Posted by: Catie | December 5, 2008

Some good news: Gas for $1 a gallon

gas2Have you heard the good news yet?

A gallon of gas could soon fall below $1 a gallon.Oil Prices

This seems amazing since just this summer it cost more than $4 a gallon.

Now with gas prices plummeting, this means more people likely will be able to hop in their cars and not have to worry about spending $50 or $100 every time they have to fill up at a gas station. Instead, they’ll be able to travel where ever they want.gas_prices_0812011

So you might ask, why the sudden shift in prices?

The Associated Press is reporting that oil prices hit four-year lows today as employers cut the highest number of jobs in 34 years. “The continuing decline in prices is so dramatic and so sudden that it is raising the prospect that gas prices could soon fall below $1 a gallon,” the AP wrote.

The last time gas prices were this cheap was in March 1999 when it cost 97 cents a gallon, according to AAA motor club. Read More…

Posted by: kmgib | December 5, 2008

Travel Around the World

If you love travel as much as I do, you have probably asked yourself, “What is the best way for me to see as much as possible for as cheap as possible?” Well, here’s one way:Travel Round the World. I know that sounds vague, but there are hundreds of websites dedicated to helping you create your own around the world trip. Many offer set itineraries, while others let you completely plan your own dream vacation.

world-in-hands

There are some trips as low as $899. This one includes New York to London, out of Istanbul to Kiev to Bangkok to Hongkong to Los Angeles or San Francisco.

This website lets you customize your own trip.

my-route

More around-the-world tickets.

Read More…

For those of you who aren’t familiar with us, Travel Blog is a blogging assignment for a web journalism class at Syracuse University.  Today is the last day we’re required to post and I hope you’ve enjoyed our entries. So since our assignment is coming to an end, here’s a question I would like to pose to the readers we’ve (hopefully) picked up along the way:

And in homage to my home state, here are the top 10 off-the-beaten-path California destinations that TravBuddy ranked for 2008.

  1. Monterey—Cities along Highway 1 were a popular theme, and TravBuddies went to Monterey to check out the world renowned Monterey Bay Aquarium and for the scenic drives.
  2. Santa Cruz—Monterey’s northern cousin was also very popular for hiking, the boardwalk and beaches during the summer months.
  3. Palm Springs—Popular Labor Day weekend destination among TravBuddies for hiking, dining and as a local escape from Los Angeles.
  4. Lake Tahoe—Lake Tahoe is known for its snow sports, but it was also popular during the summer months for water-skiing, hiking, fishing, and exploring nearby “ice caves.”
  5. Napa Valley—This wine-tasting mecca was a favorite weekend getaway for Bay Area natives. Read More…
Posted by: jwtarr | December 5, 2008

Karaoke at the . . . Airport?

karaoke3

Photo Credit: Mayra Beltran, Houston Chronicle

I love to sing; I’m just going to throw that out there.  I sing in the shower, in my car, and on my way to classes.  But, I don’t think I have ever thought about singing in the airport, well, at least until now.

I saw a story today in the Houston Chronicle about a new program at the Bush International Airport in Houston, Texas has set up karaoke booths inside of the airport.  It’s not American Idol and it certainly isn’t the stage at the Video Music Awards, but travellers still have a chance to come away with small prizes.

Read More…

Posted by: jwtarr | December 4, 2008

A New Pill That Could Solve Jet Lag?

During the course of our travel blogging we have talked about trips to China, Europe, Hawaii, and many other locations all around the world.  For many of us, the trip is exciting but the first day or two in a new time zone (and after flying all day or more!) leaves something to be desired.

Leave it to the brilliant scientific minds out there to create something that could prove to be the answer to jet lag.  The solution may be a pill created by an Australian scientist that serves as a sedative and also as a preventative to jet lag.  Now, this pill is only in experimental stages and would have a long way to go to be part of our daily lives but the prospect of what it could provide is very interesting!  Read on!

