things around and help her finally restore family peace and embrace romance as love prepares to take flight for Christmas.”</p><h2>"Christmas on Honeysuckle Lane" (Nov. 19, Hallmark Movies &amp; Mysteries)</h2><p><strong>STARS:</strong> Alicia Witt, Colin Ferguson</p><p><strong>CONTAINS:</strong> Sibling reunion, bittersweet sifting through dead parents’ belongings</p><p><strong>OFFICIAL SYNOPSIS:</strong> “Emma (Witt) returns home to celebrate Christmas for the last time with her siblings in the house they grew up in. After their parents’ recent passing, the siblings reluctantly agree to sell the family home on Honeysuckle Lane, leaving Emma in charge of its belongings. While Emma’s mother’s collection is being appraised, they find a hidden surprise that takes them on a journey to discover the power of love and family during the holidays. Based on the book by Mary Elizabeth McDonough.”</p><h2>"Hope at Christmas" (Nov. 20, Hallmark Movies &amp; Mysteries)</h2><p><strong>STARS</strong>: Ryan Paevey, Scottie Thompson</p><p><strong>CONTAINS:</strong> Inheritance, bookstore, town Santa</p><p><strong>OFFICIAL SYNOPSIS:</strong> “Sydney Ragsdale (Thompson), recently divorced, decides to spend Christmas in a house she inherited with her young daughter. As Sydney begins to spend more time at the local bookstore, she meets a teacher, Mac (Paevey), who also fills in for the town Santa. Mac tries to make Christmas wishes come true, and this year Sydney is at the top of his ‘nice’ list. As a new opportunity with the bookstore unfolds, Mac helps Sydney open herself up to life, love, and believing in the spirit of Christmas again.”</p><h2>"Christmas at the Palace" (Nov. 21, Hallmark Channel)</h2><p><strong>STARS: </strong>Merritt Patterson, Brittany Bristow</p><p><strong>CONTAINS:</strong> Lots of ice skating, a king who’s skating on thin ice by falling for his daughter’s instructor</p><p><strong>OFFICIAL SYNOPSIS:</strong> “Katie, a former professional ice skater (Patterson), is hired by the king of San Senova, Alexander, to help his daughter in a Christmas ice skating performance. As Katie spends time in the castle and with the king, she and Alex begin to develop feelings for each other and ultimately fall in love. But will the tradition-loving people of San Senova allow their king to make a foreigner their queen?”</p><h2>"Christmas at Grand Valley" (Nov. 22, Hallmark Channel)</h2><p><strong>STARS: </strong>Danica McKellar, Brennan Elliott</p><p><strong>CONTAINS:</strong> Holiday homecoming, artist rediscovering her passion in more ways than one </p><p><strong>OFFICIAL SYNOPSIS:</strong> “Burned out from the hubbub of the Chicago gallery world, artist Kelly (McKellar) returns home to the picturesque Grand Valley just in time for Christmas. Maybe her favorite town’s shining season will reinvigorate her love of art and guide her down her next path. Leo (Elliott), businessman and all-star dad to his children, struggles to balance his time this holiday season. When he is assigned to review a hotel in Grand Valley for its value, he sees this as the perfect opportunity for a Christmas family vacation. It isn’t long until Kelly and Leo’s worlds collide. As Kelly re-experiences her favorite Grand Valley traditions with Leo and his children, she begins to find her way back to her passion for art.”</p><h2>"Pride, Prejudice, and Mistletoe" (Nov. 23, Hallmark Channel)</h2><p><strong>STARS: </strong>Lacey Chabert, Brendan Penny</p><p><strong>CONTAINS:</strong> Holiday homecoming, reconciliation with parent, old rivalry blossoming into romance</p><p><strong>OFFICIAL SYNOPSIS:</strong> “Darcy (Chabert) has always worked hard to prove herself and be successful on her own terms, even choosing to start her own company, rather than work with her father. Returning to her hometown for Christmas, Darcy reconnects with an old rival, restaurant owner Luke (Penny), and they are forced to plan a charity event together. As Darcy spends time with her family and Luke, she starts to realize what matters most in life and sets out to mend her relationship with her father, and possibly fall in love. Based on the book of the same title by Melissa de la Cruz.”