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“I hereby resolve to…” 14 New Year’s Resolutions for Avid Travelers

With the arrival of 2018, I’ve been considering what type of traveler I am. Do I represent only the best qualities of Americans to the locals in the foreign cities to which I travel? Have I become overly reliant on returning to the same places again and again, rather than branching out, and discovering exciting new destinations? These thoughts prompted me to create a list of my New Year’s travel resolutions – 14 of them, in fact – and I’d like to share with you my New Year’s resolutions for avid travelers. If you, too, are an avid traveler, then let’s say this together! Stand up and place your hand over your heart… I resolve to: 1. …be a better global ambassador exhibiting the true spirit of America – not what is on television. 2. …take any and all vacation time I’ve earned…and steal whatever extra days off I can! 3. …go somewhere new in 2018, instead of returning to the old tried and true go-to vacation destinations. 4. …stop saying I’ve “done” a country, knowing deep down that I could never really know a country unless I’ve lived there. 5. …consciously unplug for longer and longer stretches when I travel. 6. …make my politicians see time off for travel as a right, not a luxury; so I can rest, recharge, rejuvenate and reignite my passions by being a more creative, loyal and productive employee. 7. … NOT do last minute “guilt” souvenir shopping at the airport store on the way home. 8. …take better pictures – but not so many that I forget to see what is in...

The Data Is In: To Achieve Lasting Well-Being, Travel Is the Best Way to Spend Your Money

It’s hard to beat the once-in-a-lifetime experience of riding across a Greek island on a motorbike. We know that travel comes with a host of unparalleled benefits: You get to spend time with people you love, seeing new things and trying new things; you get to relax away from the pressures of work and everyday life, realizing dreams you may have had for years. As it turns out, studies show that travel is the best way to spend your money. Of all the things you can buy, the experience of traveling gives you, by far, the most bang for your buck. All these great elements of travel have been proven to make people happier. And even more than that, every part of the travel experience — before, during, and after — is more satisfying, more enjoyable, and has longer-lasting positive effects than buying material things. In 2003, Thomas Gilovich published his landmark study called, “To Do or to Have? That Is the Question” – a study that, more than a decade on, continues to influence social psychology and the debate about of what brings us true contentment. Gilovich looked at how economic choices affect well-being, and analyzed the differences between experiential and material purchases on human happiness. His unexpected discovery has changed the way we look at our buying habits: Across the board, doing things makes people substantially happier than having things. Travel gives you the opportunity to spend time with people you love, forging memories that will last a lifetime. The reason for this is that we get to live and then re-live the joys of our experiences....

Why Should I Use a Travel Advisor to Book My Vacation or Honeymoon?

These days, anyone can book their own trip using various resources that are great for people with a lot of time and a sense of adventure – as well as a willingness to accept some risks. But how many travelers personally know the staff at resorts in desirable locations, such as Tahiti? How many people feel comfortable calling around to different destinations in hopes of finding useful, honest travel suggestions to help them plan their international trips? In their often exceedingly busy lives, travelers rarely have the time, energy or know-how to do this. Booking a quality vacation with custom-tailored services is not straight-forward for individuals. In fact, Google research has identified that it can take 32 visits to 10 different sites to buy a single airline ticket. And this doesn’t include searching for transport and accommodations. And even if you do the legwork, checking reviews, and confirming travel plans before your arrival, it is nearly impossible to ensure that everything will be as stress-free as it should be during your highly-anticipated vacation. This is one of the reasons my clients – and many other travelers – continue to ask for the assistance of travel consultants when planning their trips. Below are the top five reasons why I believe you should use a travel advisor to plan your vacation or honeymoon: 1. A professional travel planner is your personal advocate. All of the moving parts that comprise an international trip virtually guarantee that something will go wrong. When you’re in a foreign country, often with limited cell service, it is critical that you have a dedicated supporter in America...

