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Best cities in the world

Do not let the XXX scare you when you see the Amsterdam flag. Yes it is one of the biggest, most notorious cities for legal prostitution and consumption of marijuana, but Amsterdam is also known as a city rich with history and culture. Please, I beg you; reconsider the other side of Amsterdam.

For a cheap hostel I suggest The Flying Pig (located down at the beach and on Leidsplein St.) They have multiple accommodationssingle rooms, double rooms, even squeezing in a remarkable eight beds in one room. However, the more isolated you want to be, the pricier it becomes. I suggest getting a bed in an eight person room, that way you can meet other travelers and see what brings them to Amsterdam. One of the important aspects of traveling is meeting other people.

I understand Amsterdam’s reputation, but it holds a much better place in my heart. I have spent many a nice afternoon sitting in Vondel Park (runs parallel to Leidsplein) and watching the numerous cyclists speed down the pathways. There usually is a hotdog vendor that isn’t too far off from the most eastern exit of the park. They are served in a delicious, warm bun that is softer than a normal bunexquisite for a snack. Sometimes they have small concerts set up by local artists in the park. They are free to sit down and watch the musicians play. As well, along the northern edge of the park there is a caf where people can sit outside and enjoy the weather with an espresso or caf latte. The deserts are magnificent and if you are willing to splurge, I suggest you stop in and have a bite of cheesecake.

There are a few key spots that you must visit while in Amsterdam. First Madame Tussaud’s in Dam Square: a wax museum that exhibits sculptures of famous people. It is a world famous museum that has other locations, like in London. Also in Dam Square, if you are looking for a cheap hotel (not a hostel) you should try Hotel Doria. They have quality rooms for reasonable rates, however, the rooms are not what make this hotel so great, the location does. Check them out for booking info:http://www.intris.nl/hote ldoria/

Another stop is the Van Gogh Museum. It is four levels of nothing but Van Gogh art, including the infamous “Starry Night.” The cost of admission is rather hefty if you are traveling on a budget, however, if you can afford it, I recommend it highly.

One of Amsterdam’s best kept secrets: the zoo. If you are staying at either the Flying

Flights to Galway Â? Fly into the West!

Galway airport was officially opened in 1987 and this year (2008), it celebrates its 21st Birthday. In the last 21 years it has serviced the West of Ireland very well and has doubled its number of passengers. On the 8th of October last year Galway Airport welcomed customer number ?2 million? to its terminal. At the moment Aer Arann is Galway Airport?s only airline.

Unfortunately there’s very little public transport available to and from Galway Airport with just a bus service operating once a day from the city centre. There is however an excellent taxi available at the airport.

A very large number of Irish, British and European destinations are serviced by Galway Airport. New destinations were announced this year in January for the following locations; Amsterdam – Schiphol, Bordeaux, Malaga and Faro. Galway Airport provides the business traveller and community with very important access to “Hub” airports including Dublin, Manchester, London Luton and the latest, Amsterdam Schiphol. Galway Airport also provides a daily and weekly schedule for locations in Ireland and the UK.

Galway Airport does not have the facilities or the runway to attract the larger aircrafts used by the many budget airlines such as Easyjet and Ryanair. It has however recently acquired new routes from Aer Arann with very competitive rates.

Aer Arann took to the skies in 1970, its aim was to provide transportation to 1,000 islanders on Inishmore, a little island off the West coast of Ireland. Over the years Aer Arann certainly has done that and expanded to the airline that it is today. In the 1980?s it commenced a service from Galway to Dublin and the many other routes that operate today followed. Aer Arann operates over 600 flights per week and to destinations both national and international and is an extremely popular and customer service oriented airline. It has received numerous awards including The ISO 9000 Quality Award, and Aer Arann received “The Palme D?Or European Regional Airline Award” recently for Excellence in Customer Services. Aer Arann state that they have no hidden extras and offer the following:

No baggage charges for bags under 15kgs.
No check-in fees.
Lowest check-in time in Ireland – 30 minutes on most routes!
No more paper ? Free SMS Itineraries sent to your mobile phone.
Allocated seating ? no scrums to get your seat!
Complimentary newspaper onboard every flight.
Fly direct to where you want.
Service with a smile.

