Millennials traveling for business? Room service, please

Travel

Oct. 16, 2013 at 3:17 PM ET

chart

When traveling on business, millennials are more likely than older employees to add vacation days onto the trip and to spend more of their boss’ money than their own on items such as room service and expensive meals.

Workers under 45 also feel more entitled than older employees to the loyalty program and reward points earned while traveling for business.

Those are among the findings of a study released Monday by Expedia.com and its business travel company, Egencia, that asked 8,535 employed adults in 24 countries about their likes, dislikes, preferences and pet peeves when traveling.

(Read moreBetty White adds comedy to in-flight safety video)

The study was conducted online by Harris Interactive between mid-August and mid-September across Europe, North America, South America and Asia-Pacific.

It sheds light on the experiences of business travelers of all ages and found, for example, that 39 percent report working more hours when they travel than when they are at the office, and that 68 percent receive some sort of compensation (either money or comp days) for trips that include nights and weekends.

But Expedia spokeswoman Sarah Gavin said the study was specifically designed to look at younger travelers who are poised “to gain decision-making power within corporations and, as their careers rise, buying power in leisure travel.”

Understanding what these tech-savvy and trusting millennials want “will inform how we think about what will matter in the years to come,” she said.

It’s no surprise that 75 percent of travelers report using smartphones and tablets on the road for both business and personal reasons, or that those 18 to 30 are more likely to do so.

(Read moreWhat future airline boarding might look like)

But, Gavin said, Expedia was surprised by how much more likely millennials are to spend their employers’ money on hotel upgrades, room service, and high-end food and wine.

According to the study, 42 percent of those 18 to 30 spend more company money than their own on pricey meals (versus 26 percent of those 46 to 65); 37 percent of the former age group spend more company money than their own on room service, versus 21 percent of the latter group.

Expedia also noted how critical loyalty points are to millennials.

“In particular, younger workers are more likely to belong to loyalty programs than their older counterparts, even though they’ve obviously been road warriors for a much shorter period,” Gavin said.

(Read moreTraveling in style: Relax by the fireplace at LAX)

The results the Expedia/Egencia “Future of Travel” study generally mirror the findings of the “Traveling with Millenials” study released in March by The Boston Consulting Group. 

The authors of that study point out that though millennials are not yet the core customers of airlines, hotels and travel companies, “they will be in five to 10 years, when they enter their peak earning, spending and traveling years” and that suppliers “that don’t reach out to millennials now, seeking to understand and address their unique needs, may miss the boat entirely.” 

Harriet Baskas is the author of seven books, including “Hidden Treasures: What Museums Can’t or Won’t Show You,” and the Stuck at the Airport blog. Follow her on Twitter at @hbaskas.

Article source: http://www.nbcnews.com/travel/millennials-traveling-business-room-service-please-8C11406050

Don’t Leave Home Without These 3 Travel Essentials

(iStock)

As many hunker down during winter months to cider and coffee by the fire, a few lucky people are off on travel adventures. Take a trip during the winter is quite different going on one during warmer  months, because of weather problems that can occur and also due to sickness spread in airports and accommodations. Prepare for a carefree and relaxing vacation with these travel essentials.

Hand Sanitizer

This always tops the list of travel essentials for people of any age group. No matter where you are, having a handy small sanitizer in your back pocket can save a huge amount of germs from entering your body. Many remote areas might not have running fresh water, so hand sanitizer will come into use after the bathroom or just before eating in an airport to ensure cleanliness throughout the journey. If you can’t get your hands on a small sanitizer, wipes will work in the same manner. Don’t forget to wipe doors and hands before eating—you can never be too careful!

Try Yes to Carrots wipes ($6), Bath and Body Works scented sanitizer ($1.75), and Herban Essentials towelettes ($16)

Healthy and Affordable Snacks

Traveling doesn’t mean giving up all diet options just because you’re not at home. A few favorites of travelers are Larabars (known for their yummy taste and healthy ingredients), homemade trail mix (try unsalted cashews, almonds, walnuts etc. mixed with shredded coconut, goji berries, and mini dark chocolate chips) or meat jerky. Airport food is often pricey, and Krispy Kreme can be a little too enticing after a long flight, so keep these snacks on handy for all hours of the day.

For families, try making trail mix at home before going away. This is a great bonding exercise and fun for all!

Easy Carry-Ons

Many airlines are very picky about the size of carry-ons nowadays (we’ve said farewell long ago to the days of a three-suitcase limit without an extra charge) and adding a few extra shirts may seem like no big deal until the airline attendee weighs the case. To stay on track, purchase a small carry-on case at places like Target and Walmart that’s small enough to fit on the plane, but is also easy to track in case it gets lost through the airport shuffle. Bright prints like polka dots or animal prints are suitable for any age and a fun way to get excited for an upcoming trip.

