It was the final day of a two-month trip to Europe. I was in London, and with all of my work behind me, I had the freedom to do whatever I wanted. So I decided to test my five free London audio tours in a citywide blitz spanning two neighborhoods, one church, and two museums. It ended up being a very entertaining and cheap day, proving that you don't have to spend a lot of money to have a fulfilling experience in this pricey city.
In the morning, I bought a one-day off-peak subway and bus pass (a great deal at about $10) and caught the Tube from my hotel in South Kensington to Westminster. Time management was key: My last stop, the British Library, closed at 6 p.m., but my off-peak transit pass wouldn't let me start until 9:30 a.m. ... read more»
The government of American Samoa is going where most governments and corporations fear to tread. Effective June 1, workers traveling on government business will no longer own the frequent-flyer miles earned for their trips.
According to an AP report, the government of American Samoa has mandated that, from June 1, all miles earned by government employees on business trips will be the property of the government, which will dole them out to support travel by needy medical patients and students. ... read more»
This week, we're reading about volunteer travel to Oklahoma. Find out how you can help, and get the scoop on other travel news and blogs in our regular roundup.
How to Volunteer in Moore, Oklahoma
Travelers interested in helping the residents in Moore and other parts of Oklahoma that were affected by the devastating tornado should consider a volunteer vacation. There's plenty of work to be done, and almost anyone can help. According to a report from Jaunted, a handful of charitable organizations are putting together volunteer groups to help the affected communities. Among them: The American Red Cross, which needs volunteers for debris clean up and other tasks. ... read more»
By now, nobody should be surprised to see JetBlue carry off yet another win in the best-airline sweepstakes. For the ninth consecutive year, it earned the highest scores among all big U.S. airlines in the J.D. Power annual customer satisfaction ranking. And second-place Southwest outscored the top network carrier, Alaska, which in turn outscored all three of the giant legacy airlines. These results raise two questions, both easily answered.
Why does JetBlue do so well? Let's see—low fares, the industry's most generous legroom in coach, one no-charge checked bag, no overbooking, a generous frequent-flyer program, and a low ticket-change fee. What's not to like? ... read more»
Megabus.com, the big intercity bus system, announced more $5 and $9 fares this June, depending on route.
The bus line promises that at least 20 seats will be available at those promotional prices on "each eligible route" for Tuesday, Wednesday, and Saturday trips June 1 through 30. Buy seven days in advance; tickets are on sale now.
Megabus operates a series of networks to destinations within one-day or overnight trip range from Atlanta, Chicago, Dallas-Ft. Worth, Los Angeles, Nashville, New York, Pittsburgh, San Francisco, and Washington, D.C. Through connections, the line serves the most important cities in the eastern half of the U.S. A Canadian affiliate operates from Toronto to Buffalo Airport and Montreal, with intermediate stops. ... read more»
Guest blogger Mark Kinsel is the President of Driver Solutions, where he uses his 19 years of experience to prepare young drivers for the issues they'll face on the road. He also writes for Great CDL Training, a national leader in commercial truck driver training..
Wacky American Monuments
Everyone remembers those long road trips as a kid with Mom and Dad—rest stops, diners and the license plate game. However, with less and less families striking out for a couple weeks at a time and touring the United States, a lot of the beauty in this country goes unseen. Whether it's a giant ball of yarn, or the infamous Carhenge, there are plenty of quirky attractions worth visiting this summer. ... read more»
According to Consumer Reports' 2013 list of the best and worst airlines, Virgin America is the top carrier in the U.S.
The worst? It couldn't be more obvious: No-frills Spirit Airlines earned an unfavorable Consumer Reports score of 50, coming in last in a list of 11 carriers.
The Consumer Reports National Research Center polled more than 60,000 travelers, who collectively took about 32,000 flights last year. Airlines were evaluated based on cabin comfort and cleanliness, baggage handling, ease of check-in, cabin service, and in-flight entertainment. ... read more»
Catching up, finally, with other major hotel-loyalty programs, Marriott announced that, beginning on June 22, Gold and Platinum elite members of the Marriott Rewards program can expect a daily complimentary Continental breakfast for two at participating JW Marriott, Autograph Collection, Renaissance, and Marriott hotels in the U.S. and Canada.
Until then, the free breakfasts are only available during the work week.
If the lounge is closed, Gold and Platinum members will be given a choice of a free continental breakfast in the hotel restaurant, or 750 Marriott Rewards points. ... read more»