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Wednesday, July 30, 2014         

Travel News

What's the only downside to the VIP secret called the London Pass? The wrath of your fellow tourists when they see you jumping the line at visitor sites like the Tower of London.

Laptop littered with vacation photos? And dare I mention your smartphone? There are dozens of solutions for storing and organizing your snapshots. But how to choose? That depends on your particular habits and desires.

In the air, Etihad Airways has introduced a sleep program that includes all-natural mattresses, mood lighting, noise-canceling headphones, pillow mist and calming pulse-point oil.

Group tours sound easy: Choose a destination and the tour company plans your trip, delivering you to hotels, restaurants and attractions. You don't have to Google or organize a thing.

TripExpert.com • Are you sick of searching through crowdsourced hotel reviews while trying to figure out if the bed will be good enough? A solution is here.

Airlines boost take from passengers • The latest study on passenger fees collected by the world's airlines reached a predictable conclusion: Airlines are pocketing more than ever.

Kamino app, website help you set off on an urban adventure

Some travelers want to vacation in a city -- they enjoy the skyline of tall buildings and basking in the concrete jungle, while others prefer to soak in the beauty that nature has to offer.

Cambodia will build a memorial at the Tuol Sleng Genocide Museum to remember at least 12,000 people tortured and killed there during the radical Khmer Rouge regime, officials said Thursday.

From its frontier infancy through the mid-20th century, the only Las Vegas was downtown Las Vegas. But the city center known as Glitter Gulch lost the glamour battle post-1960 with the newer Strip.

In October, after a quick and gluttonous lunch at Hog & Hominy restaurant in Memphis, I swore I had just eaten the best pie of my life: the Beauregarde, named for Roald Dahl's gum-chewing brat, a certain Violet whose nasty habit led to her expanding into a giant piece of fruit.

www.Spinlister.com • Spinlister's shared bikes are an easy way to get around town. • What it does • What's hot • What's not

The flood of weapons uncovered by airport screeners continues to grow, despite repeated warnings by the Transportation Security Administration. In May the TSA discovered a record 65 firearms on passengers in one week, including 45 loaded guns.

It is not often that a prison is a must-see tourist attraction. Welcome to Dublin, where the Kilmainham Gaol is a national treasure. It has been called an Irish Bastille. The aging prison is a monument forever linked to the Irish independence movement.

When United Airlines and Delta Air Lines announced plans recently to overhaul their loyalty rewards programs, industry experts assumed the changes would benefit airlines at the expense of passengers. Now a new study calculates exactly how much fliers will lose.

TravelByDrone.com • Here's a website that's taking armchair travel to new heights. • What it does • What's hot • What's not

Downtown Santa Fe is enough New Mexico for some people. But in between gallery crawling, jewelry browsing and pepper tasting, you might like some elbow room. Some open country.

If you want to travel light, it's not merely what you pack that matters — it's what you don't pack. Yet you need not be a minimalist with featherweight shirts and quick-drying underwear to be a carry-on-only flier.

E-book for female travelers • If there were a Girl Scout badge for travel, you'd surely earn it after using these tips.

Federal fees not fliers' biggest bother • Here's a surprise: Most air travelers wouldn't mind paying more in fees — if it helps cut lines at airports.

It was a fading Friday afternoon in the peaceful valley northwest of Los Angeles, and that meant Marion Leeman and friends were perched along the slow-moving downtown strip with their usual signs.

If fast and free wireless Internet is a priority when you book a hotel room, don't expect speedy Wi-Fi at pricey chain hotels. That was a key conclusion in a new study by the website HotelWiFiTest, which collected and analyzed Wi-Fi speeds from 1,309 hotels nationwide.

Winerist.com • Why settle on wine tasting for just a day or two when there are wine-centric hotels, tours and experiences around the world from which to choose? • What it does • What's hot • What's not

Lori Gallo is feeding chunks of beef heart to Conrad, who is 2 years old and possessed of a piercing stare and incisors that could — make that, would — rip you apart if given a chance.

Upstart Norwegian Air Shuttle is ruffling rivals' feathers with its plans to bring the kind of low-fare service offered domestically by Southwest and JetBlue to flights across the Atlantic.

