Thursday, December 27, 2012

Travelling Free and Easy




The concept of free and easy tour packages was developed by the tourism industry in order to provide travelers with the freedom of designing their own itineraries while grabbing the different money- and time-saving opportunities offered by many travel agencies.

 

Putting it simply, the free and easy concept exempts the travelers from a schedule designed by the agency. Without restraint, people can roam around places, on their own. They can go to places they wish to visit, see things they wish to see, and experiences feats they wish to experience. There is no need to worry about wasting money due to coming to attractions which they find boring.

 

Just a few tips though. When availing free and easy tour packages, it is best to plan an itinerary prior to the trip. Touring a city impulsively could disregard the advantage of getting cheap flight tickets as it would definitely require tourists to spend way beyond the supposed budget.

 

Learning the language used in the city to visit will be very helpful. Conversational phrases will surely come handy when interacting with locals when, for example, trying to find the way to the subway station or asking where the payphone is. Remember, a free and easy means independence. There is no tour guide to translate things, so better learn even just a bit of the language.

 

Going around the city in groups will be very beneficial for those who choose the free and easy tour package. While it is exciting and challenging to tour a foreign city alone, it sometimes gets boring and scary at times. Having companies will surely lighten up the mood and will make one feel safer and more at ease. Further, it is more fun to have someone to spaz things about with.

 

Talking about security, it is best not to avail free and easy tours when in doubt of the security implemented in the city to be visited. Remember, touring around in big groups is way much better and safer than getting around a place in smaller factions. Consider the travel warnings, and feel secured.

 

To avoid danger, it is also advised that the tourists tone their selves low. Flashy outfits could attract unwanted attention. Sporting so much jewelry could tempt robbers. Carrying big backpacks could encourage pickpockets. The hotel safes are there for reasons. If it is unavoidable to leave things behind, use smaller bags.

Monday, November 26, 2012

Yes to Safety Flights!

Safety is the most important issue to press when flying. It is one of the major concerns of people who do flight booking from time to time. However, the safety of a passenger does not just rely on the services of the airline company. The passenger, himself, has the obligation to do certain things that would assure his well-being while on board.

Here are some of the most typical things to remember:

1) Never leave things unattended
A bag left unattended can cause mayhem. It may be deemed suspicious as its unknown content could pose threat to the people in the plane. Thus, it is important that people do not leave their things unguarded, or just anywhere.

2) Do not bring deadly weapons or dangerous materials to the plane
Sometimes, security lapses can occur. Dangerous materials can be brought to the plane and it could cause pandemonium when found out. It is best not to bring these sorts of things on board as it would definitely frighten other passengers.

3) Pay attention to the pre-flight orientation
Prevention is always better than cure; so it is best to listen to the rules and regulations implemented by the airline company which is to be discussed by the flight attendants prior to the flight. Safety precautions will also be explained; as well as the things to do in case of emergencies.

4) Store heavy baggage under the plane seat
Putting heavy things on the plane compartment can be risky. If the plane meets turbulence and the compartment is not locked, the things could fall and eventually hurt the passengers. The best place to store these pieces of baggage is under the seat in front.

5) Do not get drunk
Some airline companies allow its passengers to drink while on-board but it is advisable not to get drunk to not make the other passengers uncomfortable. Sometimes, conflicts during flights are caused by too much intoxication.

6) Buckle on!
Planes meet turbulences unexpectedly. No one can predict it, after all. That is why passengers must always remember to keep their seatbelts buckled. This will secure them on their seats and keep them safe in case the plane experience instability.

7) Listen to the flight attendants
Flight attendants are there not just to assist the pilots, but also to constantly remind the passengers of the different rules and regulations implemented by the company. For safety purposes, it is best to follow their orders.

8) Always keep calm
Most of the time, panic is inflicted by paranoia. That is why, it is important to keep calm all the time. In case of emergencies, always listen to the instructions of the flight attendants to avoid pandemonium.

Upon buying flight tickets, people are also given the responsibility to keep themselves safe from harm. That issue of safety does not just come from the company. It is a two-way process and passengers are expected to keep up with it, for their own satisfaction.

Monday, October 22, 2012

New Stopover Packages from Changi Airport, SIA and SilkAir

 
Aiming to provide better services to the people, Changi Airport Group (CAG) has renewed its ties with two top airline companies in Singapore, Singapore Airlines (SIA) and SilkAir. This rekindling of partnerships paves way to the introduction of new stopover packages.
 

Until March 28, 2013, people can avail exciting packages for cheap promotional rates which starts from S$54 (US$44). Promos are applicable only to flights scheduled from October 1, 2012 to March 31, 2013.
 

Known as the Singapore Stopover Holiday packages, these offers cover good accommodations, and complimentary transfers. Making it more exciting, there are also packages which offer unlimited SIA Hop-on Bus rides and free admission to 14 top Singapore attractions like the Singapore Flyer, MINT Museum of Toys, HiPPO Rivercruise, Singapore Zoo and National Orchid Garden.
 

Basically, this move from CAG, SIA and SilkAir will contribute immensely to the tourism industry of Singapore. According to Peh Ke-Wei, VP for Passenger Development of CAG, these packages will surely encourage travelers to experience Singapore and Changi Airport at its best.

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

70 New Airports for China by 2015


Within the next three years, China will be establishing 70 new airports as part of the large-scale plan to expand the aviation industry despite the economy slow-down.

