Martial Arts Travel Budget Karate Championships

Once competitors and martial arts coaches decide to pursue a major karate circuit like NASKA or NBL, it will be realized that participation in this sport can be very expensive. Many years ago, I attended a symposium by Charlie Lee and said that the only major difference between many local and local competitors is that patriots have money to travel. I have been on both NBL and NASKA circuits. She also got involved in an international competition abroad, so I learned some tricks over the years to help save some of the total costs involved in the competition.

Competition fees

Most karate courses offer some savings through pre-registration. With the addition of many promoters to online registration capabilities recently, pre-registration is quick. Of course, there is a risk of losing fees entirely if they do not appear in this event for some reason. Even if you have pledged to attend certain courses, other circumstances may prevent you from going. For example, I missed the championships because of canceling flights due to bad weather. It is also possible to postpone or miss flights due to reasons beyond your control. Of course, unexpected home emergencies can always cause trips to be canceled. So although one can save some good money over the course of a year by pre-registering all events, it is a risk.


Most tournament promoters also set room rates for custom tournament hotels. These special rates usually range from around $ 100 to $ 125, and are very good considering that most event hotels are the most important chain of hotel chains like Hyatt, Sheraton, Hilton, etc. However, I have found that if one is willing to do some research, it is more important to save as possible with accommodation. I almost don't stay in event hotels anymore. Instead, I will search to discover nearby hotels. The map facility on Yahoo is great for this. Just go to Yahoo and click on "Maps". Then enter the title and city of the Championship Hotel. Search for other hotels nearby and the site will show you where they are on the map as well as how far they are away from the event hotel. I can also use travel websites like Travelocity and Expedia to check other nearby hotels. Many hotels are often less expensive, especially lower quality hotels. In addition to travel websites, I would also check room rates directly through Choice Hotels (Comfort Inn, Econolodge and Quality Inn), Holiday Inn, Days Inn and Motel 6 via their websites. The rooms in these chains are not as luxurious as those of major hotels but are clean and comfortable. It is not down the barrel like some independent hotel. Prices can be 50% lower than championship rates for event hotels. The average room rate was around $ 50, and often includes free breakfast rarely served by event hotels.

Many low-priced hotels are within walking distance of the championships. Even if the hotel is not within walking distance, the taxi fare is usually worth the room. I stayed at the airport location hotels, then used the hotel's free shuttles both in the place I was staying in addition to the event hotel to roam around. Of course, all this is not as comfortable as staying in an event hotel but if you are willing to plan ahead a bit, it is possible to make good savings. Of course, for events where I extend my stay for vacation purposes, a rental car will allow me to stay anywhere I want.

Another way to cut half of your hotel expenses is to leave immediately after your competitors have finished. You will miss evening shows, but if you don't mind it, you only have to stay one night instead of two. Throughout the year, individual night trips can lead to significant savings.

air flights

Driving will be the most economical way to travel to tournaments, but if the locations are too far away, flying will be the most realistic way to get there. One can also explore trains as well. As for flights, one can wait for seat sales to purchase tickets. Another strategy is to travel to or outside the various airports near the city of Hadath. There may be significant savings in air fares if you are willing to use alternative airports. In some cities there are more than one major airport in the region. Alternative airports can reduce travel costs for competitors who have to cross the US-Canadian border as well. Canadians who drive to U.S. airports directly across the border can sometimes save up to 50% for flights. Passengers must join all frequent flyer programs but try to stay with an airline or two major companies if possible. Points add what could lead to free trips in the future. Of course, the points of staying in the hotel, renting cars and using a credit card also help.


As mentioned earlier, I try to use the free shuttle service to the hotel whenever possible. If my hotel did not have a free shuttle and was close to the Hadath hotel, sometimes I would take the free hotel shuttle and then walk to my hotel. I often use the hotel's event shuttle for the ride back to the airport too. All you have to do is wander around the hotel's lobby to appear like a guest and no one should doubt your use of the shuttle.

Many of the big cities where tournaments are held have very safe and efficient transportation systems from the airport. For example, instead of paying for taxis or an airport shuttle service, taking a bus or local metro train for around $ 1.50 will take me to the tournament just as easily.

So, as you can see, there are different ways to get rid of the total expenses for Karate tournament travel. You just have to do your research for each trip. As for meals, you can always hold yourself silly for a very reasonable price in those Chinese buffets located just about everywhere.


Overseas Life Thailand – Visa Run to Vientiane, Laos

A few days ago, I made my first visa to Laos by bus.

Usually I go to Singapore to get a 60-day tourist visa, but the last time I went, they refused to give me a 60-day visa because I have an open electronic travel ticket to Canada. Now they want a confirmed ticket, and they will not accept an open ticket. This is stupid, if you ask me. The lady at the front desk told that if the violence in Bangkok is bad, I can call Air Canada and be on my way the next day, so the open ticket is much better than the one on a certain date. No dice. So I had to go back to Bangkok and get a regular 30-day entrance at the airport. The whole trip cost me 18,000 baht, expense of hotels, flights, meals, taxis, etc.

I made a visa twice on a bus to Cambodia, and found pain in the exam, as you only get 14 days and then you have to do it again, and it costs 2000 baht each time.

Until this time, I participated in the bus to Vientiane.

I must say that the service provided by the visa operator was excellent; the bus (40 seats) was full, and the same comfortable bus that you used to operate Cambodia, was with the same driver. The driver is relatively conservative, seems to be aware of the fact that he has got 40 farang cars, and he's also keen to drive as you want.