Wanderu.com • Don't knock traveling by bus until you check the price. • What it does • What's hot • What's not

The Tower of London is history. The infamous Norman castle is nearly 1,000 years old. It is associated with such historical figures as William the Conqueror and Richard the Lionheart.

A section of Los Angeles International Airport was evacuated last week when a Stanford University professor was arrested on charges of bringing a World War II-era grenade through a security checkpoint in a carry-on bag.

Gogobot.com: A major overhaul of the popular Gogobot app gives users more trip-planning features and a mobile-friendly design that's easy to use and easy on the eyes.

The National World War I Museum has weathered a whiplash arc from prominence to decline and back to distinction. The museum is working to highlight the story of a war that is often overshadowed in U.S. history by other conflicts.

Government studies have debunked the myth that air circulated in commercial planes is packed with disease-causing germs. Now comes a study that raises fears about germs on cabin surfaces.

Business travelers, rejoice. And then cross laundry and packing off your to-do list.

Pullman Rail Journeys was started in 2012 by Iowa Pacific Holdings, a company that owns or partners with several iconic passenger train lines in places like Machu Picchu, Peru; the Rio Grande Valley in Colo­rado; and Mount Hood in Oregon.

A new analysis suggests that some airlines are carrying slightly fewer passengers per plane, but it may seem crowded because more room has been set aside for passengers in the front of the cabin and less to fliers in the back.

It's a website that lets runners, hikers, mountain bikers and others share their favorite trails. Traveling to a new country and hankering for a brag-worthy trail to run? Crowd-source it from another passionate enthusiast before you pack your shoes.

Saving for your dream trip just got easier with this website. » Cost: $7.95 fee to print and mail your Travel Savings Card to you » What it does: Helps you achieve your travel goals by providing a system for saving money and organizing your travel budget.

Don't feel sorry for airlines yet. Airlines made 4 percent less on baggage fees in 2013 than the previous year, according to federal statistics released last week.

Across section of Americans awakened early and waited in line for hours to be among the first to ride to the top of the Washington Monument, open to the public Monday for the first time in nearly three years after an earthquake chipped and cracked the towering symbol.

The Titanic didn't have them. Neither did the snooty Queen Elizabeth 2 or the swinging TV "Love Boat" Pacific Princess. But now many travelers refuse to cruise if they don't have a balcony cabin.

Trevolta.com • If Mom and Dad refuse to give you money for your travels, this website offers hope. • What it does • Cost • What's hot • What's not

In the last few years, the Transportation Security Administration has removed the full-body scanners that create nudelike images of passengers and restricted pat-down searches of children and seniors, among other changes.

Like ghosts from another time, the real geishas seem to float silently along the streets at twilight, making their way to teahouses and restaurants where they will entertain elite, powerful men.

It may be no surprise that the U.S.-based airline that has drawn the most complaints per passengers over the past five years is Spirit Airlines. After all, the Florida-based carrier is known for supertight seating and dozens of fees, including charges for soft drinks and carry-on bags.

AwayFind • Get more quality time out of your vacations, let alone weekends at home, with this app. • What it does • Cost • Available for • What's hot • What's not • Worth it

LAS VEGAS » Developers are announcing plans to build a 33-acre open-air music venue on the Las Vegas Strip to host a four-day Rock in Rio USA festival beginning next year.

LA CONNER, Wash. » Nearby tulip fields aren't the only reason to visit this little town. But with the Skagit Valley Tulip Festival running the whole month of April, that's undoubtedly why many visitors will have made the drive in recent weeks.

Dealscoopr.com • Here's a website that can help you keep tabs on travel deals for your favorite destinations around the globe.

If you thought airlines could find no new ways to squeeze more passengers into each plane, you are underestimating the resolve of the airline industry.

Sleep over at the Smithsonian • 38 performances honor the Bard • Springsteen exhibit set to open

UNIVERSAL CITY, Calif. » Where once gunfire and the roar of a motorcycle filled the air, the sound of high-pitched giggling can now be heard at Universal Studios Hollywood.

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. » Maybe you're planning your summer vacation. Or perhaps your daily life always has you on the go. Either way, when circumstances dictate you make quick, unplanned decisions about nutrition, you might not always make the most health­ful choices.