Read More…

Posted by: cj | December 4, 2008

Top 10 cell phones for foreign travel

The Los Angeles Times offered some cell phone tips on keeping in touch while abroad and took a look at the best cell phones for foreign travel, warning users to watch out for add-ons and to be sure to buy an unlocked phone so that its SIM card can be switched out. Phones start at $80. Here are their top 10 picks:

  1. BLACKBERRY CURVE
    Provider: Model 8310 by AT&T
    Provider: Model 8320 by T-Mobile
    Price: $149.99
    Pros: Smallest BlackBerry with full keyboard; can be tethered to a laptop for Internet access; calendar/organizer; lots of software. The 8310 has a Global Positioning System. The 8320 has Wi-Fi.
    Cons: Many advanced BlackBerry functions won’t work on a Mac. The 8310 lacks Wi-Fi. The 8320 lacks GPS.

2. BLACKBERRY BOLD 9000
Provider: AT&T
Price: $299.99
Pros: Great display with all the features of the Curve, plus 3G and High-Speed Downlink Packet Access, or HSDPA (for higher data speeds); GPS with audible turn-by-turn directions; Wi-Fi; view and edit documents.
Cons: Slightly larger than the Curve.

3. BLACKBERRY 8830 WORLD EDITION
Provider: Verizon and Sprint
Prices: $149.99 (Verizon), $219.99 (Sprint)
Pros: User-friendly keyboard; GPS with audible directions; Sprint unlocks for overseas travel.
Cons: No camera; a locked SIM card in Verizon model; memory expandable to only 4 gigabytes.

Read More…

Posted by: Catie | December 4, 2008

The ‘Greenest’ cities in America

1greenHave you noticed the big “green” movement lately?

At Carousel Center, the mall in Syracuse, N.Y., anyone driving a fuel efficient, low-emissions vehicle can park in one of the 68 reserved spaces close to the mall for “green vehicle parking only.” The spaces are marked by signs made from recycled plastic.

bagWegmans Food Markets and other stores offer reusable grocery bags.

magAnd even some newspapers are “going green.” The Post-Standard in Syracuse recently launched a Green CNY magazine.

Knowing just how environmentally-conscious my city is, I wanted to find out which cities in the United States are considered the “greenest.”

Here’s what I found… Read More…

Posted by: kmgib | December 4, 2008

Worst Taxi Rides

A Malaysian survey of 200 tourists, from 30 different countries, found that Malaysia had the worst taxi rides out of 23 countries. I don’t know if Egypt and China were included in that survey, but they would be pretty high on my list for worst taxi rides. In Egypt I feared for my life because drivers were swerving in and out of lanes at high speeds and most cars had several severe dents in them.

In China, I was terrified because the drivers did not look when switching lanes, they ran red lights, and they just kind of drifted in and out of lanes.

Check out the slide show of the worst taxi rides.

But one problem in every city I have been to is getting scammed on a taxi ride.

Read More…

Posted by: jwtarr | December 3, 2008

A Great Travel Experience and . . . Class?

I know a lot of my friends dream about going to Hawaii.  Many people still see Hawaii as an exotic paradise far, far away from the cold of Syracuse and Central New York.  But obviously for many people, Hawaii is home and for others its where they go to school.

For those of you avid travelers out there, I found a great opportunity for you!  You can go to Hawaii and enjoy the beaches while also studying to get a degree from the University of Hawai’i School of Travel Industry Management!

Read More…

Posted by: Catie | December 3, 2008

Pirates attack American cruise ship

piratesI’ve never been on a cruise ship, but I’ve always thought about it — until now. 

Pirates — yes, pirates! — chased and shot at a U.S. cruise ship with more than 1,000 people on board.

They failed to hijack the luxury cruise liner Sunday between Yemen and Somalia, the Associated Press reported. But they definitely made me (and probably many others) think twice about shelling out thousands of dollars for a cruise where you just might hear, “Pop, pop, pop.”

If I want to see pirates, I’ll just sit home and watch Capt. Jack Sparrow in “Pirates of the Caribbean.”

My reaction is probably exactly what the cruise industry is dreading.

“As the recession takes hold, pushing down both prices and bookings, the last thing cruise lines need is for people to be too scared to take a holiday at sea,” Jane Archer wrote in the Telegraph today. Read More…

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