Article source: http://www.parade.com/221660/alexacurtis/dont-leave-home-without-these-3-travel-essentials/

London, Travel Secrets From a Local

Global Yodel sent photographer Leila Peterson out with a DK Eyewitness Travel Guide: London to get her perspective on what it means to use a travel guide in her hometown. She sent back this amazing locals’ guide with a beautiful photo series!

GY: Name

LP: Leila Peterson

GY: Place you live:

LP: London, UK

GY: Can you sum up London?

LP: Umbrellas, snow shoes, bursts of sunlight, surprise heat waves, beautiful parks, and amazing little pieces of history scattered across the city.

GY: Can you sum up the people of London?

LP: A lot of really talented people here, and luckily everyone I’ve met so far have been so nice.

GY: What was the experience like looking through a DK Eyewitness Travel Guidebook for your own local city?

LP: Exciting! I visited Fenton House in Hampstead first, caught the train down to Borough Market, walked along the Thames to The London Eye and then made my way back to the George Inn for drinks before heading home. There were so many more places I wanted to visit for this project, it was hard narrowing it down.

GY: Did you find anything new or inspiring about London in the book?

LP: I came across so many hidden gems. Aside from the popular sites like The London Eye and Borough Market, I found Fenton House, which was beautiful and full of so much history. There were apple trees, lawn chairs, and a large garden surrounded by rose bushes and lavender. I spent a good portion of time lying under the trees. I also chose to visit The George Inn for drinks. Shakespeare and Charles Dickens were visitors to the historic inn!

GY: How did the guidebook influence the photos you went out to take of your city?

LP: I was originally planning to just visit the London Eye and Borough Market, but I found Fenton House and The George Inn while I was reading the book and decided to add them to my route.

GY: Tell us about the photos you shot for this project?

LP: I shot the photos with the intention of portraying a story of my day from beginning to end. Planning my journey, visiting the sites, and photographing all the beautiful things about London that stood out to me along the way.

GY: Occupation:

LP: Photographer

GY: Describe a perfect day in London?

LP: Coffee at Ginger and White, catching the train into the city and walking along Regent’s Canal. A small lunch at one of the cafés along the water, drinks in the park with my husband, and an ice cream (with flake) from the ice cream truck.

GY: What do you love about London?

LP: How much there is to do and see! I’ve been here for almost a year, and feel as though it would take years to see even 1/2 of all the things I’d like to.

GY: What do you dislike?

LP: The winter

GY: What would be surprising about this place to an outsider?

LP: I can’t really speak for anyone else, but for me, I was shocked by how culturally diverse the food is in London. You can get anything from good Korean BBQ to an American style burger.

GY: If London was a person or character who would they be?

LP: Peter Pan. It’s been around for so long and holds so much history, yet is thriving and alive after all these years. It never gets old for me, there’s always so much going on.

GY: What was your impression of the DK Eyewitness Travel Guidebook?

LP: The book made it really easy for me to discover a lot of great places. The information on the towns was so detailed and the London Underground map in the back of the book really saved me a few times!

There’s just something so fulfilling about sitting down with a book and planning out a journey, the whole experience was a lot of fun.

Check out the full locals’ guide by Leila at Global Yodel.

Loading Slideshow

  • London, A Locals’ Guide

    We sent photographer Leila Peterson out with a DK Eyewitness Travel Guide: London to get her perspective on what it means to use a travel guide in her hometown. Check out the results at a href=”http://www.globalyodel.com/yodels/discover-more-london/” target=”_hplink”Global Yodel/a.

  • London, A Locals’ Guide

    We sent photographer Leila Peterson out with a DK Eyewitness Travel Guide: London to get her perspective on what it means to use a travel guide in her hometown. Check out the results at a href=”http://www.globalyodel.com/yodels/discover-more-london/” target=”_hplink”Global Yodel/a.

  • London, A Locals’ Guide

    We sent photographer Leila Peterson out with a DK Eyewitness Travel Guide: London to get her perspective on what it means to use a travel guide in her hometown. Check out the results at a href=”http://www.globalyodel.com/yodels/discover-more-london/” target=”_hplink”Global Yodel/a.

  • London, A Locals’ Guide

    We sent photographer Leila Peterson out with a DK Eyewitness Travel Guide: London to get her perspective on what it means to use a travel guide in her hometown. Check out the results at a href=”http://www.globalyodel.com/yodels/discover-more-london/” target=”_hplink”Global Yodel/a.

  • London, A Locals’ Guide

    We sent photographer Leila Peterson out with a DK Eyewitness Travel Guide: London to get her perspective on what it means to use a travel guide in her hometown. Check out the results at a href=”http://www.globalyodel.com/yodels/discover-more-london/” target=”_hplink”Global Yodel/a.

