Vacation Packages – The Best in Travel Value!

Travel and the EconomyThe other day I was surfing through classified advertising on the web. I was looking to answer three basic questions:1. What will an average family or travel group expect to pay for a 5 day/4 night vacation?
2. What will they actually spend?
3. What value do they expect to receive from the experience?At present, the news media drones on about the sad state of our economy and an out of control unemployment rate of 9.5% (in some parts of the country 15%) and how we are in for a least two more very grim years before our economy recovers. But, somehow the travel industry has not experienced the same downturn.Travel Industry GrowthAccording to the latest Tourism Satellite Accounting (TSA) research, world travel and tourism generated close to $8 trillion in 2008, and is expected to rise to approximately $15 trillion over the next ten years while supporting 297 million jobs and 10.5% of global GDP by 2018 (travelindustrywire.com). For any industry this is stellar performance.Of course the bottom line reason for this success is people still want to “get out of Dodge” and are willing to pay for it. “How much?” and “Why?” were two of the questions that took me to the classifieds.Back To My ResearchIn my two-hour surf through the travel classifieds, I found several discount vacations in a major destination from $700 to $1000. The prices were for the hotel stay only. Food and travel were extra and could realistically be expected to double that price. So the price of this 5 day/4 night getaway could easily be between $2000 and $2500. But, then I came across something that was even more interesting and rooted in my third question.At first read, the three questions seemed to be in order of priority. We would assume that a family or travel group would first come up with a budget and then plan a vacation. Let’s find a place in a scenic location away from home. We can cook our own meals to save money. Our budget is based on what we can afford, now what can we get? And the second assumption is the vacation will realistically go over budget by an anticipated percentage. These are fair assumptions, but those assumptions go right out the window when seduced by the entertainment vacation.An entertainment vacation is a destination vacation to any of the world famous destinations, i.e. theme parks, Las Vegas casinos, International cruises, and the like. Because most families believe the shared experience of going to Disney World is so much greater, they are willing to double, even triple the expense. The stay in a hotel and eat meals in restaurants, even drive a rental car if they flew to the destination. The entertainment vacation promises a lifetime memory that a mundane trip to the beach can’t.But wait… there’s more!A secondary discovery on my journey through the classified ads was the large listings of time share vacations for sale. The selling point of this type of vacation was individual ownership of a particular place and time in the year when you could get away. But, these listings were offering the timeshare for sometimes half of the original purchase price. The primary reason for selling was, “I am no longer using it.” There is an apparent shift in vacation value… from being together to experiencing something entertaining together. That shift is the reason the travel industry is experiencing near exponential growth.If an entertainment vacation could cost the same or less than that trip to the beach, would you do it? The answer to the question is obvious. Of course! If you could save 75% on an entertainment vacation, and 50% on the restaurant meals, would you book it? Again… of course! Because the vacation value of the shared experience is high and the cost is the same or maybe even a little lower.The Travel and Vacation PackageOver the past fifteen years, several companies are now offering travel and vacation packages that combine the best of both worlds… high value experiences with low cost. These packages are different from a travel agency booking. The package offers a series of discount travel cards and certificates that allow you to book resorts, theme parks, cruises, hotels, campsites, restaurants, and more for 50%-75% off. These are not travel clubs with monthly or annual fees. These packages are offered for a one time price, usually less than the cost of a typical week long vacation. The package usually contains the equivalent of thirty or more vacations, including restaurant discounts, that never expire. Some of them are even transferable. Usually a package will include several bonus vacations that can be given away. Often hotel rooms and condo rentals can be had for the cost of the room tax. While some results may vary, with a travel package the charge for a $200 per night room could be as little as $25 a night… an incredible bargain.Vacation and travel packages can be found on the internet, but be warned, what I’ve written about is not a package from a travel agency for a one time vacation. These packages come offered by an association of business people who have negotiated the package through several travel vendors. The business association is NOT a seller of travel and therefore is not licensed to sell travel. What is sold is travel and travel related discount packages that provide discounted access to many travel and travel related companies.These vacation and travel packages are by far the best in travel value and the shared vacation experience.