</p><h2>"Christmas Everlasting" (Nov. 24, Hallmark Channel — Hallmark Hall of Fame)</h2><p><strong>STARS:</strong> Tatyana Ali, Dondre T. Whitfield, Patti LaBelle, Dennis Haysbert</p><p><strong>CONTAINS:</strong> Family funeral, surprise inheritance, reignition of old flames </p><p><strong>OFFICIAL SYNOPSIS:</strong> “Christmas is fast approaching and years of long workdays employed at New York’s top corporate law firm are about to pay off now that Lucy Toomey (Ali) will be made partner after the New Year. However, when Alice, her older sister with special needs, unexpectedly passes away, Lucy returns back to Nilson’s Bay, Wis., to attend the funeral and handle her estate. While Lucy dreads returning to her childhood home, she also feels real sorrow that she was too busy to take her sister’s last call. Once back in Nilson’s Bay, Lucy meets Peter (Whitfield), her old high school sweetheart and Alice’s former attorney, who informs her of the terms of Alice’s eccentric will that states in order for Lucy to inherit the family home, she must live there for 30 days through the holidays.”</p><h2>"Welcome to Christmas" (Nov. 25, Hallmark Movies &amp; Mysteries)</h2><p><strong>STARS:</strong> Jennifer Finnigan, Eric Mabius</p><p><strong>CONTAINS:</strong> Car accident, small-town charm in jeopardy</p><p><strong>OFFICIAL SYNOPSIS:</strong> “Resort developer Madison Lane (Finnigan) is tasked with finding a location for a new ski resort. While she’s prepared to recommend the resort be placed in Mountain Park, her boss tells her to take a trip to Christmas, Colo., to consider the location and the incentive package they’re offering. On her way into town to meet with the mayor, Madison has a minor fender-bender with the town’s welcome sign. Town Sheriff Gage McBride (Mabius) gives Madison a ride into town so she can attend the meeting while the car is towed and repaired. Little does Madison know that the town is on a mission to convince Madison that Christmas is the best place for the new ski resort. While stranded, Madison grows to love the community and the spirit of Christmas that runs throughout. Is a resort really the right move for Christmas? Or would the town be better off keeping its charm and traditions intact?”</p><h2>"A Shoe Addict’s Christmas" (Nov. 25, Hallmark Channel)</h2><p><strong>STARS: </strong>Candace Cameron Bure, Luke Macfarlane</p><p><strong>CONTAINS:</strong> Department-store stranding, guardian angel, department store, hot firefighter neighbor</p><p><strong>OFFICIAL SYNOPSIS:</strong> “As Christmas approaches, Noelle (Bure) is at a crossroads in her life when it seems that love, a connection with her father, and her dream career are out of reach. When she stays late at her job in a department store on a snowy Christmas Eve, she accidentally gets locked in after closing. She isn’t too concerned about the prospect of spending the night in the store… until a quirky woman appears out of nowhere in the shoe department and tells Noelle that she’s her guardian angel. Soon, Noelle finds herself revisiting Christmases past, present, and future as she must work with her new neighbor, a handsome, Christmas-loving firefighter, to plan the annual Christmas Charity Gala. Will visiting the holidays of yesterday and tomorrow help Noelle take new chances and discover the true spirit of Christmas? And in realizing that the only thing standing in her way of leading a fulfilling life is herself, will the love she has longed for all her life be the best surprise gift of all?”