The PB Tower bus at Sukhumvit Soi 71 completely left at 8:30 pm.

There was a urine break about an hour later at a service center, then two more hours later, and so on, all night. This gave the driver a chance to relax a little, which I thought was a good idea.

Unfortunately, I was never able to sleep on a bus or plane, and this trip was no exception. As my companion was in his seat snoring excitedly at night, the eye sellers sat there, and I moved in my seat periodically when my pumpkin was hit. I appreciate the rest as well.

The DVD movie was played at the beginning of the flight, but after its completion, it was after 11 pm, so no more films were shown.

We reached the border early, before 6:30. I watched the sun come up. We had to sit for a while until the border office opened, then one of the bus company ladies handled all our passports. She previously collected them on the bus.

After stamped from Thailand, we took 3 minibuses (via trucks) across the bridge (Mekong River) to Laos, where we waited again while the lady got our passports that are handled by the Lao immigration. In less than an hour, we took the minibuses to Vientiane, and we reached the street of the Thai embassy at about 7:30 or 7:40 am. There were already at least 200 people lining up along the sidewalk, and it was hot.

The embassy gates were opened around 8:15 a.m., and we were all placed in the embassy compound. There was a ticket machine at the front, and we joined the waiting list.

However, our former visa lady escorted us with stairs to an air-conditioned area and delivered low-number tickets from the machine. Our numbers started around 95, while the people in the ticket machine were getting more than 350 tickets. So I assumed they were in touch with each other at Vientiane who stood at the beginning of the line at the gates early in the day, then passed tickets to her when she arrived After an hour or more.

Ticket numbers were called through the Public Address System in Thai and English, and were repeated once: "Ticket Number 37, please proceed to Number 2".

I soon noticed that there was no interruption in the way the figures were explained, the advertisements came non-stop, and soon reached the eighties. We all rushed to the basement and went there when our numbers appeared. But the numbers are just kept on rolling. Our lady collected our passports and tickets, all lined up along the counter, then told us to wait in the other building.

There, we found that there were four other counters, number 3 through 6, but only one counter, was active, and at least 100 people were waiting and sitting on chairs. This waiting room was also air-conditioned.

Again, the numbers were called, but this time there were big gaps between, and there was a big pause after each number was called. When a number was called, a person went up to counter 4, received a paper receipt, and then left the stage.

After each batch of 10 or 12 numbers, there was a delay of 5 or 6 minutes. It was when I noticed that the Thai lady behind the counter was printing and then separating the receipts. It is clear that passports and applications are processed in the other building, entered into a computer, and then the receipt was printed in this building on the counter 4.

After about 30 or 40 minutes, my number was called. I went to the counter, got a receipt and got out. The guy next to me had a lower number, but his number wasn't called, so he got a little upset and went up to the table, where the lady asked him to wait.

I left the exit, and there was a woman who ran the visa collecting the receipts, and then greeted us with a truck. My receipt showed "60 days Double Tourist Entry Visa" and "Fee: $ 0", so I was happy.

We took the truck to a local restaurant where we had a Thai / Lao breakfast or a lunch of fried rice and anything. This was free, paid by the visa company, but soft drinks were an additional 20 baht.

In Laos, you can use Lao kip, Thai baht and US dollar interchangeably. If you drive in Thai baht, you can change in Thai baht. If you pay in US dollars, you will get a change in ko Lao, which, like the Cambodian currency, has very high and worthless categories. Pepsi was 20 baht, which is reasonable, but diet drinks are not available. By the way, Laos ATMs dispense only Lao Cape.

After lunch, we took the truck to the hotel, which turned out to be quite acceptable, maybe 2.5 stars. There was no pool, just a room, but it was a large room, private bathroom, cable or satellite TV with many Thais, a few Lao, and some movie channels, including HBO and Star Movies.

The bathroom was in typical Thai style, with no shower stall or bathtub, and a shower head on the wall. There was a flash water heater running, and the toilet was running. The towels were large, red, fluffy, and obviously fresh.

I paid an additional 200 baht at the front desk for a private room. A visa processing fee of 5,000 baht includes a common room (2 per room). The fee will increase to 6000 baht after the free tourist visa offer expires on June 5.

In bed before one in the afternoon, I slept for several hours, I woke up, it rained, I watched a movie, and then I went out looking for dinner. I walked up and down the main street near the hotel, but there was nothing attractive. However, the office complex 20 meters from the hotel had a restaurant, so I went there and found 5 other farangs from the visa working there too. The food was good, prices were not expensive, and I was able to pay baht thai. The young woman behind the bar is perhaps the most beautiful girl I've ever seen, and she has traveled to Thailand for 20 years. It made me wish I was 25.

The next day, I had breakfast at the same restaurant, then around 1 pm, we were put in trucks again and taken to the border. There are many "duty-free" shops on the border. We waited about 45 minutes or so, and then the lady who ran the visa appeared, and we all went through immigration affairs with people from the Lao border who only look at us, and we don't ask them to see our passports, which were held by the visa lady.

Returning across the bridge to Thailand, where we waited another 45 minutes or so, then returned on the bus for the return trip. Within an hour, we stopped at a restaurant, where we had another Thai meal, and again free soft drinks, 20 baht.

The return journey looks much faster, as many DVD movies have been played, which occupy time and reason.

We arrived in Bangkok at 1:30 am. You can go anywhere along the way; some have left Ramkhaming. I waited to the end, which is next to Ekamai BTS station, as I quickly discovered that BTS was closed. Ride the 80 baht taxi later, you are at home again.