For those with a bit of flexibility and both time and money, TripCommon, a travel software company, recently completed beta testing for Hitlist, which works as a travel agent of sorts, monitoring fares between a home airport and a user's favored destinations.

One of the most tired cliches is that so-and-so doesn't actually sell such and-such; they sell peace of mind. Well, in this case it's true. The question is whether there is a market for that peace of mind among airline customers.

Las Vegas-based Allegiant Air has rolled out a roomier seat dubbed the "Giant Seat." It represents the latest way the airline industry has created new seating options for travelers willing to pay more for extra elbow room.

BonVoyaging.com • Here's the latest trip-planning website that can help you craft your own guidebook.

The late, great Australian art critic Robert Hughes once complained that "Crocodile Dundee" is still regarded by many Americans as a work of social realism. A rhetorical exaggeration, of course, but he had a point.

Returning from a recent leisure trip to Miami, Jerry Jorgensen landed in Detroit only to face one of the biggest frustrations of air travel: His bag was nowhere to be found.

Last Minute Travel deals • For those who can't plan ahead (procrastinators, you know who you are), here's another app to help you find travel savings.

There's a certain beauty to Death Valley -- a mosaic of colors from the salt flats and sand dunes to the striations of craggy peaks. Some years, stunning wildflowers bloom in spring and early summer.

If you're against letting airline passengers talk on cellphones, you've gained a powerful ally. The Global Business Travel Association, a trade group for the world's business travelers, submitted its opposition last week to a plan by the FCC to lift a ban on voice calls on planes.

Whoever said you can't save both time and money hasn't tried this parking app. ParkMe provides a "heat map" of real-time parking spaces in lots and garages that are available in 1,800 cities around the world.

It was a daunting challenge for a lone traveler in the African bush: Using only a tiny $23-a-day Fiat and my wits, I had to sneak around the six sleeping lions blocking the gravelly road ahead.

More and more air travelers are buying expensive first-class and business-class seats, and airlines are coming up with some creative amenities to keep those big spenders happy.

Findery lets you leave your mark • From the co-founder of Flickr comes a new travel app that's three parts photo-inspired sticky notes and one part treasure map.

The addition of airline bag fees several years ago created another annoyance: people who cram all their travel necessities into carry-on bags to avoid the fees. United Airlines recently began a crackdown.

AYEUX, France » There's a digital clock on display outside the visitors center in the charming Normandy town of Bayeux — but it doesn't tell the time. It's counting down the days until the 70th anniversary of D-Day in June.

In a city synonymous with theaters and night life, the 26-year-old from Munich was perched on a scarred wooden bench in a utilitarian room in lower Manhattan on a recent evening, straining to decode the methodical hubbub of arraignments in one of the nation's busiest courts.

MARATHON, Fla. » A portion of the historic Seven Mile Bridge, a Florida Keys icon, is to be saved for future generations after officials Wednesday approved a $77 million restoration and maintenance program that is to continue for the next 30 years.

California has always been linked with the idea of American possibility. It's the sun-drenched place where you go to leave the stuffy, decaying old world for a new life. But not everything here is shiny, new and full of potential.

Bill would void rule on full-fare ads • FLIGHTS FROM LAX TO SAUDI ARABIA

From farm to table to app directory • If you're a farm-to-table foodie or just a fan of farms and farmers, this website and app are for you.

Few things will ruin a cruise faster than feeling seasick. To help prevent motion sickness, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends staying hydrated, curbing alcohol and caffeinated drinks, eating small meals and limiting external stimuli.

It couldn't have been easier. No gas-swilling car, no rental agreement fine print, no overpriced parking lots. Just me, my DeutscheBahn rail pass, a carry-on bag and a suitcase.

Don't call them hot dogs and don't ask for ketchup. Those are the cardinal rules at Olneyville New York System, arguably the best-known Rhode Island spot for one of the state's signature dishes: hot wieners.

Four Seasons Hotels & Resorts, the luxury hotel company with 92 properties, including three in the Los Angeles area, will begin to offer guests customized beds, with mattress toppers that vary in firmness at the request of guests.

Ditch the hotel, grab the kids and "chillax" in a destination with room for the entire family.