Galway Airport operates a service to and from the following destinations, via Aer Arann, both national and international:

London Luton
Belfast City
Amsterdam Schiphol

The past, present and the future of both tourism and general industry in the West of Ireland depends greatly on Galway Airport, and whether you’re visiting on business or pleasure you are assured an excellent standard of service when you arrive or depart at Galway Airport.

Whatever takes you to Ireland West, the stunning views and rugged hills of Connemara, the breathtaking Atlantic views or the colourful and vibrant Galway city, you won’t be disappointed. Galway city, also known as the ‘City of the Tribes’ is famous for its cobbled streets, wonderful little restaurants and cafés, excellent shopping, friendly people and top class accommodation.

Mairead Foley writes for the Ireland travel and accommodation website http://www.GoIreland.com

Visit GoIreland for all you need to know before visiting Galway and Ireland, like what to see and where to go. You can also view B&Bs, guesthouses, self catering and hotels all over Ireland as well as Galway hotels.

European Flight Travel Laws – Part 1

In a flight never carry any of the items mentioned below Under no situation carry drugs, heroine, brown sugar and any other kind of narcotics. Corrosives such as acids, alkalis, mercury and wet cell alkalis or fireworks, guns and flaresInside Countries Law If your luggage is expensive and you want to declare a higher value then please do it at the time of check in so that the airline will become liable in case of loss. The major car rental service provides free assistance if you have a flat tyre so dont forget to contact your company in case you face one of these situations Littering off in a garden or tourist attraction could end you up in heavy fines so always remember to use bins. Never overtake or drive fast they will levy a heavy charge on you. Always follow the traffic lights and road instructions which are very well organized in the European countries. Gay sex and lesbians are not encouraged at all places in this continent unless you are in Amsterdam (A city in Netherlands) where free sex is allowed. Never drink too much because if you get unconscious the police might catch you and jail you up.

Reflections: Nightmare vacations

Dear Granddaughter,

Thank you for inviting me to your wedding. I wouldn’t have missed it for the world but this being the third trip back to the U. S. within four months did dampened my love of flying. These trips will have to count as my vacation for this summer.

It was lucky that the Peace Corps paid for my trip in April when I had to be med-evacued to D. C. to have a breast biopsy. The mammogram I had taken in January showed a spot they wanted to check out. I wasn’t very worried about it, but it did give me a start when I read the letter in Kiev (before I left) saying they couldn’t rule out cancer. That word seemed to stand out on the page. But it turned out ok and I just had a cyst that they aspirated and I was back in Ukraine within 10 days.

The second trip was the only one I had planned to take this summer. It was good to see you and your family at your cousin’s graduation in Oklahoma City in May. You remember how worried we were about her because of the auto accident she had about 10 days before I got there. Her injuries were more severe than the other kids in the car as she had a lacerated liver. After a week in the hospital, she was able to go to graduation. I was glad she had so many of her family there since her father was in Iraq and couldn’t attend.

The trip from Ukraine to Nebraska and back again for your wedding about did me in. At the start, my flight didn’t leave until later that night, but I knew from experience that I had to start the trip early. My tutor left a message for the taxi driver to pick me up early in the morning to drive me to the bus in my city. That part went well. I can’t say as much for the rest. The bus only went to the center of Kiev so I had to find a way to Boryspyl Airport several miles from there. Nothing is easy when one doesn’t speak the language. Finally I was able to locate a bus that went to the Airport. From then on the journey went pretty well. Your mother picked me up at the Kansas City Airport and we drove in a rain and hail storm to their home in Manhattan, Kansas.

Your wedding in Nebraska was beautiful and it was great seeing the family members that were able to attend. You can be happy that the rehearsal, wedding and reception went off without a hitch.

