The Best U.S. Cities to Travel to

One of the great things about the United States is that there is no shortage of places to travel to. Whether you’re looking at a big city or a quaint southern town, something will always pique your interest. Below are some of the best places in the United States to visit. 

Nashville

Nashville is a famous city in the South known for its music and culture. While in the area, take some time to explore its various shops and restaurants. One of the most well-known places in town is Arnold’s Country Kitchen, known for its James Beard Award-winning kitchen. Another great place to visit is the Hatch Show Print, a local company that has created show posters for some of the city’s most prominent venues for over 140 years.

Honolulu

The capital of Hawaii, Honolulu, is known for its large population and diverse culture. There are plenty of great hotels in the area, such as the Lotus Honolulu at Diamond Head or the Halekulani. If you’re planning on visiting this city, make a reservation at one of its many famous restaurants, Miro Kaimuki.

One of the most popular areas is the Makapu’u Point Lighthouse Trail, a great way to explore the area. Another great place to visit is the Bishop Museum, an excellent resource for learning more about the history and culture of Hawaii.

One of the most popular areas in the area is the Hawaiian Hall, which is an excellent place for families to stay. It inspired the Disney resort Aulani’s design, which is located on Oahu’s leeward coast.

Portland, Oregon

The city of Portland is known for its various attractions, such as the International Rose Test Garden. This area is a great place to visit if you’re planning on exploring. The Hoxton is a great home base for those looking to explore the city. Just blocks from the Pearl District and the Lan Su Chinese Garden, this property is a great choice.

If you’re looking for a way to get the most out of your trip, try one of the local bike tours, the Pedal Bike Tours. These are great for people who are new to the sport and offers routes for even the most beginner riders.

San Diego

Back when it was first established, many people who were planning on visiting San Diego didn’t know what to expect in the city. Due to the recent opening of several new hotels and the rise of a well-known food scene, San Diego has become one of the most sought-after destinations in the country. While it may seem like a place that’s known for its sunshine, this city is actually more than just a beach.

Washington, D.C.

The nation’s capital, Washington, D.C., has started to shed its reputation as a place that’s typically associated with its buttoned-up image. It’s been known for its numerous cultural attractions, such as the National Museum of African American History and Culture. After the opening of several new hotels, including the Eaton, Washington, D.C. has become a more popular destination. Not only is it known for its cultural attractions, but it also has a variety of stylish accommodations.

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Planning a Solo Trip

Solo travel is a great way to explore new places without spending much time coordinating with others. It allows you to get away from other people’s busy schedules and enjoy the beautiful scenery by yourself. Another advantage of this type of travel is that it will enable you to take time to yourself to get away from the hustle and bustle of life.

It can be normal to feel alone or anxious when planning a solo trip, especially if you’re planning on traveling to a different country. Fortunately, there are several ways that can help you feel safer while traveling alone.

Let family and friends know your travel plans

Send your travel itinerary and hotel reservation information to a friend or family member at home so they can easily see what you’re planning on doing during your trip. Also, let the hotel staff know when you’re leaving and when you expect to return.

If you plan to travel to a different country, you can enroll in the Smart Travel Enrollment Program (STEP). This free service allows US citizens and nationals to get important information about their destination. This will enable you to make informed decisions regarding your trip.

Through the program, the US Embassy can also keep track of your current location and provide you with important contact details in case of an emergency.

You must keep in touch with your friends and family while you’re away. To ensure you’re always connected, make sure you have a cellphone with the necessary features, like Wi-Fi access.

Plan for an emergency

Hopefully, you’ll never have to worry about experiencing an accident, robbery, or medical emergency while traveling. However, it’s crucial to have a plan in place in case something unfortunate does happen. Before you leave, ensure you have a well-defined emergency contact list that includes nearby hospitals, police stations, and other emergency facilities. If necessary, learn some essential phrases in the local language that you can use to ask for help. 

Before you leave, ensure that you have the necessary vaccinations and doctor’s appointments. You should also pack a variety of essential items, such as hand sanitizer and a mask to protect yourself from diseases such as malaria and disease-carrying insects. Before you leave, make sure that you thoroughly research the safety of drinking water and other food establishments in the countries that you’re planning on visiting.

