Should You Buy That Cheap EasyJet Ticket?

Travel and Leisure - Sun, 11/25/2018 - 13:00
<p>For travelers <a href="" target="_blank">city-hopping around Europe</a>, easyJet is an affordable go-to airline. They have flights all over Europe, as well as covering some parts of the Middle East (you can fly to Tel Aviv and Damascus, for example) and Morocco. Headquartered at London Luton Airport, which is one of the four London airports easyJet flies out of, they’re still a relatively new company. They started flying in 1996, and today, easyJet says more than <a href="" target="_blank">1.3 million bookings</a> are made through their website every month. Post Brexit, they are <a href="" target="_blank">looking to open easyJet Europe</a> as a subsidiary, which will have offices in Vienna.</p><p><strong>Related:</strong> <a href="" target="_blank">Should You Buy That Cheap Spirit Airlines Ticket?</a></p><p>If you’re <a href="" target="_blank">planning a multi-city European itinerary</a>, easyJet seems like an obvious choice for anyone trying to stretch their cash. Personally, I find it hard to resist a cheap flight from <a href="" target="_blank">Barcelona to Paris</a>. But after booking impulsively, I sometimes worry that the inexpensive ticket is going to cost me quite a bit in terms of time and frustration. So if you’re going back and forth on whether or not to book that flight on easyJet, here are all the answers to your easyJet questions, supplied by reviewers who have already tried the budget airline.</p><h2>What do I need to prepare ahead of time?</h2><p>The key to acing an easyJet flight is preparation. Some budget airlines charge for things you might not think of, like printing a boarding pass at the airport, so you want to be sure to cover all your bases ahead of time. Lori Zaino, from <em><a href="" target="_blank">The Points Guy</a></em>, explained, “With <a href="" target="_blank">EasyJet</a>, print your boarding pass and pay to check your luggage ahead of time so you won’t have to worry about paying any extra fees. If you don’t need to check any bags and you have your boarding pass printed, you can head straight to security and avoid the check-in desk entirely. Note that you can check in online anywhere from 30 days to two hours before your flight.”</p><h2>What’s the deal with carry-on bags?</h2><p>EasyJet actually doesn’t impose exact measurements on your personal item, which is a rarity for budget airlines. They just require that the personal item fits under your seat. And there isn’t a weight limit for carry-on bags; you can cram as many chunky boots into your suitcase as you’d like, provided it fits their other carry-on specifications. Zaino said, “On EasyJet, [carry-on bag] requirements are slightly more lax, with a maximum carry-on bag size of 56 cm x 45 cm x 25 cm (about 22 x 17 x 9 inches) and no weight limit. Your personal item doesn’t have an exact size requirement, but should be able to fit under the seat in front of you.”</p><h2>How is their customer service?</h2><p>After sifting through most of the easyJet reviews on the internet, it seems like customer service is solid when things go smoothly, but can be a little dicey if the going gets tough. As for flight delays, customers do tend to complain about hold ups or last-minute cancellations with some regularity.</p><p>“Flight cancelled [on] very short notice, no help whatsoever, then ignored by head office until posting negatively on Facebook. They refuse to provide any information on the reasons for the cancellation and generally treat me with an attitude bordering on contempt,” John posted on <a href="" target="_blank">Airline Ratings</a>. “They’re good when it all goes to plan but when a problem occurs you really see what kind of company this is,” he continued.</p><p>Martin flew from Tel Aviv to London and also had a poor customer service experience. The airline lost his bag, he said on <a href="" target="_blank">Airline Ratings</a>: “No apology from easyJet whatsover. After three days into the trip, I still don’t know where my bag is or when I will get it back.”</p><p>On the flip side, Sonya V. has flown easyJet multiple times and said on <a href=";utm_campaign=www_review_share_popup&amp;utm_medium=copy_link&amp;utm_source=(direct)" target="_blank">Yelp</a> that she’s had extremely positive interactions with their staff. “In fact I had 5 flights in one month and all of them went as smoothly as could be. The staff are wonderful. Even the people telling me my bags were overweight did it with a tinge of regret. Everyone speaks excellent English.”</p><h2>Are there any amenities, or should I bring my own snacks?</h2><p>There isn’t much in the way of legroom, and the seats don’t recline. There’s no complimentary beverage service and pretzels, but seeing as they don’t measure your personal item, you’ll have room to throw a few granola bars in your purse. Sanat S gave these three bullet points on <a href=";utm_campaign=www_review_share_popup&amp;utm_medium=copy_link&amp;utm_source=(direct)" target="_blank">Yelp</a>:</p><p>“- Seat pitch was very small, which is par for the course for many low-cost airlines. However, as I am tall, it was horrible for me, with next to no comfortable leg room, and my knees were touching the seat in front.</p><p>- Even worse, the seat did NOT recline whatsoever. It was in one fixed position.</p><p>- Service was standard low-cost, with no complimentary snacks or drinks. However, for a flight that was just under 2 hours, this wasn't TOO unbearable.”</p><h2>Should I expect delays?</h2><p>Agreeing with John, who had to deal with delays, Linda R. on <a href=";utm_campaign=www_review_share_popup&amp;utm_medium=copy_link&amp;utm_source=(direct)" target="_blank">Yelp</a> suggested that encountering a delay or cancellation was a concern with easyJet. “We had a flight booked from London Luton to Paris and right when we got to the airport we were told the flight had been cancelled,” she said.</p><p>Linda also had an issue when attempting to rebook. “We found out that the next flight would not leave until two days later,” she added.</p><h2>How do I make the EasyJet experience work for me?</h2><p>Take a short flight, so that the lack of snacks, drinks, and legroom doesn’t bother you. Print your boarding pass out before you go, and consider paying extra for a slightly larger seat and priority boarding. And keep in mind that some of the strikes against easyJet (and most budget airlines) can also be a strike against any airline.</p><p>Sure, boarding might be a bit messy, but when is that not the case? In terms of timing, if you have to be at your baby cousin’s first birthday party, taking an easyJet flight that arrives two hours before the event might not be the right choice. However, if you have a relaxed itinerary and are excited by the idea of saving money, flying with easyJet can be simple and affordable.</p>
Categories: Travel

The Way People Used to Book Flights Was Mind-boggling — and Sometimes It Required Binoculars

Travel and Leisure - Sun, 11/25/2018 - 12:00
<p>Imagine the last time you booked a flight. Perhaps you did some research and compared prices. But once you located a flight, the actual time it took to book? Nearly instantaneous. At least, compared with 80 years ago.</p><p>The reigning system airlines used to book customer flights in the 1940s and ‘50s was pure, inefficient chaos. Just reading about it makes the blood boil and hands sweat. It didn’t help that airlines were adding more flights and bigger planes to their fleets every day, shortening the honeymoon phase for even the most advanced enterprise technology.</p><p>Immediately following World War II, passenger air travel in the U.S. became more accessible and encountered furious demand. Marketed as a luxury purchase, flying across the country nonetheless required multiple legs on several different carriers. As fleets grew, ticketing presented a nightmare for both customer and airline. Travel agents helped airlines stay organized and flush with demand, for which the former received a commission, but they didn’t control the inventory. It was the airlines’ responsibility to record available seats. And the margin for error was high.</p><p>At the time, each major airline operated its own version of a “real-time” reservations office. There, sixty or so reservation agents would field calls from customers and travel agents. To book a reservation, they consulted a massive availability board, which attempted to account for all seats on upcoming flights using a series of small light bulbs. At one point, the boards became so large that agents needed binoculars. (If a flight was in the distant future, the agent walked to another room to consult a separate file.) Once they confirmed an available seat, the agent recorded the passenger name and information on a card. A few times per hour, another employee collected and transported the pile of cards to the availability-board operator and the ticketing office to issue personalized tickets. None of this accounts for last-minute cancellations or changes. It was batch-processing at its unholiest.</p><p>In 1946, <a href="" target="_blank">American Airlines</a> commissioned and introduced a smaller electromechanical terminal to help automate inventory. The Reservisor, as it was uniquely named, eliminated the large and increasingly complex availability board. Instead, each unit connected to a nearby room of switches and cables, known as the “the Brain,” which recorded updated seat availability. The Reservisor processed 200 additional passengers per day and reduced staffing by 20. However, each reservation still required a telephone call and a hand-delivered note to ticketing. An estimated <a href="" target="_blank">one in twelve</a> reservations was incorrect.</p><p>Under increasing flight loads and customer relations pressure, American Airlines once again updated its system with a fancy new name, the Magnetronic Reservisor, which it installed at New York’s LaGuardia Airport in 1952. Under the new system, agents didn’t even need to be in the same building to reserve flights. Virtually any travel agent in the New York area could book a customer flight by popping a metal plate into his or her desktop unit, which communicated the request back to the Magnetronic Reservisor at LaGuardia. “Within seconds, lights on the keyset provide availability data on the specified flight,” <a href="" target="_blank">bragged</a> the manufacturer. The agent need only flip a switch and the Reservisor updated the inventory in one second. The Magnetronic Reservisor’s storage drum could hold 10,000 units of flight memory, or 1,000 flight legs per day over a 12-day span.</p><p>“Reservisor was the first commercial system to combine electronic processing and electronic communications,” wrote Smithsonian Institution curator <a href="" target="_blank">Jon Eklund</a> in 1994. The technology “demonstrated that information could be reliably processed by a central computer” in real time.</p><p>The arrival of jet engine technology — faster, farther-reaching planes — meant the Reservisor system wouldn’t cut it for long. More travel agents and better computers helped, but it wasn’t perfect. Internet ticketing couldn’t come soon enough. Today, American Airlines flies <a href="" target="_blank">6,700 flights</a> per day to 350 destinations around the world. Then again, now <i>you’re </i>the travel agent.</p>
Categories: Travel