DUBLIN » St. Patrick may have banished snakes and brought Christianity to Ireland, but perhaps his greatest feat was one of sheer endurance. After all, there were hundreds of other future saints roaming Ireland at the time, but Patrick is the one who gets the party.

LAS VEGAS » There was a time when gamblers tried to keep their trips to Las Vegas a secret. Now, visitors want loyalty points from mainstream hotel chains for the days they spend holed up in Strip casinos.

BAYFIELD, Wis. » Erno Hettinger stood atop a vast, frozen field of Lake Superior ice, hunched his back against whipping wind and gazed at the fantastic walls of icicles hanging from sandstone cliffs.

George Takei talks at "Star Trek" conventions about his role as Mr. Sulu. He tells soldiers and students about the role of Japanese-Americans during World War II. His new musical, "Allegiance" is based on his family's experience living in internment camps during the war.

NEW YORK » It's the wineries of New York's Finger Lakes that usually get the most attention from tourists, but a trail of restored homes, parks and museums may have visitors picking up a bit of women's history with their cabernet franc.

WASHINGTON » Despite the long, snowy winter in the Mid-Atlantic region, Washington's famous cherry blossom trees are expected to bring the first sure sign of spring between April 8 and 12, when they're predicted to reach peak bloom, the National Park Service said Tuesday.

Airlines strive to become more ‘green' • Airport adds pot 'amnesty boxes'

Localeur: This app offers travel tips from locals who discover and rediscover their cities as if they were on a hunt for hidden treasure.

DALLAS » Gabriel Barbier-Mueller bought his first samurai armor about 20 years ago from an antiques dealer in Paris, sparking a fascination that helped him create one of the most significant private collections in the world related to the Japa­nese warriors.

TAMPA, Fla. » Several Tampa Bay-area attractions, including the Busch Gardens theme park, will be part of a ticket pass booklet that's offered in other cities such as New York, Seattle and Toronto.

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security is pushing for private contractors to create a screening machine with "screen and walk" capability for use at the nation's 160 international airports.

FlightCar.com: The sharing economy speeds past just offering rides, to give travelers use of your car.

LAKE TAHOE, Calif. » "George Whittell," the tour guide said, "was born with a silver spoon in his mouth." So wealthy was Whittell's family that as a young man in San Francisco, he vowed he would never work a day in his life. He then set about vigorously pursuing that goal.

LIVERPOOL, England » It's the same barber shop where John Lennon got haircuts as a kid, the place immortalized in the Beatles song "Penny Lane." But instead of "a barber showing photographs" and "a banker sitting waiting for a trim," on this afternoon proprietor Adele Allan is snipping away on Jillian Keig.

SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico » Puerto Rico is building a water quality monitoring station to help protect a popular bioluminescent bay in the neighboring island of Vieques.

The report doesn't undertake any added science, but simply synthesizes previous studies, and the involvement of an insurance company might be cause for skepticism, but a recently issued white paper reaches a conclusion always worth repeating: Travel is good for you.

TOPEKA, Kan. » A new World War II exhibit starting this summer at the Eisenhower Presidential Library and Museum will pay tribute to the millions who fought, but organizers also have another purpose for the ambitious three-year project: getting young people engaged in the war's relevance.

The slew of storms that has pummeled the nation's Midwest and East Coast this winter has resulted in some horrible numbers: 77,000 canceled flights carrying nearly 6 million passengers so far this year.

Trekkel.com • This website service is a city primer and itinerary planning tool that considers the way you like to travel. • What it does • What's hot • What's not

MOSCOW » Once I came to Moscow to cover an urban ballooning expedition. In winter. But when the balloonists came face to frigid, wind-lashed face with the winter here -- well, we never got off the ground.

When airlines began charging for checked bags in 2008, they blamed the high cost of jet fuel for the move. But how much does it actually cost an airline in jet fuel to transport your suitcase?

Flight+ • This app offers up-to-the-minute info on delayed or canceled flights, whether you're the flier or picking up a traveler at the airport.

The world's airline industry has rebounded from the recession and expects 2014 to be the most profitable year on record, thanks to stable fuel prices and growing travel demand.