Will I do that again? definitely yes. The whole process was largely automatic. The company takes care of everything. You must reserve a seat in advance. It seems that one of Varang's sons was summoned to know the price and time, and he was angry that he had no seat. But he didn't make a reservation, and didn't leave his name or phone number, so he was lucky. Of course, he had left it until the last day of his visa, so he had to leave the next day in one way or another and pay 500 baht of residence fees.

To summarize: depart at 8:30 pm, and spend the night on the bus. Then it's half a day waiting around, with lunch included. Check in at the hotel, sleep a little or, if you have stamina, explore Vientiane. Not much, though. Have dinner and sleep one night at the hotel. The next day, wait in the morning or visit Vientiane, then ride to Bangkok, around 1:30 am.

If you want to do it yourself, the company you used was "Quick Thai Visa Run", 6th floor, PB Tower, Sukhumvit Soi 71. or 09-0245-255 (24 hours). They have a website on, but it hasn't been updated for a while, and it just mentions Cambodia running, not Laos running.


Carp love french fries?

In the fall of the year, in the last week of September, my son, brother, and boyfriend are making a 3-hour trip to McConnelsville, Ohio. This is the autumn fishing trip that we usually stay about three days. We are hunting an area owned by the American Electric Power Corporation (AEP) which is open to the public; all it takes is a permit that you can print from their website. AEP has around 300 fishing lakes, some of which are very small while others are more than a mile long. But this is not a story about AEP hunting, it is a story about Muskingum River Carp and catfish.

Every day we follow in the AEP area and then in the evening we go back to our hotel, Three Sisters Inn in Northwest 60. This is the great thing about our trip; we hunt fish all day long, then around 4:00 pm, or we go back to the hotel to clean up a little bit and then we get On something to eat. Due to the time it takes to return to the lakes and the fact that the Muskingum River is located across the road from the hotel and has special docks we had to try a little fishing on the river. We don't usually catch carp, but we've come to "oh why not". I did not come on this trip to sit around the hotel room and watch TV, I can do this at home.

This is where it gets fun but I need to give you the design of the area. The hotel is located on the main drive and next to the hotel there is a small restaurant. No big chain, just a small town restaurant but really good food. McDonald's is located a short walk from the restaurant. I know you tell yourself what this has to do with carp and catfish fishing; hang on and I'll tie it all together.

Well, this is the time when I decided to cross the road and give an experience to catch carp and catfish. Others in my group were less enthusiastic about carp fishing or cat fishing. You might say they were a little picky about fishing for anything but bass. I was looking at my fishing gear and chose the heaviest rod and streak I had. I made Kentucky rig with one hook. But here is the part of the story that was hard for people to believe. When I was getting my gear, one of the sisters from Three Sister Hotel told me that it was the best taste to use McDonald's French fries. Yes, I read this right, McDonald's french fries. So, I have not listened to carp before, I listened to any advice I could get. So I am walking to the restaurant and buying my bait; by the way, this is the first time I can have a snack of my fishing taste.

So here I am on the sidewalks of french fries, my case and my reel, ready to try my luck. About the time I prepared to be bored of others and came to see fishes and enjoy their taste. Well, within a few minutes, I was wandering 5 lbs, which gave me a test and got rid of water a few times just like a bass. I uploaded my plans again with my bait and it wasn't long before I pulled another fish but this time it was catfish. Well, it wasn't long before the sidewalk got four lines with the special bait and we were all fishing. My brother who never caught carp became a real fan in a very short time and fell more fish then the rest of us. We had the perfect bright experience of the french fries that are served in the little restaurant you mentioned; but you can't get a bite. Fish know what they like and do not close.

The moral of this story is that old dogs can learn new tricks that we definitely did.


11 proven sleep tips to help you comfortably well in any strange or noisy hotel

As a flying pilot, I developed a list of sleep tips.

That's because I have to spend many nights in hotel rooms and I should always be in a good position while flying.

Many travel comfort tips can also improve your sleep at home.

In addition to the great travel comfort tips, there are some basic travel accessories that I use to ensure a great night sleep. It helps while recovering from disturbances of long flights or sleeping in unusual hours, even in noisy places.

The main reasons why people who have trouble sleeping well in hotel rooms are:

* the noise

* Light

* Temperature and humidity

* Pillows are uncomfortable

* An uncomfortable bed

* Recovers from long flight turbulence

* Being in a strange place

* Hunger

* Do not use sleep strategies

# 1 – Dealing with noise

Noise can be the biggest obstacle to travel comfort. The good news is that there is some thing you can do about noise to get some comfort in the hotels.

A good night's sleep begins in your hotel room as you drive to your hotel.

Be aware of potential noise sources near the hotel.

Upon check-in, before they give you your room assignment, specifically ask about "great room". If the highway or airport is on one side of the hotel, mention this and order a room on the other side of the building.

When I get outside my room, I pause around the area looking for potential noise sources.

If my room is in a bad location, then I do not enter the room. I just go back to the desk down and politely ask for a room in a quieter place.

The only way to ensure comfort while traveling in a noisy location is with a white noise machine.

If I was going to give you just one sleep tip, I'd get a white noise machine. It is a must-have travel accessory.

The white noise machine allows you to sleep in noisy places by producing background noise. Do not record this background noise in your mind, and hide the noise disturbing sleep.

# 2 – Dealing with light

Hotel room curtains are rarely quite close. Use some clothespins to cut the curtains together.

Another thing that will help you sleep in a lit room is a good sleep mask.

