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5 Tips for Traveling With Your Pet



Everyone needs to take some time away from home to unwind and relax. Planning a great vacation becomes a little trickier if you have pets at home. Leaving them at home requires you to find someone to take care of them the entire time you are gone. This can get quite expensive if you do not have any helpful friends. Taking them on the trip with you also brings its own unique challenges. Sharing your vacation with the pet can be a wonderful experience if you take the right precautions. These are five tips to help make traveling with your pet a lot easier.

Microchip Your Pet Before Leaving

While losing your pet is never a fun experience, it is a lot scarier when you are far away from home. If they get lost in your neighborhood, then there is a very good chance they will be able to find their way back home. This is virtually impossible when they are lost in an unfamiliar location. Luckily, you can stay protected against this horrible circumstance by making one short trip to the vet before leaving. The vet can implant a microchip just under the skin of your dog or cat. Once it is implanted, you can use this chip to track your pet’s location at all times.

Keep Pets Secure in Large Cage

The safest way to travel with your pet for a long period of time is by placing them in a large sturdy cage. You may be tempted to let them roam loose in the backseat, but this can actually be very dangerous. A sturdy cage prevents your pet from sliding and falling all over the car every time you make a quick turn or abrupt stop. You will also not have to worry about them jumping up in the front seat and distracting the driver any time they get overly excited. Animals love to have their own personal defined space, and that is exactly what a cage provides.

Plan to Make Plenty of Stops

It is important to realize that it will take a lot longer to get to your destination when traveling with your pet. The added time to the trip is caused by the need to make extra stops. Dogs and cats require a lot of water in order to stay properly hydrated. Since they will be unable to drink in the car without making a huge mess, you will need to make a lot of quick stops to let them drink. This is also a great way to let your pet get some exercise and prevent them from having an accident in the car. Make the best use of these stops by fueling the car, stretching your legs and visiting the bathroom at the same time.

Keep Them Entertained a Toy

Your pet is going to get very bored if they do not have something to keep them entertained during the trip. The best way to do this is by giving them a toy inside their crate. You do not want to put too many toys in the crate because they will not have any room to move around. Just stick to one toy at a time. Once your pet becomes a little disinterested in their current toy, you should swap it out for a new one. This ensures their brain stays stimulated throughout the trip.

Make Hotel Feel Like Home

Staying in an unknown environment can be very troubling for pets. A great way to put them more at ease is by making the hotel feel like home. Pack the pet’s bed, food bowl, toys and blankets. Lay out all these items exactly the same way they are at home. This will give your pet a sense of familiarity in their new environment, which should help calm their nerves. Make the entire process easier by finding a hotel that provides special benefits to pet owners.

The post 5 Tips for Traveling With Your Pet appeared first on Travel Experta – Family Travel Blog.

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The Spirit Medium And The Model




Photo © Tewfic El-Sawy | All Rights Reserved

It’s been 4 years -almost to the day- when I was last in Hanoi on my Hau Dong: Spirit Mediums of Vietnam photo book tour, and memories of these wonderful two weeks are unexpectedly flooding in. 

Perhaps it’s because of the imminent US Presidential Election that reignited these memories since I was there in 2016 when the current White House occupant was elected. I recall having breakfast at the Golden Silk hotel while CNN was announcing the news much to stunned shock of all present. 

However setting aside politics, I think it’s just the passage of 4 years compounded by the current travel impossibility due to COVID19 that is the cause for the nostalgia.

And as an antidote to the nostalgia, I write this post about Linh Trần (whom I often call Lotus), one of the very best Hầu Đồng spirit mediums in Vietnam and who made her name by being featured in Morgan Freeman’s The Story of God Netflix series. She figures prominently in my photo book, and was interviewed at length as to her path within the Đạo Mẫu religious faith and practices.

Extremely photogenic and with considerable presence, Linh Trần’s incarnations as the various deities that populate the Đạo Mẫu religion during her ceremonies were always very popular, and she had/has faithful and loyal followers. I recall her willingness in being photographed by me in a studio near her home, and telling her -despite her scoffing- she ought to have a parallel career as an urban fashion model. 

We kept in contact throughout the intervening years, and it’s only recently that I saw photographs of her modeling her own clothes in various parts of Hanoi and Vietnam. I am certain she isn’t doing it professionally, but I’m glad she heeded my advice, even though it took her much of these 4 years to get there. 