  • London, A Locals’ Guide

    We sent photographer Leila Peterson out with a DK Eyewitness Travel Guide: London to get her perspective on what it means to use a travel guide in her hometown. Check out the results at a href=”http://www.globalyodel.com/yodels/discover-more-london/” target=”_hplink”Global Yodel/a.

  • London, A Locals’ Guide

    We sent photographer Leila Peterson out with a DK Eyewitness Travel Guide: London to get her perspective on what it means to use a travel guide in her hometown. Check out the results at a href=”http://www.globalyodel.com/yodels/discover-more-london/” target=”_hplink”Global Yodel/a.


Follow Global Yodel on Twitter:

www.twitter.com/globalyodel

Article source: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/global-yodel/london-travel-secrets_b_4169944.html

Elon Musk’s Electric Car Company Did A Powerful Thing: The ‘Supercharger …

Extreme entrepreneurialism is what the digital age enables—and no one does it better than Elon Musk. He will be talking talent, design, management and more with Henry Blodget and the audience at IGNITION: Future Of DigitalDon’t miss out,  reserve your seat now »

Tesla super charger

Tesla

Tesla super charger

See Also

As of Wednesday, Tesla owners can now travel free from San Diego to Vancouver. The company just opened what it the “Supercharger Corridor” spanning the whole West Coast.

Tesla has placed super fast electric vehicle chargers up and down the coast. Owners of its Model S cars can use them for free.

These superchargers work 20-times faster than the typical EV charger, Tesla says. So a half-charge of a battery takes about 20 minutes, it says. Presumably that means it takes about 40 minutes to fully charge the battery.

That’s still better than hours. Tesla says it placed the super chargers in strategic places, like shopping centers or near diners, so you can dine or shop while waiting for your car to charge.

Placement of charging stations, and the time it takes to charge, is one of the reasons some people are loath to give up their gas guzzling cars. So Tesla is trying to address that problem head on, at least for Model S owners.

The company believes that about 99 percent of Californians and 87 percent of Oregon and Washington Model S owners are now within 200 miles of a Supercharger.

Naturally, this means that Tesla has put a car on a road trip and will be documenting the ride via Twitter and Facebook. If you see it, snap a picture and post it with the #DriveFree hashtag, Tesla will send you a T-shirt.

Article source: http://www.businessinsider.com/tesla-travel-free-on-the-west-coast-2013-10

New Travel Info Website for Arkansas

LITTLE ROCK, AR (News release) – Motorists navigating the state highway system can now do so more safely and efficiently thanks to a new travel and construction information website developed by the Arkansas State Highway and Transportation Department.

IDRIVEARKANSAS.com is an Internet destination that enables the public to locate construction work zones on the state highway system and determine if current traffic conditions require an adjustment in travel plans. Additional layers of data can be toggled on and off to provide motorists with an overall understanding of what is happening on the state highway system.

“This is a ‘know before you go’ web site,” says AHTD Director of Highways Scott Bennett. “IDRIVEARKANSAS.com is designed to educate the motoring public where construction zones are located and to help them make an informed decision about taking alternate routes or adjusting travels plans accordingly.”

Among the features sure to be a fan favorite with motorists is a map layer that displays live traffic conditions. Highways are color coded in real-time to indicate that traffic is flowing normal, slow or at a standstill. Users are encouraged to check traffic conditions before traveling any of the state highways. This ability to “know before you go,” will help reduce delays caused by congestion.

The site was officially announced today during the October Arkansas Highway Commission meeting after making a preliminary debut at the Arkansas State Fair in Little Rock. Attendees visiting the AHTD booth in the Hall of Industry were able to click through the site and ask questions about how to use it.

IDRIVEARKANSAS.com also provides information about the Department’s two voter-approved construction programs driving much of the highway construction in the state – the Interstate Rehabilitation Program and the Connecting Arkansas Program (half-cent sales tax). This information includes a detailed explanation of both funding mechanisms, a listing of projects that will be completed, and the anticipated schedule of when construction on these projects might begin.

“Much thought was put into how we can best communicate information about highway construction in Arkansas,” adds Bennett. “Voters twice have expressed that good roads are important in the Natural State and we interpret those as votes of confidence in our ability to deliver on that statement. We feel very strongly about being held accountable to the commitments we have made and this site provides an avenue for people to see how we are progressing.”

Other functions of IDRIVEARKANSAS.com display locations of Arkansas welcome centers, highway rest areas, commuter park and ride lots, and weight restricted roads and bridges. Also, a weather radar overlay lets users determine the impact storms are having on traffic.