</p><h2>"Christmas in Evergreen: Letters to Santa" (Dec. 1, Hallmark Channel)</h2><p><strong>STARS:</strong> Jill Wagner, Mark Deklin, Holly Robinson-Peete, Barbara Niven, Andrew Francis, Ashley Williams</p><p><strong>CONTAINS:</strong> Save-the-general-store campaign, undelivered letter to Santa, hot contractor</p><p><strong>OFFICIAL SYNOPSIS:</strong> “When Lisa (Wagner) takes a last-minute Christmas trip to her hometown of Evergreen, she finds that the historic general store has been closed. Using her skills as a professional retail designer, Lisa decides to keep local tradition alive and help the good people of Evergreen bring the store back to life. As Lisa charms a local contractor named Kevin (Deklin) into working with her, the pair find themselves facing one surprise after another as they restore the store to its former glory. When the staff at the Kringle Kitchen temporarily accept the store’s beloved ‘Mailbox to Santa’ for safekeeping, the townspeople find and rally around a mysterious 25-year-old letter that never made it to the North Pole. As old traditions are made new again, Lisa finds herself falling for Kevin, the traditions, and the town of Evergreen.”</p><h2>"A Majestic Christmas" (Dec. 2, Hallmark Channel)</h2><p><strong>STARS:</strong> Jerrika Hinton, Christian Vincent</p><p><strong>CONTAINS:</strong> Holiday homecoming, job-promotion stress, a plan to save the town’s playhouse</p><p><strong>OFFICIAL SYNOPSIS:</strong> “Christmas in the charming town of Briar Falls will be bittersweet this year when architect Nell (Hinton) goes back to her hometown having been given the job of turning the historic Majestic Playhouse into a modern multiplex, much to the town’s objections. The Playhouse has been home to their annual Christmas tableaux, which will now have to end after a long and historic tradition to the town. This job is Nell’s first promotion, and one she wishes she hadn’t been chosen for, especially when she meets the new owner of the theater, Connor (Vincent), whose vision and ideas clash with Nell’s. Since Connor hasn’t had much experience celebrating Christmas, Nell hopes that if she can give him a crash course in Christmas during the town’s Twelve Day Festival, that he might just change his mind about modernizing the Majestic.”</p><h2>"Northern Lights of Christmas" (Dec. 2, Hallmark Movies &amp; Mysteries)</h2><p><strong>STARS: </strong>Ashley Williams, Corey Sevier</p><p><strong>CONTAINS:</strong> Aspiring pilot, surprise inheritance, reindeer, handsome ranch hand</p><p><strong>OFFICIAL SYNOPSIS:</strong> “Zoey Hathaway (Williams) has been working towards her lifelong goal of being a pilot for years, but everything is thrown off-course when she unexpectedly inherits a reindeer farm, along with the dangerously handsome ranch hand Alec Wynn (Sevier). Now buried in taking care of reindeer and all the Christmas responsibilities, Zoey thinks life has delivered her a strange and cumbersome blow, and she isn’t sure about Alec, who has his own ideas how best to run things. Alec, who has never had many people have faith in him, opens up when Zoey invests trust in him, and the two find themselves falling for each other. Could they both find happiness in the most unlikely of circumstances right before Christmas?”</p><h2>"Homegrown Christmas" (Dec. 8, Hallmark Channel)</h2><p><strong>STARS: </strong>Lori Loughlin, Victor Webster</p><p><strong>CONTAINS:</strong> Holiday homecoming, reignition of old flames, Christmas dance</p><p><strong>OFFICIAL SYNOPSIS:</strong> “After stepping down as CEO of her dream job, Maddie (Loughlin) heads home for the holidays to gain perspective. She finds herself running into her old high school sweetheart Carter (Webster), and tensions quickly arise. When forced to put together a Christmas dance for the local high school, Carter and Maddie find themselves putting their differences aside and rediscover what made them fall in love all those years ago.”