Where to Find the Top Travel Deals for Cyber Monday

Travel and Leisure - Sun, 11/25/2018 - 10:30
<p>While <a href="" target="_blank">Cyber Monday</a> can get you great deals and an <a href="" target="_blank">early start on your holiday shopping</a>, it can also help you save a bundle on your next getaway.</p><p>The occasion offers a range of travel deals to choose from, from flights to hotel stays to package deals that include all transportation, accommodations, and excursions at a fraction of the regular price.</p><p><strong>Related</strong>: <a href="" target="_blank">The Best Gifts No One Will Realize You Ordered on Amazon</a></p><p>Whether you’re in search of one last trip to end the year or planning your first getaway of 2019, we’ve rounded up some of the top travel deals you can take advantage of this <a href="" target="_blank">Cyber Monday</a>.</p><h2>Airfare Sales: </h2><p><a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">CheapOAir</a> will be offering <strong>$40 off of flights, hotels, and car bookings</strong> on Cyber Monday when booking with the promo code CMONDAY40. </p><p><a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">Air France</a> will sell 500 digital gift cards valued from $50 to $5,000 from Nov. 26 – Dec. 2 while supplies last. Any gift card over $150 will be given an<strong> extra $30 in value</strong> to be used at <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank"></a>. Gift cards will never expire.</p><p>Budget carrier <a href="" target="_blank">Ryanair</a> has been offering a different deal each day from Monday, Nov. 19 through Monday, Nov. 26. Be sure to check out Ryanair’s website on Cyber Monday to see its deal of the day, with prior deals including<strong> flights starting at just $6.50</strong>. </p><p><a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">Southwest Vacations</a> is offering <strong>up to $250 off of its flight and hotel packages</strong> to any of the destinations it offers. Customers will receive $125 off of trips in the U.S. when they use the promo code SAVE125DOM* and $250 off international vacations when using the promo code SAVE250INT* on Black Friday and throughout Cyber Week. Bookings can be made between Nov. 18 and Dec. 3 by 11:59 p.m. CT for travel between Nov. 19 and June 7, 2019. </p><p>Budget airline <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">WOW Air</a> is offering <strong>40 percent off of all flights</strong> for bookings made on Monday, Nov. 26 when using the code WOWCYBERMONDAY. The code is valid for bookings made Nov. 26 through Nov. 28 for travel between November 2018 and April 10, 2019.</p><p><a data-ecommerce="true" href=";utm_medium=social&amp;utm_campaign=special_offer_via_week47_black_friday" target="_blank">Icelandair</a> will be back with deals this year, offering fares to a variety of popular European stops out of U.S. cities <strong>starting at $309 round-trip</strong>. </p><p>Low-cost carrier <a href="" target="_blank">Norwegian</a> is also running Cyber Monday deals that include <strong>up to 15 percent off of restrictive fares</strong> on longhaul routes (flexible fares are excluded) from both the U.S. and Canada. The savings will automatically show up in the featured fares, so customers won’t need a promo code. The sale ends on Monday, Nov. 26 at 11:59 p.m. EST. The deals apply for travel between Dec. 3 and March 31, 2019, with a blackout period from Dec. 17 to Jan. 6, 2019.</p><p><a href="" target="_blank">Air New Zealand</a> will be offering discounted fares from <a href="" target="_blank">the U.S. and Canada to New Zealand, Australia, and the Cook Islands</a> for Cyber Monday. </p><p><a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">Expedia</a> will provide <strong>$100 off of $200 flights</strong> through a coupon that will refresh every hour from 9 a.m. PST to 3 p.m. PST on Cyber Monday.</p><h2>Hotel Deals: </h2><p><a data-ecommerce="true" href=";cm_mmc=OFMAM-6C-AMER-EN-LOY-CyberSale18-Vanity" target="_blank">InterContinental Hotel Group</a> is offering <strong>25 percent off</strong> of the best available rate for stays at over 5,000 properties across the globe during its Cyber Week promotion. The deal is valid for bookings made from Nov. 23 through Nov. 20 for travel between Nov. 26 and March 31, 2019.</p><p><a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">Hilton</a> is running a sale that includes <strong>up to 25 percent off</strong> of trips across Europe, the Middle East, and Africa that happens to coincide with Cyber Monday. Bookings need to be made by Jan. 31, 2019, though the properties below are also offering specific Black Friday and Cyber Monday deals: </p>The <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">Hilton Anatole</a> in Dallas is offering <strong>30 percent off</strong> with a two-night minimum stay for bookings made between Nov. 26 and 28 for stays between Nov. 26, 2018 and Oct. 31, 2019. <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">Hilton Waikoloa Village</a> on the Big Island of Hawaii is also offering <strong>30 percent off</strong> of stays for bookings between Nov. 19 and 30 and stays between Nov. 26, 2018 and Nov. 30, 2019. <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">Hilton Hawaiian Village</a> in Oahu, Hawaii, is offering up to <strong>25 percent off</strong> of stays for Honors members and up to 23 percent off for non-members for bookings between Nov. 19 and Nov. 26 and stays between Dec. 1, 2018 and June 30, 2019. The <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">Hilton Playa del Carmen</a> is offering up to <strong>65 percent off</strong> stays between Jan. 1 and April 28, 2019.<p><a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank"></a> is once again launching its electronic scratch-off mystery coupon for Black Friday and Cyber Monday. With the promotion, travelers who visit the website will be prompted to scratch off a mystery coupon that could provide savings of <strong>seven percent, eight percent, 10 percent, or 99 percent</strong> off hotel bookings. The coupon must be used for bookings between Black Friday and Cyber Monday, and each visitor is guaranteed to win one of the four deals, according to representatives.</p><p>Book a hotel between 10 a.m. and 10 p.m. on <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">Orbitz</a> on Cyber Monday and you can save an additional <strong>17 percent off of hotels </strong><strong>already marked half off </strong>when using the code MONDAY17. You can also save 15 percent off hotels from Nov. 23 through Nov. 27 when using the promo code THANKFUL. </p><p>Book a hotel between 10 a.m. and 10 p.m. on <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">Travelocity</a> on Cyber Monday and save an additional <strong>17 percent off of hotels marked 50 percent off</strong> when using the code CYBER17.</p><p><a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">Expedia</a> will offer up to an extra <strong>90 perfect off</strong> select hotels through coupons on its app on Nov. 26, with the coupon refreshing every hour from 9 a.m. PST to 3 p.m. PST. Expedia will also be offering <strong>50 percent off</strong> standalone hotels on its website on Nov. 26, with the coupon refreshing every hour from 9 a.m. PST to 3 p.m. PST.</p><p><a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">Bluegreen Vacations</a> will create a customized eight-day and seven-night getaway for up to six people for $499 at participating U.S. hotels. Bookings must be made between Cyber Monday and Nov. 30 to apply. </p><p>Get <strong>40 percent off</strong> a stay at <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">Viceroy Riviera Maya</a> in Mexico on bookings made Nov. 22 through Cyber Monday and get a complimentary breakfast for two included in the deal. Travel is available between November and Dec. 18, 2019, with rates starting from $363 per night.</p><p><a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">Nayara Springs</a> in Costa Rica is offering <strong>35 percent off</strong> a four-night stay on bookings made on Cyber Monday, making a trip that would typically cost $3,000 just $1,950. The deal also includes complimentary breakfast, a welcome bottle of wine, daily yoga sessions, complimentary mini bar selections, and bird-watching tours.</p><p><a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">Hamilton Princess and Beach Club</a> is slashing rooms to <strong>half the price</strong> from Black Friday through Cyber Monday for stays through March 31, 2019. Bookings must include a Friday or Saturday night stay to apply.</p><p><a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">The Atlantis</a> on Paradise Island is offering <strong>five days of savings</strong>, with deals available each day between Thanksgiving and Cyber Monday. Savings range from flight discounts with bookings to up to $300 in resort credits and complimentary stays. Bookings need to be made on Monday, Nov. 26 and are available for travel between Nov. 26, 2018 and Nov. 30, 2019 in the following towers: The Beach, The Coral, The Royal, The Reef, and The Cove. </p><p><strong>Save 50% off </strong>all room rates at the <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">Marigot Bay Resort and Marina</a> in St. Lucia when booking between Nov. 21 and Nov. 27, 2019 for ravel between Nov. 22 and Dec. 19, 2018, and between Jan. 6 and June 30, 2019.</p><p><a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">Curtain Bluff</a> in Antigua is offering<strong> 20 percent off</strong> for a minimum five-day stay for travel between November and Aug. 17, 2019. Rates include all meals, drinks, activities that range from snorkeling and paddle boarding, and complimentary VIP airport pickup. </p><p>Ocean House Management is offering a variety of deals at properties that include<strong> 30 percent off</strong> bookings at <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">Weekapaug Inn</a>, <strong>30 off of </strong>rooms at <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">Blantyre</a>, and <strong>20 percent off</strong> of rooms at <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">Ocean House</a> made between Black Friday and Cyber Monday.</p><p>The <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">JW Marriott Nashville</a> will be offering <strong>40 percent off</strong> of its rooms, in addition to providing <strong>complimentary Wi-Fi</strong>, <strong>two cocktails</strong> in its Cumberland bar, <strong>complimentary valet</strong>, and <strong>15 percent off</strong> of the hotel’s spa when booking on Cyber Monday for stays through 2019. </p><p>The <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">Andaz Maui</a> will be offering <strong>20 percent off of rooms and a $50 credit</strong> at its restaurant, Ka’ana Kitchen, when you use the code SAVOR to book between Nov. 23 and Nov. 26. </p><p>The <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">River’s Edge Hotel</a> in Portland, Oregon, will slash <strong>30 percent off of rooms</strong> and offer a <strong>complimentary upgrade</strong> when you book direct on Cyber Monday. The offer is valid for stays through March 31, 2019 when using the promo code CYBER.</p><p>California’s <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">Timber Cove Resort</a> will offer 40 percent off of 2019 stays when booking on Cyber Monday and using the code CYBER.</p><a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">The Redbury</a> in New York City is offering 50 percent off of weekend stays (Thursday through Sunday) on travel between Nov. 23 and March 2019 for bookings made between Nov. 23 and Nov. 26 when using the code Cyber online or DSCYB on the phone. <h2>Tour and Excursion Deals: </h2><p>Small adventure tour operator <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">Intrepid Travel</a> is offering <strong>20 percent off</strong> more than 1,000 trips around the world as part of its Black Friday and Cyber Monday deals. The deals are available from Nov. 20–28 for travel between Jan. 15 and Dec. 15, 2019, with the discount automatically applied. Example itineraries range from the eight-day <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">India’s Golden Triangle trip</a> filled with hot air balloon rides and safaris to a <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">cycling trip in Tanzania</a> to explore volcanoes, national parks, and more. <i> </i></p><p>Those looking to head on a tropical getaway can save <strong>up to 70 percent off</strong> some of <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">CheapCaribbean’s</a> most popular locations for the new year. These include the Dominican Republic, Jamaica, Bahamas, Los Cabos, and Cancun/Riviera Maya. For example, all-inclusive rates start as low as $349 for flights and a three-night stay at the Oasis Tulum Lite. Bookings are open through Nov. 26 for travel dates ranging from Nov. through May of 2019.</p><p>Safari and tour operator <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">andBeyond</a> will be offering <strong>20 percent off</strong> a selection of wildlife and culture itineraries for travel between Jan. 15 and December 2019 when booking on Cyber Monday. Travelers will also need to provide a 20 percent deposit within 14 days after booking for the deals to apply.</p><p><a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">Expedia’s</a> coupons will also include <strong>$100 off of $1,000 vacation packages</strong>, and <strong>$100 off of activities priced at $200</strong>.</p><p>Luxury yacht charter company the <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">Moorings</a> will offer 30 percent off of Bareboat Sail and Power charters in all of its worldwide destinations (excluding Italy and Tonga) for bookings made on Cyber Monday and for travel between Nov. 26 and June 30, 2019. A minimum charter of seven days is required. </p><p><a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">Sunsail</a> yacht charters will also offer 20 percent off Bareboat Sail and Flotilla charters to global destinations for bookings made on Cyber Monday and for charters taken between Nov. 26 and June 30, 2019 when using the code CYBER. A minimum charter of seven days is required for the deal. </p><p>Get 50 percent off of tickets to New York City’s <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">Circle Line Sightseeing Cruises’</a> Landmarks Cruise, Liberty Cruise, Harbor Lights Cruise, Best of New York Cruise, and Statue of Liberty Express Cruise or <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">New York Water Taxis’</a> All Day Access Pass when purchasing between Nov. 23 and Nov. 27. Use the code CYBER18 for the deals. </p><h2>Travel Gear Sales: </h2><p>Grab everything from cozy winter coats to waterproof hiking boots from <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">Cole Haan</a> at half price. The retailer is offering <strong>50 percent off everything</strong>, plus an additional 10 percent off purchases when using the code CYBER for purchases made between Nov. 25 and Nov. 27. </p><p>Amazon will be offering a variety of discounts for its <a href=";node=5550342011&amp;_encoding=UTF8&amp;tag=tlcybermondaytraveldeals-20&amp;linkCode=ur2&amp;linkId=210a6421226c46ac1407f63167211ead&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325" target="_blank">Cyber Monday Deals Week 2018</a>, including discounts on everything from luggage to travel tech and outerwear. </p>
Categories: Travel