My friend Arcadia Kim has three children and a Harvard business degree, but when she tried to negotiate on our behalf with the lady in charge of exfoliation at the Dragonhill Spa in Seoul, South Korea, she did not stand a chance.

AMSTERDAM » Shortly before Anne Frank and her family went into hiding from the Nazis, she gave some of her toys to a non-Jewish girlfriend who lived in the building next door.

Emancipation edict on display for 3 days • WASHINGTON » The National Archives is placing the original Emancipation Proclamation on display in Washington to mark Black History Month.

In most luxury hotels, if you want wireless Internet access, you are going to have to pay. That trend may be changing. Sort of. Loews Hotels & Resorts announced last month that it will offer free Wi-Fi at all 18 of its hotels.

AFAR Travel Guide • Here's an app that offers up inspiring sights to add to your to-do list.

Amid the hoopla, there's plenty to do for free, including visits to one of the world's biggest breweries, two popular animal attractions, a science center and a towering monument that has come to define St. Louis.

For $13 you can play pinball until your arms fall off at Seattle's working pinball museum. The two-story storefront in Seattle's International District is filled with games from the 1960s to today.

That was the conclusion of a survey by the travel website Airfarewatchdog.com, which polled more than 6,100 travelers on the topic of "the Worst Major Airline Fees." • Also: High interest in travel to Colorado

The Spin(tm) real-time video-chat and photo-sharing app allows up to 10 friends can chat on the same channel, watch YouTube videos together, share photos and comment on them.

The typical visitor to Tokyo envisions a futuristic city of skyscraper canyons and electronic gadgets, but in the eastern part of the city, an older way of life persists.

The National WWII Museum in New Orleans plans a gallery commemorating the work of men and women who saved stolen cultural treasures from destruction by the Nazis — efforts also portrayed in a movie set for release in February.

Universal Orlando Resort is doubling the park space devoted to Harry Potter with its new Diagon Alley attraction opening this summer.

"Slim-line" seats, with thinner seat-back cushions, are increasingly popular with airlines because they weigh less and help squeeze in more passengers.

CarryOn deals with escalating savings, meaning that the more people who follow a trip, the more savings the service delivers.

New York, San Francisco and Portland, Ore., are wonderful cities that can't resist preening when passing mirrors to remind themselves just how wonderful they are. Pittsburgh is a wonderful city that doesn't even see the mirror.

The original, handwritten manuscript of "The Star-Spangled Banner" and the flag that inspired the song's lyrics will be displayed together at the Smithsonian in Washington, the first time the historic pieces are believed to have been shown side by side.

The world's airlines had one of their safest years on record in 2013. There were 29 airline accidents last year, which, combined, resulted in a record-low 265 fatalities.

This website will help you answer those age-old questions: Where do I go after I land? And more important, how much will it cost?

The bent backs and weary expressions found in the agricultural fields around Salinas, Calif., evoke the same compassion and empathy that affected beloved native son and author John Steinbeck about 75 years ago.

WESTMINSTER, Calif. » The flowering tree outside Tong Le's house in Southern California sprouts but one tiny yellow blossom in early winter. But by the time the Vietnamese community of Little Saigon readies for the Lunar New Year at the end of January, the branches of the hoa mai tree will brim with the yellow flowers that are ubiquitous during the annual celebration known as Tet.

Looking to save money and time, the airline industry has for years tried to come up with the fastest way to seat passengers. Now an academic study suggests airlines could cut boarding time by seating passengers based on how many carry-on bags they are hauling.

'Road Ninja' is a free mobile app that identifies your location and points you, exit by exit, toward gas stations, hotels, shops, camping, restaurants, pharmacies, coffee and more.

More than 25 million people have left their coats and shoes on their bodies, their laptops and 3-ounce liquids packed away and walked through a metal detector rather than a body scanner since the 2011 launch of the Transportation Security Administration's PreCheck program.

Here are travel toiletries you won't be able to live without, though they'll leave your wallet lighter.

Airline delays and cancellations have dropped significantly in the last few years. At least, that's what federal statistics show. But the numbers might not be telling us the whole story.

MEMPHIS, Tenn. » This Mississippi River city is proud of its barbecue, its fried chicken, its soul food. But the food scene here is often stereotyped because of it.

