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Arthur Frommer: Recent Tax Cuts Will Force Reductions in Travel Services

By Arthur Frommer

Posted on 03/23/2018, 5:15 PM

Some commentators have rejoiced over the recent reduction in federal taxes enjoyed by American corporations and the wealthy. Fewer of those pundits have pointed out that those reductions have been achieved in part by reducing our government’s expenditures for programs that improve our quality of life.   The U.S. travel world—and especially our trains and passenger aviation—has suffered in parti...

Arthur Frommer: A Major Softening of Transatlantic Airfares Seems Underway

By Arthur Frommer

Posted on 03/23/2018, 1:45 PM

When my 15-year-old granddaughter was asked where she wanted to spend her springtime school break, she quickly answered “Paris.”   And my daughter and her husband, not wanting to discourage the young one’s travel urge, set about to study the cost of transatlantic airfare. To their surprise, they quickly found a round-trip fare of only $400 between Newark and Paris.  Now it is true that this ...

Privacy vs. Security: How Hotel Guests Can Get Around the Rise in "Room Checks"

By Pauline Frommer

Posted on 03/06/2018, 5:00 PM

I do a strange thing in hotel rooms sometimes: I host a live radio show. When I'm on the road, thanks to the magic of Skype, my room becomes my studio. And it used to be a quiet, easy place to broadcast from. No more. During not one, but two recent broadcasts, I’ve been interrupted by the maid knocking insistently. This despite hanging a "do not disturb" sign on the door. I’d thought it was bad...

The Ever-Expanding Footprint of Airbnb and What It Means

By Pauline Frommer

Posted on 03/05/2018, 6:00 AM

With speed more head-spinning than Linda Blair's in The Exorcist, Airbnb has been growing and changing and growing once again. In just the past 18 months or so, it has added online guidebook-style material, a section for luxury rentals, another that filters for “unusual” digs, and, most surprisingly, actual hotels. In the latter category, Airbnb will be growing exponentially in the coming months: I...

Why Don't More People Think of Renting an RV from a Private RV Owner?

By Arthur Frommer

Posted on 03/02/2018, 9:00 PM

Probably the most misunderstood, most underused travel facility is the recreational vehicle capable of both housing and driving a family.    All over America, persons own such RVs, but a good percentage of them make only a sporadic use of the vehicles they own. For much of the year, their RV remains parked in their garage or outside their home.   This is such an underuse of valuable fa...

The World’s Most Rewarding Source of Free Homestays Is, and Remains, Servas

By Arthur Frommer

Posted on 03/02/2018, 8:45 PM

Organizations come and go that arrange for you to stay free-of-charge in someone else’s home or apartment in the course of your travels. The latest leaders in this effort are Couchsurfing.com and Globalfreeloaders.com, which are sometimes criticized as having grown too large to be effective.   But another such organization—USServas.org—is older by far and careful to hand-pick both hosts and ...

Introducing Evaneos, a New Tool Connecting You with Local Planning Help

By Pauline Frommer

Posted on 03/01/2018, 3:30 PM

Planning for vacation is generally done in two ways today. There’s the O.C.D. version, in which the traveler spends weeks poring over the internet, reading guidebooks, putting down deposits, and prepping. And there’s the laissez-faire way, in which the vacationer picks a tour company—and then leaves the rest for others to plan. With the first option, the traveler gets a customized vacation, but ...

This New Budget-Priced Transatlantic Airline Is Probably News to You

By Arthur Frommer

Posted on 02/22/2018, 5:45 AM

Most everyone by now has heard of Norwegian Air Shuttle, which flies the Atlantic at rock-bottom prices. Although Norwegian suffered a loss in 2017, it has struck fear into the hearts of the so-called “legacy carriers,” like British Airways, Iberia Airlines, and others. Result: A consortium of established airlines—British Airways, Iberia, Aer Lingus, and others—have recently created a brand-new ...

Resort Fees Are a Tax Dodge: Why They're Destructive for Us All

By Jason Cochran

Posted on 02/21/2018, 12:00 AM

Americans despise resort fees. But in a shockingly short span of time, about a decade, we became blasé about them. Appallingly, the people once reknowned for feisty individualism and a testy spirit of fairness have rolled over like docile lap dogs—we sigh and pay hidden charges as if staying in hotels had always been this way. It wasn't. This is not normal. Can you remember how terrible you felt ...

How Not to Do Yosemite in Winter

By Pauline Frommer

Posted on 02/20/2018, 9:00 AM

I sometimes think my real job as a travel writer is to be an idiot. It's my job to make mistakes and then report on them so that my readers can have fun, safe, and error-free vacations. This week, I really succeeded: I almost died twice. I just left Yosemite National Park in California. I had thought this column would be about the wonders of Yosemite in winter. And while it is wondrous, the famo...

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