As pointed out by Li Jianxiang, the head of Civil Aviation Administration of China (CAAC), this idea to build more airports in the country is based on its significant increase in fleet – after settling a plan to buy more than 300 carriers in a span of five years.

Li added during the annual general meeting of IATA that aside from the plan to construct new airports, the old ones will be expanded and improved. This arrangement would give China more than 230 flight hubs by 2015, to cater to the 4,700 planes which are expected to be owned by the nation by then.

This ambitious move was set after IATA head Tony Tyler revealed that the global profits from airlines would most likely decrease due to the skyrocketing oil prices and various crises. Although the industry in Asia Pacific is expected to receive a total of US$2 billion gains, it is still less than half of the income received on 2011.

The group did not provide any prognosis to the Chinese market, especially that it has been a constant favorite of travelers and the Chinese people love travelling. However, the slowing economic growth of China (along with India) can be partly blamed.

In the first quarter of 2012, China’s economy raised only to 8.1%. It is the slowest pace in three years.

Thursday, October 4, 2012

More Filipinos Travel to Hong Kong and Singapore on 2012

According to recent surveys, many Filipino tourists still prefer to travel to Hong Kong and Singapore for vacation and leisure. Thanks to the frequency of flights to the city offered by different airline companies, said Tim Tio, sales and outbound marketing manager of Travelite Travel and Tours Philippines.

Hong Kong has received a 15.6-percent increase on arrival from the Philippines from January to July 2012. On 2011, it has received 659,829 visitors. Singapore, on the other hand, has been visited by 677,681 Filipinos that year; and had served 154 flights, compared to the 148 which landed on Hong Kong.

It is the boosting tourism industries of Singapore and Hong Kong that are held responsible for the statistics. Hong Kong is very much known for its shopping culture which the Filipino travelers truly take pleasure on. On the other hand, it is the Singapore attractions - Resorts World Sentosa and the Universal Studios Singapore - which immensely contribute to the strong number of arrivals from the Philippines.

This kind of set-up is expected to continue especially with the opening of the Legoland in Johor Bahru (Malaysia), which is easily accessed from Singapore. Some travel agencies in the Philippines have begun to offer tours to the amusement park, which will cover transfers from a hotel in Singapore to Legoland, and back.

But if Singapore and Hong Kong are enjoying a great reception from the Philippine tourists, Malaysia seemed to have experienced a drop in 2011. That is why Malaysia has prompted a more aggressive tourism program which includes product seminars in Manila, Clark, Cebu and Davao. Positive results have been noted in June 2012 though.

Furthermore, new air links have been established by different airline companies originating from the Philippines to Malaysia. Airphil Express, Zest Air and SEAir has offered flights to the country earlier this year; while Cebu Pacific Air is set to launch flights from Cebu to Kuala Lumpur, come December.

Monday, September 17, 2012

Simple Tips to Get Cheap Air Fares


Nowadays, everybody would want to stay on budget. As the world’s economy continues to fluctuate, it is a must that people learn how to keep their expenses low. However, it does not always follow that cutting on budget means denying oneself of the quirks of life, especially travelling. Taking a break is as necessary as being thrifty; and with that, cheap air fares are rendered as delightful treats.

But how to land on these wonderfully economic deals?

1. Consider when to buy the tickets.

Usually, sales on air fares are held to introduce the promo and/or to clear the product. That is why many people are advised to buy early or buy late in order to enjoy the probable sales from travel agencies or airline companies. However, one just has to make sure that buying early or late will not cause conflicts on his travel plans.


2. Take advantage of the off-peak seasons, and hours.

One needs not to always find a sale to land on budget air fare deals. Sometimes, it depends on the travel date and the hour of flight. Usually, flights scheduled on off-peak seasons (non-holiday periods) are cheaper compared to other dates. Also, flying during late hours like midnight to dawn could be way more inexpensive than when flying while the sun is up.


3. Weigh the options.

There are a lot of travel agencies offering nice and attractive air fare deals and package tours. However, is the price alright? Are the destinations interesting? Are the benefits worth it? All these questions should be answered satisfactorily for a choice to be good. It is then not bad to canvass for options among different travel agencies. Who knows? There could be something better than what you plan to settle for.


4. Subscribe for discount notices.

It is not always that one has the time to check every travel agency for their most recent discount offers. That is why it is advised to sign up for newsletters and announcements from the company. This way, notices about great deals will be delivered personally. Online ticketing sites usually have this ‘Subscribe’ button which people can click so announcements can be mailed on their e-mail regularly.


5. Use points to cut air fares.

Most airline companies or travel agencies offer pointing systems to their loyal customers. These points, often called flier miles, may be used to pay for the air tickets. It is often as good as cash. This means one can pay cheaper prices, or not pay anything at all.


6. Check the benefits of the deals.

Some flight promotions have this buy (quantity)-get (quantity)-discounted or free method. It is a great thing to take advantage of. People can pay less for their air fares when booking is done in groups. Also, discounts are given when tickets are for senior citizens or children.



Finding cheap flight promotions online is surely not as difficult as how it seems to be. There is always an online ticketing website of a respected travel agency to surely provide all abovementioned deals.

Monday, August 6, 2012

Quick Facts about the 2012 London Olympics


After four years of enthusiastic anticipation (and thousands of air tickets to London sold), the 2012 London Olympics has finally set to light the torch at the Olympic Stadium.