# 3 – Dealing with temperature changes

It is wise to adjust the temperature once you reach your room. This is because if you wait until you go to bed, you will likely wake up because you are either too hot or too cold.

Sometimes the hotel's air conditioner makes loud noises when it is on and off. If you have a white noise device then that's not a problem. If not, you might try to get a quieter room.

# 4 – Handle the pillows is uncomfortable

One of the hardest parts of adapting to a different bed is not really the bed itself. They are pillows. Pillows at the hotel rarely resemble what you're used to at home.

There is a great solution to this which made a huge difference to me. You can get a small memory foam travel pillow that gives you a stable pillow wherever you are.

# 5 – Dealing with an uncomfortable bed

This is also something you want to discover as soon as you arrive in your room. Not when it is late, you are tired, all ready to sleep and when there are no more rooms available.

Once I get to my room, sit down and sit on the bed to make sure it's comfortable. If not, I went back to the front desk and asked if they had any rooms with newer beds.

# 6- If you are recovering from Jet Lag. This is a major factor after long journeys between East and West.

It is an extended topic that I wrote a little about. You can find jet lag strategies on my website.

# 7 – Make sure you're satisfied with the cleanliness of the room.

Whether it is a fact, if you think the room or bed you sleep in is not clean, it will affect your sleep. This is especially true if you think the mattress is not clean.

You can easily bring your own mattress using an ocean travel pillow and dreamscape. Dreamsacks are comfortable and lightweight silk mattress liners.

# 8.Make things just like at home.

Create a routine and environment that you are most familiar with.

Make sure your room reflects your smoking preferences.

Developing and exercising a regular bedtime routine. Studies have shown that you can teach your body and mind that it is time to relax and prepare for sleep. If you do this at home as well as while traveling, you will probably fall asleep more easily.

Keep your bedtime sacred and reduce other responsibilities before trying to go to bed. You should avoid anxiety or work in your bedroom.

# 9 – Manage Your Hunger.

If you are hungry before bed, have a snack. Otherwise, your hunger can delay you falling asleep.

Some snacks in your hotel room require some advanced planning, unless the minibar prices do not bother you.

Do not eat heavy meal before bed. This will disrupt your sleep because your stomach will be busy digesting your food.

Here are some snacks that go well: dried fruits, nuts, energy or granola bars.

If you are thirsty before bed, drink a small amount of water.

Avoid alcohol and caffeine for several hours before bed.

# 10- Don't watch the watch.

Turn the clock over until you don't see that. If you have trouble sleeping, your awareness of time and your thoughts of how late or when you will wake up will make sleeping more difficult.

Make sure you have a bunch of multiple alarms, and then don't worry about over sleeping. I usually get a wake-up call, set the room clock and also my travel hour.

If you can't sleep in about 30 minutes, do not lie on bed while trying to sleep. Instead, get up and do an activity that helps you relax.

# 11- General

Studies have shown that there are two main lifestyle habits that can promote good sleep:

Exercise regularly. This will help you sleep better, but it is important that you do not exercise close to bedtime. Otherwise, it will not cool down and rest in time to fall asleep.

Eat a balanced diet. This will help your general health as well as improve your sleep.

This is just a brief overview. I highly recommend reading my full article on sleep tips before you go on your next trip. Print it and take it with you.

If you visit my website, you will also find comprehensive reviews of travel accessories mentioned in this article.

Copyright 2005 by Ph.Developments USA, Inc. all rights are save.


Once in a lifetime fly fishing on the Cimarron River

Two of New Mexico's favorite fishing rivers are the San Juan River and the Cimarron River. This story is about Cimarron. The Cimarron River is located in northeastern New Mexico and exits the Eagle Nest Lake. Located on the eastern edge of the Sangre de Cristo Mountains, the dry fly jewel flows east through the Cimarron Canyon State Park along US Hwy 64. After this water reaches several other rivers that eventually reach the Mississippi River. New Mexico Game and Fish estimates about 4,000 wild barrels measured in size per mile, no doubt these are the healthiest wild wild salmon in the state and one of the healthiest in the Southern Rocky Mountains. Most wild browns are 10-14 inches with the big boy sometimes. This fish is not well known but still crowded near roads during mid-summer.

I can easily reach Cimarron during a one-day hard drive from the Fly Shop near Tyler, Texas, and fishing in the late afternoon or early next morning. The high mountain scenery is beautiful and the fishing is great.

My story begins in mid-June 2002. During June, the stone fly hatches in full swing in Cimarron and will impatiently attack large structures of size 14 or 16 stimulated regularly. This is my favorite time of year to hunt this river. This is dry fly fishing at its best.

Unfortunately, if you remember, it was during the time when wildfires flooded many parts of New Mexico, Colorado, and Arizona. Cimarron Canyon State Park was surrounded by some fire.

I arrived at Pine Ridge Hotel, just about a mile away from good fishing waters, on Monday evening. This is an attractive small four room hotel located near the entrance to the state park. After check-in, the hotel owner informed me that the park was closed and had been since Friday. Because of the fire hazards, it was closed to everything including camping, hiking, picnics, and fishing Yes. Every park was walking in bright yellow. It looks like every other tree has a closed park sign nailed it. I couldn't believe it. I was driving a 12-hour strait to spend some personal time on dry hunting and … don't you know that … there's no catch. I was sick. If you want to see a big man cry, then this will be a great opportunity.

There were no other places near that I could fish unless I had a guide to catch some of the private water that was near. I called my good friend, Doc Thompson, a resident of the upper countryside. Doc is the best fishing guide for small currents in northeastern New Mexico including some special areas in Cimarron. Booked. I have no chance to catch any special water.