I Never Travel Without This Miracle Zit-fighting Serum — and It's $40 Off Right Now

Travel and Leisure - Sun, 11/25/2018 - 10:16
<p>As someone who often books flights at the last minute, always packs at an ungodly hour the night before departure, and does not check a bag unless absolutely necessary for survival, I've never had a particularly fussy <a href="" target="_blank">travel skincare routine</a>. Actually, I've never had much of a travel skincare routine at all.</p><p>But then a <a href="" target="_blank">fellow professional traveler</a> brought a little blue bottle of pure, powerful, zit-clearing magic called <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">iS Clinical Active Serum</a> into my life and made me one of those people who puts a serum in my carry-on before even packing my passport. I'm so glad she did.</p><p>If you travel like me, somewhere between falling asleep with your head on a <a href="" target="_blank">dirty airplane tray table</a> and throwing your diet out of whack at the first sight of a delicious local snack, your skin is likely going to rebel with a breakout. And nothing kills the buzz of arriving in an exciting destination like having to reunite with long-lost friends (or even greet the customs agent) with a giant zit on your face.</p><p>No worries — just apply a few drops of <a href="" target="_blank">iS Clinical Active Serum</a> to the problem area (and smooth a small amount over the rest of your face and neck while you're at it), and you'll be on your way to clearer, brighter skin. With key ingredients that include salicylic acid and herbal extracts, the serum is clinically proven to smooth the skin's texture while reducing redness and acne. I can't yet vouch for its claim to smooth fine lines and wrinkles, but I'm hopeful.</p><p>Ideal for oily, combination, and acne-prone skin, the serum does cause that slight tingling, something-is-actually-happening-here burn when you apply it, so if your skin is very sensitive, you may want to think twice. At $135 for 1 fl. oz., it also may burn a slight hole in your wallet, and it rarely goes on sale. But right now through Cyber Monday, you can save 30 percent ($40) and grab it for $95 at <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank"></a>. </p><p>Don't just take my word for it. The serum has more than 100 <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">five-star reviews on the site</a>, where people are calling it things like a "life-saver," "liquid gold," and a "must-have for acne sufferers." </p><p>If you're the type who can't commit based on something you read on the internet (good for you, probably) you can also get a <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">Clearing Travel Kit</a> that includes a half-size bottle of the Active Serum, <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">Hydra-Cool Serum</a> (my new favorite for dehydrated skin), Cleansing Complex, and SPF 50+ for the same price.</p><img alt="is clinical travel kit "src=""><p>To buy: <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank"></a>, $95 (originally $135)</p>
Categories: Travel

Amazon's Top-rated Portable Charger Is on Sale for Black Friday — and Going Fast

Travel and Leisure - Sat, 11/24/2018 - 16:58
<p>Not a drill: Amazon’s top-rated portable charger is on major sale right now as one of the online retail giant’s lightning deals during one of its biggest sale events of the year, <a href=";_encoding=UTF8&amp;tag=tlankerpowerbanksblackfriday-20&amp;linkCode=ur2&amp;linkId=4bece42f500def00259f1d38207988fe&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325" target="_blank">Black Friday</a>.</p><p><strong>Related: </strong><a href="" target="_blank">Amazon's No. 1 Best-selling Noise-cancelling Headphones Are $50 Off Right Now</a></p><p>With less than six hours on the clock, Prime members can shop the <a href=";tag=tlankerpowerbanksblackfriday-20&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;creativeASIN=B01JIWQPMW&amp;linkId=91d25e7264e7b9c6380bb58e56aad612" target="_blank">Anker PowerCore 26800</a> power bank for $38 (originally $66) — that is unless this top-rated item sells out before the end of Black Friday. And when we say “top-rated,” we really do mean top-rated — the Anker PowerCore 26800 is as epic as it sounds with 2,000 rave reviews and the coveted Amazon’s Choice tag, deeming it a certified must-have travel accessory.</p><p> </p><p><strong>Related: </strong><a href="" target="_blank">23andMe's Best-selling DNA Test Is $99 Off for Black Friday on Amazon</a></p><p>This fast-charging power bank is a game-changer for travelers or, really, anyone who’s often on the go. You can charge your phone, tablet, or any other USB-compatible tech without staying leashed to a wall outlet. What’s more: this portable charger is compatible with both Apple and Android devices, making it perfect for the entire family.</p><img alt="Anker PowerCore 26800 Portable Charger "src=""><p>To buy: <a href=";tag=tlankerpowerbanksblackfriday-20&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;creativeASIN=B01JIWQPMW&amp;linkId=91d25e7264e7b9c6380bb58e56aad612" target="_blank"></a>, $38 (originally $66)</p><p>Head to <a href=";tag=tlankerpowerbanksblackfriday-20&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;creativeASIN=B01JIWQPMW&amp;linkId=91d25e7264e7b9c6380bb58e56aad612" target="_blank"></a> to shop the Anker PowerCore 26800 portable charger, <a href=";deals=0de77cda&amp;marketplaceId=ATVPDKIKX0DER&amp;_encoding=UTF8&amp;tag=tlankerpowerbanksblackfriday-20&amp;linkCode=ur2&amp;linkId=7bf38eeacf2bcb430d6cf6258c14c33e&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325" target="_blank">other top-rated Anker portable power banks</a>, and more <a href=";_encoding=UTF8&amp;tag=tlankerpowerbanksblackfriday-20&amp;linkCode=ur2&amp;linkId=2afe6869b6ae87a707fa6bd327542926&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325" target="_blank">Black Friday deals</a>.</p>
Categories: Travel