Keep track of your valuables

When you’re out, make sure that you only bring what you need, such as your phone, a credit card, your ID, a copy of your passport, and some cash. Keep these items in a secure bag that you can easily see. You should also avoid putting these items in your bags that are out of sight.

In case your passport gets lost or stolen, make sure that you have a copy stored somewhere away from where you’re storing it, like with a friend or family member. You should also keep an eye on your valuables while riding public transportation. Keep some extra money, valuables, and your actual passport in the hotel safe

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Tips for First Time International Travelers in 2022

It can be stressful and exciting if you’ve never traveled out of the country. Fortunately, you can get over some of your travel jitters by utilizing the tips mentioned below.

Don’t Put Off Getting Your Passport

Many travelers are surprised to find that it can take a while for them to get their passports. This is why it’s imperative that you get it as soon as possible. In many instances, it can take around 14 weeks to get a passport.

Choose A Destination Where You Will Be Able To Communicate Easily

Traveling internationally can be rather difficult if you aren’t able to communicate with the locals. You shouldn’t assume that translation apps will allow you to communicate as well as you’d like to. Those that are traveling out of the country for the first time should consider going to a destination where they can easily communicate. This will ensure that their trip is as enjoyable as possible, and they don’t have to worry about not being able to have their basic needs met because they aren’t able to communicate with others.

Figure Out How You Will Pay For Things

While credit cards are widely accepted in most stores in the United States, it isn’t uncommon for many retailers to not take credit cards overseas. This is why travelers need to figure out how they will pay for things ahead of time. Many travelers exchange their money for the local currency when they get to the airport. Those that don’t want to use cash need to make sure that they will be able to utilize credit cards when they are traveling internationally.

Make Reservations In Advance

A lot of popular attractions will reach capacity fairly quickly for the day. Because of this, tourists shouldn’t just assume that they’ll be able to gain access to an attraction by just purchasing a ticket at the door. International travelers should decide which attractions they’d like to see before their trip so that they can make reservations well in advance.

It’s completely normal to be anxious about traveling out of the country for the first time. However, there are plenty of things that you can do ahead of time to be prepared for this fun adventure.

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Traveling to Vancouver? These are Must-Sees

Are you fond of traveling? If yes, you can concur with me that there are must-see destinations when you travel to specific destinations. In this context, we’ll look into the must-sees in Vancouver, and they include:

Going to Robson Square and Spending Some Time There

Robson Square has been making headlines for good reasons. There was a period when Tamara Bell, an artist from Vancouver, went ahead and placed at least 215 pairs of shoes on the steps of Robson Square, and they were meant for children. She did so to memorialize the indigenous children who had an unmarked grave in Kamloops, B.C., and it was recently discovered.

Such discoveries showcase the history of colonialism and the issues that revolve around residential schools. The steps at Robson Square used to lead to a courthouse. Currently, they have turned out into a place where people stand silently or even engage each other. It may not be a fun tourist destination. However, it’s among the important tourist destinations in Vancouver.

Visit the MOA (Museum of Anthropology)

The University of British Columbia hosts the museum of anthropology. It may seem like it’s far away; nonetheless, you won’t regret anything.

The museum has window walls, and you can get to watch the conservators at work. The artwork collection is also impressive. Have you ever seen a mammoth? Then you’ll get to see one at this museum. There are objects from different centuries at the museum. The museum also has artifacts that are from cultures that have already vanished.

There are also works done by some of the contemporary artists in the nation. You’ll also find objects from different centuries. Visiting the museum is more like walking through a library filled with people’s dreams.

Visit Chinatown

There is a neighborhood in Vancouver known as Chinatown. The town is densely curated and lovely. Also, it is indigenous-owned. You’ll enjoy a rare books collection and the gallery exhibition there.

You Should Get a Transit Card

The transit card is also called a compass card, which ensures you’ll spend less money while traveling around Vancouver. You’ll get it at some of the major transport hubs. You can also get it at the London Drug Store. After that, you can start taking trains and buses immediately. You’ll save a considerable sum of money as you get to see more of Vancouver. Also, you’ll save some time.

When in Vancouver, you now know which tourist destinations to start with. You’re bound to have an incredible experience when you travel to each of these destinations.