Book a First-Hand Encounter with the Supernatural: A Look at the World’s Most Haunted Destinations

With All Hallows’ Eve just around the corner, a post about haunted locations around the world seems particularly apt. If you’re into encounters of the spine-tingling variety, you’re part of a small but passionate group of travelers. “Paranormal Travel” enthusiasts participate regularly in online forums, and there’s even a small cottage industry that specializes in highlighting travel to spooky destinations. If this interests you or someone you know here’s a quick list of some of the world’s most haunted destinations. Night guards claim to hear pacing footsteps, strange voices, and blood-curdling screams. Castle of Good Hope, Capetown, South Africa This bastion fort built in the 17th century is said to still terrify the soldiers who guard her ramparts by night. Sentries claim to hear pacing footsteps, strange voices, and blood-curdling screams. Less gruesomely, this castle is also said to be home to a supernatural canine that jumps up on guests as they walk the halls! The Tower of London is haunted by a dark history (here the Tower Bridge is shown looming in the background). Tower of London, England The Tower of London, part of which was built as early as 1078 by William the Conqueror, has served as a royal residence, an armory, and, most famously, a prison. It is here that people claim to have seen the headless ghost of Anne Boleyn, the ill-fated wife of Henry VIII, wandering the halls and gardens with her head cradled in her arms. Dolls photographed on the Island of the Dolls by Esparta Palma [CC BY 2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons Island of the Dolls, Xochimilco, Mexico The story of...

Luxury Vacations to Paris

Of all the phenomenal places I have traveled, Paris, France may be my favorite. Since living in Avignon, I have been to Paris more than a dozen times; the more I visit, the more it feels like home, and every luxury vacation package to Paris that I plan feels like a reunion! Luxury Vacations to Paris include some of the most elegant boutique hotels in the heart of the city of lights, where you lounge in contemporary reflections of Art Deco or “Belle Epoque” or step outside your room to the lavish splendor of Opera Gernier. No matter your preference, the taste of exquisite French style will form the foundation to your carefully constructed vacation packages in Paris. Even more than the breathtaking sights and stylized venues, the heart of Paris is the food of a lifetime. Paris Luxury encompasses the most delectable morsels with unique and striking venues to create an ambiance impossible to recreate anywhere else. Imagine the grand dining room of Le Meurice, where marble lines the walls behind glowing crystal and elegant lace. You sit, order the recommendation of a brilliant sommelier, and sip, waiting to taste an incarnation of the luxury vacations to Paris have to offer. With every sip of wine and bite of decadent cuisine, you will feel as if the world of luxury has opened to you, and Paris is the gate. The charming Arrondissements of Paris ensure that no day of your vacation will be without marvel — from the Louvre to the Pantheon, each section of city opens new avenues to unforgettable art, architecture, and memories. If you have...

Luxury Vacation Packages to Tahiti

Imagine yourself in Tahiti, where luxury is found. At a luxury resort, your every want, need, and whim will be fulfilled so quickly and completely that you will feel as if the friendly staff has read your mind. Luxury Vacation Packages feature world-class snorkeling in private lagoons, isolated cabanas, kayak excursions, and some of the freshest food you have ever tasted. No matter what your taste, you will find the incarnation of your dream vacation in our Vacation Packages to Tahiti. More than any other place on earth, French Polynesia captures the luxury of resorts, the beauty of nature, and the paradise of a world devoted to you and also to your family. Tahiti Luxury is not only for adults! At the Four Seasons, for instance, the “Kids for All Seasons program” creates supervised, educational memories, where the resort becomes a playground. While adults enjoy each other and well-deserved rest, your children engage with accredited instructors where they experience the outdoors with creative, stimulating play. Nothing could be better for the whole family, since Tahiti luxury accounts for every person it encounters. If that were not enough, imagine jet skiing through crystal waters, feeding sharks, riding exhilarating jeep safaris, and sipping cocktails on a sunset cruise. More than anything, Tahiti Vacation Packages include those amenities that make you feel the most at home: whether those are internet cafes and wireless connections, pearl and jewelry shops, or tennis courts and fitness centers, Vacation Packages work around the luxury you would most like to experience during every day and night. Whether you are looking for a secluded honeymoon, a luxurious spa...