IDRIVEARKANSAS.com provides an additional avenue for the motoring public to communicate with AHTD through site features that enable users to ask questions, report problems, report littering and more. Additional features are already in the works, including live streaming traffic cameras and a revised winter weather road conditions map.

“We encourage everyone to ‘know before you go’ by logging on to IDRIVEARKANSAS.com,” concludes Bennett. “Travel smart, travel safe is the new way to drive Arkansas.”

Article source: http://www.arkansasmatters.com/story/new-travel-info-website-for-arkansas/d/story/c5zOoWMEzkWIUxktM1yDPw

The Scariest Moments in Family Travel

(iStock)

Haunted hotels? Been there, done that—yawn. Leave it to a group of family travel pros to scare up some seriously frightful stories from the road for your entertainment… and ours (now).

I like to refer to mine as the “throw Mama from the train” tale:

The conductor woke me from the sleeper car where my toddler and I had snuggled into a tight bunk. It was a little after 2:30 in the morning and we’d be the only ones dropped at a station an hour outside Barcelona, so I hustled my son into his carseat straps since the train would only briefly pause. We arrived at the deserted station and I hopped out, placing my son on the platform and stepped back in to carry off the folded three-wheeler all-terrain stroller that had become part conveyance, part backpack holding all of our worldly belongings. That’s when it stuck in the door. Tight. With me trapped behind it. My mind raced. I’d carried the thing on, no problem. But now, it was wedged, a solid barrier from ankle high to well over my waist.

“Ayudame!” I  cried, panic rising. Two sleepy passengers hurried over and we kicked, we pried, we yanked—one gentleman tried to detach a wheel, explaining the doors on the left (where we boarded) were four inches wider than the right. That’s when the train started. With no sign of the conductor to alert, it was picking up speed. My drowsy toddler looked quizzically from his seat, with an outstretched arm. As he grew smaller and the end of the platform came into view, I grabbed the man’s shoulder, shoved one foot on top of the stroller and launched myself from the train—Supermama.

I got up from (skinned) hands and knees 15 feet from the end of the elevated platform and scrambled back to hug my entirely unfazed boy; not caring in the slightest that our passports, IDs, credit cards, and cash were heading to France. Turning, I saw the stroller catch the light of a streetlamp as it arced into the dark night, landing in a mangled heap a quarter mile down the tracks.

Jennifer Miner, co-owner of The Vacation Gals, a popular, award-winning women’s travel blog, shares her story of being “pound-wise,  penny-foolish” in Puerto Rico:

My parents rented, sight unseen, the cheapest condo on a VRBO list, and off we went with my two-year old, infant, husband, and brother-in-law. Big mistake. It rained every day, and the roof leaked. The crib was decades old and unsafe, so our infant slept in our small bed with me and my husband. There was nothing to do in the residential neighborhood, and rain made beach time unpleasant. The final straw came when my brother-in-law decided a fun game to play with my toddler would be “Let’s pretend this penny is a peanut butter and jelly sandwich.”

Naturally, my two-year old swallowed that penny, and in the ensuing chaos I completely lost my already tenuous hold on Spanish. Rushing into the hospital, the best I could muster was “Dinero. Me niña comer dinero.” This translates, basically, into, “Money. My girl to eat money.” Fortunately, after an x-ray and a few hours of waiting around, we learned that we would luckily only have to be patient and wait for that penny to make an eventual appearance in her diaper.

When my husband, daughter, and I left the hospital, we blinked our eyes against the bright late-afternoon sunlight. Scariest thing of all, it seemed, was that we missed the only sunny day of the week.

Jamie Pearson, founder of TravelSavvyMom.com—a family travel site earning nods by Babble, LA Times, Parenting and others—shared her, ahem, laundry list of why one hotel stay was disastrous:

One time in Belgium, my husband and I let our then two-year-old son eat waaaay too much chocolate. Back at the hotel, poor Max blew out his diaper. When my husband (who was now wearing a hotel bathrobe) tried to change him, Max somehow managed to get poop all over his bathrobe, the bathmat, and (in the process of trying to clean it up) all the towels. Before I knew what was happening, my husband put it all in the bathtub to “soak.” We had to call the front desk and ask them to send someone to take away the mess. I made my husband tip the housekeeper €20, but judging from her face, it wasn’t enough.

Colleen Lanin, author of The Travel Mamas’ Guide and the founder of TravelMamas.com shares a story from Mexico. (How do you say “Yikes!” in Spanish?)