Amazon's No. 1 Best-selling Noise-cancelling Headphones Are $50 Off Right Now

Travel and Leisure - Sat, 11/24/2018 - 16:14
<p>Among all the <a href=";_encoding=UTF8&amp;tag=tlboseheadphonesblackfriday-20&amp;linkCode=ur2&amp;linkId=3f4acb21d761b6e12c885208ffc64927&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325" target="_blank">Black Friday deals on Amazon</a> (including major markdowns on <a href=";node=11851273011&amp;_encoding=UTF8&amp;tag=tlboseheadphonesblackfriday-20&amp;linkCode=ur2&amp;linkId=5919acf7dd53c392cef1845f9bab0a55&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325">Amazon Devices</a> to $99 off the super-popular <a href="" target="_blank">23andMe DNA testing kit</a>) this one is definitely worthy of adding to your cart. <a href=";tag=tlboseheadphonesblackfriday-20&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;creativeASIN=B0756CYWWD&amp;linkId=5dfe2668df61d7ef913f850fdf157175" target="_blank">Amazon’s best-selling wireless headphones</a> are on sale for $50 off — and while the deal looks like it’ll last through Black Friday, there’s still a high chance it’ll sell out before the end of the shopping sales event. Yes, the headphones are that good.</p><p>The <a href=";tag=tlboseheadphonesblackfriday-20&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;creativeASIN=B0756CYWWD&amp;linkId=5dfe2668df61d7ef913f850fdf157175" target="_blank">Bose QuietComfort 35 Series II Wireless Headphones</a> have earned Amazon’s coveted Amazon’s Choice banner for their high quality performance and top-rated reviews (over 1,000 five-star reviews, just so you know). These headphones are everything you’d ever want in a travel accessory. They are wireless and Bluetooth enabled for a hassle- and tangle-free experience, feature three levels of noise-cancellation (making them especially perfect for flights), and have Alexa voice control built in. Oh, and they’ll even connect to the Bose Connect app where you can personalize your headphone experience, including your preferred level of noise cancellation, if say you want to drown out the sound of the crying baby in 7B, but still be alerted to the pilot's safety announcements. And for $50 off? Consider them sold.</p><img alt="amazon black friday bose headphones "src=""><p>To buy: <a href=";tag=tlboseheadphonesblackfriday-20&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;creativeASIN=B0756CYWWD&amp;linkId=5dfe2668df61d7ef913f850fdf157175" target="_blank"></a>, $299 (originally $349)</p><p>You can grab yourself (or the traveler on your holiday shopping list) a pair at <a href=";tag=tlboseheadphonesblackfriday-20&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;creativeASIN=B0756CYWWD&amp;linkId=5dfe2668df61d7ef913f850fdf157175" target="_blank"></a>.</p>
Categories: Travel

23andMe's Best-selling DNA Test Is $99 Off for Black Friday on Amazon

Travel and Leisure - Sat, 11/24/2018 - 14:54
<p>If you’ve ever thought about doing an at-home DNA testing kit just for funzies (yes, uncovering your genetic origins and whether or not certain health risks and genetic traits — such as male balding — run in your genes has become a popular recreational activity), then look no further. <a href=";_encoding=UTF8&amp;tag=tl23andmeblackfriday-20&amp;linkCode=ur2&amp;linkId=45addb0fc616e45f97ba3b6120f2752e&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325" target="_blank">Amazon Black Friday</a> has <a href=";tag=tl23andmeblackfriday-20&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;creativeASIN=B01G7PYQTM&amp;linkId=3c4a8efe2a82704b4eef773d8d641062" target="_blank">23andMe’s super-popular Health + Ancestry personal DNA testing kit</a> on super-sale right now. But if you want one, you’ll have to act fast.</p><img alt="23andMe DNA Testing Kit "src=""><p>To buy: <a href=";tag=tl23andmeblackfriday-20&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;creativeASIN=B01G7PYQTM&amp;linkId=3c4a8efe2a82704b4eef773d8d641062" target="_blank"></a>, $100 (originally $199)</p><p>From now until about 5:40 p.m. EST on Nov. 23, <a href=";_encoding=UTF8&amp;tag=tl23andmeblackfriday-20&amp;linkCode=ur2&amp;linkId=45addb0fc616e45f97ba3b6120f2752e&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325" target="_blank">Amazon’s Black Friday</a> sales event is offering nearly 50% off the <a href=";tag=tl23andmeblackfriday-20&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;creativeASIN=B01G7PYQTM&amp;linkId=3c4a8efe2a82704b4eef773d8d641062" target="_blank">23andMe Health + Ancestry DNA testing kit</a> — a bundled package of two of their most popular DNA testing kits. With this combo kit, you can trace back your ancestral origins while also figuring out if you’re lactose intolerant or if unibrows run in your family — fun! You can also test for health risks, such as Celiac Disease or Late-onset Alzheimer’s.</p><img alt="23andMe DNA Test Ancestry Personal Genetic Service - includes at-home saliva collection kit "src=""><p>Head to <a href=";tag=tl23andmeblackfriday-20&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;creativeASIN=B01G7PYQTM&amp;linkId=3c4a8efe2a82704b4eef773d8d641062" target="_blank"></a> to grab 23andMe’s Health + Ancestry personal DNA testing kit before <a href=";_encoding=UTF8&amp;tag=tl23andmeblackfriday-20&amp;linkCode=ur2&amp;linkId=45addb0fc616e45f97ba3b6120f2752e&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325" target="_blank">Amazon’s Black Friday sales event</a> is over — or before it sells out.</p>
Categories: Travel

The Sneakers Kate Middleton and Emma Watson Can't Stop Wearing Are on Sale for $46 Right Now (Video)

Travel and Leisure - Sat, 11/24/2018 - 13:16
<p>Two of the world’s most famous fashion icons appear to be pulling from the same closet.</p><p>Emma Watson, everyone’s favorite well-dressed wizard, stepped out in <a href="" target="_blank">New York City</a> rocking a pair of <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">Superga Cotu Classic Sneakers in White</a>, along with a light gingham top and white jeans.</p><p>The shoes shine as the ultimate <a href="" target="_blank">travel-ready accessory</a> because they are not only stylish but also ridiculously comfortable, making them the perfect pair for both walking the city streets and taking an evening stroll on the beach.</p><p>While the actress certainly looked fantastic (and totally BBQ ready), she isn’t the first Brit to wear the ultra-popular sneaker. Last spring, Kate Middleton, the Duchess of Cambridge, was also spotted wearing the <a href="" target="_blank">trendy footwear</a>.</p><p>Even <a href="" target="_blank">Princess Diana</a> was known to sport a pair at her more casual appearances. So what makes these shoes oh-so-spectacular? As <a href="" target="_blank"><i>Who What Wear</i></a> noted, just check out the sneaker’s Amazon reviews.</p><p>“I walked all over NYC for 12 hours in these and they were some comfortable! Not only that they are super cute (cuter and fit better than classic Keds). I have wide feet and they are very comfortable,” one five-star review said.</p><p>“Very nice well made shoes from Superga!!! I see what the hype is over these shoes because they are designed w heavy outsole but does not feel like that when you're wearing them just shows the durability and quality of the shoes not to mention they're adorable,” another exclaimed.</p><p>The simple and totally understated sneaker may just be the perfect footwear for any season and at just $46 (<a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank"></a>), they're surprisingly affordable. After all, that's a small price to pay for the right to say you, Kate, Princess Diana, and Emma have the same style.</p><h2>Superga 'Cotu' Sneaker</h2><img alt="Superga White Sneakers "src=""><p>To buy: <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank"></a>, $46 (originally $65)</p>
Categories: Travel

This Historic Market District Is Where You’ll Find London’s Best Shopping Today

Travel and Leisure - Sat, 11/24/2018 - 13:00
<p>The name <em>Covent Garden</em> may conjure images of <em>My Fair Lady</em>-style cockney flower hawkers, but the market stalls actually moved across the river in 1974. They were replaced mostly by touristy chain stores, but now those too are disappearing, and boutique properties like the glamorous, 18-room <a href="" target="_blank">Henrietta Hotel</a> <em>(doubles from $325)</em><i> </i>are moving in.</p><p>Residential developments are under way, and a full-time gardener is at work on a neighborhood regreening program. <a href="" target="_blank">Stylish U.K. companies</a> and cult indie brands have set up flagships in newly refurbished retail spaces, many of them in protected historic buildings.</p><p>The result? <a href="" target="_blank">Covent Garden</a> is reclaiming its place as one of <a href="" target="_blank">London</a>’s best shopping destinations. Here, our list of the most essential stores to visit on your next trip.</p><h2>The Shop at Bluebird</h2><p>The original <a href="" target="_blank">Shop at Bluebird</a> in Chelsea is an institution, having drawn design lovers to its King’s Road concept store for more than a decade. Now Carriage Hall, a historic carriage house in what was once Covent Garden’s labyrinthine market center, is one of the neighborhood’s must-visit addresses. In this dazzling new 15,000-square-foot flagship, you’ll find the eclectic selection of apparel (Acne Studios, Marni, Alistair James), beauty (Grown Alchemist, Votary), and homewares (Scandinavian design objects from Hay, Assouline and Phaidon art books) that made the original a London mainstay.</p><h2>Mariage Frères</h2><p>This expansive store from France’s oldest and most prestigious teahouse is a veritable shrine to <a href="" target="_blank">the U.K.’s national drink</a>. Occupying five floors of a renovated Georgian town house, the <a href="" target="_blank">Mariage Frères</a> Covent Garden store claims to offer the world’s largest collection of teas, with varieties grown in 36 countries. Book a table at the Salon de Thé for an afternoon brew paired with pastries and petits fours, then visit the second-floor museum, with its collection of antiques, recipes, and paraphernalia from around the world. Afterward, explore the apothecary-like emporium, where almost a thousand blends are for sale, some fetching up to $140 per package.</p><img alt="Goods for sale at London's Covent Garden shops "src=""><h2>For Art’s Sake</h2><p>Founded just two years ago, this London purveyor of handmade, high-design sunglasses has swiftly acquired a committed fan base. Up until now, Londoners had to buy the company’s shades either online or from a booth in Harvey Nichols. But this month, <a href="" target="_blank">For Art’s Sake</a> will open its first stand-alone store in Covent Garden’s Market Building. In keeping with the brand’s fashionable credentials, the space will be furnished with on-trend architectural brass and marble shelving, and velvet-covered walls that match the cases that come with every purchase. Among the bold styles, you’ll find lenses in rose and lavender; bridges set with tiny pearls; nose pads fashioned from jade; and oversize cat-eye frames made from hand-cut, marbled acetate.</p><h2>Petersham Nurseries</h2><p>Following up on its serene garden-store-cum-restaurant in the residential district of Richmond, <a href="" target="_blank">Petersham Nurseries</a> has opened a Covent Garden outpost that is three in one: a florist, selling romantic, rambling arrangements of seasonal <a href="" target="_blank">British flowers</a>; a delicatessen for artisanal preserves, English cheeses, freshly made pastas, and Italian wines; and a lifestyle shop stocked with home goods, gardening supplies, antique furniture, imported textiles, and indoor plants. Also worth checking out are the two on-site restaurants: the Italian-inspired <a href="" target="_blank">La Goccia</a> <em>(small plates $7–$19)</em><i> </i>and the elegant <a href="" target="_blank">Petersham</a> <em>(entrées $30–$46)</em><i>, </i>which serves fresh Bellinis and egg-yolk ravioli in a plant-filled, almost forested dining room hung with filigreed mirrors and floor-to-ceiling paintings.</p><img alt="Scenes from Petersham Nurseries in London's Covent Garden "src=""><h2>Floral Street</h2><p>Beauty-industry veteran Michelle Feeney named <a href="" target="_blank">her perfume brand</a> after the road on which Covent Garden’s flower sellers once gathered, having been inspired to launch it while strolling its quaint lanes. Just around the corner on King Street, her small, white-walled shop carries just eight fragrances, all packaged in compostable boxes and sugarcane-based bioplastic bottles. Each is named after a flower, such as the zesty, bright London Poppy and the sultry Black Lotus, and deepened by an entourage of complementary notes. Book an appointment at Feeney’s monthly <a href="" target="_blank">Scent School</a> to learn more about the science of perfume — glass of champagne in hand.</p><h2>Edwin</h2><p>This Japanese company was the first to import American jeans to Tokyo in the 1940s, but it soon started manufacturing its own — planting the seeds for <a href="" target="_blank">Japan’s wildly successful denim industry</a>. <a href="" target="_blank">Edwin</a> is now one of Japan’s premier jeans labels, and its minimalist European flagship store is, as you might expect, dominated by navy and indigo hues. In addition to the raw denim that earned Edwin its devoted following, you’ll find other staples for men such as streetwear-inspired tees and trousers, overdyed flannels, and leather goods.<i> </i></p>
Categories: Travel