</p><h2>"Memories of Christmas" (Dec. 8, Hallmark Movies &amp; Mysteries)</h2><p><strong>STARS: </strong>Christina Milian, Mark Taylor</p><p><strong>CONTAINS:</strong> Inheritance, the pressure to carry on the traditions of a late mother, lots of house decorating</p><p><strong>OFFICIAL SYNOPSIS:</strong> “Noelle (Milian) was raised by the queen of Christmas. When she inherits her late mother’s house, she finds out that her mother had been hiring someone to decorate it — Dave (Taylor). The deal is off, but Dave convinces Noelle to let him carry on the tradition. As the display goes up, Noelle’s defenses start to come down. She embraces the town’s Christmas gala that was her mother’s legacy, finds unexpected love, and develops a joy for the holidays that she never thought possible.”</p><h2>"Once Upon a Christmas Miracle" (Dec. 9, Hallmark Movies &amp; Mysteries)</h2><p><strong>STARS:</strong> To be announced</p><p><strong>CONTAINS:</strong> One organ transplant, not one but three Christmases</p><p><strong>OFFICIAL SYNOPSIS:</strong> “Told she would have less than a few months to live without a liver transplant, Heather Krueger’s time was running out when a kind stranger, Chris Dempsey, heard of her plight and discovered he was a perfect match. The two met and before long a friendship developed into romance. The movie follows Heather and Chris’ journey over three Christmases as his selfless gesture leads to a Christmas miracle for everyone involved. Based on a true story.”</p><h2>"Christmas Wonderland" (Dec. 9, Hallmark Channel)</h2><p><strong>STARS:</strong> Emily Osment</p><p><strong>CONTAINS:</strong> Holiday homecoming, reiginition of old flames, artist rediscovering her passion in more ways than one, Christmas dance</p><p><strong>OFFICIAL SYNOPSIS:</strong> “Heidi (Osment), who initially left her small town of Pleasant Valley with the dream of one day becoming a successful painter, has put her own art on hold to excel as an art gallery curator. Now, a week before the gallery’s big Christmas party, she must return home to watch her niece and nephew. She comes face to face with her high school love, Chris, now a teacher, who is in over his head after he must find a new last-minute location for the Christmas dance. Heidi offers to help him and together they discover a beautiful place for the dance, perfectly capturing the Christmas spirit, called Wonderland Farms. The more time Heidi spends in Pleasant Valley decorating for the Christmas SnowBall, the more she finds herself inspired to start painting again. With Christmas fast approaching, Heidi soon becomes torn between the life she built in the city and the life she is surprisingly charmed by back in Pleasant Valley, embracing her true passion.”</p><h2>"A Gingerbread Romance" (Dec. 15, Hallmark Channel)</h2><p><strong>STARS: </strong>Tia Mowry-Hardrict, Duane Henry</p><p><strong>CONTAINS:</strong> Gingerbread house contest, single-dad baker</p><p><strong>OFFICIAL SYNOPSIS:</strong> “With Christmas just weeks away, the architecture firm Taylor works for enters her in a contest in which the teams will design and build life-sized gingerbread houses. After the contest, Taylor will likely be getting a promotion to a position in another city. The firm teams her up with Isabelle, a renowned French pastry chef with whom Taylor instantly locks horns. When Isabelle backs out, Taylor stumbles into a local bakery and meets Adam, a baker and single dad. In an act of desperation, Taylor convinces Adam to partner with her for the contest, arguing that winning would give the bakery and his designs much-needed exposure. For years Taylor has been resistant to call anywhere ‘home’ for fear it will only be temporary. But the time she spends with Adam and his daughter in their cozy home, decorating for the holidays and exploring the town at Christmas, fills her with a longing for a place to call home.”