I was thinking of cutting my losses, packing my equipment and going home with my tail jammed between my legs when I saw the zookeeper turn into a hotel parking lot. I approached him impatiently, explaining my predicament and pleading with him to have mercy on this misguided Texas. He indicated that there was little he could do. Senior officials have ordered him to close the park. The area was very dry and the fear of forest fires was highest. Finally he gave me a small window of hope when he said that if he did not catch the wind or change directions during the night he asked if he could open the park the next day. No guarantees. There was only a small chance for things to fall in my path but I decided to wait outside and see.

The next morning, nice and early, I walked into the hotel angel's office with my fingers and toes crossed. "Great news," the owner said, "You can hunt." The zookeeper called the hotel and told the owner to tell Tex that he could hunt. The ranger opened the park for hunting only. Nobody can camp, hike or stroll. Hunting only. Best of all, leave all barricades and Park Closed sign up. My head started buzzing with this scenario. Can it be true? Could it be anywhere in this country a stream full of large brown color, full of fish eager to dry flies, had not had hunting for five days, had closed signs on every other tree and had bright yellow barriers in every withdrawal? Is this really happening? And most of all … is this really happening to me? Yes that was !!!

I broke my legs and a fly rod reaching the river very quickly. I was the only one to hunt this 12 mile water. The only person. The river has not been under hunting pressure for five days. nothing. Nota. Absolutely zero. What a wonderful opportunity. I hit the water at 8:00 in the morning. Knowing that the dragonfly slot will start to fit at 9:00 am, I have attached a yellow stimulus size 16 with a John copper dropper on my 2wt rod. For the next hour, the catch was 50/50 in the drought and the mermaid. When the hole started, I removed the nymph to focus on dry. My promoters have been repeatedly demolished by hungry trout. The hatch started around 9:00 am and finally ended around 2:00 pm as the day warms up. During that time, more than 40 dry brown tones fell. Most of them were in the range of 10 to 12 inches. Some are slightly smaller and some are slightly larger. The whole time, I had never seen anyone else on the river. You are in total bliss fly fishing. Later that afternoon, as the temperature fell, they began to collide hard again and did so even before dark. I lost the total number of fish caught on that day. After a while you just end the count. The fishing was tremendous and the solitude was better.

During the day, when I was pressing my parked jeep to get a shot from Joe or something, people were driving the purchase to give me a stare of disgust. I could see their lips messing around with something like, "This idiot tuxan … can't he read the signs?" I was not interested in any way with straits. I wanted the entire state of New Mexico and the entire world to believe that the park is completely closed and may not open again.

That evening, back in my room, the harsh facts of this summer were alive. I sat on the front porch and saw helicopters and other large planes drop large amounts of water on forest fires spread along the foot of the mountain. Huge walls of smoke draped the horizon. I could not help but feel sad because of the destruction that was unfolding before my eyes. When it was so dark, I retired to the borders of my room.

Later that night, while I was lying in my comfy little bed, I had trouble sleeping. As my mind drifted away from the fire outside and danced with the ideas on the day of the hunt, I felt laughter that I felt swollen with contentment. My fishing experience kept running between my mind. I could not help but wonder what he would bring the next day. Will my isolation end up fly fishing? Guess what … did not happen.

I bumped into the garden early next morning to face the same scenario. The signs and barriers were still in place and no one was on the horizon. Using the same flies and techniques, I enjoyed equal success as I was the day before. It wasn't until late that afternoon that I saw the only other car in the park. The word was finally out. By then, he was just fine. I enjoyed a few hours of good fishing the next morning before returning to Tyler.

Is there an ethic here? I do not know. It was a challenging fishing trip and I will never forget it. Later on, however, it seemed really unfortunate that my memorable fishing trip was at the expense of many. Southwest lost many good forests and helpless wildlife during that terrible period. Houses disappeared and live covers were destroyed. I suppose the saying still holds true, "Good luck for someone is usually at the expense of someone else."


Cruising to Alaska from Vancouver? Three secrets you should know

1. Arrival in Vancouver at least one day before cruise sails. Of course I might be a bit biased, but Vancouver will be one of the best communication outlets during this trip. Oftentimes I saw corvettes flying to Vancouver the day they depart their flight and miss this absolutely wonderful city. Plus, the extra stress level to make your ship on time is not a way to start your vacation if not all is according to plan. All it takes is a lost plane connection, mechanical difficulty, a boundary problem, or bad weather that can ruin your entire vacation. Trust me, the ship in Vancouver will not wait for you if it is delayed, and you are solely responsible for arriving at the ship on time. Not only that, but the tides and currents that sail outside Vancouver make that captain in many cases have to leave on time, or run the risk of being held in port for hours until it is safe to leave again. There are amazing tours and sightseeing options in Vancouver, and if you can swing in time it's definitely worth it. The same is true of your departure day – why would you end a totally good cruise by stressing whether you are leaving the ship in time to do so on a ridiculously early trip?

