Archive for January, 2010

How to Save on Car Rental and Plane Tickets by Booking Foreign

Thursday, January 28th, 2010

Thanks to today´s globalization many U.S. based companies have expanded their reach by creating websites to deal directly with locals. Usually these websites have a country specific domain such as expedia.com.au. What people don´t know is that many of these websites offer deals that are cheaper than those offered in American websites mainly because they offer prices competitive with the market that they are targeting.

Renting a Car in a Foreign Website

When researching on a U.S. based company´s foreign website make sure to compare what you are paying vs. what they are offering you. It might be that the price is the same, however in places like England and Australia things like taxes, collision damage waiver and deft protection are included in the price. To be competitive, American companies also include those extras in the price they offer in a local website. These extras are optional in American websites and therefore are charged extra as well.

Although American car rental agencies don´t require local credit cards to making a reservation, you may have difficulties when picking up the car as you may not be allowed to pay local price with a foreign credit card.

Booking a Plane Ticket in a Foreign Website

The biggest obstacle when booking a plane ticket via a foreign website is paying the booking. Some websites offer such rates only to residents and only accept local credit cards. One way to go around this is to ask a friend to book it for you. You may also ask a travel agent. Travel agents may charge you a fee so make sure that savings still offset the cost of the travel agent.

To book affordable vacation rentals worldwide visit Rentalo.com.

Aruba: Beautiful Beaches and Great Weather

Tuesday, January 19th, 2010

5Located in the Lesser Antilles, Aruba is a beautiful island only 27 kilometers north of the coast of Venezuela in the Southern Caribbean Sea. It has been for long a preferred vacation destination of travelers who like the beach, the ocean and the sun. It is an autonomous region within the Kingdom of the Netherlands and it is part of the ABC Islands with Bonaire and Curaçao. Travelers visiting this island can expect a dry climate and numerous Aruba vacation rentals options including high rise hotels, inns, vacation homes and vacation apartments. The island features numerous beaches with turquoise Caribbean waters and cooled by constant trade winds including Palm Beach, Baby Beach and Malmok Beach among others.

Aruba is divided into two different regions, the northeast and southwest coasts. Those looking for Aruba’s famous beaches should head to the southwest coast; this part of Aruba has the white sand beaches and turquoise waters. The northeast coast has a rocky coastline with fewer beaches suited for tourists. The capital of Aruba is Oranjestad and it is also the largest city of the island.

Aruba’s Things to Do and See

Natural Pool: The Natural Pool is a small pool of water hidden in natural rock that is only accessible by ATV or a Trail Rated 4×4. It is located on the Island’s north side and it is an ideal option for a day trip with the family.

The Boca Catalina and the Antilla Shipwreck: Other great option for those traveling with family; these two sites ar4e great for snorkeling tours. The Antilla Shipwreck is the remains of a German cargo ship that was anchored off of Aruba during the Second World War.

The Butterfly Farm: The butterfly farm is a favorite among kids. With an explosion of colors, the Butterfly Farm is set in a tropical atmosphere this farm will teach visitors about butterfly habits and metamorphosis.

Aruba’s Beaches: Visiting Aruba and not going to a beach is like not visiting Aruba at all. The island is home to both typical tourist beaches and secluded and underdeveloped areas. The most famous white sand beaches of the island include the renowned two-mile-long strip Palm Beach, Baby Beach, located in a calm lagoon; Malmok Beach, a narrow stretch home to sprawling homes and windsurfing residences and Arashi Beach, home to the majestic California Lighthouse.

Berkeley: An Eclectic Mix of Cultures

Monday, January 11th, 2010

4Known as being one of the most progressive cities in the United States, Berkeley is an exciting destination that offers travelers an eclectic mix of cultures and viewpoints. It is located on the east shore of the San Francisco Bay area and it is the site of the famous University of California, Berkeley; the oldest of the University of California system and the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory.  The city has a great Mediterranean climate offering visitors dry summers and wet winters and a wide variety of Berkeley vacation rentals, hotels and bed and breakfasts for all kinds of parties and budgets. Visitors of Berkeley can expect an incredible arts scene with numerous hipster cafes and boutiques.

Things to do in Berkeley

Whether you are an outdoor fan or prefer indoor activities, Berkeley will have something for you. From biking and hiking paths to arts museums the options are almost innumerable.

Berkeley Marina and Peer

Located at the west end of University Avenue, the Berkeley Marina and Peer offer astonishing views of the Golden Gate Bridge and the San Francisco Bay. It is a great option to spend an afternoon with friends, although at night it is a bit dark and not so visited.

Sather Tower

One of the buildings of the UC Berkeley campus, the Sather Tower is a historic place modeled after the Campanile in Venice. It was built in 1914, designed by John Galen Howard and its 64-bell carillon chimes every day at noon producing a melodic sound. The building is in the National Register of Historic Places and definitely worth seeing if you like architecture.

Lawrence Hall of Science

A must in your list of things to do if you like science and if you are visiting with children, the Lawrence Hall of Science offers many exciting hands-on exhibits and activities as well as panoramic view of the Bay Area, Oakland and the Bay Bridge. Learning is made fun in this place.

Botanical Garden

Owned by the University of California, the Botanical Garden in Berkeley houses a wide number of plants native to California as well as many international exhibits. There is a cacti house and a tropical greenhouse with exotic species from Asia and South America. There is also a pond and a creek that run through the area.

Baja California: The Ideal Beach Getaway

Wednesday, January 6th, 2010

4Baja California is a peninsula located in the Pacific Ocean bordering the state of California in the United States and a famous vacation destination for both families and spring breakers who love the area’s dramatic sea landscapes and vast and remote deserts. It is the northernmost and westernmost state of Mexico and offers innumerable options as far as resorts, Baja California vacation rentals and other lodging alternatives. It is divided in two different states, Baja California State; the one that borders the United States and San Diego and Baja California Sur which constitutes half of the peninsula.

Some of the most renowned cities of Baja California include Tijuana, Mexicali, Rosarito Beach, La Paz, which is the capital of Baja California Sur and Cabo San Lucas. Due to its proximity to the U.S and specifically to California, many kids travel during spring break to enjoy Baja’s coastline and its beautiful beaches. The Sea of Cortez side of the peninsula is less exposed to the open sea and tends to be less rocky than the Pacific side. The southern and central areas of the peninsula are composed by remote deserts while the Pacific area is ideal for beachgoers and surfers in search of adventure.

Although in most of the country knowing some Spanish will really help you and people appreciate your efforts of speaking their 5language, in Baja California many locals have been or worked in the United States and the knowledge of English is high. You will not have that many problems finding somebody that can translate for you, especially in the north along the border in such towns as La Paz and Los Cabos. Many children also receive English education as a second language in their schools.

There are many things to do in Baja California whether you are visiting on your own, with friends or family. Whale Watching is one of the most popular activities among tourists. The waters of Baja California are home to numerous species of whales including the Humpback and the Orca. If you like diving and snorkeling, Baja California offers great white shark cage diving off Guadalupe Island and a fantastic diversity of marine life accessible to divers and snorkelers at the Sea of Cortez. Kayaking is another favorite with week-long beach camping Kayak tours at the Loreto Marine National Park. If you prefer fishing, this area has long been known for being one of the best places to fish marlin, sailfish, tuna, wahoo , dorado and roosterfish among others.