Although some events had already started prior to the opening ceremony, the excitement didn’t die down a bit. So to heighten it up, why not learn some quick facts about the 2012 London Olympics, and the whole sports competition, itself?

  • The Olympics is believed to originate from Ancient Greece but truth is no one knows where it had started. The most popularly accepted legend though was that it was started by Heracles, a Roman and Greek mythology character 


  • During the ancient times, the Olympics served as the symbol of peace as joining cities would set aside their feuds and wars just so they could compete properly

  • The term ‘gymnasium’ was derived from the Greek word ‘gymnos’ which means nude. This was used because the participants in ancient Olympics were required to complete their events with their clothes off

  • During the Olympics in 1900, there were only a few spectators who attended the event. (Perhaps, the air fares were too high?)

  • At least one of the colors of the Olympic rings is used in every national flag in the world

  • During the 1912 Olympics in Stockholm, the gold medals were really made out of pure gold

  • The tradition of holding opening ceremonies for Olympics was started with the London Olympics in 1908

  • London has been host to the Olympics for three times already: 1908, 1948, and the present, 2012

  • The 2012 London Olympics is also referred to as the Games of XXX Olympiad, and London 2012

  • So far, London is the only city in the United Kingdom to have hosted the Olympics

  • The oldest torchbearer ran a 12,000-km distance without her cane for the 2012 London Olympics. She is Diana Gould, 100 years old


  • Olympic mascots were first used in summer 1972 after it was approved by the International Olympic Committee in Munich, Germany

  • Almost four billion people were expected to grab air tickets to London to watch the events

  • For the Opening Ceremonies of the 2012 London Olympics, the stadium will be transformed into a British countryside – complete with meadows, fields, rivers and even herds of sheep. The production is entitled the ‘Isles of Wonder’ and is directed by award-winning directors Danny Boyle and Stephen Daldry

  • There will be a total of 205 nations participating on the 2012 London Olympics

The 2012 London Olympics is a remarkable event for everybody as it is another manifestation of the unity which binds the different nations in the world.




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Thursday, July 12, 2012

How to Stay on Budget when in Beijing




Contrary to the belief of others, it is definitely not a difficult thing to go around Beijing, China without shedding so much cash. Spending a fortune and making the most out of the experience when in this beautiful city could be rendered as an option as long as you know what to do. And mind you, the list of tips on keeping your trip to Beijing low-budget and worth it does not end after you purchase cheap air tickets.

Here are the top three suggestions to make your flights to Beijing really economical:

      STAY ON BACKPACKERS' INN



If you can go on without too much luxury in terms of accommodation, why not grab the chance? Sure, there are a lot of opulent hotels in Beijing and each offers very tempting packages. But there are also a lot of simple dormitories and inn around the city which provide the same comfort and security. Although it would require more effort in finding nice and cheap places, at least it would save you from paying a lot for a place you would most likely see only during the night.


      SETTLE FOR CHEAPER FOOD



First class restaurants are abundant in Beijing; but if you want to stay on budget, skip those lavish places and resort to the clean canteens and street food stalls around the city. The presentation of the meals may not be as pretty, but the taste of food sold on those smaller establishments could totally rival those in classy ones.


      PLAN AN ITINERARY BEFORE THE TRIP




Being impulsive will surely make you spend more money. Thus, you should design an itinerary prior to your tour around the city. Plan ahead and find the places where entrance fees are cheap, if not free; and if possible, categorize these destinations according to its place so you won’t have to pay so much for transportation.





It is easy to stay on budget as long as you want it. So buy those air tickets and do not hesitate about your trip. Just relax and enjoy.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

TRAVEL NEWS: Banyan Tree in Kerala, India Opens on December



Banyan Tree Hotels & Resorts will be opening ‘Banyan Tree Kerala’, its first resort in India by December of this year.

Banyan Tree Kerala is situated in Nedithuruthu, midway between Kochi and Alleppey in the southern state of Kerala. It will feature 59 villas and one houseboat for a maximum of four guests. All villas will have two private pools – one lap pool and one regular – in addition to a common outdoor swimming pool.

The resort will also offer four meeting rooms, two F&B outlets, a kid’s club, a gym and a spa with six treatment rooms.

Assistand Director Key Accounts of Banyan Tree Hotels and Resorts, Manas Sinha is quoted saying: “Our focus for Banyan Tree Kerala will be on the domestic luxury market. We are adopting a different business plan from what we practice elsewhere.”

Meanwhile, in order to boost brand recognition in the domestic market, Banyan Tree has organised a series of one-on-one meetings between high-end local tour operators and marketing representatives from its resorts in Asia, starting with one such meet in Kolkata on March 20.

Banyan Tree opening in India is very welcome, as we now have an option to send our high-end clients to a resort within the country. This will be handy for last minute decision-making by clients, and we will not have to bother about visas as in the case of overseas destinations”, Managing Director of Gainwell Travel Leisure Kolkata, Manoj Saraf said.

Banyan Tree had just acquired a plot of land in Goa for its second property in India which will be a 50 to 60-key resort, scheduled to be completed in the fourth quarter of 2014.

Within this year, the group will be opening a total of four resorts worldwide, including two in China and one in Vietnam while 2013 will see the launch of one Angsana in Vietnam and one Banyan Tree each in China and the Philippines.