Forget Breakfast in Bed — Now You Can Have a Floating Breakfast Delivered to Your Hotel Pool

Travel and Leisure - Sat, 11/24/2018 - 11:15
<p>You’ve probably seen it on Instagram, a bikini-clad woman standing navel deep in an infinity pool with a turquoise ocean in the background next to a floating spread of your favorite breakfast foods. This new trend, appropriately called <a href="" target="_blank">“floating breakfast,”</a> is the latest luxury hotel offering popping up around the world.</p><p>The origins of these beautiful breakfasts can likely be <a href="" target="_blank">traced back to Bali</a>, seen at the <a href="" target="_blank">AYANA Resort and Spa</a> ten years ago, although it’s unclear who created it and when. But the <a href="" target="_blank">Banyan Tree Ungasan, Bali</a> has been serving over the top breakfasts in private villa pools with ocean backdrops since September 2017. The trend has also spread to their sister properties including the luxe <a href="" target="_blank">Banyan Tree Koh Samui</a> and <a href="" target="_blank">Banyan Tree Bintan</a>.</p><p>My boyfriend and I went to the <a href="" target="_blank">Banyan Tree Koh Samui</a> to see what the craze was all about. Our spacious villa was perched high up on the hill with unobstructed, unbelievable views of the <a href="" target="_blank">Gulf of Thailand</a> and the resort, perfect for those coveted Instagram shots.</p><p>The night before, I filled out our order form for the floating breakfast and handed it off to our villa host, Julie. I circled an ungodly amount of food: scrambled eggs, french toast, tropical fruit plates and four different types of fruit juice. In hindsight, it could have fed a family of four (don’t worry, we ate it all).</p><img alt="Floating breakfast spread at Banyan Tree Koh Samui "src=""><p>The next morning, at our lazy, mid-morning requested time, staff carefully prepared each dish on a giant circular floating basket with raised edges. We ordered half the menu, so it wouldn’t all fit, but the most important foods, like the bacon, made it on while they placed the other dishes on our outdoor table. They very carefully set it down on the corner of the pool and the hot tub and gently set it afloat into the water. My heart raced as it careened towards the edge of the infinity pool but it was intelligently designed to stop itself.</p><p>It may seem obvious, but getting into the pool very slowly is key to avoiding a potential disaster. After my boyfriend agreed to do an obligatory photoshoot for <a href="" target="_blank">my Instagram</a>, we spent the next hour floating in our private pool stuffing ourselves with perfectly poached eggs, chicken sausage, smoked salmon, exotic fruits and next-level waffles.</p><p>Surprisingly, cutting and reaching over the edge of the wooden basket wasn’t awkward like I’d expected it to be. It was better than any breakfast in bed we’d ever had, and the quality of the food plus the views from Banyan Tree Koh Samui made it an ideal way to spend the morning. Best of all, it only costs $15 to set up; the breakfast was already included in our stay.</p><img alt="Floating Breakfast at Banyan Tree Koh Samui "src=""><p>Resorts are finding this meal option to be surprisingly popular, particularly among couples. “We have had many guests order it since we started offering it last month,” said Rainer Roerschm, Director of Food, Beverage &amp; Cuisine at Banyan Tree Koh Samui. “We have a lot of <a href="" target="_blank">honeymooners coming here</a>, and they enjoy it as a couple.”</p><p>Banyan Tree is not the first, and it definitely won’t be the last to offer this unique dining trend. Other notable hotels with floating breakfast include the ultra-romantic <a href="" target="_blank">Four Seasons Maldives at Landaa Giraavaru</a> and <a href="" target="_blank">Four Seasons Resort Bali at Jimbaran Bay</a>. Their menu includes fresh squeezed orange juice, mimosas, a mixed bakery basket, a tropical fruit plate, coffee or tea and of course anything else off the in-villa dining menu.</p><p>You may want to do it for ‘the Gram’ or surprise your partner with a romantic breakfast. Either way, it’s a delicious way to start a day in paradise.</p>
Categories: Travel

The Comfiest Travel Pants Ever Are Just $20 for Black Friday

Travel and Leisure - Sat, 11/24/2018 - 09:31
<p><a data-ecommerce="true" href="">Uniqlo’s leggings/pants</a> will ruin you for all other travel pants. The first time I tried them on, I had two immediate reactions. First, the pure joy of pulling on a pant that not only fits and looks good but feels good. And second, rage for the countless years I’ve wasted flying in regular jeans. I get too cold in a skirt or dress and I love the packing space that wearing my heaviest pants saves in my suitcase.</p><p>According to the Uniqlo site and confirmed by me, these stretchy trousers convincingly “look like pants and feel like a legging.” I bought my first pair last year at the urging of a fellow T+L editor, and let me tell you, they are a dream. Not only are they softest work-appropriate pants I own, but I’m also thrilled to report that — unlike so many of my other black “denim” pants — the color hasn’t faded in the slightest after months of washing.</p><p><strong>Related:</strong> <a href="" target="_blank">The Best Travel Pants for Women Who Hate Flying in Jeans</a></p><p>The fabric is soft, breathable, and super stretchy, but not the kind of stretchy that bunches up around your knees after you’ve been sitting for a while. They’ve got a hi-rise fit that’s really comfortable to sit in without the back slipping down. And while the button and front “pockets” are purely aesthetic, the back two are real and, might I add, well-placed if you’re looking for a bit of a visual lift back there.</p><p>They come in tons of different styles: cropped, full-length, solids, and occasional prints, and you can alter the inseam length for free on select styles both online and in stores. They’re sized from XS to XXL — I’m usually a 10/12 in pants and wear a Large, if that's helpful — and there are also maternity styles.</p><p>Also, did I mention they’re only $20? Because these beauts are a mere $20 for <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">Black Friday at Uniqlo</a>. Case: Made.</p><h2>Solid Leggings Pants</h2><img alt="uniqlo leggings pants review "src=""><p>To buy: <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank"></a>, $20, (originally $30)</p><h2>Denim Leggings Pants</h2><img alt="uniqlo leggings pants review "src=""><p>To buy: <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank"></a>, $20, (originally $30)</p>
Categories: Travel

The Travel Pillow That Made Me Believe I Could Be Comfortable on Planes Again Is 25% Off