NEW YORK » The Olympics, the World Cup and commemorations of World War I, D-Day and the fall of the Berlin Wall are some of the events that will spotlight destinations like Sochi, Brazil, Sarajevo, Normandy and Berlin in 2014.

A drunken man gets tackled by a group of off-duty cops in November while trying to storm the cockpit on a flight from Warsaw to Toronto. An inebriated passenger on a January flight from Iceland to New York tries to grope and choke fellow travelers until crew and passengers bind him with duct tape.

Jetpac City Guides lets Instagram photos guide the way. This app provides a quick visual take on popular destinations — it's like having a concierge in the palm of your hand.

In Georgia, in this land of cotton, Civil War battlefields and big mess of traffic in Atlanta, it's hard to imagine that dinosaurs once roamed these hills of red clay millions of years ago.

WASHINGTON » A Vincent Van Gogh painting that has been hidden away at a Virginia estate for decades now has a new home at the National Gallery of Art.

Loud kids' parents ranked worst fliers • Conventions raise hotel room prices

Peek.com: With this website, you can spend more time having fun and less time searching for what to do.

Whether you're planning a trip in the new year and need some practical advice, or you'd like to give a coffee-table book filled with inspirational photos to someone on your Christmas list, there's a travel-themed book for you. Here are a few recently published books to consider, including the relaunch of Frommer's guidebooks.

Can't decide where to stay? Compare hotel options against home and apartment rentals, B&Bs, hostels and more at AllTheRooms.com.

Travel insurance slammed as bad deal • Car rental firms conserve water

LOS ANGELES » MANY movies have been shot at Los Angeles Union Station, but none can match the one you start filming in your head the moment you arrive from Alameda Street.

Wi-Fi Finder, HotelTonight • The regular Webbuzz columnist in off this week, but here are a couple of new or improved apps that make traveling easier.

Nation eyes ‘Thrones' to lift tourism • Hotel will stay open during upgrade • Hermitage holds holiday night tours

If you are among America's well-to-do, you may have noticed that the airline industry has been rolling out the red carpet for you lately. For good reason. The number of affluent travelers has risen in the last few years, according to a report by the travel marketing agency MMGY Global and research firm Harrison Group.

LAS VEGAS » For years, Las Vegas tourists have had no place to pay their respects to one of the glitzy town's founding fathers.

QUESTION: On a recent flight from Phoenix, I was selected to have my palms swabbed by the TSA. Then they told me my hands tested positive for explosives and put me in a room and searched me from head to toe. Of course, they found nothing.

SportsWhereIAm.com • On the road or on vacation? This website will help you find a sporting event at your destination.

CHIANG MAI, Thailand » I was in Bangkok and less than enamored. The nightlife is chaotic, as are the crowded streets, the tourist-laden temples and the city itself, so overflowing with skyscrapers and malls and concrete that it seems about to burst.

NAIROBI, KENYA » In Paul Salo­pek's first year of his trek across the globe, the reporter walked alongside his camels for days in Ethiopia without seeing glass or bricks or any other signs of modern humanity, ate a hamburger on a U.S. military base and was shadowed by minders in the Saudi desert.

Eating at airports gets more healthful • AMERICANS USING FEWER VACATION DAYS

Pinocular.com • Here's a website that helps you locate vacation rentals that match your interests. • What it does • What's hot • What's not

Are airline-affinity frequent-flier and other rewards credit cards worth an annual fee? That's a decision consumers need to ask themselves.

LONDON » There's no getting around it: The basics of life are pricey in London. Hotel rooms, taxis, restaurant meals and subway fares are among the most expensive in the world.

DALLAS » From the mug shots police took of Lee Harvey Oswald to the homicide report for the president he was accused of killing, a collection of rarely seen artifacts related to the assassination of John F. Kennedy has gone on display at Dallas City Hall.

www.Spottly.com • » What it does: Uses your smartphone and desktop photos and your own notes to make personal travel bucket lists. Lazy? You can use photos from the Internet or re-post other people's notes.