Image from Google Images

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

TRAVEL NEWS: Making the Distance between Seoul and Chuncheon Closer through ITX Cheongchun High Speed Train


With the operations having officially begun on February 28, 2012 at 6:00 PM, the ITX Cheongchun High Speed Train marked the reality of a faster travel from Yongsan Station in Seoul to Chuncheon in Gangwon-do Province.

As the train speeds off to 180 km/hour, passengers could expect to cover the distance between the two places in just 73 minutes. A train departs from Yongsan Station every hour, and ten minutes after, one from Chuncheon would leave.

The route intersects four stations: Cheongnyangni, Pyeongnaehopyeong, Gapyeong and Namchuncheon. During rush hours on weekdays though, every train stops at Sangbong Station in Seoul and Sareung and Maseok Stations in Namnyangju.

The double decker-train is provided with facilities assuring every passengers of utmost convenience. There are restrooms and nursing room for mothers.

Train tickets are sold through easily-operated ticket vending machines positioned at every station. A trip from Yongsan to Chuncheon, and back, will cost 6,900 won while a trip starting from or to Cheongnyangni will cost 6,000 won.

ITX Cheongchun High Speed Train operates daily from 6:00 AM to 10:00 PM.

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Revised Flight Surcharge Rates from Emirates, Cathay Pacific and Singapore Airlines


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: 
Starting March 1, 2012, there will be a slight increase in the amount of fuel surcharges of airline companies Emirates, Cathay Pacific and Singapore Air. This applies to tickets issued on or after the given date, including those of infants and children.


Summary of the revised amounts of fuel surcharges is charted below:

EMIRATES (one-way surcharges only)

From UAE to GCC, Middle East, South Asian Region


Economy Class : Dh60
First Class/Business Class : Dh390

From UAE to Africa, Europe, Far East, Australasia

Economy Class : Dh120
First Class/Business Class: Dh500

From UAE to Americas

Economy Class : Dh170
First Class/Business Class: Dh610


CATHAY PACIFIC

Between Hong Kong, Southwest Pacific, North America, Europe, Africa, Middle East and Indian Subcontinent


USD 133.20
HKD 1039.00
CAD 135.80
NZD 162.00

Between Japan and Korea
Between New York and Vancouver

USD 29.50
HKD 230.00
NZD 36.00


SINGAPORE AIR

Between Singapore and Hong Kong


USD 29.50

Between Hong Kong and San Francisco

USD 133.20


The revision on the amount of fuel surcharges is implemented with the guarantee to improve the facilities of the said airline companies. For assistance in flight bookings, visit AirTicketonSale.com now. 


References:

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

TRAVEL NEWS: Hainan’s Duty Free Stores Enjoy Huge Popularity



Duty Free Stores in the Hainan province are enjoying huge popularity and profit as off-shore duty free shops. Sanya and Haiku airport duty-free stores are drawing crowds of cash-rich Chinese who are eager to splurge on branded goods.


Unlike outlets in China international airports which can only offer duty-free goods to Chinese travellers leaving the country, the Hainan stores can sell to local tourists without requiring an outbound ticket.


The tropical island is treated as an off-shore location where Chinese returning to the mainland can buy tax-free branded goods with a wider selection, often available at lower prices.


Launched early last year, this pilot programme exempts Chinese tourists in Hainan from paying import duties which can be as high as 40% for cosmetics.



Branded goods in China are usually more expensive than same products abroad. Coupled with hefty consumption and value-added taxes, the average total levy can add up to about 60%. This jacks up the prices of luxury goods in China and they end up costing about 70% more than similar goods in France and 50% more than those in United States.


“Hopefully, more Chinese people will be able to enjoy better prices and convenience offered by off-shore duty-free stores without having to leave the country,” said Sanya store’s spokesman Ms. Jessica Zhao.



The Sanya store racked up an impressive 800 million yuan (S$159 million) in sales in its first eight months of offering 100-plus brands of luxury items duty-free to Chinese tourists last year.


Experts expect to see more duty-free stores mushrooming across China in the next three to five years.


“The central government had set the trend and the conditions are in place,” said Central University of Finance and Economics’ Professor Li huan, who noted that are applying to become duty-free havens.


China’s southernmost island province hopes to take advantage of its “4S” reputation – sea, sand, sunshine and now, shopping.


Because of the huge popularity of these duty free stores, several travel agencies have included duty-free shopping to their Hainan tour schedules.


“We have added duty-free shopping to all our tour packages to Hainan and will arrange regular shopping-themed tours in the future,” said Zhang Lingjie, Deputy Director of the Domestic Tour department at China International Travel Service (CITS) in Beijing.


Hotels nearby the stores are also benefitting from the influx of guest, noting that the number of bookings have increased dramatically since the opening of the Sanya store.


Airline companies, too have added extra flights to meet the growing demand for Sanya flights.


Image source:

Thursday, February 23, 2012

EVENTS: Mardi Gras New Orleans 2012



Mardi Gras is one big holiday in New Orleans, it means music, parades, picnics, floats and excitement! Everyone is wearing purple, green and gold, some even adorned themselves with the long beads they caught from the beautiful floats. People sit on the ground throwing balls, playing music, having picnic while they watch the crowds walk by between parades.

During Mardi Gras, all of the businesses and roads are practically shut down -- people are walking everywhere and meeting new friends. People are dressed in crazy costumes, kids are everywhere, and the air is oozing with fun and excitement!