Going back to Ukraine turned into the worst nightmare of the three trips. I felt things might not go well when I learned that the flight from Kansas City to Chicago was delayed. Sure enough, when I got to Chicago the plane to Amsterdam was loaded and my seat had been given away because I wasn’t there to claim it. The service personnel tried to be helpful by rerouting me to Detroit thinking I might be able to get a flight out of there to Amsterdam. I did get on that plane. There was only one problem when I arrived in Amsterdam the flight to Kiev had already departed. So ok, I’ll take the next one. That’s fine but there is only one flight a day from Amsterdam to Kiev which meant I had about 22 hours to wait. I did not want to go into Amsterdam since I was alone so I chose to spend the night in the airport. I found that a person can sleep, not well, but get some sleep in the airport chairs. There is a section set aside for just that. The next afternoon I was able to board the plane to Kiev.

All in all it took me three days to get back to my apartment. I was so glad to get back I didn’t want to see an airport for a while.

Honey, I hope you are very happy with your new husband. I wish you the best of luck and I am so happy to have been there to see you enter this new life. All the trouble was worth it.



Tips for Affordable Last Minute Travel

Many times, people have to travel places without having suitable planning and flight bookings. The last minute traveling has become frequent in recent times, as life is getting faster, both at the personal and the professional ends. People have to visit places in cases such as, an emergency visit that may be official or personal, or a change in honeymoon planning etc. However, the advancements in Internet have brought a revolution in the lifestyles of people, as one can shop from home and that too at the best available prices. Internet has also enabled advance booking of tickets for flights and rooms in hotels. The technology is a great aid, especially to people, who need to get flight tickets at the last moment, and that too without the help of bugging travel agents. Many websites are also providing last minute services, which include, booking hotel rooms, if needed, along with, flight tickets. These websites take customer online requests, process these requests through their links with various airlines, and hotels, and search for suitable options, which have not been filled to the capacity. These various alternatives so found are then offered to customers, who may choose accordingly, while making payments through their credit cards.

Travelers can look out for both luxury flights and cheap flights, and in the same manner for accommodation, in a faster and efficient way. Web portals are providing customers with bookings in Flights to Amsterdam, Las Vegas, New York, and other such prominent destinations, along with low profile places. However, travelers need to be aware of various hidden costs associated with a deal. Also, one has to be careful while making choices, as these are final in most cases, and the deals are non-refundable. Along with this, credit cards should be used carefully, and personal details should not be disclosed in any manner.

Kenya Airways flights: the pride of African airlines

Kenya Airways flights: the pride of African airlines

In the next 10-20 years, Kenya Airways aims to grow into a decidedly dominant carrier in Africa with a notable presence in Asia, Europe and the America’s while operating a modern fleet of new airplanes. Kenya Airways was on pace to become a world-class network airline by 2005.

Kenya Airways growing fleet

Despite the downturn in the aviation industry caused by events in 2001, the last three years have been a period of continued growth and innovation for Kenya Airways.

The airline began its growth spurt with delivery of its first Boeing 767-300ER followed by 2 additional 767s in June and July of 2001. In 2002, the carrier renewed its regional fleet with the addition of four new 737-700s, making Kenya Airways the first airline in Sub-Saharan Africa to operate 737-700 with blended winglets, retiring its last A310.

The Boeing 777s specs

The 777 is the most technologically advanced airplane in the world and is available in 5 models: the 777-200, a 777-200ER (extended range), a larger 777-300 as well as two as two longer ranger models, the 777-200LR and the 777-300ER. The 777s seat from 301 up to 368 passengers in a three-class configuration with a range of 5,210 nautical miles (9,649 km) in the 777-200 to 9,280 nautical miles (16,983km) for the 777-200lr (longer range).

The growth of Kenya Airways

As Africa passenger traffic growth to Kenya continues, so does the need for airplanes that offer more range, carry more passengers and that offer an improved level of comfort.