Are you tired of having airport security screeners toss away your bottles of water, shampoo or lotion? Change is on the way in some parts of the world. Battelle, a nonprofit research and development organization in Ohio, has built a screening device that London's Heathrow Airport began installing recently to test liquids carried by passengers onto planes.

You'd be surprised at how traveling at a slower pace can transform a road trip.

Plane-maker objects to seat squeeze • Safety messages get makeovers

PROVO, Utah » Time may be running short for hard-core "Star Wars" fans to see the real-life set used to portray Ana­kin Skywalker's childhood home of Mos Espa on the planet Tatooine.

Hawaii isn't known for its skyscrapers, though there are more than a few (Hyatt Regency Waikiki, ugh) in Hono­lulu and a smattering elsewhere in the islands.

Hotel guests pay up for rubdowns • No booking edge for green hotels

Here's a website that can help you plan vacations that are socially empowering and environmentally responsible.

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. » New York Yankees legend Mickey Mantle signed a baseball for Dennis Schrader in 1956, when Schrader was a 9-year-old boy attending a spring training game in Florida, leading to a lifelong obsession: He now has more than 4,600 signed baseballs, certified by Guinness as the largest such collection in the world.

Boost in business travel has caveat • Law's end likely to set off airfare war

It's an online home for storing your memorable travel locations as well as sharing your favorite global secrets with others.

You can view other travelers’ day-by-day itineraries and ask questions about places while building your own itinerary.

Young business travelers are more likely than older travelers to spend their company's money on expensive meals and first-class airline seats and to schedule vacation time during work trips.

Details everything there is to know about airport lounges, including day-use costs and amenities, as well as photos and reviews. Includes 600 lounges at the 60 busiest airports in the world.

Southwest Airlines recently ran ads that touted $69 fares, followed by promotions from Virgin America for fares starting at $59. Not to be outdone, Alaska Airlines peddled $49 fares — a deep discount compared with the average one-way domestic fare of about $190.

Zane Grey knew how to make an entrance, or at least how to describe one. As the famous Western writer liked to tell the story, he was on horseback in 1913, riding deep into Navajo country, when a flash lighted in the desert.

With a can of bear spray on his hip and hearing aids in both ears, Lyle Ruterbories whistles and hums as he tends to this patch of wilderness along the Canadian border.

In the end, most travelers from around the world are similar. Price and location are among the top factors in picking a hotel, according to a new study of more than 200,000 hotel guests from eight countries, written by researchers from JD Power and Associates.

Here's a website that makes time-share resales easy. With just a few clicks, you can get a vacation for life, one week at a time.

What is the world’s largest island?

BODIE, Calif. » Nothing against Virginia City or Tombstone or any other collection of Gold Rush-era wooden structures along that ribbon o' highway, but they are to ghost towns what Disneyland's Matterhorn is to true alpine peaks.

A federal lawsuit to stop the proposed merger of American Airlines and US Airways could be good for penny-pinching fliers.


All summer, thousands of visitors traipse among the U.S. Capitol's many statues, which honor the nation's founders, leaders and legends. There's George Washington, father of his country. Abraham Lincoln, preserver of the Union. John Gorrie, inventor of the ice machine.

If you worry about picking up a funky bacteria on your next airplane trip, fear not: The GermFalcon is on the way. Built into the arms are ultraviolet lights, which the GermFalcon shines on the plane's seats while it rolls down the aisle. • Also: Onboard Wi-Fi tops comfort, fliers say

Like adventure activities? How about travel deals? Finding both is as easy as doing a Google search. Caution: You many end up leaving the country.

Greetings from fast-changing Portland. On your right, note the dozens of breweries and distilleries, none of which existed until the other day. On your left, take care not to provoke the bicyclists, who might control everything by the day after tomorrow.

Yes, Swedes eat a lot of meatballs and equip their homes with IKEA furniture. Many drive Volvos and listen to ABBA. But there are some clichés about the Swedes that are simply wrong.

The digital revolution has imperiled the future of many job categories, including darkroom film processor, typewriter repairman and telephone operator. With the surge of sophisticated travel websites, can we put travel agents on the list of nearly obsolete jobs?

Are you and your offspring spending a fortune on college tours? Narrow your options first with a virtual tour. This website gives you a look at 400 college campuses and universities in the U.S., Europe, Africa and Latin America.