A relaxing multigenerational Mexican vacation turned into a nightmare when a stranger tapped me on the shoulder, “I think your father is having a heart attack.” My husband, toddler, and I had just been served steaming bowls of delicious-looking soup in a café in the tiny town of Todos Santos. My dad had gone outside to get some fresh air; he wasn’t feeling well after a night of too many margaritas. I never did get a chance to taste that soup. Instead I climbed into the cab of a local’s beat-up pickup truck with my ashen father. My husband set off on foot, running as he pushed our daughter’s stroller over dirt roads and broken sidewalks to the clinic several blocks away. We arrived at small, crumbling building and were greeted by handsome doctor-boys and a stretcher. Upon examination, we learned my dad was just extremely dehydrated. After an IV of fluids and cash payment of a few dollars for what would have cost thousands in the U.S., he was (thankfully!) on the mend.

Article source: http://www.parade.com/222174/saschazuger/the-scariest-moments-in-family-travel/

6 Tips for Booking Holiday Travel

The holidays are just around the corner, which means the window for finding affordable Thanksgiving and Christmas airfare is rapidly shrinking. The good news is there are still some tricks to saving money and — perhaps more importantly — your sanity, on your holiday travel.

1. Book Now or (Stop Complaining)

The sweet spot for cheap holiday airfare has already passed. Plan to book now — or at least by the end of October — before prices really skyrocket. According to Kayak, after mid-October, airfares for Thanksgiving increased up to 17 percent, up a whopping 51 percent for Christmas, and up 25 percent for New Year’s Eve.

Prices fluctuate through the week, and even throughout the day. History tells us that airfare generally drops early in the week. The key is to set a limit, stay vigilant, and if the price drops below that ceiling, jump on it. Here are some helpful tools:

• AirfareWatchdog emails airfare alerts based on your preferred route.
• Bing Travel’s Price Predictor suggests whether to buy now or wait based on historical data.

2. Pick Smart Travel Days

The best time to fly is when everyone else…isn’t. That means flying on Thanksgiving Day and on Christmas Day. It’s ok, everyone can hold off on turkey for one day.

According to Orbitz, the average airfare on Thanksgiving Day is $406 compared to the $499 the day before. The Saturday before Christmas averages at $591, compared to $408 on Christmas Eve. Saturday, December 28 is the most expensive departure date of the holiday week, with an average airfare of $513.

Extend your holiday trip to return on cheaper days. Kayak has a helpful Best Fares calendar shows the daily average airfare for your route so you can pick the best inbound/outbound dates.

3. Be Flexible With Your Hotel

Hotel deals are far and few between during the holidays, especially in major cities. But there are some ways to save on your hotel. Don’t stay over New Year’s Eve and consider a non-traditional accommodation, like a vacation rental, instead of a hotel. Paying in full, in advance, can drop a few dollars off the total rate, and there’s always the power of picking up the phone to negotiate perks like free Wi-Fi or free breakfast. Most importantly, know where the rates are trending high: Tools like Booking.com and Orbitz.com have years of data to let you know which cities have the highest rates… so you know where not to go.

4. Protect Against Delays

Booking a connecting flight? Protect yourself from potential delays and get on the very first flight of the day. Airline delays have a ripple effect that gets more difficult to recover as the day goes on. If there is a snag in your scheduled flight, you’ll have more options while everyone else is just getting to the airport.

Stay ahead of the game with some helpful apps:

NextFlight lists upcoming flights in case of a cancellation
Flight Caster predicts flight delays, sometimes even before the airlines figure it out.
FlightTrack Pro has a live flight tracker, among other tools, to help manage travels in real time.

When all else fails, check out these time-killing apps for your tablet or smartphone.

5. Don’t Check Your Bags

Worried about losing your bags during holiday travel? You’re not being paranoid. Look at the reports of mishandled (lost, delayed or damaged) luggage over the past year, according to the DOT:

December 2012 – 4.15 mishandled bag reports per 1,000 passengers
January 2013 – 3.41 mishandled bag reports per 1,000 passengers
March 2013 – 3.05 mishandled bag reports per 1,000 passengers
May 2013 – 2.96 mishandled bag reports per 1,000 passengers
July 2013 – 3.68 mishandled bag reports per 1,000 passengers

Translation? December is a tricky time for checked luggage. Do yourself a favor ship them via FedEx, UPS, USPS, or any number of luggage delivery services. You pay a little more than the airline, but you also get a door-to-door guarantee… and no schlepping. How convenient is that?

6. Just Go Away!

Remember, other countries don’t celebrate Thanksgiving. So while everyone else is elbowing their way onto domestic flights, savvy travelers can take advantage of low-season deals abroad.

Think Dublin in November, when flights on Aer Lingus are under $600 from JFK.

Don’t forget our friends up north who already celebrated their Thanksgiving. Airfare from Los Angeles to Vancouver over the holiday is just about $300 per person.

