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Forecast: No Sargassum Season in Cancún This Year—but Other Beaches Not as Lucky

By Zac Thompson

Posted on 07/08/2024, 7:00 AM

In recent years, summer has been peak sargassum season, with large, unsightly accumulations of the stinky brown seaweed piling up on beaches in Florida, the Caribbean, and Mexico's Riviera Maya. For the last few months, ocean researchers have been tracking a huge blob of the stuff floating in the Atlantic Ocean and headed westward in time to ruin summer vacation photos in places like Cancún, the ...

When Is Oktoberfest in Germany in 2024? Dates, Best Cities, and Other Info to Know

By Zac Thompson

Posted on 06/28/2024, 5:45 PM

In a typical year, around 6 million people descend on Munich for Oktoberfest, Germany's two-and-a-half-week-long annual celebration of beer and all things Bavarian (pretzels, lederhosen, oompah bands, the Chicken Dance) at the city's Theresienwiese fairgrounds. Because the event is so popular, there's no such thing as too early when it comes to planning to attend the festival. In fact, competition...

Barcelona to Ban All Vacation Rentals by 2028

By Jason Cochran

Posted on 06/21/2024, 1:00 PM

Although the announcement may seem surprising to outsiders, people familiar with Barcelona will recognize this has been a long time coming—and will likely be a harbinger of future crackdowns across Europe. On Friday, Barcelona mayor Jaume Collboni announced that the city intends to invalidate the licenses of all 10,101 units currently approved as short-term vacation rentals, and no new licenses w...

JetBlue Basic Economy to Allow Carry-Ons—Which Airlines Still Charge for Overhead Bins?

By Zac Thompson

Posted on 06/20/2024, 7:15 AM

JetBlue passengers with the airline's cheapest class of tickets, known as Blue Basic fares, will be allowed to bring a carry-on bag onto the plane at no additional charge, the carrier announced this week. Previously, if you had a Blue Basic ticket—JetBlue's version of basic economy—you could only bring aboard a small personal item that fits under the seat in front of you. Use of the overhead bins...

Where The Best Beaches in Europe for Water Quality Are

By Zac Thompson

Posted on 06/19/2024, 7:00 AM

Weather forecasters say it's gonna be another summer of brutal heat waves in Europe—maybe the hottest season ever, according to some predictions. But at least there's some reassuring news for the many travelers who will seek to escape the blistering temps by submerging themselves in the continent's coastal waters. A new report from the European Commission and the European Environment Agency fou...

The Real Reason Cruise Ship Cabin TVs Don't Carry the Big Networks

By Jason Cochran

Posted on 06/14/2024, 8:15 AM

The minute you step aboard a cruise, you're entering a bubble. Your phone calls cease, your e-mails go unchecked, and day-to-day pressures can't reach you. A good cruise is like a world unto itself, and that's a big reason we go on them. But when you embark on a cruise ship, you're also often saying goodbye to your favorite TV shows and sporting events, and not everyone craves a full suspension of...

You’re Not Going to Like What Drinking Alcohol on Flights Does to Your Body, Per New Research

By Zac Thompson

Posted on 06/11/2024, 7:00 AM

For the many travelers out there whose strategy for getting through long-haul flights is a one-two punch of boozing and snoozing, some German scientists have some bad news. A new study conducted by researchers with the German Aerospace Center's Institute of Aerospace Medicine found that the combination of alcohol and reduced air pressure onboard a plane poses a "significant" risk to the health of...

Would You Climb This Scary Ladder "Floating in Thin Air" Above Norwegian Fjords?

By Zac Thompson

Posted on 06/06/2024, 7:00 AM

As climate change pushes Southern Europe's summer temperatures past the proverbial boiling point, many travelers have begun to look northward to Scandinavia for outdoor vacation spots. A new attraction in Norway will have you looking northward and skyward, perhaps with an expression reminiscent of Norway's own The Scream if you have even the slightest fear of heights. Suspended 790 meters (abou...

TSA Confirms Real ID Will Be Mandatory to Fly Starting May 7, 2025

By Jason Cochran

Posted on 06/03/2024, 2:00 PM

This post was originally published in December 2022 and contains updated information.The deadline for all Americans to be using Real I.D., the strengthened identification format that was announced in 2005 during the George W. Bush administration after the security disasters of September 11, 2001, has been affirmed by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security. Americans must not really need safer id...

Book Passage 2024: Learn How to Be a Travel Writer or Photographer

By Pauline Frommer

Posted on 05/29/2024, 2:15 PM

Whenever people ask me what my favorite destinations are, I have to fudge the answer. The truth is I'd rather go somewhere new than revisit a place, and every destination is as unique as a fingerprint, with its own pleasures and disappointments. But even though I go to many travel conferences in the course of a year, there's only one I look forward to all year: the Book Passage Travel Writers and ...

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