</p><h2>"Time for Me to Come Home for Christmas" (Dec. 15, Hallmark Movies &amp; Mysteries)</h2><p><strong>STARS:</strong> To be announced</p><p><strong>CONTAINS:</strong> Canceled flight due to snowstorm, alternate forms of transit, travel companions ultimately bonding over their professional struggles related to their dead parents</p><p><strong>OFFICIAL SYNOPSIS:</strong> “Based on the song by Blake Shelton and the book by Dorothy Shakleford and Travis Thrasher. It’s the last Friday before Christmas in New York City and a massive storm is brewing. Small-town business woman Cara Hill is meeting with her banker while country music star Heath Sawyer is playing Madison Square Garden. When the flight to Tulsa they’re both booked on is canceled, this unlikely pair of strangers winds up traveling together. Each has a secret — Heath hasn’t written a song since his father died, and Cara’s mother recently passed and her family’s jam business is failing. Will Christmas provide a miracle — and a chance at love? <em>Time for Me to Come Home for Christmas</em> is a touching story about finding a way home after a loss — to your family and to your own true self.”</p><h2>"Reunited at Christmas" (Dec. 16, Hallmark Movies &amp; Mysteries)</h2><p><strong>STARS:</strong> Nikki Deloach, Mike Faiola</p><p><strong>CONTAINS:</strong> Writer’s block, holiday homecoming, wise deceased grandmother</p><p><strong>OFFICIAL SYNOPSIS:</strong> “Frazzled and struggling with writer’s block, novelist Samantha (Deloach), along with her boyfriend, heads home to her late grandmother’s home to spend Christmas. While at home with family, her grandmother’s wise words reveal the true meaning of Christmas with Samantha at a time when she most needs encouragement.”</p><h2>"Entertaining Christmas" (Dec. 16, Hallmark Channel)</h2><p><strong>STARS:</strong> Jodie Sweetin</p><p><strong>CONTAINS:</strong> Talk of the family “brand,” journalist falling in love with his story, Vermont</p><p><strong>OFFICIAL SYNOPSIS:</strong> “Claire is a cookbook author, crafting expert, and television personality whose name is synonymous with perfection. As she contemplates retirement, her daughter Kara (Sweetin) is poised to become the new face of the Livingston brand. The only trouble is, Kara can’t cook. Or sew. Or do any of the signature things her mother is known for. When a young girl posts a video online requesting Claire help welcome her deployed father home for Christmas, Kara is sent in her place in an effort to prove herself a worthy successor to the board of directors and win the job. As Kara does her best to make a good impression, she gets more than she bargained for when the young girl’s uncle Joe turns out to be a reporter for the local paper, looking for his next story.”</p><h2>"Christmas Copy" (Dec. 22, Hallmark Channel)</h2><p><strong>STARS:</strong> To be announced</p><p><strong>OFFICIAL SYNOPSIS:</strong> To be announced</p><h2>"Small Town Christmas" (Dec. 22, Hallmark Movies &amp; Mysteries)</h2><p><strong>STARS:</strong> To be announced</p><p><strong>CONTAINS:</strong> Book tour, resolution of five-year-old ghosting </p><p><strong>OFFICIAL SYNOPSIS:</strong> “Author Nell Phillips’ first book has become a surprise best-seller of the Christmas season. Nell’s last stop on a nationwide book tour takes her to the town of Springdale, the hometown of Emmett Turner, a young man she met over five years ago while both were junior copy editors at a New York publishing company. Nell was hurt when Emmett stood her up for a dinner date and then disappeared from New York without any explanation. As Nell is quick to admit, Emmett’s colorful, nostalgic anecdotes about Springdale inspired her to write this book that is shaping her life and especially this holiday season.”</p><h2>"Christmas Made to Order" (Dec. 23, Hallmark Channel)</h2><p><strong>STARS:</strong> Alexa PenaVega</p><p><strong>CONTAINS:</strong> Family reunion, holiday coordinator falling for client</p><p><strong>OFFICIAL SYNOPSIS:</strong> “When architect and Christmas amateur Steven finds himself hosting his family for Christmas, he recruits holiday coordinator Gretchen (PenaVega) to bring holiday joy to his home. Gretchen’s expert Christmas spirit brings Steven’s family together, but neither expected it to bring them closer to each other. After a great opportunity presents itself to Gretchen, she and Steven must decide what’s really important in life.”