The highlights of the festivities are the Mardi Gras Parade Krewes where one can get treasure items being thrown from different floats like anodized aluminums that depict the parade theme on one side and the Krewe's emblem on the other called doubloons, cups, long pearl beads and stuffed animals.

Each year there are dozens of parades in New Orleans and the surrounding area, and this year is no different. Parades begin Sunday, February 5, 2012 and continue until Mardi Gras day, February 21, 2012.

Each Mardi Gras Parade Krewe has a unique history and theme. Some have been around for decades, while others have been in existence for just a few years. Krewe of ZULU is
well known for its interesting history and "golden nugget" (coconut) parade throws. Mardi Gras Indians is about beautiful beaded and feathered costumes they hand design throughout the entire year. Krewe of Bacchus features national celebrity monarchs each year, and draws hundreds of thousands of visitors. Krewe of Rex is the origin of many traditions of Mardi Gras, including its colors of purple, green and gold, as well as the collectible doubloon coins and Krewe of Endymion quickly emerged as one of Carnival's 'Super-Krewes' in 1974 with the inclusion of more floats and celebrity guests.



Usually days have several parades booked back to back, so whether you are on St. Charles Avenue with the family, catching beads from a Central Business District balcony or enjoying the floats on Canal before a night in the French Quarter, plan for a day of Mardi Gras magic!

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

TRAVEL NEWS: Myanmar to Introduce E-visas

 
Tourists who are planning to visit Myanmar will no longer need to go to Myanmar embassy to apply for visa starting on March.

The country’s Ministry of Hotels and Tourism is pushing for a significant liberalisation of the country’s visa regulations and is planning to introduce an electronic visa application system beginning next month.



Union Minister, U Tint San said “We are trying to introduce an e-visa system from March, that would allow international visitors to apply for a visa from anywhere via the Internet, before visiting Myanmar”.

The ministry’s efforts to roll out an e-visa system were first unveiled in January. The pilot project will be start this month before it is officially launched in March.

U Tint San mentioned that the ministry is also working to attract direct international flights to airports at Bagan and Ngapali “in the near future”.

“We are also in discussions with other ministries to allow tourists to enter or exit the country at checkpoint by either air or land,” he added.

Presently, tourists who would like to enter Myanmar by land need to face quite a number of travel restrictions. Only a handful of border crossings are open to foreigners and a regulation introduced in mid-2011 which requires tourists to enter and exit at the same checkpoint are just few of them.

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Travel News: 2011, Busiest-ever year for Changi Airport



Records showed that 2011 is the busiest-ever year for Singapore’s Changi Airport. It handled over 45 million passengers for the first time ever last year.

The airport registered 46.5 million passenger movements and 302,000 aircraft movements in 2011, an increase of 10.7 % and 14.5 % over the year before, respectively.

December 2011 was also recorded as the airport’s busiest ever month with 4.53 million passenger movements which is about 11.4 % more than its succeeding year and 27,700 aircraft movements, showing a 16.0 % increase from last year.

The substantial increase in the airport’s passenger and aircraft movements were attributed to the strong travel demand in Asia-Pacific. South-east Asia and North-east Asia were the two best performing regions registering double-digit growth, while traffic to and from South Asia and South-west Pacific also enjoyed positive growth.

Jakarta, Hong Kong, Kuala Lumpur, Bangkok and Manila occupied the top five positions among Changi Airport’s top 10 routes. On the other hand Taipei, Manila, New Delhi, Melbourne and Hong Kong registered the strongest percentage growth with at least half a million passengers who travelled to Singapore last year.
 
It should also be noted that seven new carriers joined the airport’s portfolio of airlines in 2011. They are Air Macau, Hong Kong Airlines, Finnair, TransAsia Airways, IndiGo and Lao Airlines.


News Source:
TTG Asia

Image Source:
SingaporePictures

Monday, February 6, 2012

India Plans to Extend VOA Policy to 13 more Countries



The Indian government is planning to extend visas on arrival (VOA) to citizens of 13 more countries including Malaysia and Thailand according to a source from India’s Ministry of Tourism.

Based from a report published in India’s “The Economic Times”, other countries which are being touted as potential beneficiaries of the VOA policy extension are Brunei, France, Germany, Spain, Sweden, Russia, Ukraine, Kazakhstan, Brazil and South Africa .


The report also stated that the VOA facility would be extended within a year to airports in Hyderabad, Kochi, Bangalore and Goa, adding to the four active airports such as Kolkata, New Delhi, Mumbai and Chennai.

Currently there are 11 nations which are benefiting from the said policy, namely Luxembourg, Finland, New Zealand, Japan, Cambodia, Laos, Vietnam, Myanmar, Indonesia, Philippines and Singapore. In 2011, records showed that only slightly more than 10,000 VOA applications from nationals of these countries were granted.

Anju Desai, vice president of Mumbai-based HMA Travel was quoted saying: "The countries earmarked for the VOA are major source markets and will open the floodgates of inbound tourism. We have received complaints about delays in issuance of Indian visas from our missions abroad. Now, all that will end and seamless travel will begin."

In relevance to the issue, the Indian High Commission in Malaysia released a statement clarifying that the Indian Government had not yet taken any decision to extend VOAs to Malaysian nationals.