Consider a cruise, with late November rates on MSC Cruises starting at just $700 per person to sail through Italy, Greece and Israel.


Follow Peter Greenberg on Twitter:

www.twitter.com/PeterSGreenberg

Article source: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/peter-greenberg/holiday-travel-tips_b_4158610.html

Richard Curtis puts happiness through time travel in ‘About Time’


NEW YORK |
Wed Oct 30, 2013 4:36pm EDT

NEW YORK (Reuters) – Director Richard Curtis’ latest film “About Time,” a time-traveling romantic comedy, began with a conversation between old friends about happiness and what would make a perfect final day.

After writing hit films such as “Four Weddings and a Funeral” and “Notting Hill,” and directing “Love Actually,” the 56-year-old New Zealand-born filmmaker said he was at a time in his life when he realized it would be a normal day with family, friends doing what he usually does.

In “About Time” Irish actor Domhnall Gleeson plays Tim Lake, a charming, insecure young lawyer trying to find his way in life and love, who can travel back in time and comes to the same conclusion.

“I’ve tried to really write a film that isn’t only just about friends and love but about family and children and about losing members of your family, and about protecting members of your family,” Curtis said about the movie that opens in U.S. theaters on Friday.

The film reunites actor Billy Nighy, who appeared in “The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel” and “Love Actually,” with Curtis. He plays Lake’s father, who tells his 21-year-old son that the men in the family can travel through time to revisit and change events in their own lives.

“About Time” is a bit of a departure for Curtis, whose earlier romantic comedies, although witty and tender, were grounded in reality. But the director thought the best way to show how special an ordinary day could be would be to invent someone who could change what happened in his own life.

MAKING EVERY DAY COUNT

In addition to Gleeson, who appeared in “Anna Karenina” and “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2,” the film also stars Rachel McAdams, of “The Notebook” and “The Time Traveler’s Wife,” as Mary, Lake’s love interest.

Stage and screen actress Lindsay Duncan is the family’s matriarch, a woman whose style icon is Britain’s Queen Elizabeth, and Australian actress Margot Robbie, who stars in the upcoming “The Wolf of Wall Street,” is his first love.

Curtis said he chose McAdams for the part because he thought she would be the perfect actress to transition in the film from a young woman on a first date to a mother of three.

He envisioned Nighy as the universal father.

“We loved the idea that people would be able to put their own father in the place that Bill was occupying,” said Curtis, who lost both his parents in the last five years.

Set in London and the southwest coast of England in Cornwall, “About Time” follows Lake, who was disbelieving at first but finally gets the knack of time travel. He uses his gift to woo and win Mary after a false start, to help family and friends out of professional and personal problems, and to relive precious moments with his father.

But ultimately Lake realizes that he doesn’t need time travel to find happiness and make the most of his life.

“If the movie has integrity it is because I actually believe it would be great to try and be happy every single day with very simple ingredients,” Curtis said.

“About Time,” which is produced by Working Title Films and is distributed by Universal Pictures, is his third turn as a director. It is likely to be his last after he confirmed media reports he has no plans to direct another film.

“I caught up with what I’m thinking about life,” he said.

But Curtis will continue writing and is working on “Trash,” a film about street kids in Brazil that will be directed by Stephen Daldry.

“I think there will be other journeys,” he said.

(Editing by Mary Milliken and Doina Chicu)

Article source: http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/10/30/entertainment-us-abouttime-idUSBRE99T1CN20131030

Cubans traveling abroad in record numbers, officials say


HAVANA |
Mon Oct 28, 2013 5:54pm EDT

HAVANA (Reuters) – Cubans are taking advantage of the loosening of travel restrictions this year to go abroad in record numbers, the government said on Monday, with the tally of travelers rising by 35 percent since a new law took effect in January.

The United States, Mexico and Spain were the most visited destinations by Cubans, according to Colonel Lamberto Fraga Hernandez, deputy director of immigration.

The new law got rid of Cuba’s much-hated need to obtain an exit visa and loosened other restrictions that had discouraged Cubans from leaving.

Fraga said that 226,877 Cubans had traveled abroad since the law went into effect on January 14, compared to 167,684 during the same period in 2012 and far more than traveled in previous years.

Cubans can now travel abroad for up to two years without returning home to renew their passports. Fraga said 58 percent had already returned and 24,000 had traveled more than once this year.

“The new migration measures have had a positive impact. … Cubans are not fleeing, they are traveling normally,” he told a Havana news conference.

“Today, obtaining visas is the main obstacle that limits Cubans’ travel,” Fraga said.

Cuba reported earlier this year that a record 46,000 residents had permanently left the Caribbean island in 2012, and the United States has reported an upsurge in the number of Cubans crossing into the country from Mexico, taking advantage of a special law that automatically welcomes them.