2. Access to the ship. There are several ways to do this depending on whether you will completely ignore Tip 1 and try to move directly to the ship, or whether you will head directly to your hotel. 2015 marks the first season in a long time, as only Canada can be used for cruise trips, thank God for that! Those who may have taken a cruise from the "other" dock known as Ballantyne Pier in the past, will surely agree with me that it was a disappointing start for your cruise at the very least. Ballantyne Pier is outside the city center and away from most hotels in the city. Fortunately for you, Canada Place is where your ship's departure destination will be almost this year. The cruise terminal is located in Canada, which is close to many hotels, taxis, and the Canada Line. Fully automated express train line in Vancouver. Some cruise lines offer shuttle bus service to the ship or hotel, but my recommendation is to do mathematics first. Taxi from Vancouver Airport to Canada Plus with a 15% tip will take you between 35 to 45 Canadian dollars and the journey takes about 30 minutes. Most bus transfers bought by ships will cost you almost the same for every person, so it may not be the best deal unless you are a solo traveler. If you don't mind pulling all your bags and walking a few blocks away, the Canada Line train costs just under $ 10 per person and about 30 minutes to the pier – not bad if you have a backpack, but with luggage d recommend against it . After getting off the train, you must walk to the ship, which is about ten minutes from the train, to the drop-off point. My first choice would be to arrange transportation from a pre-tour company or private sedan to take you to your hotel. There are plenty of luxury rides and rides available online or at the airport, and you should arrange this before boarding. A sedan or limousine usually runs from 60 to 80 Canadian dollars plus the bonus. If you are arriving early, be aware that most hotels check in on time between 3 pm and 4 pm, however any decent hotel will try to accommodate you early or at least offer to store your luggage upon arrival until your room is ready.

3. When is the best time to reach the ship? Well, if you like sitting, queuing or waiting at the immigration office, the first thing in the morning. If you are like me and prefer to spend your day enjoying Vancouver or sleeping for a bit, you should think well while arriving at the Canada Place cruise terminal aboard your ship. The time taken to board a ship can land from landing in the dock anywhere from 20 minutes to 4 hours, depending on your arrival time and the number of ships in the port. Keep in mind that the ship likely drops to a few thousand guests who have completed a cruise. It usually takes at least 10:00 a.m. to clear the ship from departing guests, and another hour before new arrivals are allowed to start the check-in process. If your first contact port is a Canadian port like Victoria or Prince Robert, you will likely be saved from going through "US immigration" on the platform in Canada Place. If your trip resembles most of Alaska cruises and was the first port in Alaska, you will most likely go to the U.S. Immigration Examination Section before conducting the ship registration process at Canada Place, which is why you need to have your passport handy. The procedure usually works in that order; dropping off luggage, security checks, immigration processing in the United States, check-in to cruise lines, and then, the moment you've been waiting all this time to leave the ship! Even if you are the first person on board the ship at 11 am, most of the ship including your bedrooms will only be available to you around 1 pm when the ship personnel finish cleaning up and preparing everything for you. What this means is that the first two or three hours of check-in will be sitting or standing in a huge queue, then when you go off, if it is before 1pm, you will have to wait in a public area who ship with your luggage until They announce that your room is ready on the ship. My advice is to enjoy Vancouver, and it appears a little late in the early afternoon to check in instead of trying to reach Canada Place at 9 a.m. so you can park alongside 2000 other guests. Having said that, make sure that you of course check the sailing time and don't leave it until the last minute either. You must be at the quay at least 90 minutes before sailing at the latest, because the check-in process is usually closed at least an hour before sailing.

So there are, many first tips for this year Alaska cruise season. Don't miss out next time when I tell you all what to expect on your first day on board, from how to get room upgrades, to what to do on the first day of your flight, and what you can wait until the second day. Until then, thanks for reading and Bon Voyage!


Beijing Beijing housing for exchange students at BLCU University

When preparing to go to Beijing, whether for student exchange or travel purposes, it is a good idea to take a look at the different types of accommodations available. This article will focus more on housing to find Beijing University of Languages ​​and Culture (BLCU) For students, but tourists planning to stay in the university area of ​​Beijing may also want to view BLCU's student residences as a cheap way to stay.

TJ I did a quick check around the BLCU apartment buildings that were good, or at least decent, to stay on. It didn't take long for us to conclude that Building 17 is the most popular and most difficult to book, one of our BLCU colleagues remained in Residence 17 Just because he booked and paid for it in the classroom before. (Note: The cost of accommodation varies in each accommodation)

    The actual process of reserving the bedroom includes:

  1. Call the accommodation department BLCU
  2. Explain this to the staff (mostly Mandarin, although some of them know little English)
  3. Make a payment (one month)
  4. Show them proof of payment when you get there

I did it the easiest way by just rocking and asking for a room. It seems to me that the housing of BLCU Residence is very similar "Priority access" Mainly because they will always say they are "fully booked" but somehow they find a room when needed.

    that's it House positives 17 From my experience. Please note that I have not actually stayed in Building 17.

  • Most recent (clean)
  • The most beautiful phoyans
  • It is "off campus"
  • The rooms are bigger (although this is doubtful)
  • Closest to Wudaokou and the train station
  • Private gatekeepers (non-resident students are meant to log in and log out)
  • Buzzing with international students

The The downside of the dwelling is 17 This may be the building closest to Building 1 (BLCU's main study building), and this means getting up early in the morning to get to class or even buy a bike (highly recommended). I also question rumors that Residence 17 He has bigger rooms because I discovered some Huge bedrooms in Building No. 4 (I sneaked a peek while walking past the open doors).

TJ And you're tossing between Sleep 4 (Old International Student Residence) And housing 6 (Near the basketball courts). TJ Arrived in BLCU Before me and settled in Sleep 4So when I got there, I closed one of the Dorm 4 rooms, and then decided to sign out of one of the rooms Sleep 6 very. The main downside was that Sleep 6 You don't have elevators.

