Archives for June 2007

How Can I Find Car Rental Deals on the Internet?

As with most other areas of travel, the Internet has made renting a car much simpler and more convenient. Convenience is not the only advantage in renting a car online, the cost savings may also be considerable; however, finding the best car rental deal may take just a little time and effort. [Read more…]

How safe are Carnival Cruises? How safe are Princess Cruises?

Although recent events may have caused many to have second thoughts about taking a cruise ship vacation, cruises have been and continue to be among the safest of ways to holiday. According to the International Council of Cruise Lines (ICCL) FBI statistics show cruises to be safer than almost any city in the United States. While accidents and crimes do occur their number is relatively small when compared to the more than 90 million passengers who have taken cruises over the last decade. [Read more…]

What are the ten most popular tourist attractions in London?

History, shopping, theatre – they’re all available in London. A visitor could stay the year round and always find something interesting to do but there are ten fundamental attractions that almost all first time tourists to London enjoy. [Read more…]

How can I get the cheapest flights for our trip?

There are a few ways to get some truly great deals on flights to Orlando. In fact, I recently flew from Detroit to Orlando – round trip – for $16! But in order to take advantage of these great deals, there are a few things you’ll need to know:

One, it’s all about the timing. Airlines know when people are most likely to travel, and they set their fares accordingly. That means that if you’re limited to traveling only during school vacations your chances of getting any kind of super-cheap fare are extremely unlikely. If your family vacation hinges on cheap flights (and cheap rentals), you may want to consider talking to your kids’ teachers and taking the kids out of school for the week. That way you can get a better deal on your flights, vacation rental, and the lines will be shorter pretty much everywhere you go.
Second, as much as possible, keep your dates flexible. To get the best airfares, you need to sign up for the “special deal” notification lists from the airlines, and you have to be ready to pick up and go at the airline’s whim.
Lastly, if your life doesn’t allow you to keep your travel dates flexible, consider signing up for a fare alert service like Travelocity’s Farewatcher alert. I use this service a lot, but I also rarely book my flights more than two weeks ahead of time. It gives you a bit more leeway time to pack and go, but can still be somewhat restrictive.

How can I find cheap airline tickets on the Internet?

Shop for airline tickets like you shop for a car — know the value of what you’re buying so that you’ll know a bargain when you find one…and won’t get stuck with a lemon.

If you’ve seen The Roaming Gnome, you know that Travelocity is one of the big players in discount air travel, along with Expedia and Orbitz. Priceline is also a competitor, but we suggest you focus on the offerings of the “Big Three” to get your best deal.

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Our family is considering our vacation to coincide with the fourth of July festivities. What can we expect in terms of pricing and lines?

I never plan my Disney vacation for July fourth for just the reasons you’re concerned with: prices and crowds. The feedback that I have received from renters and other rental property owners is discouraging. My own experience mirrors that. My family was vacationing with relatives who had only that date available for a Florida vacation. I’ve visited the parks dozens of times, and I’ll never visit on a summer holiday again.  It was one of the worst experiences related to heat and crowds I’ve ever had.
If you must travel during the summer, avoid the holidays at all costs. The July heat in Florida can be truly stifling making long lines even more frustrating than normal. Kids can be impatient even under the best conditions and the heat will only intensify that impatience. It can also try yours, as well.

Prices at theme parks and restaurants are fairly static during the summer, but because of the heavy air travel during those months air fares are high and generally don’t budge.

If summer is the only time you and your family can travel, try and keep your dates as flexible as possible. If at all possible, Talk to your kids teachers and consider taking your kids out of school for your trip (this works especially well with the younger, elementary school-aged kids, who don’t get as much homework and are less likely to miss out on something really important).

Where can I eat at Walt Disney World?

There are more than 100 places to eat at Disney World to suit any picky eater and their parents’ wallets. It’s just one more of the wonderful things about the Disney theme parks. Some restaurants are themed, like the 50s Prime Time Café, some serve foods of certain cultures, like the Lotus Blossom and San Angel Inn. And if all your little ones will eat are hot dogs and SpaghettiOs, well, then, you can get those, too. No kidding! [Read more…]

Where can I find Disney Photo Spots to take Digital Pictures?

You’ve probably been planning you’re trip to Disney World months – maybe even for a year now. You’ve researched everything and tailor-made your trip for you and you family: the hotel with theme rooms for the kids, when to hit the rides for the shortest lines, where and when to eat for the best and/or least expensive meals. With all of your planning, you’ll likely want to be taking home some things to remember your trip by. Sure, personalized Mickey Mouse ears are de rigueur, and souvenir place mats are kind of cool, but while you’ll see them again and again (perhaps on the floor or the bottom of a toy box), the best memories are likely to be the photos you snapped yourself.
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Where is Walt Disney World Located? Is Walt Disney World in Kissimmee, Florida?

Most people believe that Disney World theme parks are located in Orlando, Florida. Unfortunately, for many who book their hotels there hoping to be close by, they’ll find that the Disney theme parks are actually located in the town of Kissimmee, which lies about 20 miles southwest of Orlando. So when checking out lodging, the lower prices of Orlando might seem like a great deal, but the 20 miles of congested freeway traffic and the frustration and annoyance that goes with it might make it more trouble than it’s worth. [Read more…]

What is the Walt Disney World Fastpass? What is the Universal Studios Express Pass?

Disney’s Fastpass is an electronic ticketing system that allows guests to make a reservation to return to an attraction at a later time in the day. When you return with a Fastpass in hand, you’ll use the much shorter Fastpass line instead of the ride’s regular lines. To get a printed Fastpass ticket, you’ll run your park admission ticket through an electronic Kiosk that is near the entrance to the ride.

You can get a fresh Fastpass for a different attraction every two hours. The bad news is that there are only a specific limited number of Fastpasses printed for each attraction each day. When they’re gone, they’re gone. If you don’t get a Fastpass, you’re stuck standing in line with the other regular folks.
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