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Archive for the ‘Caribbean’ Category

Once a year, Ben and Jerry’s gives away ice cream at its scoop shops free.

fcdheader2TODAY’S THE DAY!

In the U.S. and Canada, find your nearest scoop shop here.

Overseas, give one of these two links a try:  1, 2.  (You’ve got a chance if you’re in Aruba, Belgium, Cyprus, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Iceland, Ireland, Israel, Malta, Mexico, Netherlands, Portugal, Singapore, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Thailand, Turkey, or the UK.)

Enjoy!

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With the focus on staycations and naycations, there’s little reporting on important nuts-and-bolts issues affecting thousands still on the road.  Expect to hear about these only when they start causing major snarls for casual tourists unaware of the changes.

  • Flying to the United States this year?  As of January 12, 2009, all travelers to the U.S. from Visa Waiver countries (that’s Andorra, Austria, Australia, Belgium, Brunei, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Monaco, The Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Portugal, San Marino, Singapore, Slovakia, Slovenia, South Korea, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, and the United Kingdom [and in the near future, Bulgaria, Cyprus, Greece, Malta, Poland  and Romania too]) will be required to submit their travel plans online 72 hours prior to travel.  Failure to complete ESTA authorization before travel may result in denial of boarding or entry.  Read the details about this change in the post U.S. to Require Online Registration for Visa-Free Travelers.
  • After January 16, 2009, you’ve got to use Euros when traveling in Slovakia.  They’re the 16th EU country to switch to the currency since its introduction a decade ago.  Later this year, expect the Czech Republic to finalize a date for their switch (expected early 2010).
  • Travelers transiting or changing planes within Mexico will now be subject to customs inspection before continuing to their next flight.  International travelers to the United States will be familiar with the drill:  claim checked baggage and proceed through customs, then drop off baggage again before heading to the connecting gate.  Flights from the Caribbean, Central and South America have already begun the procedure; February 1 is the date for flights from Canada, Asia and Europe; flights from the U.S. have until September 1 to comply.  Be aware and avoid tight connections.  And don’t forget to lock that luggage!
  • Starting June 1, 2009, it will no longer be possible to travel by air, land or sea without a passport to destinations in the Western Hemisphere, such as Mexico, Canada and the Caribbean.  Children under 16 may use a birth certificate in lieu of passport.  This requirement also applies to Americans attempting to reenter the United States.  Details here.

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Greetings fellow travelers and welcome to this week’s Carnival of Cities. I’m happy to be your host as we jet around the world following tales of tapioca, tumbling and taxidermy. Intrigued? Read on . . .

New York City, NY, USA: Sascha Zuger from Travel Savvy Mom scoops a great hotel package, describes her run-in with Sesame Street’s Gordon and highlights the Kids’ Night on Broadway offer in her post Broadway, Baby!

Rome, Italy: speaking of perfect hotels, Mara at Mother of All Trips has identified a real winner for young families near the Coliseum in her post Mondays Are for Dreaming: Hotel Lancelot.

Naples, Italy: Karen Landes is blogging at WhyGo Italy on the shades of life on display when slicing Naples in two in the post Spaccanapoli: Naples’ Historic Main Street.

Washington, DC, USA: Jon at The DC Traveler gives us a peek at the folks folding themselves in half and risking their lives nightly for our enjoyment when he goes Backstage at Cirque du Soleil KOOZA.

San Francisco, CA, USA: DFernandez takes us along on a twisty insider tour of his favorite tourist spots in The (Crooked) Road Not Taken at You’re So City.

London, UK: Caitlin at Roaming Tales is serving up top tips for London’s East End — not the least of which is where you may spot folk-dancing squirrels selling high-end clothes . . . Check out her post A Stroll through London’s Quirky East End for directions, or simply let your badger on a leash lead the way!

Prescott, AZ, USA: Granny J takes in an impressive number of public scupltures in Prescott’s Heroic Bronzes at Walking Prescott.

Dublin, Ireland: A detail on the airport wall caught the eye of Fin Keegan in the post Bitter in the End.

Dresden, Germany: You’d have to be blind to miss the detail on the tiled wall called the Procession of Princes in my post Saturday Photo Friday #4 here at Less Than a Shoestring.