Travel and Leisure - Sat, 11/24/2018 - 09:31
<p>For me, neck pillows are a point of contention. They sound good in theory, seem like they should work, and people always act like they’re going to make your life better — but they’re not, and they don’t, and when you realize how disappointing they are, you put them in a closet and pretend it never happened. </p><p>Or at least that’s what I thought — until I met the product that made me believe in <a href="" target="_blank">travel pillows</a> again: the <a href=";tag=tltrtlreview-20&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;creativeASIN=B00LB7REFK&amp;linkId=18dce8c3125bfdd73468758f076975bc" target="_blank">Trtl Pillow</a> (which just so happens to be 25% off right now when you enter code 25TRTLBF at checkout).</p><p>Some background: I’m a tall lady with a longer neck — a neck that also happens to be fairly stiff, especially on flights, thanks to a combination of normal, 20-something-New-Yorker tension and the stress that comes along with dreading 6+ hours in coach. Unsurprisingly, I’ve also never been able to <a href="" target="_blank">sleep on planes</a> (and yes, if you have a “foolproof” method involving wine or pills, I’ve already tried it).</p><p><strong>Related:</strong> <a href="" target="_blank">9 of the Wackiest Best-selling Travel Accessories From Amazon</a></p><p>My problem isn’t that my knees are inevitably knocking the seat in front of me, or even that the cabin lights are seeping through the bottom of my flimsy <a href="" target="_blank">eye mask</a>. My problem is that, no matter which seat I’m in — no matter how I maneuver my body —I never know where to put my head. </p><p>I’m not one of those people who can just let it loll, neck bent at a dangerous angle or chin slumped against my chest. Feeling like my neck is unsupported or unnaturally positioned can affect my whole body and mood while traveling. This should make me the ideal customer for the travel pillow market, but I’ve been burned time and again. I’ve tried those <a href=";tag=tltrtlreview-20&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;creativeASIN=B00B2LBNKM&amp;linkId=edef4e37a8ffeaead0565330066fbe6f">stretchy ones filled with beads</a> that sound like crunching snow whenever you move your cheek; the inflatable ones that roll up nice and small in your bag, but once blown up, leak out over the course of 15 minutes and leave you smelling like your own breath; the ones that promise “maximum support” and yet are still not substantial enough to maximally support my (admittedly, fairly large) head. For the most part, travel pillows kind of suck.</p><h2>Trtl Pillow</h2><img alt="trtl pillow review "src=""><p>To buy: <a data-ecommerce="true" href=";tag=tltrtlreview-20&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;creativeASIN=B00LB7REFK&amp;linkId=18dce8c3125bfdd73468758f076975bc" target="_blank"></a>, $23 with code 25TRTLBF (originally $30)</p><p>This was my outlook when I went into testing the <a href="" target="_blank">Trtl</a> (pronounced “turtle”) pillow. A <a href="" target="_blank">longtime favorite</a> of <em>Travel + Leisure</em> editors, it does away with the main design flaw of the majority of travel pillows on the market: the “U” shape. Think about it. It’s nice to be able to move your head from side to side, sure, but what these pillows give us in horizontal surface area, they lack in vertical support. I always wished my pillows were “taller” so I wouldn’t have to crane my neck — run with that idea, though, and you’ll end up with a neck brace the size of your carry-on. </p><img alt="trtl pillow review "src=""><p>This fine specimen, on the other hand, doesn’t really even look like a pillow at all. The concept is simple: a thin-but-sturdy frame, ergonomically designed to hinge at around a 90-degree angle, covered in soft fleece. Attached to the frame is a length of fabric that you use to secure the frame in place (between your shoulder and your face) — wrapping it around your neck infinity-scarf-style and securing it with Velcro.</p><p>Unfurled, it looks like a piece of (machine-washable) fabric. Folded up for storage, it’s the size of a small book and weighs about a quarter of a pound. It sounds a little scary at first, being totally detached from our idea of a “pillow” — it's not puffy, squishy, or filled with down — but during a recent overnight flight from <a href="" target="_blank">New York</a> to <a href="" target="_blank">Madrid</a>, the Trtl helped me sleep on a plane for the first time in 15 years. If this isn’t a pillow, I don’t really care what it is. </p><img alt="trtl pillow review "src=""><p>To my fellow stiff-necked, heavy-headed travelers, I say this: the <a data-ecommerce="true" href=";tag=tltrtlreview-20&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;creativeASIN=B00LB7REFK&amp;linkId=18dce8c3125bfdd73468758f076975bc" target="_blank">Trtl Pillow</a> will support your head nearly vertically. You won’t feel like you’re being strangled by redundant material. You won’t feel like your neck is craning so far it will snap. You won’t really feel like you’re using a travel pillow at all — and that’s all this travel pillow skeptic could ask for. </p>
Categories: Travel

This Leather Wallet Has Over 2,000 Five-star Reviews on Amazon — and It's on Sale for $7 Right Now

Travel and Leisure - Sat, 11/24/2018 - 08:08
<p><a href=";_encoding=UTF8&amp;tag=tlbestwalletblackfriday-20&amp;linkCode=ur2&amp;linkId=c9ee3633b3944b2a41cdc57796e1b649&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325" target="_blank">Amazon’s Black Friday</a> isn’t slowing down, what with new lightning deals popping up left and right. Just when you think you’ve seen all the markdowns (like <a href="" target="_blank">$99 off of a 23andMe DNA testing kit</a>, <a href="" target="_blank">$50 off Amazon’s best-selling headphones</a>, and <a href=";tag=tlbestwalletblackfriday-20&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;creativeASIN=B07D4FQB8S&amp;linkId=e0ae3540eaf0b037ed9af4630535c6b8" target="_blank">TV markdowns galore</a>), the online retail giant unleashes yet another wave of can’t-miss deals. Right now, we’re bringing to you a <a href=";tag=tlbestwalletblackfriday-20&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;creativeASIN=B00N9OPMMU&amp;linkId=0734f07fcd157b5f81d67a19a3a5bd3a" target="_blank">top-selling leather wallet</a> that’s so good, it has over 2,000 rave reviews — and get this: It’s on sale for only $7.</p><p><strong>Related: </strong><a href="" target="_blank">Amazon's Top-rated Portable Charger Is on Sale for Black Friday — and Going Fast</a></p><p>Whether you’re looking for a simple everyday wallet to replace your current one or a trusty new cardholder to bring with you on your travels (it comes with RFID-blocking technology to secure personal info from electronic scanners), <a href=";tag=tlbestwalletblackfriday-20&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;creativeASIN=B00N9OPMMU&amp;linkId=0734f07fcd157b5f81d67a19a3a5bd3a" target="_blank">Hammer Anvil’s wallet</a> may just be the one for you.</p><img alt="Best-selling Amazon Wallet on Sale "src=""><p>To buy: <a href=";tag=tlbestwalletblackfriday-20&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;creativeASIN=B00N9OPMMU&amp;linkId=0734f07fcd157b5f81d67a19a3a5bd3a" target="_blank"></a>, $7 (originally $10)</p><p>It comes in six different colorways and textures — from an elegant crosshatch black leather to a classic brown leather that’ll only get better with time — and features a sleek and simple design that’ll hold your cards and bills without all that extra bulk. Amazon user Kenlokeri Floyd explained in a five-star review, “The tightness of the leather keeps even a full wallet feeling very slim and I don't even notice it in my back pocket when sitting.” Amazon user RyanCallihan raved about how thin the wallet is, writing, “I love the feel of this wallet. I didn't believe it when I read the reviews that said, ‘I can't even feel it in my pocket!’ But it's true. It's just barely there, and it's so awesome.”</p><p><strong>Related: </strong><a href="" target="_blank">Amazon's No. 1 Best-selling Noise-cancelling Headphones Are $50 Off Right Now</a></p><p>Now, if you want to grab yourself a wallet (or maybe 10) for just $7, you’ll have to act fast. This flash sale isn’t going to last for long — in fact, it’s ending today at 7:30 p.m. EST, at which point it will go back up to its original price of $10.</p><p>Head to <a href=";tag=tlbestwalletblackfriday-20&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;creativeASIN=B00N9OPMMU&amp;linkId=0734f07fcd157b5f81d67a19a3a5bd3a" target="_blank"></a> to buy the Hammer Anvil leather wallet while it's on sale.</p>
Categories: Travel

Getting Snowed in Is the Best Way to Spend Your Vacation at This Idyllic Vermont Resort

