International Tourism Boom in South Africa

By Zac Thompson

Posted on 07/28/2016, 8:45 AM

South Africa experienced an international tourism boom in the first five months of the year, according to the country's Tourism Ministry. The number of travelers from places like the United States and Germany visiting South African game parks, beaches, and vineyards was up 19% compared to last year. The surge can largely be attributed to South Africa's falling currency, spurred on by economic...

State Parks on Big Sur Coast Closed Due to Wildfire

By Zac Thompson

Posted on 07/28/2016, 8:30 AM

Due to a huge wildfire that has already destroyed more than 19,000 acres in California, a number of iconic state parks along the Big Sur coast have been closed until further notice. That means that the California Department of Parks and Recreation has barred access to some of the most popular campgrounds and hiking trails in an area noted for its awe-inspiring oceanside scenery. The drive alo...

A Carry-On Bag You Can Ride Around the Airport

By Zac Thompson

Posted on 07/27/2016, 9:00 AM

Here's a novel way of getting around the airport: hitching a ride on your carry-on bag. A contraption called Modobag lets you do just that. Equipped with an electric motor, it's a suitcase you can sit on and ride at speeds of up to 8 miles per hour. It has a range of about 8 miles, a size and battery that you can take on planes, and a memory foam seat strong enough to support a rider weighing...

American Airlines Adds More Checked Baggage Fees on International Flights

By Zac Thompson

Posted on 07/27/2016, 8:45 AM

Once the norm, free checked bags on domestic flights are few and far between these days. Now at least one major airline is adding more fees for your first checked bag on some international flights as well. As pointed out by travel blog One Mile at a Time, American Airlines now charges $25 to check one bag on flights to Mexico and the Caribbean, as well as to Central America and South America ...

Russia's Harassment of American Visitors

By Zac Thompson

Posted on 07/27/2016, 8:30 AM

Russia's recent treatment of Americans should make anyone considering visiting that country give the idea a second thought. Shortly before Secretary of State John Kerry landed in Moscow to discuss Syria, Russia expelled visiting NBCUniversal executive Jeff Shell, saying he was on a blacklist assembled in retaliation against U.S. sanctions targeting those responsible for Russia's illegal annex...

A Guy Named Hemingway Wins Key West's Hemingway Lookalike Contest

By Zac Thompson

Posted on 07/26/2016, 8:45 AM

A guy named Hemingway won the annual "Papa" Hemingway Lookalike Contest in Key West, Florida, over the weekend. White-bearded 65-year-old Dave Hemingway—who is in no way related to the famous author—had entered the contest six previous times but never won it until now. Held at former Hemingway hangout Sloppy Joe's Bar, the event is a highlight of the Hemingway Days festival, held yearly to ho...

Fans in Uproar Over Closing of Disney's Tower of Terror

By Zac Thompson

Posted on 07/26/2016, 8:30 AM

The gut-wrenching Tower of Terror elevator drop at Disney California Adventure in Anaheim will let fall its last batch of thrill seekers in early January of next year—and fans are none too pleased. When Disney announced plans to turn the tower into a Guardians of the Galaxy attraction, reaction on social media was swift and overwhelmingly negative. Many have accused the park of selling out i...

Former Attorney General Hired by Airbnb to Help Draft Anti-Discrimination Policy

By Zac Thompson

Posted on 07/26/2016, 8:00 AM

Former United States Attorney General Eric Holder has been hired as an advisor by Airbnb to help devise the company's new anti-discrimination policy. In December, a Harvard study (pdf) found that it was harder for people with African-American-sounding names than others to rent rooms through Airbnb's home-sharing service. Since then, the company has faced repeated accusations from African-Amer...

Luggage Clip Lets You Pull Your Suitcase Hands-Free

By Zac Thompson

Posted on 07/25/2016, 8:45 AM

If you're tired of dragging your rolling suitcase around by hand and don't mind looking slightly ridiculous, a new doohickey called My Hitch is perfect for you. It's a plastic clip that you attach to the back belt loop of your pants, then attach to your suitcase, so that you can pull it around behind you, leaving your hands free while you walk. My Hitch works best with luggage under 25 poun...

World's Tallest Moving Observation Tower Set to Open on English Coast

By Zac Thompson

Posted on 07/25/2016, 8:30 AM

On August 4, the English seaside resort town of Brighton will open to the public the world's tallest moving observation tower. Dreamed up by the team behind the London Eye Ferris wheel, the British Airways i360 features a glass-enclosed viewing pod that glides up and down the tower, offering those inside (up to 200 at a time) views of the coast from a height of more than 450 feet. In addi...

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