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Travel Tips for Students

Students know that traveling is an essential part of their education. Studying abroad can provide students with many new opportunities and experiences they might not otherwise have had. However, learning to fly internationally as a student requires some special considerations. This blog post will explore tips for safe international flying for students looking to study abroad!

Consideration The Departure And Destination Airports

As a student flying internationally, you must consider the departure and destination airports. For example, if studying in England, it is vital to avoid London’s Heathrow Airport if possible, because it has some of the longest lines in the world! These lines are especially long for students traveling with checked baggage. Also, other major international airports in the United Kingdom, including London Gatwick and London Stansted, are much easier to fly out of.

Travel Light When Traveling By Air

Another tip for student travel is to pack light when flying internationally. This will help avoid long ticketing lines at airports, which saves time to check-in baggage. All airlines have baggage limits and fees for checked bags, which can add up quickly. So, pack light and travel with only a carry-on bag to get around this issue! This will make the airport lines more manageable, and the student will avoid some of the mandatory airline charges!

Take The Passport On All Flights

When traveling internationally by air, the student should make sure they bring their passport with them on all flights. This is a requirement for international air travel and cannot be downplayed.

In addition, some destinations require their citizens to have a visa in order for students to enter the country. Therefore, the student should know the requirements before leaving the United States!

Consider the Cost of Air Travel

As a student, it is vital to consider the cost of air travel. This can be found when searching different airfare prices online by using the website. The sites not only show you which airlines offer cheap tickets in your destination country but also which airports have cheap flights for students! This helps students find more cost-efficient travel options, which is especially important for students who are on a budget.

When students travel abroad, it is essential to pack light and bring their passports on every flight. In addition, they should keep in mind the departure and destination airports when planning their flights so they can avoid some of the longest lines in the world! So good luck studying abroad, and have a safe flight!  

 

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Traveling in 2022, What Should We Expect?

The last two years have changed the world, with countries closing their borders completely and abruptly going digital. Everyone was stuck inside and unable to see friends or family; we had no idea what the future would look like. 

Gone are the days of easy traveling by plane, train, or car. Many of the world’s population are travelers at heart, and the unknown of what the future of travel will look like is worrisome. 

Tourism makes up 10% of the global GDP, one of the world’s biggest industries. During the pandemic, the number of people traveling decreased significantly. With the economy slowly recovering, the question of how it will change in the future is still unanswered.

The Environment and Sustainability 

Despite the positive effects of travel, it can also have detrimental effects on the environment. Some of these include pollution from transportation and the destruction of natural wonders caused by over-tourism. The pandemic has played a role in helping push the issue of sustainable travel.

Due to the pandemic, the tourism industry has to adapt to address the environment. To reduce its impact on the environment, airlines are starting to adopt more sustainable methods of transportation. Some of the major hotels and resorts have also started to focus on preserving the environment.

Domestic Traveling and International Traveling 

What will the future look like for travel after the pandemic? Although the number of people traveling will decrease, flying won’t go down significantly. Instead, people will continue to travel to places that are too far away to reach by public transportation.

Although international travel will decrease, domestic travel will still increase significantly. During the first few days after the outbreak, many people traveled to their home countries instead since not being able to travel internationally. 

People will travel at home for a while until things let up, as some people are still nervous about being in overpopulated areas. Being in smaller areas with not as many people will be the go-to compared to major tourist areas with lots of people. There is also a chance for international and long-distance traveling to become expensive. 

It’s possible to get cheap flights within Europe if you live in Europe. With the tourism industry taking a huge hit due to the pandemic, ticket prices for trains and planes will also increase. People who want to travel will also pay more. Since the pandemic has severely affected the tourism industry, it will make travel less accessible.

Moving Forward 

The most important thing that people can do to make their travel more sustainable is to move toward a more eco-friendly type of tourism. Doing so will allow them to enjoy their trips and reduce their carbon footprint. Aside from flying, people should also consider using other sustainable transportation methods and staying in eco-friendly hotels and resorts.

Although the changes the tourism industry has made in response to the pandemic may not be completely implemented, some of the measures implemented in the past two years will still be applicable. Despite the pandemic, people still want to travel and enjoy life. The tourism industry is slowly recovering from the effects of the pandemic.