Before my final decision, I went around to check Nearby apartments (Some also do not have elevators). There were apartments still under renovation, rooms for rent, people looking for an extra roommate, etc. Living off campus will not be beneficial for someone staying in the short term (Up to 6 months), so I went back to Sleep 4. By then, many international students had arrived and the rooms available in the building were running out quickly!

There are a large number of apartments around Wudaokou and BLCU due to the many schools in the area. There are also a lot of hotels within walking distance that you can stay temporarily if necessary. The cost of staying in an apartment is relatively cheaper than housing, but dormitories can be more convenient and less difficult (especially if you have a bad owner).

At first, I didn't understand why Voyoans at BLCU always made you check the bedroom before you agreed to move in, but it didn't take long for me to realize that Every bedroom I went to was different. Most of the rooms are standard in size (sorry, I didn't take a picture), with bathroom / toilet in each room. TJ It was the smallest room compared to mine because of its BalconyBut some other friends didn't have a balcony like TJ Or the extra space that I had.

I didn't think the rooms were in Residence 17 It was bigger than my room in my two room building, and I'm sure there are rooms bigger than my room … You just need to know the rooms in it!

    House positives 4

  • Very central (convenient)
  • Amal internet cafe / restaurant in the basement (you can hang it in the stairs on the first and second floor, sometimes on the third floor)
  • They do not lock the doors when curfews are in the past
  • Some nice fuyuans
  • Newly installed security cameras
  • Buzzing with international students

On a side note, the “24” mark in the “Hope Cafe” sign does not mean 24 hours a day! They will stay open as long as there are people, but sometimes they close very early (1 to 2 in the morning).

The furniture in each room is the same: wardrobe, two study tables, two beds, a small refrigerator, and a TV. I love the fact that there is a lock on the wardrobe as well as a study table drawer. But don't expect all furniture to work 100%.

If you decide to stay in the building number 4, try to avoid the first floor !! You were told that there was a death in one of these rooms at the beginning of 2007. Also, the bedrooms on the first floor seem to be prone to mold and become completely stuffy when running in the heaters in winter.

Beware, elevators in building 4 can be stacked. You may not want to stay on the upper floors at the exit opportunity you are stuck inside the elevator (it happened to a friend!). I was on the third floor, which was close enough to the ground floor, using the stairs when the elevators were parked or outside. It is not fun climbing 9 floors after a long night drunk with sore feet.

Finally, I just want to mention that I looked at Single bedroom in Building 8. Just seeing the room made me happy because I was in a shared room because it is so small, and the room looks very lonely. But of course, there are downsides of shared sleep as well (bad roommate, no privacy, etc.).

– – – –

Note. BLCU scholarship students are placed in Dormitory 1 or 2 (I'm not sure there are other buildings). This means collective showers and toilets (


Circus Circus vs Excalibur – Which is better for you

If you are planning to go to Vegas and are looking for a place that might be suitable for the whole family (where there are children), you will probably consider booking Circus Circus or Excalibur, hoping that your kids win you don't hate you forever because you dragged them to a place designated for adults. This page will also discuss the pros and cons of 2 Vegas resorts for adult visitors only.

First of all, I have to highlight that Las Vegas (especially all major resorts and casinos), is not where I would have joined my children (for reasons ranging from heavy smoking everywhere, to high alcohol level – the "bad" behavior of However, if you really need to take your kids there, you might want to give them something to enjoy as well.Therefore, circus and explorer circus resorts will be on the shortcut menu, which is understandable.But … which is better for your family?

In terms of “things to do” for kids, Circus Circus has the best setting, thanks to the huge Adventuredome: here you have a wide range of games to suit all ages, from young children to teenagers; the more sophisticated trips are very enjoyable for adults, I have to admit , I would have stayed there all day if it had not been for my partner who literally had to drag me away. Even if you decide not to stay in Circus Circus, if you have children, chances are you will take them there for a full day of fun: they will thank you for that.

However: The pool is small in size and it certainly does not offer a set of games that would be perfect for children; the rooms are very clean although I could not describe them as “comfortable” (the gaskets were very difficult); the casino was "frustrating" in my opinion, though it is It is fair, because the circus circus is aimed at families who may have decided that the casino will not be a major factor.

Despite Dizinische's look, Excalibur doesn't really suit children. Yes, they do have a cellar area where kids and families can find games to play together, but they certainly can't compare with Adventuredome of Circus Circus. I think Excalibur is an extraordinary compromise for those looking for an economical stay with something for kids in a slightly better location than Circus Circus. However, a positive feature is its huge pool area, where there is a large enough section designed for kids, with kids' water slides (which can also be used by adults, of course).

Excalibur rooms and corridors can hardly be described as "child friendly": they all smoke (well, non-smoking rooms have people who smoke in the rooms, most of them are drunks, and everywhere you go, you can smell the smell and breath of smoke, no matter how much Difficulty trying not to. If you don't mind that your kids breathe in smoke, Excalibur deserves families to think about. However, keep in mind that it is very loud, as semi-nude girls dance at casino tables with very loud music, full of drunken middle-aged men spending their holidays at cheap prices; we were surrounded by them in a "non-smoking land" (full of smoke).

However, the main positive feature is that Excalibur Casino is undoubtedly more fun than Circus Circus Casino; children are not allowed in casino floors, but if you can get a babysitter while you want to gamble nearby, this casino will give you better fun.


Swine Flu – Can You Get It From Your Hotel Bed?

How many times have I stayed in a hotel where I wondered about the cleanliness and hygiene of the mattress. What can you really sleep on in an unclean bed? Even if the sheets are changed, what about the pillow, bedspread or blanket?

