Let's go together!

Sunday, March 7, 2010

One of my favorite ways to travel.

There were many times in my life that I rode the train. In the mid 90's I worked on the Royal Majesty Cruise ship on a 7 day cruise from Boston to Bermuda. A month after I began working on that ship we were chartered to be one of the ships whom accompanied RMS Titanic salvage of part of the hull of the titanic. I sat and had a beer with Buzz Aldren (First man to be farthest away from earth, on the moon in 1969 and deepest in the ocean in 1996). I had the opportunity to escort Lonny Anderson to the theater as well as meet one of the oldest Titanic survivors. I seen artifacts of the Titanic in our library. It was without a doubt, one of the greatest experiences I have ever had. When I left that ship, instead of flying home I decided to ride the train.
It was a four day and night trip from Boston to Grand Junction, CO. I went through 9 states. It was fantastic by day seeing things and places I've never seen. At night not much to see.
However, to this day my favorite train trip is the trip between Denver and Grand Junction, CO. A very historic route that takes you over the rocky mountains by rivers, meadows and through canyons. I so enjoyed sitting in the viewing car having a drink, chatting with other travelers from all over the world and enjoying the views. There are over 100 tunnels you go through that was mostly dug through the earth by hundreds of Chinese hands. One tunnel you go through, is over 7 minutes long. If you are interested in rail adventures in Colorado please visit this link http://www.tours.com/tours_vacations/colorado/train.htm
There are many wonderful trips by rail like Royal Gorge Route Railroad, Durango & Silverton Narrow Guage Railroad, Cripple Creek & Victor Narrow Gauge Railroad, Manitou & Pikes Peak Railway and many more.

How about you, have you had a train trip anywhere in the world you want to share? Let us know we want to hear from you.

Friday, March 5, 2010

There is more to this than meets the eye.

A day or two ago I received a email from a good friend. She told me she was beginning to plan a trip to Shannon Ireland for 31 days. She ask me if I had some travel secrets or something to help her plan the trip. Well, I think that's the true reason I wanted to start 'helpmeplananaffordablevacation' blog. I began a simple search for flights on her particular travel calender and found out something almost right away...

Now I am not going to explain her trip story, cause it is just in the beginning phases but I ask her to tell her story on how she did it. She agreed to share it with us so you need to connect with us every day to see what happens. From planning, to the trip itself including pictures, video, stories and more. If you have any tips or suggestions we want to hear from you. She needs your help too! Comment and let us know what you think.

...I put in the dates for her trip, how many were going and where they we going. I pressed the search button and waited about a 30 second for the search to yeild results. All the while, I was thinking “OMG, I am going to get this out of this world, mind blowing price that will make me say, am I amazing or what?” Well, it kind of did. I found one about $210 less than she could find herself (per person). “Wow!” I said to myself I may just have a secret or something. But then I pressed the very inviting button to book now. Then came the truth, besides the extra details for passengers from food preference to an isle or windows, the total (that includes flight fees & taxes) was an additional $195, which became about the same as her search findings. I tried a couple of other travel sites and low and behold, I found better upfront prices. They were even lower than the other. Again I thought, “Now I am on to something”. Once again I pressed book now and this time it was $350 less but the taxes & fees were also about $350. What is going on here?
Almost all these flight deals were practically the same. It was their low initial price that made you feel good about the deal. Until the flight fees & taxes took away the discount or great price. My question is, why are the fees and taxes so different from company to company? Baggage wasn't even included in that price, those are fees the air line charges you. To this point, all the same-same the all.
Southwest has no baggage charges to my knowledge and are the only one, but they don't go everywhere.

Tell me what do you think?
Until next time.

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Wednesday, February 24, 2010

How about close to home?

I live in Colorado, on the western slope. Let's see, there is Aspen, Aspen is less that 2 hours from where I live. Telluride is less than three hours from me. These are two meccas of the rich and famous. In the winter, there are skiing, snowboarding, snowmobiling, just all kinds of winter sports. In the summer these two places are some of the most beautiful mountains in the world. I am not a real winter sports guy so I go there mostly in the summer.

But what about other Colorado destinations? Where I live I have two incredible places to visit. One is the largest flat top mountain in the world, the Grand Mesa. It has over 200 lakes clear water lakes, many private and public resorts. Fishing is awesome in the summer and great snowmobiling in the winter. If you choose to plan a vacation to the Grand Mesa, be prepared, people do get lost in its vast wilderness. Fall colors are incredible. For information on the Grand Mesa visit: http://www.coloradodirectory.com/grandmesaarea

The other place to the south of me is the Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park. I recommend you visit this park in the summer. The beauty is hard to beat. Hiking the canyon is a big recreation, but getting to the bottom and fishing for a big O' German brown is unforgettable. Fall colors are also incredible. For more information on the Black Canyon of the Gunnison visit: http://www.nps.gov/blca/index.htm

I plan to give some more great Colorado destinations that can match anything in the world. I want to hear from you. What less known destinations in Colorado or your state that would be a great vacation? Looking forward to hearing from you.

Monday, February 22, 2010

What are your Ideas?

In the 90's, I had one of the most amazing opportunities anyone could have. I worked aboard pleasure cruise ships. Every day I awoke in a different place, either at sea or in another country.

I, of course, have done a little of my own research on travel, travel destinations, hotels, car rentals, travel by air, trains, busses, RV's, campers, etc..
WOW! What a jungle out there!

OK, here is the senario. The economy has been bad for me, really bad. However, now I am coming out of the hole and can, after 6 or 7 years, finally take a vacation. Now, how in the world do I plan one. Searching travel on a search engine gave me some 518,000,000 results. Where do I go, where do I start? Please join me on a journey to open our minds to ideas to have an incredible affordable vacation or a much needed get away.