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Travel Tips for Busy Times of the Year | Ann Marie Heiser

Traveling during busy times of the year can be stressful, but it doesn’t have to be. With a few basic tips, you can have a memorable vacation during holiday travel. The following tips will help make your travel experience a little easier.

Start Planning Early

The biggest key to getting your holiday trip off to a good start is to plan early. This will give you the most flexibility when choosing flights, sleeping accommodations, and activities you want to do during your vacation. Start looking at airfares and make your reservations in the early fall for Thanksgiving and Christmas. The earlier you book, the more choices you’ll have for flight times. However, you might not always get the best price. But it’s a balancing act because booking earlier might not mean cheaper flights. This means that if you can be a little flexible with your flights, you might score cheaper tickets by waiting until later in the fall to make your reservations. 

Pack Carefully

Your destination will determine the kinds of clothes you need to pack. However, you want to have enough clothes and supplies to last your vacation, but not so much that the airlines charge you extra for bags and/or weight. Here are some other considerations for packing.

– Will you have easy access to a washer and dryer? If so, you can pack fewer clothes.

– Will you be attending any formal holiday parties or eating at restaurants with a dress code?

– What kind of activities will you be doing on your vacation?

Give Yourself Plenty of Time

Holiday travel can be stressful, so patience is key. Leave for the airport earlier than you normally would, especially for travel during Thanksgiving and Christmas. You might be sitting in the airport longer waiting for your flight but that’s better than missing your flight. Plan on arriving at the airport 2 hours before domestic flights and 3 hours before international flights.

Also, be ready for flight cancellations and delays. Winter weather during the holidays can be extreme. There’s also the chance of mechanical problems, crew shortages, and so forth. A little patience during holiday travel can go a long way.

Consider Buying Travel Insurance

Stuff happens. You or a family member might get sick. You might get stranded away from home. Or you might have to cancel your trip due to unforeseen circumstances. Travel insurance can give you some peace of mind knowing your travel expenses will be reimbursed if your trip is interrupted. There are different types of travel insurance, so it’s important to study each plan carefully to know what it does and doesn’t cover.

Have Fun

The most important part of all is to have fun. While travel can be stressful, especially during busy times of the year, you can still make the best of it. Whether you’re gone for a weekend, a week, or an extended vacation, the memories will last a lifetime.

The Importance of Sharing Your Story as a Leader | Ann Marie Heiser

In the universe we live in, everyone has a story to tell. But like leadership, storytelling isn’t an inborn gift. Business leaders should learn storytelling to engage and inspire their teams. Surprisingly, people don’t only engage with companies because of their products and services. People support what aligns with their beliefs or a course they are passionate about. 

Every business has a unique story that is glued in their values, mission, and vision. Before the company existed, there was a person with a goal. The person founded the business with a set of values and beliefs. In a chaotic world with tons of things that divide us, these stories and values enable us to remain connected.

Sharing A Story Versus an Opinion

Every person has their own point of view. The only challenging thing is that we consider our opinions ‘right’ and anything contrary inherently ‘wrong.’ In most cases, opinions divide us further. 

On the flip side, a story describes an experience. It is defined as a series of events that made a person who they are. In layman’s language, a story describes the evolution of something. An opinion is all about our views, while a story elaborates why we share those views. 

As a leader, it is essential to share your story to inspire your followers. Here’s what to consider to differentiate between our stories and opinions.

Ask Why

For leaders to know their stories, they need to ask themselves what inspires their opinion. If they get curious to understand their views, they will find out why they believe in specific ideas. The more they understand what makes them who they are, the more resourceful information they can give others.

Be Mindful When Sharing Information

Leaders can share their values without making other people “wrong” for not having the same thoughts. For example, if a person chooses to be vegan, they can politely say, “I choose to be vegan to enhance my health,” rather than saying, “people shouldn’t take meat because it’s being brutal to animals.” It’s simply sharing ideas without crucifying others for not following your path. Creating a space could be an invitation for someone else to reconsider their point of view. 

By sharing stories, leaders can help their followers move beyond the curtain of polarization and politics and remember people with pure feelings and belief systems still exist. 