Bangkok, Thailand: The news about hundreds of air passengers stranded as rebels seize the airport putting your Thai travel plans on hold? Conan Stevens serves up a perspective on the impact of the foreign spender in Is Thailand Safe to Travel in Now?

Shanghai, China: Our benevolent leader Sheila Scarborough gives us the scoop on a bubble tea chain discovered in China which has a branch in — no joke — Albuquerque in the post Stop into China’s rbt for Tea and Juice Drinks at the Family Travellogue.

Mexico City, Mexico: Gilocafe has a video to share from their visit to Teotihuacan Pyramids: Mexico City, Mexico.

Kanyakumari, India: Maneesh of Admirable India shares his photos from two museum visits in the post Trip to Kanyakumari: Chapter 2: Wandering Monk Exhibition, Kanyakumari and Government Museum, Kanyakumari: Part 1.

Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic: Jason Sarracini of Trip Quips gives a quick resort tip for a stay on the island.

That concludes this week’s Carnival — the next Carnival of Cities will be hosted by the friendly folks at UpTake. Submit your (one, non-spammy) blog post about any aspect of ONE city to the next edition before next Tuesday using the carnival submission form. If you like these posts, try browsing the extensive Carnival of Cities archives.

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If you’re new to Less Than a Shoestring, please take some time and have a poke around! I welcome your questions and comments on the site. This blog shows that travel can indeed be both pleasurable and frugal. Because I live in Europe, you’ll find loads of information on European no-budget travel — but in keeping with This Just In’s post and for your ease, I’ve put together below a collection of my U.S. tips and bargains.

Once a month, the Travel on a Shoestring Carnival turns its focus to the Americas. You’ll find lots of great tips from around the blogosphere collected in the following posts:

Every Friday, the blog features a travel freebie. Some timeless classics for U.S. staycationers and backyard travelers:

Not free, but cheap activities include:

For those traveling a bit further afield, take a look at the posts:

If you’ll be driving to your destination, you’ll want to read:

Before flying, from the wild and wooly world of U.S. airline travel:

Changes U.S. travelers and visitors should know about:

See the no-budget traveler take on the New York Times’ “Frugal Traveler” in the posts:

If you like what you see, subscribe to the RSS feed and have the latest no-budget travel tips delivered to you! It takes just a second to set up, ensuring you never miss a single post.

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Welcome to the fifth Travel on a Shoestring Carnival for the Americas. Here you’ll find North American, Central American and Caribbean travel tips for those without a lot of money to spend. 

This week’s photographic inspiration comes from the Canada article at DirectoryM.  The entry is loaded with tons of information about the country, including a really interesting section on distinctly Canadian cuisine. Now let’s get down to business!

If you’re in the mood for a city vacation, you’ll want to check out the following posts:

+ Montreal.  In Montreal is for [Vietnamese Food] Lovers posted at The Ironic Mullet TM :: Culture and food from a traveler’s perspective :: The Tiny Guide, Lee Ann Westover deliberates the cheapest way to get there from NYC and runs down your best options for authentic pho.

+ BostonMarilyn Terrell’s post Beantown is Greentown at Intelligent Travel describes bike rental options and other green travel ideas.

+ Abingdon.  On I-81 between Knoxville and Roanoake, not far from the TN-NC-VA border, lies a unique historical theater.  Read about this cultural excursion in Joanne Scarborough‘s post GB Shaw wanted spinach: the Barter Theatre at Perceptive Travel Blog.

+ Using public transport.  Penny Nickel presents 15 tips for a frugal, relaxing, earth-friendly vacation that’s car-free! posted at Money and Values.

+ Booking hotels for less.  Ybother lays out the basics of using Hotwire, from figuring out which hotel you’re booking to making sure the room you book meets your expectations, in Using Hotwire? 10 Hot Tips on Booking Hotels via Hotwire posted at A Top Ten List Everyday to Jumpstart Your Knowledge.

If want to get back to nature, try on the following posts for size:

+ Matthew Paulson presents Camping Frugally: Spending Less in the Wilderness posted at The Travel Advocate.

+ Julie Bloss Kelsey presents Website of the Week: National Park Service posted at Mama Joules, saying, “Tips for navigating the National Park Service website before you head out on your next trip.”