News Source:
TTG Asia

Image Source:
EvisaAsia

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Getting To Know Guangzhou China



Guangzhou, historically known as Canton or Kwangchow is the capital and largest city of Guangdong province situated in the southern part of China on the Pearl River. It is considered as a key national transportation hub and trading port. Although Guangzhou is leading a hectic way of life, there are several tourist spots around the metropolis which offers relaxing atmosphere and panoramic views that will surely take the stress away caused by the noisy and busy streets of the city.


The outskirt of Guangzhou is a perfect getaway to have peaceful and tranquil atmosphere away from the busy metropolis. The hilly district on the north-eastern part of Guangzhou offers a scenic view of the city. The famous Yuexiu Park can also be found within the district. Yuexiu Park is the largest park in downtown Guangzhou covering as area of 212.5 acres. The park is made of three artificial lakes and seven hills of Yuexiu Mountain, where its name came from. Tourists and locals alike are drawn by its perfect combination of cultural relics and ecological tourism.

Nearby sights can also be enjoyed by climbing the five-storied watch tower which was built during the Ming Dynasty. At present, the tower houses a historic museum which is also worth a visit.
After exiting the park, two large hotels and a market can be seen. Twice every year, traders and customers from all parts of China meet in this particular place for a trade fair. Just nearby is the Orchid Garden where one can see the astonishing sight of 100 orchid species growing on the garden’s 18-hectare territory.

Another place worth exploring which is within the vicinity is the South China Botanical Garden. It is considered as one of the largest Botanical Garden in the world boasting a record number of 5000 tropical and sub-tropical plants, grown locally or imported from other countries.


Moving in to the centre of the city, visitors can see the Guangxiao Temple – one of the region’s oldest and grandest temple. The temple possesses a solemn and imposing aura. The key structure of the temple is the Mahavira Hall which sits on the high pedestal with the Bell and Drum tower erecting on both sides. Inside this hall are three statues of Buddha, Sakyamuni in the centre, Manjusri on the left and Visvabhadra Bodhisattva on the right, known as the Three Saints of Huayan. There is also a pagoda built to house Huineng’s hair, Huineng is one of the six founders of Chinese Buddhism who saved his hair in the temple itself when he became a monk. The two oldest iron pagodas which happen to be the oldest of its kind in China can also be found in the Guangxiao Temple.

The tomb of King Nanyue which is located at the Jeifang Bei Road always attracts large number of tourists. It is hidden 20 meters underground made up of 750 huge stones with colourful murals. The mausoleum also features more than 1,000 pieces of cultural relics, bronze ware and terra cotta. The main highlight of the place is the silk-jade garment made up of 2,291 pieces of jade – a one of its kind in the whole world. Seeing this fascinating work of art is quite an experience so set aside any hesitation and start looking for the cheap air tickets to Guangzhou!

Other exciting places visitors must explore to get the most from their Guangzhou trip are Temple of the Six Banyan Trees which features the giant statue of Guan Yin, the Huaisheng Mosque presenting a good example of Chinese tolerance and shows proof of ancient connections between China and Arabia, Ancestral Temple of the Chen Family and the Culture Park which offers lots exciting activities and attractions.
All these and more waiting for you to explore in the city of Guangzhou, start planning your trip and remember to include all these exciting places in your itinerary for a memorable trip! Several online travel companies offer China tour packages so budget won’t be a hindrance as well.

Monday, January 30, 2012

Exploring New Delhi

Reasons Why You Must Grab The Best Deal to India

New Delhi is the capital city of India known for its tree-lined boulevards and home to numerous national institutions, museums and landmarks. It is considered as one of the fastest growing cities of the world with a population nearing three hundred thousand residents. That is why one negative impression of first time tourist in this city is its tenacious touts and crush of mechanical and human traffic. However we cannot deny the fact that amidst these negative things, New Delhi is a place rich in history and amazing ancient monuments which made this place worthy of an air ticket to visit India.


Delhi represents two very different worlds, the “old” and the “new”. New Delhi was built as the imperial capital of India by the British while Old Delhi served as the capital of Islamic India. Visitors can easily have a taste of both worlds by immersing themselves in medieval-flavoured bazaars of New Delhi or chilling out in the modern cafe’s and bars in the New Delhi.


New Delhi is also home for to two UNESCO Heritage Sites namely Humayun’s Tomb and Qutub Minar. This two ancient historical places are must-see places when you book air tickets to New Delhi. Considered as two of the most popular tourist destinations in India, these monuments represent the ancient history of India.




Humayun’s Tomb was designed by a Persian architect named Mirak Mirza Giyas for Humayun’s widow Hamina Banu Begum. This tomb later established a standard for all Mughal monuments, such as the Taj Mahal which followed its design.




Qutub Minar is a 72.5 meters fluted red sandstone tower covered with intricate carvings and verses of the Qur’an. The construction of this monument signifies the Muslim domination of Delhi and as a minaret for the muezzin to call the faithful to prayer. Qutub Minar is the first monument built by a Muslim ruler in India which began the new style of art and architecture that came to be known as Indo-Islamic style.




Another historical structure worth spending for an air ticket in India is the India Gate located in the ceremonial Rajpath Avenue in New Delhi. This monument is erected in honour of the Indian soldiers who died during the Afghan wars and World War II, names of all those soldiers were inscribed on the walls.




Aside from these magnificent monuments, New Delhi is the best place to sample authentic Indian cuisines. Have a taste of the meaty Mughlai curries, plump South Indian idlis (rice cakes), wood fired pizzas and squishy sashimi to complete your New Delhi experience.