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Travel Trends by Gender

As someone who takes a great deal of interest in general travel trends, I was intrigued by the concept of historical differences between men and women and whether or not those variants are still relevant today. The focus is not necessarily on couples who travel together, but more on the intrepid female traveler who feels free to go wherever her whims take her. Here’s a brief look at why the genders traveled differently and whether or not that disparity still exists.Historical TrendsPerhaps the earliest recognizable female figure is the adventurous women who first explored such exotic locales as Egypt and Africa in the nineteenth century. Many of Agatha Christie’s mystery books featured such a globe-trotting heroine, who was likely modeled after real-life traveling icons such as Martha Gellhorn, an early war correspondent, and Gertrude Bell, an archeologist, writer and politician who traveled far and wide at the turn of the century. The famous anthropologist Margaret Meade is another truly courageous woman traveler or a century ago who comes to mind.These women are unique in that they set aside any trepidations and focused, instead, on their thirst for travel and discovering new destinations. They were the exceptions, not the rule.It’s Not the Destination, It’s the JourneyIt seems there was never a difference between the sexes as far as the level of interest in travel. After all, who doesn’t want to go and see new places, eat new foods, experience new cultures? The only gender diversity is truly the level of adventure the traveler embarks upon. For instance, up until recent years few women were interested in – or brave enough to sign up for – mountain climbing trips or jungle clearing excursions.As a general rule of thumb, men are often more concerned with the journey and not necessarily the destination while women dream of visiting far-off lands without having to go through a great deal of adventure to get there. Remember this is only a very general observation; certainly there have been and still are women who revel in exciting journeys to uncivilized locales.Travel Trends TodayWhat’s different today? What’s happened since the nineteenth century to make globe-trotting more common among single women travelers?For one thing, women are accepted in positions of power. “Allowing” wives and mothers from centuries past to travel unaccompanied meant that men were giving these women a certain power previously only allocated to the male of the species. Learning other cultures and meeting foreign peoples expands the mind and broadens a person’s horizons – things that were not acceptable for women ages ago. And now that there are a great deal more women in the workforce, travel is both necessary and usual for them.For another thing, travel today is much safer (on the whole) than it was during the era of the highwayman or outlaw gang. There was a reason women didn’t travel alone and it was all about the concept of safety in numbers. Today, women can drive to the airport, find secured airport parking and get on board a plane to any destination around the world in a manner of travel that is much safer than sticking to the roadways.The modern travel trends for women include adventure travel, learning travel, volunteerism, and a desire to check off items on a bucket list. Interestingly enough, these are the same types of trips that men are leaning toward, too. So, although there once was a great disparity in travel trends between men and women, today that gap is nonexistent. Buon voyage, ladies!

Why Travel Medical Insurance Is So Important

Travel medical insurance is an insurance package that offers certain medical coverage while traveling. These plans are similar to that of normal health insurance policies, but are associated with traveling. Travel medical plans consist mainly of one of two types of policies, namely temporary travel medical plan and permanent travel insurance program.To acquire travel insurance, an individual needs to pay a monthly premium to the insurance company through a travel agent. The company then pays for all medical care required by the customer while traveling.International travelers, who travel frequently, mainly require this type of insurance. There are various choices to be made amongst travel health insurers, which offer help to numerous traveling people. If travelers develop some medical troubles outside their country, these travel programs provide them with all the necessary medical assistance and protection.These travel health insurance scheme provides hospital security benefit of $100 or more per night, for travelers going outside the US. They also provide $15,000 and more to cover suitable medical expenses for previous health conditions. These are the most attractive feature of these travel plans.Reasons To Get Travel Insurance:Is travel medical insurance necessary or waste of money? This is a common question arising in the minds of many people, when they think of a travel insurance program. There are certain reasons that show how important travel health coverage can be to a traveler.While seeking an affordable travel package, people need to pay attention to its price structure. Most of the available travel medical plans are of low cost. The traveler is ready to spend the vacation money for fun, but chances of medical complications can add extra money. To avoid this, it is very necessary to buy a cheap travel health insurance package.Most medical policies provide health care assurance all around the world. However, they do not offer full amount as per the coverage. For instance, if a person is traveling on a cruise ship, the basic health insurance plan will cover only 50 percent of the doctor’s visits on the ship.However, the medical travel package covers the full amount and sometimes more. Therefore, travel insurance programs are the best choice for international travelers to protect themselves while relaxing.Many travel medical insurers offer policies, without a medical or health examination. The package takes care of all the medical expenses associated with any medical crisis, while traveling.Final Advice:Travel medical insurance provides peace of mind, during your entire trip. To make the vacation more enjoyable without any hassles, it is very important to have travel medical insurance. For those travelers, who have previous medical history this is even more important.Travelers with previous history have a high risk of medical complications during traveling and there is no chance of extra expense, if they already have travel coverage. You really don’t want to take the risk of not having it.A travel agent generally offers the travel health insurance when making bookings, and a large number of travel agents, who provides these policies, are available online. To conclude, travel health coverage provides an extra level of comfort and deals with all the medical complications get a quote below.