Perhaps her next step would be to become an influencer on the youth-oriented social platforms such as Tik-Tok and certainly Instagram.


By: tewfic el-sawy
Title: The Spirit Medium And The Model
Sourced From:
Published Date: Tue, 27 Oct 2020 21:03:00 +0000

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Berlin Brandenburg Airport lounge names pay homage to former Berlin airports




Pleasingly, the new Berlin Brandenburg Airport has a little nod to the history of the city. The Berlin Airport lounge names for the common use facilities come from the old airports.

BER has been a saga from start to finish. The original opening date of 3 June 2012 was postponed just 26 days prior. Since then it has been a lot of rebuilding and redesign, not to mention a colossal amount of money, to get the airport up and running.

Berlin Airport Lounge Names

Thanks to the history of Berlin, at one time the city had three main airports. These were Berlin Tempelhof Airport, Berlin Tegel Airport and Berlin Schönefeld Airport. The original airport, opened all the way back in 1923 was Tempelhof, which had the code THF.

Once Tempelhof was closed, the two airports remaining were Tegel, used for legacy carriers mainly and Schönefeld, where the budget airlines generally flew from.

Terminal A at Tegel is hexagonal in shape and has was designed to get you from kerb to aircraft with as little walking as possible. A great concept, and one which is no longer feasible, hence the modern airport which is a walk-a-thon. TXL is closing on 8 November 2020, and the closed facilities are the new Berlin airport lounge names.

But What About Schönefeld?

Berlin Brandenburg Airport is actually on the site of the former Berlin Schönefeld Airport. A new runway was constructed to the south and a new terminal was built in between, complete with road and rail connections.

In fact, the old Schönefeld terminal will now become Terminal 5 at Berlin Brandenburg Airport. Low cost airlines such as Ryanair will be based there, pending a new Terminal 3 coming in the future. Therefore, the terminals right now are 1, 2, and 5.

Overall Thoughts

It is great to see the Berlin airport lounge names being Lounge Tempelhof and Lounge Tegel. Back when the airport was originally scheduled to open, the anchor tenant was to be airBerlin.

They built a lounge at the airport, which was never used as they went bankrupt in late 2017. The former airBerlin lounge is now the Lounge Tempelhof, for those wanting to know such details.

Are you looking forward to trying the new Berlin Airport when it opens in a few days time? Will you miss anything about Tegel or even Tempelhof? Do you also like the new Berlin airport lounge names? Thank you for reading and if you have any comments or questions, please leave them below.

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All my flight and lounge reviews are indexed here so check them out!

Featured image by Muns via Wikimedia Commons.

By: The Flight Detective
Title: Berlin Brandenburg Airport lounge names pay homage to former Berlin airports
Sourced From:
Published Date: Tue, 27 Oct 2020 19:05:06 +0000

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How to Travel Abroad to Work From Home




When I decided to travel to Mexico in the middle of the pandemic for more than a month, I didn’t have many supporters among my friends and family, with fair concern. The country is currently one of the hardest hit by the virus — and is now approaching nearly 900,000 cases.

Traveling now clearly isn’t an option for everyone, but my partner and I both felt we could get away and, with our employers having us work remotely, I probably had no better opportunity to work abroad than this one and only time.

We wanted to travel and visit as safely as possible, not only on the flight down from New York to Mexico City, but also during our stay in both the capital and the beachfront community of Tulum. We also needed to be able to work from home, which requires a strong internet connection, a working cellphone and a quiet place to concentrate.

Here’s what we learned while working from home, abroad.

Before booking our trip this summer, we considered other countries such as Barbados, Turks and Caicos, Jamaica and even our parents’ homeland, the Dominican Republic. But Spanish is both of our first language and we’ve traveled to Mexico pretty frequently in the last few years. That familiarity was comforting. Additionally, we had friends who had gone earlier and told us that in Tulum, where we would spend the majority of our time, restaurants, stores and other public places were adhering to social distancing, mask requirements and other safety measures.

During normal times, you usually think to pack sun lotion, swimsuits and everything else for a trip to the beach. As we all know, these are not normal times.

Not only did we pack everything we needed for a few weeks away, we packed 100 disposable masks, gloves, two big bottles of sanitizer and about 10 mini bottles of sanitizers that we planned to take with us whenever we went out.

We also traveled with disinfectant wipes as we wanted to disinfect our phones and even our laptops.

The one thing we did forget that I recommend is a thermometer to check your temperature if you do get sick. We had the fortune of not getting any symptoms but we did regret not having one.

