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Friday, November 21, 2014
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Jen Savedra (Editor)
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DID NOBODY DO THE MATH

But no surprise fees will not go down
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21 NO 2014: A hike in passport fees has become a cash cow for the federal government. Recently released figures show the government took in $200 million more than it cost them to produce passports last year. MORE

THANKSGIVING TRAVEL IN THE US

Less for gas more for airfare and hotels
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21 NOV 2014: The good news for US Thanksgiving travellers - the price of gas is at five-year lows. The bad news - a lot more people will be on the road. During the long holiday weekend, 46.3 million Americans are expected to go 50 miles or more from home, the highest number since 2007, according to travel agency and car lobbying group AAA. That would be a 4.2 percent increase over last year. MORE

MISSED MANNERS

Celebrate the differences
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21 NOV 2014: Warning travellers about behaviour when abroad is becoming relatively common. Thailand's Embassy in Japan has some tips for Thai visitors: Don't put your chopsticks in the serving bowl. If driving, stop for pedestrians at crosswalks. And just because you have kids doesn't mean you can cut the queue. MORE

A SLICE OF THE PIE

Enjoy a piece of Florida Key Lime Pie and help others
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21 NOV 2014: Really, this is just what you need right now! Spreading the Florida Keys’ warmth and free samples of the subtropical island chain’s signature dessert, a Key Lime Pie food truck is set to roll on the streets of Toronto and Hamilton Monday, Nov. 24, through Friday, Nov. 28. MORE

THE MOST INSPIRING CITIES IN THE WORLD

Really.These are the top 50
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21 NOV 2014: The heartbeat of a city is a difficult thing to measure. Some, like physicists Geoffrey West and Luis Bettencourt, say you can measure a city by the precise pace at which its citizens walk. (In fact, they’ve developed an entire mathematical equation to do so.) Others think a city’s true worth lies in the cost of its housing, or the growth of its population, or the fiscal outlook of its property developers. MORE

THEY ARE BECOMING A PROBLEM

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21 NOV 2014: Federal officials are investigating after three commercial pilots reported drones flying near their planes as they approached New York City's Kennedy Airport this week. MORE

FOR SALE

Private Islands around the world
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21 NOV 2014: If your clients are really looking for something different, perhaps a private island may be just the thing for them. Certainly some are not for the regular family budget, but some are surprisingly affordable.      MORE

APPOINTMENT

Richard Meadows President of Cunard Line North America
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21 NOV 2014: Cunard has announced that Richard Meadows has been appointed president of Cunard Line – North America, assuming operating responsibility for the iconic Cunard brand throughout the North American continent from 1 December 2014. He will report to David Noyes, CEO of Cunard Line. Meadows will retain his role as president of Seabourn, leading all business and global operations for the ultra-luxury cruise line. MORE

THROUGH THE PORTHOLE

More winners
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21 NOV 2014: Seems today’s the day for all the lists and awards so let’s look at Porthole Cruise Magazine, which has announced the winners of its 16th Annual Readers’ Choice Awards. The Winners were determined by the readers and online fans of the magazine, who voted on 54 cruise-related categories from best ships to best itineraries. MORE

MAKING WAVES

Six new ships
By WALLACE IMMEN
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21 NOV 2014: In the wake of the arrival of Royal Caribbean International’s new floating playground Quantum of the Seas that amps up size, technology and entertainment on a cruise, the cruise chatter of late has been about Quantum leaps. MORE
In case you missed yesterday (or last week)... here is a selection of recent stories:

NO FUN FOR TRAVELLERS

Let the deicing begin
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20 NOV 2014: If you’re travelling in Canada or in much of the US today – expect delays. Another round of snow hit Southern Ontario Wednesday evening and cities across the Central and North east are suffering heavy snow and winds. In other areas, there’s freezing rain in Halifax, snow in Edmonton and freezing fog in Calgary. Environment Canada said Toronto will receive up to 5 cm of snow and areas near the Great Lakes may receive closer to 10 cm through the day. The wind will be gusting between 30 and 50 km per hour. MORE

DONE DEAL

Norwegian gets Prestige Cruises
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20 NOV 2014: Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings Ltd. yesterday announced it has completed its previously-announced acquisition of Prestige Cruises International, Inc. the parent company of Oceania Cruises and Regent Seven Seas Cruises, in cash and stock for a total transaction consideration of US $3.025 billion, including the assumption of debt. MORE

AIR CANADA EXPANDS ASIA ROUTES FROM VANCOUVER

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20 NOV 2014: Air Canada announced yesterday it will expand the introduction of Boeing 787 Dreamliner to more of its routes to Asia from Vancouver including Beijing in February and Seoul in March 2015. Air Canada recently converted its Vancouver-Shanghai route to 787 Dreamliner service, with Vancouver-Tokyo Narita to be converted mid-December. MORE

DO TOUR GUIDES NEED LICENSES

US Supreme Court could decide
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20 NOV 2014: Should tour guides in Washington have to prove they know James Madison from James Monroe? Should those in New Orleans take tests on the difference between Creole and Cajun? On the heels of conflicting rulings from two appellate courts, a Virginia-based group wants the US Supreme Court to decide whether cities are within their rights to demand that tour guides be licensed. MORE

UNUSUAL WOW FACTOR

Smaller seats and baggage charges
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20 NOV 2014: Under pressure to boost revenue, JetBlue will add bag fees and squeeze seats a bit closer together as it tries to boost profit. The airline said Wednesday that it will create three ticket classes beginning in the first half of 2015, and only the top two include at least one free checked bag. MORE

LAST CALL

Bacardi distillery in Puerto Rico to charge visitors
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20 NOV 2014: The drinks are no longer on the house at Casa Bacardi in Puerto Rico. Foreigners will now have to pay US $12 to visit one of the most popular tourist attractions in the metropolitan San Juan region. The seaside rum distillery was well-known for its free drinks and tours. MORE

PAY TO SAY

No bad review policy
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20 NOV 2014: A British couple says they were charged a hefty fine by a hotel in northwestern England after they described it as a filthy hovel in an online review. Tony and Jan Jenkinson told the BBC on Wednesday they were charged by the Broadway Hotel in Blackpool after leaving their comments on TripAdvisor. MORE

SNOW WAY TO TRAVEL

Winter gets here ahead of schedule
By DAVID TAIT
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20 NOV 2014: Nothing is guaranteed to screw up travel – particularly by air – quite like a good old- fashioned snowstorm. Of course, as inherently winterized Canadians, we generally tend to slough off such seasonal hardships as inevitabilities, “mere barnacles on the ship of life” and many will even proclaim that such things (forever my favorite) are in fact, “character building.” Hmm. MORE
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