Where to go in Switzerland on a short trip: Alps, lakes, and cities

SchilthornInsideViewSwitzerland is an extremely popular country for those planning multi-stop tours around Europe, yet very few potential first-time visitors actually know specifically where they want to go. Everyone seems to know that it has the most beautiful views of the Alps and some very impressive cities, but there are actually many misconceptions among casual trip planners, so I’d like to clear most of that up below.

I get hundreds if not thousands of itinerary questions for people who are considering a Eurail trip around Europe, and most people just include the word “Switzerland” among a list of cities like Paris, Rome, and Berlin that they want to visit. So where in Switzerland should you go if you can only make a few stops at most? I’ll answer that question below. Click to read more

Mexico City on a budget: What you need to know

Exterior-of-Palacio-des-bellas-artesUnlike other countries like the UK and Paris, where the large cities are the main drawcards for tourists, many people visit Mexico without stepping foot in its capital.

Thousands flock to popular coastal towns like Cancun each year, or spend time on Mexico’s Caribbean islands, but not many take the chance to explore Mexico City.

This is a great shame for me, because after spending seven days in Mexico City in December I’ve come to realise that it was one of my favourite cities I’ve ever visited, and that to miss it out on your travels is a great shame.

If you do decide to put Mexico City on your itinerary next time (well done!) then hopefully this travel guide will help you make the most of your time there. Click to read more

Cheapest Asian cities to fly into from London and Europe

MumbaiVictoriaEven after the various currency shifts in recent months and years, most of the world’s best travel bargains are still in Asia. Adventurous Europeans have known this for decades, as the beaches of Goa, Phuket, and Boracay Island are packed with them every winter. Singapore, Hong Kong, and Tokyo are the only destinations that won’t seem cheap once you arrive. Otherwise it’s just a matter of how far down the price list you want to go.

Fortunately, flights between Europe and Asia tend to be quite inexpensive, at least considering the long distances. Part of this is due to several airlines based in Dubai, Abu Dhabi, and Doha expanding quickly by competing for passengers with discounted fares. Travelers will almost always have to change planes in the Middle East for the lowest fares. Click to read more

Cheapest cruise lines for Alaskan cruises – 7 lines ranked by price

alaska_cruises_slide2Often referred to as the last frontier, Alaska is an outdoor lover’s dream with sky high mountains, lush wilderness, glaciers, wildlife galore and a unique way of life. But because Alaska is so large, it’s sometimes hard to view a lot in a short amount of time. That’s where cruises come in. With a recent surge in popularity, Alaskan cruises have now become the best way to see Alaska, whether on a budget or not.

Each cruise line, much like hotels and resorts, tends to fit into a certain price category and thus have a different overall cruise atmosphere and personality. There are 7 main cruise companies (including a luxury ship) that venture from Seattlethe up around the Alaskan coast. The information below should help you narrow down your choices to only one or two of the cruise lines available. Click to read more

France and Italy: Best 2 to 3 week itinerary for first-time visitors

Rome ColisseumThe only country that might be more magical than France for first-time visitors is Italy, and vice-versa. Even though Europe is filled with amazing tourist destinations these two countries seem to stand above the others, with France being the most visited country in the world and Italy having the most UNESCO World Heritage sites. For my own money, these two countries contain 3 of the 5 great European cities that everyone should see first.

Fortunately, these two countries also share a border so they are extremely popular to visit as a pair. They both also get so many tourists that all the major destinations are easy enough to visit without knowing the language at all, though learning at least a few words and phrases is simple and worthwhile. For these reasons, France and Italy are perhaps the most popular first trip to the European continent. Below we’ll discuss the cities you need to include and the minimum time in each, as well as some other itinerary planning tips. Click to read more

Is the Chicago CityPASS worth it? Chicago CityPASS review

Welcome to the ‘Windy City’, a tourist hub and one of the most visited cities in the United States. Here you’ll find attraction and activity, one after another, each showcasing a different side of Chicago. But with so many different choices, each costing a pretty penny, it can be hard to decide where to spend not only your time, but your money as well.

That’s where the Chicago CityPASS comes in. Designed to save both money and time, this particular pass is supposed to help visitors during their trip. But does it really? We’ll find that out and more below. Click to read more

Cheap things to do in Cartagena, Colombia

Cartagenas-fort-at-duskCartagena is possibly the most charming city in all of the Caribbean coast, with its cobblestone streets, towering cathedrals and brightly colored walls.

Horse drawn carts transport tourists throughout this quaint old town, and you feel as though you’ve stepped back in time as you navigate its narrow alleyways while salsa music thumps out of homes nearby.

A traveler’s hotspot in Colombia, Cartagena certainly isn’t the cheapest place to visit in the country. We paid US$60 for a basic double hotel room (including breakfast) and then around US$20 per person, per night in a six bed dorm at a hostel.

But if you’re smart you can find some bargain areas in and around the town, helping you save your pennies as you explore this picturesque city. Click to read more

Is the Dublin Pass 2015 worth it? We review value and prices here

GuinnessStorehouseAs popular as Dublin is for tourists, it’s actually quite compact and easy to visit in only two or three days. The Dublin Pass is a standard “city pass” that covers admission to pretty much every popular attraction in town for one flat price. The Dublin Pass doesn’t include public transportation, but most attractions are within walking distance for those staying in the city center anyway.

The most popular attaction in Dublin is the extremely entertaining Guinness Storehouse, and of course it is included in the Dublin Pass (including a free pint in the Gravity Bar at the end). Assuming you are planning on visiting the Guinness tour, it’s very likely that the Dublin Pass is a good idea, but we’ll run the numbers below. Click to read more

16 Cheapest Asia cities to fly into from the US

UnitedHongKongAs more people from the United States and Canada come to realize the amazing travel bargains and opportunities all over Asia, more of us are going. One of the challenges is that it’s such a huge part of the world and there are so many very different options. Especially if you plan on visiting more than one country, it can be confusing where to start and where to end.

The good news is that most of the flights from the US and Canada are probably cheaper than you’d guess, at least as long as you know about typical international airfares. Even though part of Asia (India, specifically) is literally on the opposite side of the world from the US and Canada, fares are often cheaper than much shorter flights to Europe.

We decided to run tests to see which cities are the cheapest for round-trip flights starting in the United States, and the results are below. Click to read more

Asia 3-Star Traveler Index for 2015: 31 cities from cheapest to most expensive

SingaporeCity1Asia is home to more than half of the world’s population, and it’s also home to most of the world’s great travel bargains. Even its big cities tend to cost half or less compared to those in the West for hotels, attractions, food, and drinks. Most of the popular cities are also in the Tropics, so they are ideal for sunshine holidays any time of the year.

Below you’ll find 31 of the most popular destinations in Asia ranked from cheapest to most expensive for 3-star travelers. They are ranked by a daily total that includes a well-rated and well-located 3-star hotel room (double occupancy) as well as an allowance for transportation, attractions, food, and drinks/entertainment. You’ll see below, that once you are on the ground, many things can be shockingly cheap, even in Asia’s most popular tourist cities. Click to read more