</p><h2>"Christmas Bells are Ringing" (Dec. 23, Hallmark Movies &amp; Mysteries)</h2><p><strong>STARS:</strong> To be announced</p><p><strong>CONTAINS:</strong> Holiday homecoming, Christmas wedding, romantic reunion with childhood friend</p><p><strong>OFFICIAL SYNOPSIS:</strong> “Samantha, a freelance photographer, is returning to Cape Cod for the first time since the death of her mother years earlier. She’s going to celebrate her father’s Christmas Eve wedding to the lovely Helen but is anxious to revisit past memories. However, having never been to the Cape during winter, she finds that it is a whole new experience. On deadline for a big Christmas spread that could ignite her career, she enlists the help of her childhood friend, Mike, to show her around. In the time she spends in Cape Cod with her dad, Helen, and Mike, she finds meaning in her creative pursuits, falls in love, and realizes that Christmas is wherever your family is.”</p><h2>"When Calls the Heart Christmas" (Dec. 25, Hallmark Channel)</h2><p><strong>STARS:</strong> Erin Krakow, Lori Loughlin, Jack Wagner, Pascale Hutton, Kavan Smith, Paul Greene</p><p><strong>CONTAINS:</strong> Holiday stranding, plan to save orphange, baby on way</p><p><strong>OFFICIAL SYNOPSIS:</strong> “When a group of orphans become stranded in Hope Valley for Christmas, their caretakers — sisters who have a mysterious backstory — lead Bill (Wagner) to investigate the circumstances of their arrival. He discovers the sisters and their orphanage are in jeopardy, so Abigail (Loughlin) and the other residents rally to make it a Christmas to remember for the orphans. Elizabeth (Krakow), who is preparing for the birth of her child, organizes her students to engage in selfless gift-giving. That, along with a Christmas miracle, help bring wonder, hope, joy, and love to all this Christmas season.”</p><h2>"Focus on Love" (Dec. 29, Hallmark Channel)</h2><p><strong>STARS:</strong> Carlos PenaVega</p><p><strong>CONTAINS:</strong> Frantic party planning, unexpected romance, New Year’s Eve to remember</p><p><strong>OFFICIAL SYNOPSIS:</strong> “With only one week to prepare, Lisa Patterson and her family of party planners are given the biggest job in their company’s history: a New Year’s Eve party for tech entrepreneur Megan Clark. But when her brother breaks his leg and her parents head off on a planned vacation, Lisa must reluctantly enlist the help of her brother’s visiting college buddy, David Campos (PenaVega), to help her pull off the event which just so happens to fall on her favorite day of the year. But what Lisa didn’t plan on was falling in love in the process.”</p><h2>2017's Hallmark Christmas movies</h2><p>Want to relive last year’s adventures? <a href="" target="_blank">Click here</a> to see how that slate stacked up against this one.</p><p> </p><p> </p><p> </p><p> </p>
Categories: Travel

Snakes Are Boarding Planes All by Themselves — and Now They’re Trying to Get to Hawaii

Sat, 09/29/2018 - 11:00
<p>Samuel L. Jackson isn’t the only one who hates seeing <a href="" target="_blank">snakes on a plane</a>. Most of the time, these slithery reptiles end up <a href="" target="_blank">getting on</a> aircraft thanks to <a href="" target="_blank">human intervention</a>, but there’s one breed that seems to be getting airborne all on its own.</p><p>How comforting to hear.</p><p><a href="" target="_blank">According to scientists</a> at the University of Queensland, the brown tree snake hitchhiked to the island of Guam via airplane, resulting in it settling, breeding and consequently devastating the bird population there.</p><p>The snake’s travel patterns were published in a study in the <em><a href="" target="_blank">Journal of Molecular Evolution</a></em>, which investigated species that had a unique venom also found in the brown tree snake. The venom is relatively harmless to humans, but 100 times more toxic to birds. The study, while tracking the existence of the venom, concluded the “explosive” spread was due to the snake’s ability to stow away on World War II military planes in Australia.