Perhaps you’re headed for an island vacation instead?

+ Global Traveler presents Budget Traveling In The Caribbean posted at Traveling Around The World, saying, “The Caribbean is a great place to travel at any time of the year for a tropical island vacation.”

+ The Traveling Mamas were on location in Hawaii and have a bunch of great posts on cheap experiences.  Try Molokai Sunset on Papohaku Beach, Mama on the Move – Hawaii Hiking to Petroglyphs, or, if you’re hungry, Where to Eat a Great Fast Food Lunch in Hawaii.

+ Ron presents Museums on the Big Island of Hawaii posted at Your Aloha Connection.

If you’re looking to save money on plane tickets, have a gander at:

+ Raymond presents The Best Frequent Flyer Airline Miles Credit Cards For Cheap Flights posted at Money Blue Book.

+ Linda W. presents Getting To The Caribbean posted at The Eclectic Female, saying, “If you’re planning a trip to the Caribbean, you probably automatically started looking up flights to the area.”

Can’t afford to fly?  Then take the bus instead!  Jack Norell presents Bus travel around the world posted at Eyeflare – Travel Articles and Tips, saying, “Bus travel is often as budget as you can get. Cheaper than trains, but faster than walking, here are some of the best cheap bus operators in the world.”

General tips for budget travel come to us this week from:

+ Heather Hills with 10 Best Ways to Travel on a Budget posted at Chick Vacations, Women Travel.

+ Heather Johnson with 10 Frugal Travel Tips for Your Summer Vacation posted at FIRE Finance.

+ Amanda S reminds us they’re not expensive if you share in Timeshare On A Budget posted at RCI member informer.

+ Matthew Paulson tells us how to do it all on the company dime while saving a nickel in How to Go on Business Trips & Come Home With Extra Money posted at The Travel Advocate.

Andy Fletcher shows us how to have a good time with just 51 cents in The Souvenir Smashed Penny Collector posted at Andy Fletcher’s Custom Trains Blog.

When staying in someone else’s home, it is expected you act considerately towards your host. Tip Diva presents Tip Diva | Top Ten Tips – Being A Considerate House Guest, saying, “When you’re traveling, a friend or family member may offer you a room for a night, a week or even longer. Even though you may be close to the person, you’re still a guest, and there are some things that every gracious person should know.”

Wrapping up this week, minnemom reflects on the reason behind the vacation weekend in Memorial Day Observance posted at Travels with Children, saying, “While not describing a particular destination per se — an observance like this can be found around the country — I think it is important to stop and pay tribute, and not to think of “holidays” as just “vacations.” Maybe we can all take some time out of our travels for observances such as this.”

Thanks to everyone for participating. Submit your blog article (or encourage your favorite travel bloggers to submit) to the next edition of Travel on a Shoestring: Americas using the carnival submission form. Next week this time we travel to Asia, Australia, New Zealand and Oceania. You can still submit your posts to that carnival till Wednesday.

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IMD ticketToday is International Museum Day and thousands of museums around the world will take part by offering free entrance or special events this weekend only.

You can find a partial list of participating countries and museums here. If you don’t see your museum of choice listed, don’t fret — give them a call and find out if they too have something on.

If you don’t already have plans for this Sunday, treat yourself and your loved ones to a little backyard tourism in support of museums at home and abroad!

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https://i2.wp.com/spaceweather.com/eclipses/03mar07f/DiNasso1_med.jpgWe’re two months into our 2008 Travel Events calendar, and in case you forgot to note it down, tonight is a total lunar eclipse, visible from Europe, Africa, and the Americas. USA Today translates the times across the U.S. continental time zones. While Americans can wander outside after finishing dinner, Europe and Africa will have to stay up past their bedtimes to catch a glimpse of an eerily orange moon.

This is the last total eclipse until December 2010. If skies are clear, bundle up, get away from the city lights and check it out!

More about the science behind a total eclipse and tonight’s star-moon-planet triangle can be viewed here.

For the shutterbugs, more information than you ever wanted to know about photographing a lunar eclipse can be found here.

And for fun, two songs to get you in the mood: LUNAR | ECLIPSE

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