Travel and Leisure - Fri, 11/23/2018 - 14:01
<p>There was snow in the trees as we crossed the <a href="" target="_blank">Vermont</a> state border — evidence, according to my ski aficionado husband, David, that a good-size winter storm had just blown through. Sure enough, when we pulled through the gates of <a href="" target="_blank">Twin Farms</a>, a storied resort near the town of Barnard, we found it swaddled in a fairy-tale blanket of fresh, foot-deep snow.</p><p>I’d never really seen the American winter from anywhere but the gritty sidewalks of <a href="">New York City</a>, where David and I live. When I was growing up on the southern coast of England, winters were mild, and snow, when it came, fell in inches, not feet. So as our host, a genial, bearded man named Kyle Rikert, showed us around Twin Farms, I felt as if I was <a href="" target="_blank">experiencing the season</a> fully for the first time.</p><p>Blue-tinged drifts framed each of the windows of the hotel’s main building — an 18th-century farmhouse, which the novelist Sinclair Lewis bought in 1928 as a gift for his then-fiancé, a journalist named Dorothy Thompson. Snow lay on its rooftop in thick swags. A nearby covered bridge was fringed with icicles the size of parsnips. Somewhere in the distance, geese flew over a frozen lake.</p><p>“You got lucky!” said recreation manager Brenda Hillier, picking skis off a rack in the resort’s wooden ski hut that afternoon. “This is only about the tenth day of skiing we’ve had this year.” We were at the foot of Sonnenberg, where Twin Farms acquired six downhill-ski trails back when the property became a hotel in the 1990s. Vermont has seen massive fluctuations in snowfall over the past two decades; today, Twin Farms doesn’t really publicize its private slopes, since they’re usable so rarely.</p><p>“In the seventies and eighties, the whole neighborhood used to learn here,” Hillier said. “It cost six dollars a day.” As a child, David had also learned to ski in the area, at Suicide Six — a small but much-loved mountain just outside of <a href="" target="_blank">Woodstock</a>. It had been 25 years since he last took to the slopes, but he seemed unruffled as he headed up Sonnenberg mountain on the back of a snowcat in jeans and a pair of woolly gloves.</p><p>I, on the other hand, <a href="" target="_blank">had never skied before</a>, and was still outside the hut rehearsing the “pizza pie and french fries” drill commonly used to teach children when David reappeared, zigzagging down the sheer face of the empty mountain like something from a James Bond movie. Staffers gathered around to admire his flawless tracks as I slid quietly backward down a tiny incline, vowing to get our kids — who we’d left with their grandparents in New York — into intensive ski training before the winter was over.</p><p>All this to say, I never got to fully utilize the ski-in, ski-out feature of our accommodation, the Chalet, which sits to the side of Sonnenberg mountain. It didn’t really matter. Each of the 20 rooms and cottages at <a href="" target="_blank">Twin Farms is unique</a>. Ours, an airy, two-story wooden cottage, had views all the way to Pico Mountain, some 15 miles away. Looking out at the chocolate-box scenery from under a furry blanket, blissfully alone, was far more enjoyable than skiing, anyway.</p><img alt="Pancakes at Twin Farms resort in Vermont "src=""><p>For most of the year, Twin Farms has a no-children policy. As any parent will tell you, life with young kids is a perfectionist’s nightmare; Twin Farms is one of those rare hotels that allows its guests to pretend, for a short while, that the world around them is flawless. Care to select from 27 regional <a href="" target="_blank">cheeses</a> and have them delivered with a bottle of <a href="" target="_blank">wine</a> to your chalet before dinner? Not a problem. A massage in front of a wood fire, followed by a soak in your own private hot tub? A phone call away.</p><p>And then there was the food. From the moment our server arrived to tell us about the particular type of salt we would have on our table at dinner that evening, it was clear we were in for a memorable meal. Sure enough, the seven-course tasting menu with wine pairings (all of which was included in our room rate) was the perfect balance of hearty and high-concept, from the cheddar fritter and aioli starter to the entrée of local suckling pig with smoked-potato purée and crispy brussels sprouts. Pleasantly stuffed, we declined the offer of a ride to our chalet and tramped back in the icy darkness, just as the first few flakes of a fresh snowfall began spiraling down from the sky.</p><img alt="Snowshoeing at Twin Farms luxury resort in Vermont "src=""><p>The next morning we went snowshoeing: a gratifyingly even playing field for David and me and, in my opinion, the best way to explore the 300 idyllic acres surrounding the farm. Once we’d gotten the hang of the snowshoes — and it didn’t take long — the crunch-crunch of feet sinking into velvety, virgin drifts became almost meditative. Blue jays and woodpeckers hopped between snow-covered birch branches; the metal spigots used to collect syrup from the maple trees wore little white hats. The only sound was the wind in the woods and the tinkle of meltwater running somewhere beneath the diamond-dust drifts that framed our path.</p><p><strong>Related</strong>: <a href="" target="_blank">The Top 10 Resort Hotels in the Northeast</a></p><p>I was reminded of Sinclair Lewis’s wife Dorothy’s words about Twin Farms. Among other pastoral delights, she wrote, the couple wanted a Vermont estate that could provide them with “delicious air.” In these woods each breath did feel delicious, like a drink of clear, cold water. We gulped it down. The whole experience was a celebration of the elements, rather than the constant battle against them that life in the urban Northeast so often resembles. Which is to say, it was precisely what I’d always hoped the American winter would be.</p><p><em><a href="" target="_blank">Twin Farms</a> (doubles from $1,600, all-inclusive) is a 2½-hour drive from Boston, or five hours from New York. You can also fly in to the small airport in Burlington, Vermont, which is just over an hour from the property. Rates include optional picnic lunches and a cocktail hour each night.</em></p>
Categories: Travel

Why a Hot Spring Tour of the American West is the Perfect Cure for Your Winter Blues

Travel and Leisure - Fri, 11/23/2018 - 13:01
<p>It’s bitingly cold, and you’re in the West, but you don’t ski. You can’t snowboard, you’re too old for sledding, and snowmobiling, loud and rumbly as it is, just isn’t your thing. But there is an outdoor activity for those of us who are averse to winter sports: soaking in a thermal <a href="" target="_blank">hot spring</a>. The only requirement is a willingness to strip down and shiver for a seemingly endless minute before lowering yourself into the hot, lovely water.</p><p>I live in Livingston, a town of around 7,000 in southern <a href="" target="_blank">Montana</a>. In late December or early January, when the sun starts to sink at 4 p.m. and a long, dark evening stretches out before us, my husband and I often drive to one of the many hot springs in our area. We particularly like the low-key <a href="" target="_blank">Spa Hot Springs Motel &amp; Clinic</a> in the town of White Sulphur Springs, popular for its mineral-rich waters. The three pools — kept at a steady 98, 103, and 105 degrees — are filled with eggy-smelling (but weirdly appealing) sulfurous water that leaves your skin silky with its traces of silica, sulfate, calcium, and magnesium. Along with local ranchers and intrepid travelers, we’ll steep ourselves beneath colorful murals depicting Native Americans and wildlife at the water’s edge, and maybe sip a beverage we’ve brought along.</p><p>We also like <a href="" target="_blank">Chico Hot Springs Resort &amp; Day Spa</a>, a more upscale affair outside of Pray, Montana. We might order a prime rib in the restaurant or a poolside burger, and then have a postprandial soak (avid hot-springers use <em>soak</em> as a noun) in the natural mineral pools.</p><p>On days we’re feeling more adventurous, we drive several hours to Idaho’s <a href="" target="_blank">Lava Hot Springs</a>, a five-pool complex where the dark pebbles of the gravel bottom feel slick on your feet. Or <a href="" target="_blank">Yellowstone National Park’s</a> Boiling River, where the scalding waters meet the cold, flowing Gardner River — one of only a few spots where you can legally soak on government land. Here, you can sit, cozily submerged, and spot elk, bison, or bighorn sheep crunching in the snow.</p><img alt="Scenes from hot springs in Montana "src=""><p>These are the easily accessible pools. But there are also wilder finds all over Montana, Idaho, Utah, and Colorado, and you never know when you’ll encounter one (keep a swimsuit in your car). Of course, you can soak in the summer, but it’s like drinking hot tea in the shower. The pleasure of a winter soak derives from the elemental contrast of temperatures. Your nose will be frosty, and your hair frozen to a potato-chip crisp, but your relaxed, invigorated body will be toasty, a column of steam rising up around you.</p><p><em><a href="" target="_blank">Spa Hot Springs Motel &amp; Clinic</a>, in central Montana, has three pools open year-round. A hundred miles south, near the Wyoming border, there’s <a href="" target="_blank">Chico Hot Springs Resort &amp; Day Spa</a>, which has been welcoming bathers since 1900. <a href="" target="_blank">Lava Hot Springs</a> in Idaho has a network of outdoor mineral-water pools. While many springs in Yellowstone are off-limits, thermal waters can be enjoyed at the park’s <a href="" target="_blank">Boiling River</a>.</em></p>
Categories: Travel

How Will Meghan Markle Celebrate Her First Thanksgiving As a Royal

Travel and Leisure - Fri, 11/23/2018 - 10:45
<p>So, exactly how does one celebrate Thanksgiving when they’re also part of the British royal family?</p><p><a href="" target="_blank">Meghan Markle</a>, as we all know, is an American who <a href="" target="_blank">found happiness with Prince Harry</a>, Duke of Sussex. And now the Duchess of Sussex is about to celebrate her first Thanksgiving outside her country of birth. But the big question is, can she even celebrate an American Thanksgiving?</p><p>According to <em><a href="" target="_blank">People</a></em>, there’s no hard written rule that Markle can’t celebrate the day, which is great because it is allegedly one of her favorite days of the year. People also reported that she and Prince Harry have no engagements planned for Thursday, so it’s very likely that they will be honoring Markle’s American traditions, hopefully with stuffing and gravy.</p><p>But Thanksgiving isn’t just about turkey, and a royal like Markle wouldn’t let the holiday go by without doing some good as well. According to <em><a href="" target="_blank">Glamour</a></em>, on Wednesday the Duchess visited the Hubb Community Kitchen, which was started after the Grenfell Tower fire, to help out the women who run the center.</p><p>Hubb Community Kitchen also played an integral part in Markle’s charity cookbook, <a data-ecommerce="true" href="" target="_blank">Together: Our Community Cookbook</a>. Funds raised by the cookbook sales have gone to renovate and keep the kitchen running, so it can serve the community as best as it can. According to the Kensington Palace Twitter feed, Markle has been making regular visits to the kitchen since January.</p><p>Aside from Duchess Meghan’s good charity work to celebrate the spirit of Thanksgiving, it’s rather well know that she loves a well-cooked bird. She cooked an “engagement” roast chicken when her engagement to Prince Harry was announced, and she often posts around this time of year to show off her fabulous turkey roasting skills, according to <em><a href="" target="_blank">People</a></em>.</p><p>Now that Markle is a royal, Instagrams of turkeys past can no longer be shared, sadly. She <a href="" target="_blank">deactivated her account</a> shortly after her engagement was announced.</p>
Categories: Travel

The Coldest Thanksgiving in 100 Years Is Coming for the Northeast

Travel and Leisure - Thu, 11/22/2018 - 17:45
<p>Bundle up before heading out on <a href="" target="_blank">Thanksgiving day</a>.</p><p>People in the Northeast should be prepared for some extra freezing temperatures and inclement weather for this Thanksgiving weekend, <a href="" target="_blank">according to CNN</a>. While you may not run into too much rain or snow on your way to your Turkey Day feast, you may find yourself struggling against the elements on the way home.</p><p>This weekend should prove to be the coldest <a href="" target="_blank">Thanksgiving</a> in nearly a century for many areas, CNN reported.</p><p>In the Northeast, you might notice some much cooler winds starting on Wednesday night. According to CNN, some may experience some light snow followed by freezing temperatures. In New York, travelers should expect some snow showers, but people in Boston and Philadelphia should look out for strong winds and even more snow to delay them at the airport and train stations. Wing gusts are predicted to reach between 30 to 35 mph on Wednesday afternoon and evening.</p><p>On Thursday, get ready for a chilly holiday. You may want to opt for indoor games. The brutal cold in Boston, New York, Philadelphia, and Washington D.C. will be the worst it's ever been in nearly 100 years, CNN said. For New Yorkers at the Thanksgiving Day Parade, keep warm between the single-digit cold and windy weather.</p><p>Bostonians will be lucky if they see the mercury reach 20 degrees Fahrenheit, where wind gusts show no sign of plans to slow down and will result in a five- to 10-degree wind chill. But, if you’re in Washington D.C., you’ll be able to enjoy weather in the mid-30s. Friday will continue to be cold in this region, but will start warming up as the day goes on.</p><p>On Saturday and Sunday, bad weather might throw a wrench in travel plans. Rain is predicted to cause delays from Saturday to Sunday morning, though the temperatures should be much warmer. People in Maine may experience some snow.</p><p>As for the rest of the country, more wind and rain is expected for the Midwest, South, and Southeast. However, if you’re in the Rockies, you may enjoy some fresh snow for skiing. California, Oregon, and Washington state should expect some rain showers as well.</p><p>But nothing beats the cold and rain like hot turkey with gravy and stuffing.</p>
Categories: Travel