Cuba’s old travel law was enacted in 1961 to slow the flight of Cubans after the island’s 1959 revolution by severely restricting their movements, similar to a ban still in place in the United States on most citizens’ travel to Cuba.

Many dissidents have taken advantage of the new freedom to travel outside Cuba, coming and going as they please, unlike in other communist nations.

The new travel law is one of the wide-ranging reforms President Raul Castro has enacted since he succeeded his older brother, Fidel Castro, in 2008. There are still restrictions on travel, mainly for reasons of national security and for those with pending legal cases.

Americans are also visiting Cuba in higher numbers despite strict travel restrictions, joining the hundreds of thousands of Cuban Americans who travel home each year, according to Cuban government figures published earlier this month.

Just over 98,000 U.S. citizens visited Cuba in 2012, up from 73,500 in 2011 and twice the number compared to five years ago, according to the National Statistics Office.

The numbers do not include more than 350,000 Cuban Americans estimated by travel agents and U.S. diplomats to have visited the island last year. Because Cuba considers them nationals, they are not listed in its tourism statistics.

(Additional reporting by Marc Frank; Editing by Will Dunham)

Article source: http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/10/28/us-cuba-travel-idUSBRE99R11G20131028

Complete Seoul business travel guide


.cnn_html_media_utility::before{color:red;content:’>>’;font-size:9px;line-height:12px;padding-right:1px}
.cnnstrylccimg640{margin:0 27px 14px 0}
.captionText{filter:alpha(opacity=100);opacity:1}
.cnn_html_slideshow_media_caption a,.cnn_html_slideshow_media_caption a:visited,.cnn_html_slideshow_media_caption a:link,.captionText a,.captionText a:visited,.captiontext a:link{color:outline:medium none}
.cnnVerticalGalleryPhoto{margin:0 auto;padding-right:68px;width:270px}
]]>

Since Seoul is vast -- it takes a lot more time to get around than you might think. Due to unpredictable/terrible traffic, business travelers should factor in at least 30-60 minutes of buffer time for getting to meetings on the other side of town. Since Seoul is vast — it takes a lot more time to get around than you might think. Due to unpredictable/terrible traffic, business travelers should factor in at least 30-60 minutes of buffer time for getting to meetings on the other side of town.

Seoul is fifth in the world for number of international conferences hosted. Last year saw a 10% increase over the previous year in the number of international meetings and conventions.Seoul is fifth in the world for number of international conferences hosted. Last year saw a 10% increase over the previous year in the number of international meetings and conventions.

Many traditional Korean and Japanese restaurants (popular for business lunches and dinners) require patrons to leave shoes at the door. Few local humiliations match having a toe sticking out of an old, dirty sock in the midst of serious business talk. Many traditional Korean and Japanese restaurants (popular for business lunches and dinners) require patrons to leave shoes at the door. Few local humiliations match having a toe sticking out of an old, dirty sock in the midst of serious business talk.

COEX convention center is the most popular venue for conferences in Seoul. It's connected to Asia's largest underground mall. COEX convention center is the most popular venue for conferences in Seoul. It’s connected to Asia’s largest underground mall.

Incheon International Airport has an ice-skating rink, driving range, movie theater and the world's first Louis Vuitton airport duty free store. No wonder it's consistently voted world's best airport by numerous travel publications. Incheon International Airport has an ice-skating rink, driving range, movie theater and the world’s first Louis Vuitton airport duty free store. No wonder it’s consistently voted world’s best airport by numerous travel publications.

No individual entrees here. In Korea, it's all about sharing food. Be warned: taking the last bite of a particularly tasty dish is considered tactless. No individual entrees here. In Korea, it’s all about sharing food. Be warned: taking the last bite of a particularly tasty dish is considered tactless.

Rather than drinking in bars after dinner, Seoulites prefer drinking with dinner. Here's a href='http://travel.cnn.com/seoul/drink/business-travelers-guide-drinking-korea-213012' target='_blank'how to survive a Korean drinking session/a. Rather than drinking in bars after dinner, Seoulites prefer drinking with dinner. Here’s how to survive a Korean drinking session.

Because you're singing anyway. Koreans love karaoke, and a lot of business is conducted while drinking at karaoke bars. Because you’re singing anyway. Koreans love karaoke, and a lot of business is conducted while drinking at karaoke bars.


1


2


3


4


5


6


7


8

(CNN) — For the third straight year, Seoul has ranked fifth in the world for number of international conferences hosted.

Its airport is the busiest in Asia.

Hotels are bursting to capacity.

An increasing number of business travelers is arriving each month to South Korea’s capital, many not knowing what to expect.

Despite the cutting-edge technology the city is known for these days, there remain challenges for a first-timer in Seoul.