</p><p>“The snake hitchhiked on troop carriers from the Australian region and has since driven multiple native bird species into extinction, with only three species now found on the island,” said Associate Professor Bryan Fry from UQ’s School of Biological Sciences in a statement on the <a href="" target="_blank">University website</a>. “The snakes’ impact was so devastating, it now ranks among the worst pests of all time.”</p><p>The snakes were able to hitchhike by slithering up the plane's landing gear. It’s good to know they’re not exactly slithering through the airport and into the first class cabin. But it’s not fun to think about snakes being smart enough to just hop on any old plane just to find their next meal without our help.</p><p>“For the last 80 years or so, for the brown tree snake at least, this biological advantage has been aided by the introduction of air travel,” Dr. Fry added.</p><p>And it’s not just Guam that the snakes have infiltrated. They’re also attempting to hop over to Hawaii. </p><p>“They’re regularly intercepted in the Hawaii airports, so if these direct flights are allowed to continue, it’s only a matter of time until they get to Hawaii and wipe out the birds like they did on Guam,” said Dr. Fry.</p><p>Stopping the spread is no easy task. Dr. Fry told <a href="" target="_blank">Mashable</a> that one option would be to completely halt all air travel from Hawaii to Guam and vice versa, but obviously that is not a viable solution. Another option is to use dogs to detect the stowaways.</p><p>Either way, we'd rather the snakes just stay on the ground. </p>
Categories: Travel

New Flight Routes Coming This Fall and Next Year You'll Want to Book Now

Sat, 09/29/2018 - 10:46
<p>Domestic and international airlines announced a bucketload of new routes and services recently, making it easier, faster and, in some cases, cheaper to check more places off those bucket lists and explore new parts of the world.</p><h2>The New Year in Las Vegas</h2><p>Alaska Airlines and Delta Air Lines joined American Airlines in scheduling some ‘bonus’ flights to and from Las Vegas in January 2019. While aimed at attendees of <a href="" target="_blank">CES</a>, the giant consumer electronics show, the added flights offer extra opportunities to visit Sin City or to use Las Vegas as the jumping off point for a New Year's visit to one of the targeted cities.</p><p>For that week, <a href="" target="_blank">American</a> is adding flights to/from Tokyo’s Narita International Airport (NRT), <a href="" target="_blank">Alaska Airlines</a> is adding 40 additional flights from tech happy hubs including Seattle, San Francisco, Los Angeles, and San Jose and <a href="" target="_blank">Delta Air Lines</a> has a couple of extra flights to/from Shanghai.</p><h2>Chicago to New Zealand</h2><p><a href="" target="_blank">Air New Zealand</a> is gearing up for the November 30 launch of three weekly non-stops flights between Chicago O’Hare and Auckland using its new configuration Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner. Once on board, settle in: the flight out from Chicago will last more than 16 hours; the flight back will take about 15 hours.</p><h2>Boston to Honolulu</h2><p>On April 4, <a href="" target="_blank">Hawaiian Airlines</a> extends the aloha spirit to New England with the launch of five weekly nonstop flights between Boston Logan International Airport and Honolulu’s Daniel Inouye International Airport (HNL).</p><p><strong>Related:</strong> <a href="" target="_blank">The New Longest Domestic Flight in the U.S. Will Launch Next Year — and It'll Be 11+ Hours Long</a></p><p>Hawaiian will use an Airbus A330 for this 10-hour, 5,095-mile flight, which will become the longest regularly scheduled domestic flight in U.S. history. In honor of the airline’s upcoming 90th anniversary on November 11, the flight from Honolulu to Boston will be Flight HA90.