Nederlander Worldwide Entertainment on Wednesday agreed to manage and produce a live show in a specially built $65 million theater in central China that will celebrate the world-famous terra-cotta warriors, a high-profile step for America's live theater giant into the world's most promising consumer market.

On the way to Sin City, the average planeload of passengers spends a total of $116 for liquor, beer, wine and soda, surpassing drink sales to any other destination in the lower 48 states. • Also: Hotels try to sell more food

Offers inbound luggage service at more than 250 airports nationwide. Check your bags as usual, but BagsVIP will pick them up at baggage claim and deliver them to your house or hotel.

Bikini-clad women have jumped into Copenhagen harbor as part of the 100-year anniversary celebration of the landmark Little Mermaid statue, the Danish capital's top tourist attraction.

New Mexico might open a museum at the site of a 1980 bloody prison riot. Old Main was closed in 1988, eight years after the February 1980 riot in which inmates killed 33 fellow prisoners. • Also: London gallery shows Dylan sketches; Zeppelin tours offer sweeping views

Introduces the world's best festivals to inspire a community of "culturally curious" travelers and expand their horizons through collective gatherings. There's big passion behind this project.

The green trend is taking hold in the airline industry. United Airlines announced plans in June to buy 15 million gallons of lower-carbon, renewable jet fuel over a three-year period.

Offers made-to-order travel packages to "premier ticketed events," starting with the World Cup next year in Brazil.

Ask a Parisian about the city's Chinatown and you're likely to get an answer that's uncharacteristically reticent. "It's not exactly where I'd bring someone," natives will demur politely. It's the rare person who will say what most locals feel. "There's nothing to see there."

This website sources deep discounts at independent and boutique hotels by using its own bidding system and access to hotel rooms that might go unsold. Hotel rooms in San Francisco and New York are currently available, with Los Angeles, Miami and Chicago up next. It has plans to expand to 15 cities by the end of the year.

No one ever accused Spirit Airlines of being classy. After all, the Florida airline sells wine in a can for $7 and has installed coach seats that don't adjust.

Salad, the menu at Notre Maison says, is for rabbits. And they're not kidding. Anybody coming to this traditional restaurant in Lyon's historic old town will be disappointed if they are looking for vegetarian options — or even vegetables.

Do you want to see grizzly bears in the wild? Of course you do. This summer's Alaska adventure wouldn't be complete without photos to post on Facebook and send to friends.

For a limited time, a Denver hotel is offering a package with a one-night stay in a pop-up, inflatable room that rises 22 feet in the air, thanks to a scissor lift on top of the van on which it sits.

If you are itching to switch on your iPad or Kindle reader while your plane taxis for takeoff, you are going to have to wait at least a little longer. • Hotel scores get an upgrade

A national guide to the best vintage markets, architectural salvage centers, flea markets and more. You can search by state or from five to 50 miles within an American city.

This app allows for free calling, text messaging, photo sharing and video chats among Vonage Mobile app holders. In addition, you can make low-cost international calls to those who don't have the app.

In the foreseeable future, fliers can expect to be "randomized" by the Transportation Security Administration. That means an electronic device would randomly direct travelers to different screening lines. • Also: Pilfering from hotels common

Lightweight, super-comfortable earbuds with an Apple Control remote that operates your iPod or iPhone from one of three buttons. The remote also has a microphone so you can easily switch to a phone call while listening to music.

Q: It seems like you get a lot of letters from people who are mad about something that happened, but didn't bother to complain until well after the fact. Could you perhaps say a few words about complaining effectively and politely?

We're often stuck on cars, buses and trains, commuting to work or trying to get to our next destination. But what about transportation that highlights a destination?


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‘Keiki In The Kitchen’ Recipe Contest
The “HMAA Keiki in the Kitchen: Food, Fitness & Fun” contest is calling on young chefs statewide to submit their best recipes. The deadline is Aug. 10. Read More »
 
Enforcement Lax On Improper Signs
I spotted a huge side-of-building political ad against fluoridated water on Kapahulu Avenue. It does not qualify as a site-of-business ad under our law since it’s not advertising surfboards — the interior business. It’s advertising unfluoridated water. Read More »
 

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