What to Pack Before a National Park Trip

Exploring the U.S. National Park system is a great way to get outdoors. Hundreds of individuals visit national parks each year. They go camping, hike the hundreds of trails available, and get to see some of the most notorious plants and animals. National parks boast imminent beauty and will be a great getaway from the hustle and bustle of everyday life. When planning for a national park trip, individuals should take into consideration what activities they have planned. This will make it easier to create an effective packing list before heading out. Being prepared makes for an easy, comfortable and exciting experience.

What Clothing is Best?

Individuals should always research park temperatures a week ahead of time. Doing this will give them insight into what to pack in terms of clothing. Be that as it may, it is always beneficial to prepare for just in case situations. For example, days may be scorching hot while nights are frigid cold. Packing for both hot and cold weather is necessary. Vacationers should pack a lightweight jacket that doubles as a raincoat and long-sleeved t-shirts that are okay for any weather condition. If participating in water sports or hiking, short-sleeved shirts and clothing with SPF protection will be beneficial. 

Luggage is Vital

When exploring the national parks, luggage is at the mercy of the wind, rain, dirt, and other elements. Therefore, strong, waterproof, and weather-prone luggage is needed. Rolling bags are essential when flying into destinations, and weatherproof duffle bags provide an easy way to pack and unpack. 

Packing Proper Footwear 

If hiking is a part of the trip, individuals will need durable, water-resistant shoes. A sturdy pair of tennis shoes or hiking boots will protect the ankles and provide support. Furthermore, water-resistant shoes will and protect the feet when trekking through puddles or rough terrain. 

Recording the Memories

Memories are essential when it comes to family vacations. Those who wish to record these memories will need a camera that is sufficient for pictures and video. A DSLR or simple point-and-shoot camera will do. Polaroid cameras are also ideal for instant photos for travel journals.

Traveling the national parks is a one-of-a-kind experience for anyone. Packing the right equipment will make the entire experience simple and worry-free.

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Questions Leaders Should Ask Themselves

The general expectation is that leaders should have answers to everything but the reality is that leadership has many more questions than answers. 

Leaders can improve their knowledge, determine their direction, promote engagement and make better decisions by first asking questions to themselves. Below are relevant questions leaders should ask themselves.

  1. What is the best thing to do in the next few minutes?

 This question simultaneously addresses management and prioritization as they are critical qualities in leadership. The answer should prepare leaders for effective action by listing the importance to do according to priority by attending first attending to things they dislike to clear the ground for their preference.

  1. What requires attention?

 Leadership can be comforting, but it is crucial to regularly search for new opportunities, responsibilities, and skills that require improvement. Continual learning should be part of leadership because traditional methods of doing things will not always keep up with the evolving world.

  1. Who is challenging the point of view and stand on issues?

 It is unhealthy when people surrounding leadership always agree with everything. Successful leaders work with people who do not fear challenging things with facts. Leaders should examine if they can gain something by seeing things from the perspective of their employees and if their subordinates have fears in expressing their opinions. Leaders must avoid creating a corporate culture of fear.

  1. What is the right way of bringing clarity to a situation?

Determining a method of clarity when people are grappling with an issue helps teams define their actions, goals, and completion timeframe. It also ensures the availability of resources. Bringing clarity can turn difficult moments around to allow the implementation of ideas.

  1. How would a great leader handle this situation?

Leaders should look up to particular role models known for their heroic leadership and think the way their heroes would do in a specific situation. Anticipation gives courage, inspiration and puts a situation in a clear perspective. Leaders, for example, can ask themselves how one of the billionaire businessmen would handle new technology.

  1. What is the best way to enable or hold back a team?

 A review of the day’s activities is valuable in leadership. It allows an honest review of gains and things that leaders could have done more to facilitate team performance. It is also a suitable time for leaders to determine if they said something that caused negative consequences they did not intend. If there is, it will help to unpack the circumstances leading to unfortunate utterances and prevent the recurrence of similar blunders. 

  1. Who has been out of sight?

Leaders should not assume that someone they have not talked to for a period is working well because the team is delivering. The best idea is to reach out to team members that have been out of sight. Leaders cannot know if someone in a team is going through challenges until they ask. 

Frequent leadership coaching sharpens skills as participants know questions leaders should ask themselves.

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