Hepatitis A virus can stay out of the body for several months. HAV can live some acids and some heat and survive in dried stools. Other hepatitis viruses such as HBV and HCV can live from 16 hours to a week.

Researchers have known since 2005 that "super bugs" like C.Difficille, which is mainly found in hospitals, can live for weeks in bed and can even be resistant to bleaching. Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) is a relatively common bacteria found on the surface of the skin and nose of healthy people and animals. This bacterium causes an outbreak in schools and gyms, and is transmitted by contacting a towel.

If the mattress is not changed or cleaned properly, it is possible to transmit bacteria and viruses. Picking up the virus from hotel bedding is not common but possible, especially when you talk about headboards stuffed with sheets, bed linen and cushioned pillows, which can maintain enough moisture to enable the virus to live long enough to be infected. Bacteria, on the other hand, are a more solid form of life. If the guest before you had a bacterial infection and had enough of those bacteria deposited on the headboard or pillow, you could be infected.

The molds responsible for respiratory and skin problems like eczema are virtually indestructible and can live almost anywhere. According to a May 1999 clinic study, 93% of patients with chronic sinusitis (CRS) have allergic fungal sinusitis. Molds thrive in dark, humid areas, such as in the air conditioner region in tropical climates. This smell, when you first turn on the air conditioner at your hotel, may be a symptom of a mold problem.

What about swine flu? The swine flu virus or the nasal viruses that cause colds need to keep alive cells. Without these cells, which are found in body fluids such as blood, mucous membranes or saliva, viruses have a short shelf life, between a few seconds and 48 hours, depending on the surface. Viruses tend to live longer on non-porous surfaces, such as door handles, compared to porous surfaces, such as fabrics. But if the tissue is moistened with enough fluid, mucous membranes, saliva or stool, the virus may persist for much longer periods.

Can you infect swine flu from an unlikely hotel bed. You will have to lie down and put your face in the swine flu deposits within minutes of an infected person infected there. However, if you have to come into contact with a wet patch of infected bodily fluids, this may be possible.

Although it is unlikely that you will encounter beds in a hotel, not only that has changed, but it is still wet with former guests with body fluids, "better safe than sorry", on this day and age of epidemics and poor housekeeping, is a phrase Hunting to live with.

The same precautions and methods that you should use for any bed in the hotel when checking bed bugs will also serve you to check wet or dirty bedding. Don't wait until you are ready to get back to bed after a long day of sightseeing, check it out when you get to your room. Get rid of the bed! Throw it in a corner and forget about it because the last time it was cleaned up, Jimmy Carter was in the office. Restore a corner of the beds closest to the headboard, and make sure there are rusty colored spots. Move your hand and arm under the sheets above the mattress protector (hopefully there will be one) and feel any wet points. Remember, you never know who has slept in this bed before. Maybe it was a smooth elderly, or mom changing diapers and a baby, how about a baby urinating in bed. Everything is possible, why not take a minute to confirm before you or someone in your family jump. Smell your hand now, if it stinks, washes, and leaves the room. Your best hand is the rest of you.

After checking the bed, go to the headboard, if it is lined or covered with a cloth, all you have to do is turn your hand to check for moisture. Once again, smell your hand and repeat the above instructions. If your hand smells like your head then you will put your head there.

Now the most important component, the pillow. This mass of fibers or feathers filled with feathers is more than able to absorb and store fluids, mucous, urine, sweat and blood. All that is separated from you is a pillow case, and we hope it is a barrier pillow protector. Hold the pillow in your hands and pressure, hold the compressed pillow for 20 seconds, giving you ample time to feel any moisture. Do this several times in different places on the pillow, to make sure it is dry.

After spending 5 minutes examining the bed, headboard and pillow, I put together a travel paper like Allersac. If clean sheets separate me from the mattress and pillow, the extra protection of my travel card will give me peace of mind to relax and feel comfortable knowing I wash them.


The Tovar Hotel

El Tovar Hotel is located on the edge of South Grand Canyon's edge,

Grand Canyon National Park, Arizona.

El Tovar Hotel is an architectural wonder that seems to have emerged from the rocks it is in. This sprawling, multi-level building, which opened in 1905, opened after the natural steps and lines of the valley's edge.

It is built from original stone, rubble stone and Douglas Spruce big wood with a distinctive roof located on several levels. A proud wooden tower rises from the upper level to attract your attention upon your arrival. The coat of arms of the arms, upon entering, declares that this is not a historic historical national park.

Once called the most expensive and appointed registry house in America. The exterior of the first floor is covered with wooden panels, which gives the appearance of a huge cabin, while multiple balconies, terraces, and balconies tend more towards a rustic mountain chalet.

El Tovar still bears most of its rustic character and charm. It has attracted many prominent guests over the years to see and explore the vast landscape panorama of one of the natural wonders of the world.

President Theodore Roosevelt and William H. Taft with Bernard Shaw, Albert Einstein and author Zany Gray and Golemo Marconi to name a few.

The elegant dining room (previously a favorite of President Roosevelt during his stay) offers classic and regional options.

El Tovar Hotel features year-round 78 rooms or suites with a seating area.

The rooms are available in a standard or deluxe suite or suite with variations with a double bed or a queen-size or king-size, and all have air conditioning, cable TV and full bathroom facilities.

A stay at this majestic hotel will leave you with an enjoyable time of memories and an eagerness to return. Scenic sunrise and glorious sunsets were enough for me.

"Reservations" must be made approximately a year before to get the best room picks … For reservations, please contact Xanterra Parks & Resorts # 888-297-2757