Don’t let petulant first impressions stop you from visiting India. Create a travel now for wonderful moments to last a lifetime.

:)

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Affordable Adventure Travel Destinations in Asia

Are you the type of traveller who looks for adrenaline pumping activities during your holiday vacation but short of budget to afford the trip to popular adventure destinations? Travelling to Asia can be the best alternative as cheap air fares are commonly available for flights bound to the different countries in Asia.

Buying online air tickets from established travel companies can be cheaper especially during promotional period rather than going to the direct website of airlines companies. Thus most travellers who are planning a trip to Asia resort to online booking to get the cheapest air ticket. Although most of the famous adventure destinations can be found in expensive-to-travel continents, Asia offers numerous places which guarantee a vacation full of adrenaline rush. Here are some of the places that promise a smashing holiday:



Bali, Indonesia



Most travellers thought of Bali as a romantic and relaxing place to go because of its spectacular beaches. Aside from being an ideal getaway for sun and sand lovers, Bali offers adrenaline pumping activities as well. The big waves of its beaches are a big hit for surfers from around the world. Visitors can also try ocean raft sightseeing or snorkelling for more adventures. For those who love the rapids, white water rafting in the Ayung and Unda Rivers can be the highlight of the trip.


Thailand



If you are planning to go to Thailand for a holiday trip but still hesitant to do it, forget the hesitation because this country is filled to the core with adventures that will surely make your blood pumping. Inland activities such as jungle treks in the Northern Mountains, mountain climbing, canopy tours and elephant rides will surely make travellers sweat while having a good work out. Other activities worth trying are cave exploration, scuba diving, surfing and kayaking.


Ladakh India



Climbing the rugged mountains of the Northern Border of India can be physically demanding however it can also be a lifetime experience for those who crave for adventure. Different forms of Buddhist culture can be seen dotting the region as traveller trek along the steep mountainside of Ladakh. White water rafting is also a popular sport in this part of India. The ultimate test of courage and physical fitness will be conquering the River Azkar known for its wild raging rapids and cold waters.


Kota Kinabalu, Malaysia



Climbing the tallest peak in Malaysia which is the Kota Kinabalu is one of the reasons why travellers search for cheap air tickets to Sabah. This activity is commonly popular for those who seek adventure during their trip. Aside from climbing the 13,400 foot peak of Kota Kinabalu adventure lovers can also enjoy camping out in the jungle and have a chance to see untamed wild animals wandering free.



Vietnam



The country’s national park Cuc Phoung is famous to tourists because of its more than 300 species of tropical birds and a whooping 43 million varieties of flora and fauna. Trekking through the forests of Vietnam can bring each traveller closest to the wildlife and nature at its best.



Bhutan



Bhutan is one of those destinations waiting to be discovered by adventure lovers. An archeological paradise, Bhutan is well-known for its magnificent monasteries and fortresses. Travellers can trek through the trails that wind past them or bike through the countryside to explore the area. Other ways of touring this place is through kayaking or rafting which is more of a challenge.


Travellers who crave for adrenaline rush need not spend a lot to have a dose of thrilling activities. With several cheap air fares available for Asian countries, adventure comes in affordable price.

Monday, January 16, 2012

Trips Back In Time

Travelling is one thing that most of us love to do. It gives us the opportunity to explore other places, discover new things and learn more about other people’s culture and history. While it is common for everyone to search for the cheapest air fare, looking for historical sites our place of destination has to offer, contributes a great deal when it comes to planning a holiday vacation.

It is very usual that before buying our air ticket online, we make sure that we won’t just have enjoyable experience from our trip but it will also enrich our knowledge about the country’s history, people and culture. Here are the top historical sites commonly visited by tourist around the globe:


Egypt



With numerous attractive travel deals in the internet offering cheap air fares and accommodation, exploring the historical sites of Egypt such as the Great Pyramid and Sphinx of Giza has become more affordable. Be amazed at the stunning beauty of the oldest Seven Wonders of the World as you learn more about the ancient civilization’s pharaohs and kings, culture and history. Other must-see places are Valley of the Kings, Abu Simbel, Egyptian Museum, Saqqara, Luxor and Karnak.


Rome



Sometimes buying air tickets online is cheaper from online travel companies than going to the direct website of airlines companies, especially when travel companies are having promotions. Thus visiting Rome might no longer be too expensive for those who desire to see those magnificent and iconic buildings of Ancient Roman, Renaissance and Baroque architecture. Get up close with the ancient ruins of the Coliseum, Pantheon, the Roman Forum, Circus Maximus, Arch of Constantine and Fontana de Trevi and discover for yourselves why they are famous all over the world.


Petra



A UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1985, this famous “rock cut” architecture in Jordan will be worth of every effort searching for the cheapest air ticket. Petra is a “rock-carved rose red city” built by industrious Arab people called Nabataeans who settled in the southern part of Jordan around 100 B.C. This world’s wonder is known for its majestic and incomparable scenic spots that enchant tourists of all races.


Taj Mahal



For most tourists, the main reason of joining India tours, is seeing one of the most stunning monument in the world famous not only for its beauty but for its romantic story as well. Known to many as “a symbol of everlasting love”, Taj Mahal is the most beautiful structure built by Mughals or Muslim rulers in India. Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan built the Taj Mahal in memory of his third wife Mumtaz Mahal. Nearby tourist attractions such as Fatehpur Sikri, Akbar’s Tomb, Agra Fort, Temples of Vrindavan, Bharatpur Bird Sanctuary, Ranthambore National Park and Sariska Wildlife Sanctuary will definitely complete the India experience.