You Could Be the Owner of This Historic Australian Hotel for Less Than $100

Travel and Leisure - Thu, 11/22/2018 - 15:33
<p>Why stay at a hotel when you can just own one instead?</p><p>The owners of the historic Bethungra Shirley Hotel near Cootamundra, in the Riverina region of New South Wales, <a href="" target="_blank">Australia</a>, are giving away their property to the best applicant with a vision for the place’s future. All it will cost is an application fee of A$100 (about $73 USD).</p><p>Robyn and Allan Cox, current owners of the hotel, originally bought the place for A$470,000 (about $341,000 USD) in 2014 and are now deciding to move away, according to <a href="" target="_blank">Lonely Planet</a>. They are hoping the building will serve the community and are open to applicants’ ideas.</p><p>At the moment, the Coxes have a <a href="" target="_blank">campaign going on Facebook</a> to spread the word of the “giveaway.” The place is considered a great space for a B&amp;B, wedding venue, pub, restaurant, cafe, open garden or high tea.</p><p> </p><p>On the Facebook page, potential applicants can also find interior photos of bedrooms (there are 13 in all) and communal rooms, as well as exterior shots of the gardens (of which, there are two).</p><p><strong>Related: </strong><a href="" target="_blank">The Best Times to Visit Australia for Perfect Weather and Cheap Flights</a></p><p>The Coxes, in addition to the building, will also throw in the cost of furniture and settlement fees to lower expenses for the new owner, in order to foster their dream venue. So far, the Coxes have received many creative ideas for the place.</p><p>“The list is as long as your arm. We get a lot of the usual ideas from the hospitality industry, because the building is designed for the hospitality industry. But we’re all getting a lot of dreams coming out because there is no overhead. When you don’t have the expenses you can let your dreams go wild,” Robyn Cox said to Lonely Planet.</p><p>According to Lonely Planet, the Coxes need 20,000 applicants in order to cover their own costs, but they aren’t worried about making their goal. If they do exceed it, they plan on going to the local hospital or community board to donate the extra funds.</p><p>The Facebook page is up and running but the application site is still underway. Hopefully, the couple will have it up and running by December. “We’re just as excited as everyone else to see who’s going to end up with it,” Robyn Cox told Lonely Planet.</p><p>To stay updated, like the <a href="" target="_blank">Apply for my home Hotel Shirley B&amp;B Bethungra</a> page.</p>
Categories: Travel

This Stunning New Lodge in Alaska Is One of the Best Places to See the Northern Lights

Travel and Leisure - Thu, 11/22/2018 - 14:01
<p>Living in <a href="" target="_blank">Los Angeles</a>, I don’t crave beaches and palms in winter. Rogue 90-degree days in January make me long to scrape ice off a windshield, or at least wear a sweater. So in March, I flew in to snow-blanketed Anchorage and caught the Alaska Railroad’s natty blue-and-yellow <a href="" target="_blank">Aurora Winter Train</a> to Fairbanks. As we chugged out of the city, the windows filled with trees and snow, an occasional moose, and, around every turn, <a href="" target="_blank">Denali</a>, getting steadily larger. At 20,310 feet, it’s the highest mountain in North America, but that number doesn’t express how gigantic it is, how ridiculously far away you can be and still think,<i> </i><em>Wow, big</em><i>.</i> I’m told the peak is often hidden in clouds, but under blue skies, my experience was of something impossible to miss but constantly pointed out. “There’s Denali,” said everyone in Anchorage. “There’s Denali,” said everyone on the train. “There it is, all right,” I agreed. It seemed so close — but I was about to get much closer.</p><p>It’s difficult to convey the awesomeness of the <a href="" target="_blank">Sheldon Chalet</a>, a new lodge that sits right on Denali’s shoulder and is accessible only by helicopter. But the bare facts are these: in the 1950s, a bush pilot named Don Sheldon homesteaded five acres inside what would later become <a href="" target="_blank">Denali National Park and Preserve</a>, including a 300-foot-high granite outcropping sticking out of a glacier. Atop it, he built a hut that, by virtue of its location, was only practical for use by experienced mountaineers.</p><img alt="Northern Lights over Sheldon Chalet, in Alaska "src=""><p>Sheldon died in 1975, but last year, two of his children built a hexagonally shaped, heavily engineered, highly improbable five-bedroom piece of heaven, from which guests can trek over glaciers, go heli-hiking, and glimpse the <a href="" target="_blank">aurora borealis</a>. Flying in, I watched from the helicopter’s bubble-like cockpit as leafless birch forest gave way to cracked superhighways of ice snaking through a maze of upthrust slabs, sawtooth ridges, and looming monoliths. “There’s Denali,” the pilot said.</p><p>The chalet appeared ludicrously small, dwarfed by its surroundings, a toy house perched on a miniature rock. After we landed, I was led inside and welcomed with champagne and oysters and other nibbles that refocused my brain on the most important thing — me.</p><p>Herein lies the particular, vertigo-inducing magic of the Sheldon Chalet: contrast. The lodge fortifies you with cozy comforts. There’s a warm stove, snuggly faux-fur blankets, slippers in your size, even artful little pillow chocolates. But step outside and there is only austerity and silence, a landscape produced by eons of uplifting rock and compressing ice, a place so profoundly unable to know or care about your existence that in its presence you feel both afraid and euphoric. You are so small, and your life is so brief and insignificant, but isn’t that kind of freeing? The experience forces you to be in the present, free of petty concerns like Instagramming or sending gloating texts. Plus, there’s no Wi-Fi.</p><p>The Chalet is only the most rarefied example of an Alaskan trend toward remote, small-scale accommodation. The new <a href="" target="_blank">Borealis Basecamp</a>, 25 miles north of Fairbanks and fully off-grid, is a lunar colony of dome-shaped white cabins. Each has a panoramic window angled to facilitate viewing the northern lights from — wait for it — bed. Aurora tourism is notoriously tricky; not only do you need to be in the right place at the right time, you need a clear, dark sky. Fairbanks is in the right latitude (check) and has little ambient light and low precipitation (check, check), but you still have to cross your fingers.</p><p><strong>Related</strong>: <a href="" target="_blank">A New Luxury Hotel Is Opening in the Middle of an Alaskan Glacier</a></p><p>My first night, around 10, a pale band appeared in the sky. The wind kicked up; the temperature dropped into the single digits. I got out of bed and hustled into my many layers. I needed to be under the sky, the whole thing.</p><p>Pale green light swirled up like peacock plumes. Glittering bridges spanned the horizon. Here it was again — the exhilarating indifference of the natural world. The aurora, this impossibly beautiful thing, holds no intention, carries no purpose, needs no observer. It’s chemistry. On this particular night, charged particles had traveled more than 90 million miles through space on the solar wind, and reacted with gases in the atmosphere when I happened to be looking up. Ninety million miles.</p><p>“Big country,” people say about <a href="" target="_blank">Alaska</a>, but everything’s relative.</p><img alt="The Aurora Winter Train, in Alaska "src=""><h2>Alaska Trip Planner</h2><p>If you want to see both the <a href="" target="_blank">Sheldon Chalet</a> <em>(from $2,300 per person per night) </em>and <a href="" target="_blank">Borealis Basecamp</a> <em>(doubles from $389)</em> and take the train, it’s best to fly in to Fairbanks. The <a href="">Aurora Winter Train</a> runs December to March, with weekend-only service in fall and spring. Most passengers do the whole trip in one 12-hour, 356-mile shot, but the town of Talkeetna is worth a stop, especially for outdoor activities like mushing or snowmobiling. On Main Street, visit the <a href="" target="_blank">Denali Brewing Co.</a> for microbrews, <a href="" target="_blank">Conscious Coffee</a> for a shot of caffeine, and the <a href="news" target="_blank">Roadhouse</a> for colossal cinnamon rolls. The Sheldon Chalet arranges transfers in both Talkeetna and Anchorage, so you can skip Talkeetna or the last leg of the railway, or fly in to Anchorage if you only want to stay at the chalet.</p>
Categories: Travel

Enjoy 30% off Stays at Boston's Edgiest New Boutique Hotel

Travel and Leisure - Thu, 11/22/2018 - 13:00
<p><em>T+L launched Operation Vacation to inspire workers to use their days off and get away, offering exclusive travel discounts as incentive. For the latest deals on hotels, airfare, cruises, and trip packages, visit <a href="" target="_blank"></a>.</em></p><p>Boston: At least 30 percent off <a href="" target="_blank">The Revolution Hotel</a>, a new boutique hotel whose edgy design is inspired by Boston’s creative past. </p><p>The deal includes:</p>30 percent off all room categories<p>Original price: From $150 per night</p><p><strong>T+L Price:</strong> From $100 per night; book by December 31, 2018 for travel through March 31, 2018.</p><p>Booking details: Use/reference is "TLREV" when booking</p>
Categories: Travel