Q&A WITH PATTY VANIKIOTIS, ASSOCIATE EDITOR/COPY EDITOR
In our February 2019 issue, Patty Vanikiotis, associate editor and copy editor, mentioned plans for a fall trip to Spain and Portugal. Needing to rent a car and having never driven internationally before, she asked: What tips do you have for undertaking such a journey? If you’ve made such a trip, what would you consider essential take-alongs and key elements to consider? Any pitfalls we should try to avoid?
I rented a car internationally once when I traveled to Italy a few years back. The process was a little tedious but manageable. There are so many options these days in choosing a reputable company, but I had a travel agency handle everything for me.
THOMAS MASTERSON, via email
My husband and I have rented a car for all of our European vacations. We have traveled to Spain and Portugal four times in the last eight years. You must have an international driver’s license for each driver. Good for one year, we get ours from AAA. I like to take a Michelin book map for more detail than the standard folding country map; you can order them online.
I highly recommend a standalone navigation device rather than one you rent with the car. You will know how to use it, it will be in your language and you can carry it with you in pedestrian mode in cities or on hikes. You can load the international maps, and it comes with software to load onto your home computer. You can map out your driving routes with planned stops, then transfer them to the nav device. You can also load places you want to visit, restaurants, gas stations, banks and such, and transfer them to the device. Spain and Portugal have some skinny streets in the old towns and villages, and you want to avoid them if you can.
Have a great trip.
GLORIA CANTRELL, via email
In the Feb. 6, edition of eFlyer USA, we discussed the rankings of ethical travelers, according to a study by The Latin America Travel Co. The list was conducted based on human rights, animal welfare and gender equality. A few readers wrote in with thoughts:
Found the distribution ridiculous. Surely … Bhutan above Sweden … Qatar above Israel? Seriously? Is this based upon actual travel, or brochures published by the respective countries?
DR. RICARDO SCHACK, via email
Germany ranks as the most desirable destination for ethically minded travelers? I don’t know about that. In terms of animal welfare, I would think the Netherlands would be higher on the list.
ANGELA NEWSON, via email
THE END OF THE A380
In the Feb. 20 edition of eFlyer USA, we discussed Airbus ceasing production of the A380. The final Airbus A380 aircraft will be delivered in 2021, and some readers wrote in with a response:
I have had the pleasure of flying an A380 only a few times, and it quickly became my favorite jet. I hope I will have the opportunity to fly on an A380 again.
SCOTT PEDERSON, via email
I have just gone through your description regarding its outstanding qualities and likeability throughout the world, but then what are the other reasons for its discontinuation of production which have not been mentioned?
MUHAMMAD SHARIF, via email
MALTA, MALTA, MALTA!
In the Feb. 27 edition of eFlyer USA, we discussed the increasingly popular tourist destination of Malta and the record number of North Americans flocking to the archipelago. A few readers wrote in from personal experience:
I’ve been to Malta twice, both for business conferences. The first time was about 12 years ago, and I was amazed by the history and old fortifications.
Two years ago we held a confer – ence there for our European dealers, and they loved it. The guys from the Netherlands had never been there or even thought about it. After a few days at our Malta FaxCore conference, they said they would return with their spouses and children on holiday.
The place is affordable, easy to get to from most hubs in Europe, and the people are friendly and welcoming.
TOM LINHARD, Globility Board member, via email
Read your online story regarding U.S. and Canadian travelers to Malta. My husband and I visited Malta for a week in May last year (we are from Ontario, Canada). It was fantastic.
SANDYE HOOK, via email
In a recent story featured on globaltravelerusa.com, one writer discussed the new concept of tipping flight attendants on Frontier Airlines. One reader wrote in with thoughts:
While I always tip 18–20 percent when dining out in restaurants, I just don’t see the same level of service on Frontier as I do in a nice sit-down restaurant. I don’t require a lot of service on a flight and I don’t fly Frontier often, but I would be interested to see if the service improved on my next trip based on the new tipping concept. I can’t see this becoming a popular trend among airlines.
BRITTNEY WELLS, via email
Q&A WITH MARIE EDWARDS, DIRECTOR OF SALES
Whenever I travel for work, I try to find new and interesting places to visit, especially green spaces. So many cities are becoming more sustainable, green and making significant changes to the city landscape and community.
Do you seek out gardens and parks or have a natural curiosity about urban locations that have been transformed within the city/destination you are visiting? If so, what cities are your favorites?
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Two and a half hours beyond Ho Chi Minh City, via a newly constructed highway, Azerai Ke Ga Bay in Vietnam’s Binh Thuan province opens the gate to a corner of the country waiting to be discovered. The careful planning and sustainable development of Azerai Ke Ga Bay has already made a strong impression as an award-nominated and -winning pioneer of 5-star boutique hospitality in this emerging destination, drawing in an adventurous new generation of affluent international guests.
Known as one of the best airports in the world and voted Best Airport in the Middle East by Global Traveler readers, Hamad International Airport aims to set new standards for the airport industry that exceed the expectations of travelers through its facility.
Set your sights on Australia this year as Queensland prepares to welcome some neat hotels and experiences in 2024. In fact, it’s easier than ever to reach the region thanks to a new, non-stop American Airlines flight from Dallas (DFW) to Brisbane (BNE) beginning this October.
Embracing a life well lived often means embracing a life well-traveled. Every journey becomes a canvas for experiences that shape our lives and at the heart of every adventure lies the indispensable companion: quality luggage.
Ivrea is a town and comune of the City of Turino in the Piedmont region of northwestern Italy. In 2018, it was included in the buffer zone of the UNESCO World Heritage Site Ivrea, the Industrial City of the 20th Century.
The resort offers several thoughtfully crafted artisanal cocktails to celebrate National Margarita Day or any day; however, if you can’t make it to Cancún this month, shake up two of Hilton Cancun Mar Caribe’s margaritas at home with these recipes.
One affordable plan can protect an entire year of trips: business or pleasure, short or long, domestic or international.
In Europe, Asia and North America, rail travel for touristic purposes is becoming more popular than ever. Earlier this year, Railbookers, which offers a collection of independent rail vacation itineraries featuring sought-after destinations in the United States and around the world, announced its upscale Around the World by Luxury Train itinerary, which will take travelers across the globe to 13 countries, four continents and more than 20 cities as they enjoy the best accommodations, dining and sightseeing by train for 80 days, all onboard the finest rail accommodations on the world’s most luxurious trains.