Kenya Airways is naturally following the growth path of many other long-haul carriers in the industry by improving its regional and international routes. Passenger demand is creating the need for more frequency and point-to-point routes to and from Kenya. With its new 767-300ERs and the recently acquired 777-200ER, Kenya Airways is improving its long-haul route networks from Nairobi to London, Amsterdam, Dubai, Mumbai, Bangkok and Hong Kong.

Kenya Airways Partnerships

Kenya Airways has grown its partnership with KLM, Northwest AIRLINES, Precision Airlines, East African Airlines and Air Malawi, giving passengers a choice of destinations in Europe, Middle East, Asia and the Americas. Not only are these partnerships beneficial to the passengers, the relationships also connect Kenya Airways to many global distribution networks that benefit its daily business operations. Kenya Airways continues to expand its horizons with partnerships and extending its route networks with the addition of new Boeing 777.

The U.S Awards for the 777 jetliner

On May 30, 1995, the 777 became the first airplane in aviation history to earn U.S Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) approval to fly 180-minute extended range twin engine operations (ETOPS) at service entry. On May 4, 1998, the 777-300 achieved another historic milestone by becoming the first commercial airplane to receive type certification and 180-minute ETOPS approval on the same day.

The new distinct look of Premier Class

Kenya Airways new Premier Class flat bed seats are giving passengers more comfort on long haul routes. It also includes large overhead compartments to provide passengers with increased stowage capacity. Out bound as well as centre stowage units are designed to open downward for convenient loading. When closed, they allow ample overhead clearance.

In-flight Service system

For improved more efficient in-flight service, Kenya Airways 777s are equipped with an advanced cabin management system. Linked to a computerized control console, the cabin management system assists cabin crews with many tasks and allows airlines to provide new services for passengers, including a digital sound system comparable to the most state of the art home stereo or disc players.

The 777 Awards

The industrial Design Excellence award was awarded to the passenger cabin of the new Boeing 777 jetliner, the first time the industrial Designers Society of America honored an airplane interior.

A world-wide survey of passengers flying long-range routes in first, business and economy classes revealed an overwhelming preference for the 777. The survey found that more than three out of four passengers who had flown aboard both the 777 and the airbus A330/340 airplanes preferred the Boeing 777.

The airline of the Year… i.e. 4 years in a row

Over the last three years, Kenya Airways was awarded the airline of the year by the African Aviation, Africa’s leading industry journal for its continuous improvements of its products and services and upholding the highest safety standards of its products.

Kenya Airways is the flag carrier of the republic of Kenya operating scheduled regional and international passenger, cargo and mail services from Nairobi to Europe, India, Asia and the Middle East.

Love, In The Time Of Cheap Airfare

The Makings of a Heartbreak

Who doesn’t know how hard it is to maintain a long distance relationship? Your partner and you have visions of a wonderful future together. You see each other eye to eye, soul to soul. So, what’s standing between you and what could be the great love of your life? If you’re from UK and your sweetheart is in Amsterdam, the answer is distance. Yes, distance, time constraints, individual careers, and exorbitant airfares that burn gaping holes in your pocket. Still, you never give up hope that one day, airlines will grow a conscience and offer cheap flights from UK to Amsterdam.

Hopes for Star-Crossed Lovers

There’s light at the end of the tunnel, though. There are airlines that have slashed the prices of their airfare, making cheap flights from UK to Amsterdam possible. For example, if you live anywhere in London, you’d be overjoyed to know that there are fares to Amsterdam below £100. All you have to do is be resourceful in availing of discounted seats and airline promos.

Cheap Flights from UK to Amsterdam: the Modern Cupid

People maintaining long-distance relationships rejoice! Airlines are now trying to give the lowest possible administration charges in bookings. As a result, air carriers, also known as “no frills” or budget airlines, are now offering cheap flights from UK to Amsterdam.