Here’s help.

Seoul can be gorgeous -- like the venues at Samcheonggak (pictured) -- but it can be hellish to traverse. Budget plenty of time when moving around town.

1. Traveling from the airport/around the city takes lots of time

Seoul is vast — far greater than many expect.

As the largest proper city in the developed world, it’s approximately 10 times the size of Manhattan, and much more crowded.

What this means for the time-sensitive business traveler is that a lot of buffer time should be factored in — about 30 minutes, to be safe — for getting to and from meetings, especially if they involve crossing the Han River.

From Incheon International Airport, the express train (₩ 8,000 or $7) runs every 30 minutes and will drop you off at Seoul Station, north of the river, near the Myeongdong business hub. Not a lot of travelers seem to know about this for some reason, and trains are usually quite empty.

Airport limousine buses (₩ 10,000-₩15,000 or $9-$14) are another convenient way to get to most any destination from the airport.

Staffers at the airport’s bus counter are helpful if you tell them where you need to go.

Cabs cost around ₩50,000 or $48 to get into the heart of Gangnam (south of the river) or Gangbuk (north of the river).

During morning and evening rush hours, it’s best to take the train.

2. The language barrier can throw you

The language barrier is particularly frustrating when it comes to addresses and directions.

Unlike the United States (or most other countries), Korea historically numbered buildings based on the date they were built in each district, not by location.

This means buildings next to each other can have completely different address numbers. (An initiative to change addresses is ongoing.)

The best way to get around is to have the address written or printed out in Korean to show to taxi drivers who can then input the address in their GPS system.

Stay strong while they grumble, and insist they put it in.

When completely lost, call +82 2 120, the city’s help center, which has various language assistance options including English, Japanese and Chinese.

Who and what you need to see should determine where you stay.

3. Hotel bookings should be based on location

Due to transit times (up to 90 minutes to two hours to cross the city during rush hour) it’s best to choose your hotel based on your meeting locations.

Best hotels, by business hub:

Yeouido: Conrad Seoul, Marriott Executive Apartments, Sheraton D Cube City

Myeongdong: Westin Chosun, The Plaza, Ibis Ambassador Seoul Myeongdong, Fraser Place

Samseong (near COEX convention center): Grand InterContinental Seoul Parnas, InterContinental Seoul COEX, Park Hyatt, Oakwood Premier Coex Center

Best hotels if you’re flexible with location:

Gangnam (south of river): JW Marriott, Ritz-Carlton, Novotel Ambassador

Gangbuk (north of river): The Shilla, Grand Hyatt, Banyan Tree Club Spa, W Seoul Walkerhill

4. Bring business cards. As in, a whole box

In Korea, the standard business-related introduction involves reverently receiving and returning a business card, bowing and shaking hands, somehow all at the same time.

When the exchange is done over a meal, it’s common to lay out the business cards of everyone at the table on the table in front of you so that you can remember everyone’s name and position as you talk to them.

“That’s one of the things that people wish they had known before coming here — how quickly they’re going to run out of business cards,” says Seoul Convention Bureau vice president Maureen O’Crowley.

5. Wear nice socks at all times

It’s not just a matter of style — it’s protection against embarrassment.

Many traditional Korean and Japanese restaurants (popular for business lunches and dinners) require patrons to leave shoes at the door.

Few local humiliations match having a toe sticking out of an old, dirty sock in the midst of serious business talk.

Eat, drink, bow. Repeat as necessary.

6. Be prepared to drink and bow

“Showing you can drink a lot, hold your alcohol, and still talk intelligently about a subject is important to showing that you are a mature, working business person that’s worthy of trust,” says John Li, an investment banker from Hong Kong who travels to Seoul once a month for work.

“Pay attention and you’ll catch on quickly about the ritualism in business drinking. Also, there’s a lot of only-Koreans-allowed entertaining that happens afterward.”

It’s considered rude to let someone pour his or her own drink. After toasting, it’s considered polite for younger people at the table to turn their heads to the side when they drink.

For more tips on business drinking in Seoul, consult the business traveler’s guide to surviving a Korean drinking session.

7. Layovers or delays = shopping

Incheon International Airport has been voted best airport in the world many times … for good reason.

Apart from the shiny interior and quirky venues such as an ice skating rink, driving range and movie theater, the intense face-off between its two main duty free retailers, Lotte and Shilla, means big discounts for shoppers. (Our recommended souvenirs include Korean cosmetics — for women and men.)

CNN Travel’s series often carries sponsorship originating from the countries and regions we profile. However CNN retains full editorial control over all of its reports. Read the policy.

Article source: http://www.cnn.com/2013/10/28/travel/seoul-business-travel-guide/