Mexico didn’t have any requirements about being tested before arriving but we took a coronavirus test three days before leaving, quarantined and received our results a day before traveling. We wanted to ensure we would not spread the virus on the plane ourselves.

Flying from New York, we thought we would have an empty flight, but we guessed wrong — you might plan to expect the same if flying to a tourist destination.

Regardless, we had planned to take several precautions. We wore gloves and masks in the airport and on both flights. Additionally, we each wore a hooded sweater, trying to cover as much of our bodies as possible, even if it meant we were going to be a bit hot throughout the flight. It just made us feel better.

Once we stepped onto the plane, we sprayed down our seats with disinfectant and also wiped down the arm rests as well as the trays. There we stayed throughout the roughly 3 ½- hour flight, not leaving our seats. I highly suggest using the restroom before you get on the plane so you won’t have to get up and walk through the cramped aisles and use the plane’s bathroom. We also did not eat on the plane.

Once we landed, we stuck to Ubers. (Like many New Yorkers, we don’t have driver’s licenses.) Neither of us felt comfortable taking public transportation, and the car-hailing service was affordable and convenient.

But to be frank, it was a risk, like the overall trip. In Mexico, we discovered that many of the cars don’t have plastic dividers separating driver from passengers. However, most drivers wore masks, and we always rode with masks and opened car handle doors with gloves.

But really, we only took cars when necessary. In Mexico City, where we stayed for four days, we got around mostly walking. In Tulum, we rented bikes to get about.

In terms of lodging, we were a bit leery — despite taking the risk of traveling — of staying in a hotel. We wanted a space where we knew we wouldn’t run into a lot of people, and if we did, at a lesser volume and less frequently. So we did some research. In Tulum, we found an Airbnb in a building called Sanctuary in a private community called Aldea Zama. It gave us a location where we didn’t have to go to town much as Aldea Zama had a few restaurants and a grocery store. And at $50 a night, this Sanctuary was affordable.

The building had only 18 apartments in total and three floors so we rarely, if ever, ran into people and it had amenities like a pool and a gym that were cleaned daily. Additionally, the apartment had two balconies and more than 2,000-square feet, giving us both enough room to set up working spaces.

Internet access is crucial for any remote worker. Always double-check with your hotel or Airbnb host before you travel to confirm how to connect and the Wi-Fi's strength and reliability. In Tulum, we discovered that the electricity would go out often so there were periods where you could go without Wi-Fi for an hour or two. But I had made sure I had a personal hot spot on my phone. Before you go, call your service provider to discuss connectivity in your destination. I found myself struggling to get access with one provider until I called my phone company in the United States and they mentioned another provider would be helpful. The representative also guided me as I went through my phone to find and select the cell carrier that gave me better reception (Tip: Roaming has to be on to find any additional carriers.)

I spent the majority of my days working inside the apartment, but took frequent bike rides into town or to a local market. In the evenings, we would either eat at home or go to a local restaurant or out for a beach sunset. (We met many Americans who moved to Tulum during the pandemic.)

When we ate out, every restaurant indoors or outdoors we encountered followed a system where they check your temperature, spray you with sanitizer and make you step in a small puddle of water as disinfectant (whether this indeed prevents the spread of the virus was unclear to us). We skipped the few restaurants that appeared too lax on social distancing.

The six feet of social distancing was enforced mostly everywhere we went, from small to larger-scale restaurants, as was mask-wearing.

But don’t expect all the typical tourist destinations, like historic sites and museums, to be open. While we got away on a few day trips, including visiting the cenotes, or underwater caves, we understood that our options — like most travelers in the Covid era — were limited.

I recommend always sticking together with your partner or friend during the trip: You want to work as a team to avoid exposure, even if you get sick of each other. (We definitely did at some points.)

For many, this trip probably looks risky and dangerous, but we felt prepared, protected ourselves as best as we could and avoided large crowds.

Before we went, we were told by friends that they felt safer walking around in Mexico than they did in Florida or New York, and we came back feeling the same way.

In fact, I felt really safe overseas in ways I didn’t feel at home before and after returning. It gave me some peace during a very difficult period.

Claudio E. Cabrera is the deputy off-platform director at The Times.

By: Claudio E. Cabrera
Title: How to Travel Abroad to Work From Home
Sourced From:
Published Date: Tue, 27 Oct 2020 09:00:19 +0000

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