Missing your hunnybunny in Amsterdam and feeling that a phone call can’t soothe the loneliness? Get online, type in keywords such as “budget flights” or “promo airfare,” input your location and that of the place you’re going to, then hit enter. Next, you trawl through the sites yielded by search engines, book a flight for the day, charge it, print out your e-ticket, pack your toothbrush and a spare change of clothes, and as quickly and painlessly as that, you can make your way from the airport to your loved one’s waiting arms.

Take note, though, that these flight rates, while still quite affordable compared to what other airlines charge, are pricier if tickets are purchased one day before, or on the date itself, of the actual departure. To avail of highly discounted airfare, book your flight early. The amount you save in cheap flights from UK to Amsterdam would eventually accumulate to some serious sum.

Love Connection

You would be happy to know that most flights servicing both countries are offering budget fares. So, cheap flights from UK to Amsterdam are not a one-time thing at all. Affordable air travel will help you keep the loneliness at bay. After all, cheap flights from UK to Amsterdam have practically made next-door neighbors out of the two countries.

Amsterdam: Things to do with the family

Amsterdam is the capital and the largest city of the Netherlands which draws in millions of tourists a year. When you first think of Amsterdam, you might think that it’s more of an adult orientated city with its famous red light districts and funky things on sale but there’s a real sweet and friendly side of Amsterdam that’s just perfect for the venturing family who comes here.

When you get to Amsterdam or even if you research it on the internet, you’ll realize that their main tourist attractions are actually their various museums and art houses.
However, most museums won’t really hold the attention of kids for long, which is why the museum NEMO is just perfect for them. This is Netherlands largest science center with plenty of hands on experiences available.

Kids and adults alike will be wowed by the impressive architecture of the building from the moment they lay eyes on it, and when they enter, they have five floors to explore everything from flying cars and soap bubbles to the magic of metal and DNA experiments!

If you or your family members are fans of parks, then head for VondelPark, a garden with over 110acres of footpaths, waterways and entertainment that draw millions of tourists in each year. Watch fire eaters and jugglers relax by the lake or take the kids to one of the six big playgrounds available on ground. If you’re here during the months of June to August, catch one of their free open air concerts and many other performances that show at the park.

Give your feet a break next by taking an Amsterdam Canal Cruise. One of the most beautiful features of Amsterdam would be its canals and seeing the city and its alleyways by boat is both an exciting and memorable adventure that everyone can enjoy. If you’re not a fan of boats, try having a fun filled day of cycling around the city. Amsterdam is one of the most bicycle friendly cities in the world today with over 500,000 bicycles and hundreds of bicycle paths that can lead to you explore Amsterdam in your own time and leisure.

If the kids start to get bored of the people and the buildings, take them to Artis Zoo, the oldest zoo in the Netherlands that is more than just a Zoo. Artis is home to greenhouses, planetariums, and a zoological museum and home to over 700 animal species. This museum is so unique that you’ll spend hours just being fascinated by its perfect blending of culture, plant, stars and animal life all under one roof and how majestic and enchanting the whole place feels.

Hotel Saves the Day


These days, it’s not often that air travel ends up as a disastrous failure, but I am minded of a time some years ago when this is just what happened…and how eventually everything resolved itself.

My plan was a relatively simple one; fly to Amsterdam, drop off my luggage at my hotel, be picked up by a representative of the firm that I was visiting, conclude my business and overnight at my hotel until my departure the next day. Now, this seemed simple enough, but I had not bargained for a Europe wide blanket of fog to scupper my plans.

My departure from Heathrow and the subsequent 45 minute flight to Amsterdam went as it should have done; just before landing though the pilot judged conditions too hazardous to make a landing, and after circling for a while, was diverted to an alternate airport and when this too was judged unsuitable I developed a nagging feeling of worry.

The next port of call was a military airport on the Belgian border and I was gradually realising that we would have to land this time whatever the conditions, as our fuel was getting worryingly low. I’m happy to say that after three attempts and a very rough landing, we did finally make it.

