Guides from our travels

Day-to-day details & all costs of our trips

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Do's, don'ts, advice, how-to's

New rules for compensation for flight delay favors passengers (E.U. only)

November 12, 2014

airport_delay_tnFavoring passengers, re-defining flight arrival time is a part of the new rules that the European Court of Justice has implemented. The rule says that the actual arrival time of an aircraft at its destination is defined by when at least one aircraft door is opened. This ruling has particular significance for passengers who seek compensation for a flight delayed by three hours or more, especially in cases in which the aircraft lands close to the three-hour threshold.

If you’re flying between U.S. and Europe, then the new ruling can boost your chances of collecting compensation of up to $800. Although the EU’s compensation rules only apply when the delay is fault of the airline, delays due to storms or labor actions don’t count.

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Travel Photo: Catedral Metropolitana de Porto Alegre, Brazil

November 11, 2014

Catedral Metropolitana de Porto Alegre, Brazil

50 things every traveler should know

November 8, 2014


Translate text in real-time on iOS with Slated

November 8, 2014

slatedLink: iTunes
Cost: $4.99

Bang for buck:
Ease of use:
The looks:

There are tons of language translation apps on iOS and while most of them like Google Translate are free, they require internet or data network to work. Although apps like Smigin work offline, it is restricted to certain phrases for now.

If you want to send a text message to friends who speak a different language, you have to use those apps to translate and then copy-paste the translated message.

But Slated is an iOS keyboard that translates while you type, and can also translate what’s sent back to you.

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Fly over 35 times free on Southwest with this trick

November 5, 2014


Million Mile Secret has this awesome post on signing up for 3 Southwest Chase credit cards (you only have to do 2), and get enough points to fly 35 times for free, depending on your flights.

Find out how…

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Book travels with low, monthly payments at Triptive

November 5, 2014

triptiveTravels can be expensive and a lot of people are discouraged by the costs of flights and hotels. With all the baggage fees and booking charges, travelers tend to spend more than they would have anticipated when booking flights and hotels.

But what if you can book your flights and hotels on a monthly payment plan? Triptive will do just that for you.

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ESTA updated for additional information for U.S. Visa Waiver Program

November 3, 2014

USA_ESTAThe Secretary of Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announced enhancements to the Electronic System for Travel Authorization (ESTA) required to be filled by citizens of countries applicable for United States’ Visa Waiver Program.

This simply means that if you belong to a country that does not require you to get a visa to visit U.S. will have to fill in additional passport data, contact information, and other potential names or aliases.

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Build phrases and learn language using Smigin

November 2, 2014

smiginLink: iTunes
Cost: Free

Bang for buck: It’s free!
Ease of use:
The looks:

There are a lot of iOS apps for language translation and most of them do a great job of translating, but if you’re looking for basic and simple conversation then try Smigin.

It lets you build phrases quickly, giving back native pronunciation, and you can save them as favorites for later user.

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How to use Uber for airport pickup

November 2, 2014

Uber_AirportThe new ridesharing apps like Uber and Lyft are life-savers; and even pocket-savers when compared to taxi services from airport to the city. Most of the times these ridesharing apps can save you up to 50%, and the best part is the whole system is cashless. You don’t need to pay anything to the driver, and don’t spend that extra cash in tips.

Most cities in U.S. and world have accepted ridesharing as the best way for transportation. But because of the fees that taxi drivers pay to the airport, these apps won’t allow pickups at airports.

As some Uber drivers told me that they are free to drop passengers off at the airport, but are not allowed to pick up people from the airport (although it does depend on the city you live in, as some cities do allow it now).

So how do you work your way around this?

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Hang in there & check for open seats when you’re stranded on cancelled flight

October 30, 2014

Cancelled FlightFlights get cancelled all the time and there are not many options one can have in those situations. You can opt-in to stay at hotel or call your friends and family to find out if they know someone in the city, where you can crash for free; or perhaps call a travel agent (if you have one) to see if they can put you on an alternative flight.

But sometimes your persistence will help. Find out why?

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Put a longer hold time on your domestic flight seat with this website

October 26, 2014

optionsaway_tIt’s a general rule for most airlines to allow you to put a free 24-hour hold on your tickets, but often times that’s too less of a time to finalize the other parts of your travel plans. But what if you need more time to put a hold on your tickets?

This is where Options Away comes in.

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Log your travels with UMapped iOS app

October 20, 2014

umappedLink: iTunes
Cost: Free

Bang for buck: It’s free!
Ease of use:
The looks:

There are tons of apps for logging your travels or writing a journal using your phone, and UMapped is just another one in addition to that.

Basically, you start a new trip, and add details about your travels as you go. That’s pretty much what UMapped does. Some of the main features include writing your journal offline. The app will automatically synchronize any changes the next time your mobile device is connected.

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What it’s like to fly the $23,000 Singapore Airlines Suites Class

October 16, 2014


In 2008, Singapore Airlines introduced their Suites Class, the most luxurious class of flying that is commercially available.

The Suites were exclusive to their flagship Airbus A380, and they go beyond flat beds by offering enclosed private cabins with sliding doors that cocoon you in your own little lap of luxury. The interior was designed by French luxury yacht designer Jean-Jacques Coste and comes along with a plush soft leather armchair hand-stitched by the Italian master craftsmen Poltrona Frau. Perhaps most well-known of all, Singapore Airlines became the first and only commercial airline with a double bed in the sky.

Derek Low has an opportunity to fly the Suites Class on the Singapore Airlines and here’s his story in pictures:

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Difference between non-stop, direct & connecting flights

October 14, 2014


While you’re booking your next travel, you come across the two terms – non-stop flight and direct flights – and although they sound the same, they aren’t.

Non-stop Flights
A non-stop flight is a single flight between two airports with no stops in between. Most travelers prefer non-stop flights because they are the fastest, but the most expensive as well.

Direct Flights
You’d think that a direct flight might be the same as a non-stop flight, but it’s not. A direct flight makes at least one intermediate stop along the way to its final destination, but has only one flight number.

For example, if you choose a direct flight between Los Angeles and Singapore, you’d fly on one plane the whole way to Singapore. But that plane would make a stop at Tokyo, where it will refuel; and drop off and pick up more passengers. Hence making it a direct flight.

But the passengers who’s destination was Tokyo were on a non-stop flight.

Connecting Flight
A connecting flight will take at least two different planes with two different flight numbers to reach your final destination.

In the example above, say, you’re flying from Los Angeles to Bangkok, then there’s a possibility that the same flight will stop in Singapore and you have to change to another plane from Singapore to Bangkok.

Connecting flights are almost always less expensive than non-stop flights, but they are not always the best option for travelers who want the fastest.So make sure to know what type of route you’re flying.

Travel photo: Escalante National Park, Utah, USA

October 12, 2014

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