Travel blog

Up, Up and Away: Tips and Facts for the Albuquerque Balloon Fiesta



As opening day approaches, Balloon Fiesta Park becomes a boomtown. It buzzes with the sound of trucks and people rushing to prepare the site of one of Albuquerque’s premiere events. In this makeshift city, experienced workers and volunteers alike must come together to set up booths and facilities in anticipation of 900,000 guests. Since 1972, visitors have flocked to New Mexico each year to gaze upward and be awed by the magnificence of hundreds of hot air balloons.




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Topics: Americas, Balloon Fiesta


How to Prepare for Your First Rose Parade




The Rose Parade is the “granddaddy of them all,” a beloved institution known as America’s New Year Celebration. It is as closely tied to the New Year holiday as fireworks or optimistic resolutions. For many first-time visitors to this Pasadena, California event, there are a host of questions about the ins and outs of seeing it in person. If you’re considering a trip to Southern California for next year’s event, here are our tips for how to prepare for your first Rose Parade.




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Topics: Americas, Rose Parade


How to Pack Gifts and Souvenirs from Your Trip




One of the most rewarding ways to look back and reflect on a trip is through the souvenirs, mementos, and keepsakes. It’s also fun to choose the right gifts for your friends and family back home. After collecting your gifts and souvenirs, you must then assess how to get them all home safely and in the most cost-effective way.

Did you leave room in your suitcase, and if so, what’s the best way to pack your items to keep them safe? Is shipping your items perhaps the wiser strategy? Follow our travel packing hacks, tips, and tricks to help you choose the best option to suit your needs.




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Topics: Travel Tips


Travel Trends Across the Decade




Take a moment to reflect back on what you were doing 10 years ago. The year was 2010 and iPads and Angry Birds were all the rage. 2010 probably doesn’t seem like that long ago, but the changes in both our world and your life are likely quite significant. And the travel industry has seen its fair share of compelling changes as well. Here are some of the biggest travel trends over the past decade and into 2020.




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Topics: Travel Tips


How to Avoid Pickpockets in Europe




Europe is a gorgeous place to visit. There is so much culture to experience and endless historic sites to see. What the eye can’t see, however, is the occasional pickpocket. While pickpocketing is something every vacationer worries about, it won’t be a problem if you are smart about how you travel.

With the proper travel tips and preparation, you shouldn’t feel nervous as you explore new countries. Here’s how to avoid pickpockets when traveling, so you can focus on enjoying your trip.




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Topics: Travel Tips, International Travel


11 Must-See Attractions in NYC




Considered by many to be the greatest city in the world, New York City is a place unlike any other. It is constantly buzzing with the energy of its 8 million residents and the millions of visitors that pass through its streets every year. Gotham, The Big Apple, The City of Dreams—whatever you call it, New York is a one-of-a-kind city filled with iconic sights and some of the world’s best attractions. Don’t miss out on these must-see places in NYC.




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Topics: Americas


Tips for Staying Cyber-Safe While Traveling




Before you embark on your transatlantic cruise or jet off on your international vacation, you need to make sure you’ve protected your devices. Don’t let unauthorized users hack your cell phone or laptop while you’re out of town. Strong cyber security helps keep your devices safe from unwanted cyber-attacks.

With solid cyber security, you can even protect your information if the worst were to happen and you lost your device – or it got stolen. Just as you would secure a lock on your suitcase to protect its valuable contents, you want to do the same with your devices before traveling. To keep your personal information and property safe, follow our easy tips for cyber security while traveling.




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Topics: Travel Tips, International Travel


The White Dove of the Desert: Mission San Xavier del Bac



On the stunning façade above the ornate door of Mission San Xavier del Bac, a stone-carved cat, its sharpest details rounded down by years of wind and desert rain, crouches, ready to attack the mouse on the other side of the grand entryway. Legend says that when the cat finally eats, the world will end.

Nicknamed the “White Dove of the Desert” and listed as a National Historic Landmark, the mission is still an active church. It has been abandoned, survived an earthquake, and most impressively withstood both the ravages of the time and the encroachment of the modern world. It stands as a striking beacon in the Sonoran Desert, at what the Spaniards who built it considered the very edge of the known world.




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Topics: Americas, Balloon Fiesta, History


Benefits of Taking More Vacations




There are a million reasons why a vacation is important. Stepping out of your comfort zone and experiencing the world is good for the soul, but did you know it’s good for your health, too? That’s right, the next time you ponder your dream vacation, you might want to think about how taking that vacation can actually improve your physical and mental health.

To make sure you get the full benefits of taking a vacation, don’t be afraid to book an extended trip. The longer the getaway, the better. Some time away is just what the doctor ordered.




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Topics: Travel Tips, Senior Travel


Vietnamese Customs: Dos and Don'ts for Visiting Vietnam




Vietnam is fast becoming one of the most appealing destinations in all of Southeast Asia. It’s blessed with a huge variety of stunning natural beauty, as well as incredible cultural accomplishments. You’ll see an expansive coastline, pleasant beaches, countless rivers, thick forests, stunning Buddhist pagodas, and bustling cities. It is also home to eight UNESCO World Heritage Sites, and a varied and delicious culinary scene.




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Topics: Asia, Travel Tips, International Travel