</p><h2>Amsterdam, Naples and Prague With United</h2><p>On March 30, <a href="" target="_blank">United Airlines</a> begins daily, year-round service between San Francisco and Amsterdam Schiphol Airport.</p><p>The Chicago-based airline is also adding daily nonstop seasonal service (May 22 to October 4, 2019) between New York/Newark and Naples, Italy. While that flight operates it will be the only nonstop service between the U.S. and Naples.</p><p>For those thinking about visiting Prague, United is also adding daily nonstop seasonal service between New York/Newark and the Golden City June 6 through October 19.</p><h2>New Seasonal Flights for Summer</h2><p>American Airlines will kick off nine new routes for spring and summer, including daily, year-round service between Charlotte Douglas Int’l Airport (CLT) and Munich Airport, starting on March 30.</p><p>Seasonal summer services coming online include flights from DFW Airport to both Dublin (DUB) and Munich (MUC); between Chicago O’Hare and Athens International Airport (ATH) and between Phoenix Sky Harbor (PHX) and London Heathrow.</p><p>The City of Brotherly Love gets some love from American, with <a href=";LanguageId=1&amp;PressReleaseId=d0416775-9c18-405f-a864-3e291ff60828" target="_blank">seasonal service</a> from Philadelphia to Scotland’s Edinburgh Airport (EDI), Berlin-Tegel Airport (TXL), Bologna Guglielmo Marconi Airport (BLQ) in Italy and Croatia’s Dubrovnik Airport (DBV).</p><h2>New Routes in the U.S.</h2><p>On March 7, <a href="" target="_blank">Alaska Airlines</a> will begin offering a daily nonstop daily flights between Seattle and Columbus, Ohio, the largest city in the Buckeye State and one of 20 cities still in the running for Amazon’s so-called ‘HQ2’ second headquarters.</p><p>And in August 2019, <a href="" target="_blank">Delta Air Lines</a> is scheduled to start flying between Detroit and Worcester Regional Airport (ORH), about 50 miles west of Boston. The long underutilized central Massachusetts airport is having a bit of a comeback: JetBlue recently began offering flights between ORH and New York’ JFK airport and American Airlines kicked off service between ORH and Philadelphia.</p>
Categories: Travel

American Airlines Is Raising Prices on Wine and Beer

Sat, 09/29/2018 - 07:26
<p>Get your "cheap" drinks in while you can.</p><p>On October 1, American Airlines is increasing prices for beer, wine and liquor by $1, <a href="" target="_blank">according to <em>USA Today</em></a><em>.</em></p><p>A spokesperson for the airline said that in-flight beverage options have improved over recent years. While you could spend $8 to get a Bud Light, you could also opt for something like Goose Island IPA, Samuel Adams Octoberfest or Fat Tire Belgian White for the same price.</p><p>Spirits will run $9 with options like Bombay Sapphire gin, Disaronno Amaretto and Woodford Reserve Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey, among several others. Wine is the same price and includes cabernet sauvignon, grenache and sauvignon blanc. Select longer flights also offer prosecco.</p><p>All non-alcoholic beverages for economy class passengers are free on American.</p><p>Passengers flying to Europe, Asia and select cities in Latin America and Hawaii can get free beer and wine. Spirits are only free for economy passengers on flights to and from Japan, Hong Kong, Sydney and Auckland.</p><p>However, it’s worth bearing in mind that passengers sat in <a href="" target="_blank">Main Cabin Extra</a> get free drinks (so do those in first and business classes). Prices for the upgrade start at $20 so, depending on how many in-flight drinks you order, the extra legroom could pay for itself.</p><p>American is not the only airline to raise menu prices this year. In March, Southwest Airlines began charging $6 for wine and beer and $7 for spirits onboard flights.</p>
Categories: Travel