The Parthenon



A trip to Greece won’t be complete without setting foot on the ruins of the Parthenon. This historically rich structure was built by Pericles in the mid-5th century B.C to serve as a temple for the Greek Goddess Athena whom people of Athens regard to as their virgin patron. Parthenon symbolizes not only the highest point of Greek Art but as a symbol of Athenian Democracy as well.


Machu Picchu



Often referred to as “The Lost City of the Incas”, Machu Picchu is a pre-Columbian 15th century Inca site situated on a mountain ridge above the Urubamba Valley in Peru. It is considered highly significant as a relatively intact cultural site because the site was never known to the Spanish during their conquest. After the discovery of American historian Hiram Bingham in 1911, Machu Picchu has become a famous tourist destination.


Angkor Wat



In recent years travel destinations in Asia are becoming more and more popular to tourists not only because of their beauty and historical value but also because of several travel deals to different countries in Asia offering cheap air fares and discounted hotel accommodations. One of the places that are attracting lots of tourists is this ancient temple featuring top classical style Khmer architecture located in Angkor, Cambodia known as Angkor Wat. This temple was built for King Suryavarman II in the early 12th century as his temple and capital city. Angkor Wat is admired by many because of the grandeur and harmony displayed in its architectural design, extensive bas-reliefs and numerous devatas (guardian spirits) adorning its walls.



Although books and internet can provide us the essential facts about these ancient wonders of the world, seeing them up close will give us an experience of a lifetime that we can only get from travelling.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Sydney’s Best Destinations

Being Australia’s financial and economic hub, Sydney has grown to become a wealthy and prosperous city, with iconic landmarks and heritage buildings that entice million of tourists to purchase air tickets to Australia. Sydney is also home to several internationally known museums and galleries. It is also popular to tourists because of its large open spaces and natural areas that is why it is no wonder that Sydney is one of the top tourist destinations all over the world.


Sydney offers exciting places and activities to its visitors thus booking air tickets to Sydney guarantees a fun-filled holiday vacation. One of the attractions in the most populous city of Australia is the Sydney Tower. It is the tallest structure in Sydney located above Centrepoint shopping centre, as such it provides a spectacular view of the city’s amazing skyscrapers.



The Sydney Harbour Bridge is a must-see structure if you are visiting Australia. Nicknamed as “Coathanger” because of its arch design, it gives a dramatic view of the city, the harbour and the nearby Sydney Opera House. According to the Guinness World Records, it is the world’s widest long-span bridge and the fifth longest spanning-arch bridge.  A stroll on this magnificent bridge especially at dawn or dusk provides a breathtaking view of Sydney enough to make every visitor to develop a strong liking for the city.



One of the UNESCO World Heritage Site, Sydney Opera House is an iconic building conceived and largely built by a Danish architect Jorn Utzon. Utzon received the architecture’s highest honour in 2003 – the Pritzker Prize for designing the most distinctive building of the century and most famous performing arts centres in the world. Sydney Opera House hosts over 1,500 performances every year attended by roughly 1.2 million people. It is also one of the most visited tourist attraction in Sydney with more than seven million people visiting the site each year.



Darling Harbour is a perfect chill-out place situated in a western outskirt of the Sydney’s central business area. It is considered as the city’s favourite destination for leisure and entertainment featuring more than 40 restaurants, 30 bars, cafes, museums, aquarium and parks.



Located at the Darling Harbour is one of the world’s largest Aquarium – the Sydney Aquarium. Children and adults alike will be amazed seeing the world’s largest collection of all-Australian aquatic life. It boasts more than 12,000 aquatic animals from 650 species in spectacular habitat display. Visitors can have a glimpse of Australia’s famous marine life at a very close distance at the Open Ocean exhibit featuring massive oceanarium comprising of underwater channels.



Just next to the Sydney Aquarium is another tourist attraction which is the Wild Life Sydney previously named as WildLifeWorld. It brings some of Australia’s unique animals such as koala and kangaroo at the doorstep of the city’s central district. It also offers visitors a chance to see various species of animals, birds, reptiles and insects commonly found in the Australian bush, swamps, rainforests and deserts.


Large open spaces are one of the things that visitors like about Australia. Parks which are perfect for camping and taking leisure walks are also a popular tourist spot in Australia. The Sydney Olympic Park which had been the venue of 2000 Summer Olympics is now a premier destination for sporting, entertainment, cultural activities and considered as Australia’s largest urban parklands.



Families will surely have a great time at Luna Park, Sydney’s premier amusement park featuring fun and games for the whole family. Entrance to the park is free thus visitors just need to pay for the rides and games plus since it is located at Milson’s Point at the north side of Sydney Harbour Bridge, the park provides an amazing view of the Sydney Harbour.


A trip to Australia won’t be complete without visiting the famous beaches located just few kilometres away from the city such as the Bondi Beach, Manly Beach and Double Bay. These beaches are popular for water activities such as surfing, scuba diving and snorkelling. If you are not into water sports, you’ll have a great time enjoying their pristine sands, turquoise water and relaxed atmosphere.


From the iconic structures to sandy beaches, Australia is full of interesting and thrilling activities to offer. As such, most tourists opt to buy an air ticket to Australia to spend a holiday vacation.