We were bussed along with our luggage, to our original destination, Amsterdam Airport, from where I caught a taxi to my Amsterdam hotel…I was now some six hours late and my nerves were understandably frazzled. Languishing in my taxi I cursed my circumstances and reflected that this was my worst business trip ever, but as I pulled up to my destination, the Gresham Memphis Hotel in Amsterdam, I cheered slightly.

The Gresham was positively salubrious and as the smart, courteous and understanding reception staff expedited my check in, my mood thawed a little more. When I saw my room, I decided that the grand surroundings that I found myself in, should make me resolve to make the most of the situation…that said, I headed to the bar/ restaurant for some dinner. There I enjoyed some hearty fare and as I sunk into one of the bar’s armchairs, I finished the night off by sampling some of the extensive cocktail menu…after all, I figured that the Company’s expense account at least owed me that much!

The next day I felt on top of the world. A great evening in the most congenial of surroundings had turned my whole situation around…even more so, as I started the day off in just the right way with a hearty breakfast in the Gresham’s Breakfast Room. On offer was an extensive Buffet Breakfast of the traditional Continental variety as well as the hot British variety…I had both…all washed down with lashings of strong black coffee.

It’s amazing how failure can suddenly turn into success and my wise choice of Amsterdam hotels had certainly achieved that; I hired one of the hotel’s well equipped conference rooms that morning and arranged for the company that I was visiting to have our meeting there. I was all done by 1 O’clock, had lunch and caught the 4 O’clock flight home. As Voltaire might say; I’d had the very best outcome in this best of all possible worlds.

A Great Deal at Stansted


When I comes to the major airports of the South East, there can be no doubt that if asked, almost everyone could name them all; they are, of course, Heathrow, Gatwick, Luton and Stansted. Heathrow is, of course, the most well known as it is the world’s busiest airport as well as being Britain’s largest airport. Gatwick would probably be next in line in the league of recognition, closely followed by Luton and Stansted.

In recent years though, the last two airports on the list above, have been growing in popularity at a far greater rate than the first two airports on the list. There are many factors that have contributed to this organic growth, but the most compelling are the availability of very cheap flights from these airports and the ease of passing through them due to their less crowded nature: Stansted is a prime example of the play of these factors.

Stansted Airport is home to a good selection of ‘budget airlines’ that just couldn’t afford to fly out of Heathrow or Gatwick; the savings they make are subsequently passed onto passengers in the form of low fares; for instance, £40 one way to Palma, Majorca…you just can’t beat that. Stansted’s location, likewise plays a part in its popularity; Stansted is almost halfway between the northern extreme of the M25 and Cambridge, near Bishop’s Stortford and Harlow; it is convenient for North Londoners, for Essex and the northern Home Counties; it thus makes it less crowded and easier to traverse than Heathrow or Gatwick…and great to use if you want a hassle free experience.

So just imagine this…

You want to fly to Amsterdam for a week and want everything to be as cheap, simple and stress free as possible; you book into an Airport Hotel in Stansted where you spend a restful night. In the morning you arise, gently stroll down to breakfast and when you are ready, you order a taxi to take you from your Stansted hotel to the airport.

On the way to the airport you gratefully reflect that you have cleverly avoided any airport parking problems, as the Stansted hotel that you booked had hotel parking for up to 21 days included within the cost of the room.

On arrival, you breeze through check-in, security and the departure lounge and as you take off, you rest safe in the knowledge that upon your return, your car will still be safe in its Stansted hotel parking bay and that your room in your Stanstead hotel will be awaiting you.

A week later, upon your return, you catch a taxi to your airport hotel in Stansted, rest overnight and in the morning you collect your car from the hotel parking bay and drive off home; relaxed and stress free.

Now that is the advantage of an airport like Stansted; if you want that kind of travelling experience then you need just do three things. Fly from Stansted; book into an airport hotel in Stansted and finally, ensure that your Stansted hotel has inclusive free parking…enough said.