Insight Vacations Celebrates 100 Years of The Travel Corporation with Anniversary Sale

December 25, 2019
Lisbon_3203e2 (c) Dave E. Leiberman-Pateis Belem

Taste the sensational pastries of Pastéis de Belém in Lisbon on Insight Vacations’ “Amazing Spain and Portugal” tour © Dave E. Leiberman /goingplacesfarandnear.com.

New York, N.Y.– To celebrate The Travel Corporation’s (TTC) 100 years of being driven by service, Insight Vacations is offering travelers a special anniversary savings.

As a proud member of TTC, Insight Vacations is excited to welcome you into the TTC family and showcase why it is the leader in travel across the world—by catering to every taste, place and pace. Through our dedication to service and making travel personal, we cannot wait to welcome you on a magical journey.

“For 100 years, travel advisors have booked the companies of The Travel Corporation with supreme confidence, and Insight Vacations is no exception. The tradition of excellence in hospitality established long ago by the Tollman family influences everything we do,” says Jon Grutzner, president of Insight Vacations. “To honor that and celebrate with our loyal customers, we have created 100th Anniversary Celebration savings to give our guests the opportunity to experience our new itineraries and immersive experiences at the best value for 2020.”

On all Insight journeys, you’ll travel in relaxed style that experience the heart and soul of the destination–with small groups, premium hotels in the best locations, authentic dining and experiences with locals.

For TTC’s 100th anniversary, you can save up to 20% on European Discovery, Spain, Portugal and Morocco trips for bookings between January 1, 2020- January 7, 2020 for the travel periods April 1, 2020 to October 31, 2020.

You can also take advantage of even more savings in 2020 with Insights’ extended air offer and early payment discountFrom now until Feb. 27, you can save up to $300 per couple on economy air on departures to Europe, Eastern Mediterranean, Egypt and Morocco for travel during Oct. 1, 2019 to May 31, 2020, and September 1, 2020 to November 15, 2020.

By choosing flights with American Airlines, British Airways, Finnair and Iberia, you can save $150 off per person on Economy, $200 off per person on Premium Economy or $300 off per person on Business Class.

Also, if you book and pay in full by Feb. 27, you can receive a savings of 7.5% on trips to Europe and Britain, and the USA and Canada. This special offer is not combinable with the anniversary sale.

So, live your stylish life on a remarkable journey, venturing to some of the most iconic and remarkable destinations in Europe and beyond:

European Dream (11 Days); Leisurely paced with two-night stays in each destination and plenty of time to explore, this journey allows you to live your European Dream and come face-to-face with history through memorable local interactions. Enjoy VIP fast-track entry into the Vatican Museums and Sistine Chapel, as well as exclusive access to the Bramante Staircase that is usually not open to the public. Meet a gondolier in Venice and learn how the tradition of gondola navigation is being passed on to future generations. In Orvieto, marvel at the skills of an Italian chef during a cooking demonstration where you’ll learn how to make homemade pasta. In Stanserhorn, join a Swiss ranger to learn about local fauna and flora in the areaWhile in Paris, join a local foodie to venture where Parisians go about their daily lives, explore small shops and sample local treats and delicacies.

Amazing Spain and Portugal (9 Days): Delve into the heart and soul of each destination on this 9-day journey through the Iberian Peninsula. Tour the celebrated Alhambra Palace with a Local Expert, taste authentic Pastéis de Belém in Lisbon, and see the ancient Roman arches across the river Tormes in Salamanca. Embark on a scenic drive to Seville to explore the maze of narrow lanes and shady squares of the Santa Cruz Quarter, and see the final resting place of Christopher Columbus, along with his tomb, at the grand 15th century Seville Cathedral. In the historic city of Toledo, visit the workshop of a master craftsman and see how Damascene swords are made. In Jabugo, taste the famous jamon Iberico (Iberian ham) and learn about its history and production.

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Celebrate the Holidays and Toast the New Year at Favorite New York & Hamptons Hot-Spots

December 24, 2019
LI southhampton social club e2

Southhampton Social Club

New York City’s resident foodies are dashing all the way to these fine dining destinations to enjoy the very best in holiday treats and feasts. These New York restaurants are dishing up the holiday spirit from Manhattan to Long Island’s East End. So why not embark on a journey of festive fun and holiday celebrations happening throughout December and into the 2020 New Year.

Here are the gourmet dining establishments that have set their tables to welcome your family and friends for this Holiday Season:

New York City

T-Bar Steak & Lounge

T-Bar redefines the steakhouse experience with masterfully crafted New American entrees on the authentic steakhouse menu and from the raw bar. The sophisticated Upper East Side eatery offers outstanding cuisine in a sleek and comfortable setting, preferred by New York City’s power players and distinguished residents. For those looking for a relaxing dinner before the hustle and bustle of New Year’s Eve, T-Bar and Chef Ben Zwicker will be serving their regular a la carte menu starting at 5:00 pm. As always, the famous Steak Bar features Filet Mignon, Aged NY Strip Steak, Aged Bone-in Ribeye Steak and Black Angus Porterhouse Steak (for two) seasoned with Kosher salt plus black pepper and served with your choice of steak sauce; bearnaise sauce or poivre sauce. (1278 Third Avenue, New York, NY 10021, 212-772-0404, www.tbarnyc.com).

Russian Samovar

For a Russian holiday like none other, Russian Samovar is providing authentic Russian cuisine historically favored by native New Yorkers and members of the ethnic group in Manhattan’s Theater District. Party Like A Russian! at the restaurant’s New Year’s Eve celebration starting at 10:00 pm on Tuesday, December 31st, 2019. The main dining room will feature 6+ hours of partying with an incredible banquet for a seven-course meal, an unlimited liquor package, and live music for an evening of singing and dancing.

NYC-Russian Samovar e2

Russian Samovar

Russian Samovar’s seasonal menu includes the winter soup Salyanka with beef, smoked sausages, olives, pickles and onions; Vareniki are Russian dumplings served pan-fried with sour cream; and Khachapuri, a traditional Georgian three-cheese pastry. The dessert menu includes the popular Russian layered honey cake Medovik, traditional cheese cake Zapekanka, and Poached Pear served with ice cream and chocolate sauce.

Throughout the holiday season, family and friends can enjoy Russian Samovar’s time-honored history and the exceptional ambiance which embodies a 19th-century feel, complete with Russian folk prints and picturesque green and red shades. If you are in the Theatre District, head to Russian Samovar to experience Russian culture, New York City history and the most-lively musical and performing art shows featuring classical works, show tunes, ​lounge music, jazz, and Russian gypsy folk music.

Open Christmas Eve, Christmas Day: Normal Business Hours; Open New Year’s Eve: noon to 6 pm; open on New Year’s Day: 5-11 pm

Party Like A Russian! NYE 2020 Celebration begins at 10:00 pm on Tuesday, December 31st, 2019. (256 West 52nd Street , at 8th Avenue, New York, NY 10019, 212-757-0168, www.russiansamovar.com.

Southampton

Claude’s at the Southampton Inn

The award-winning Claude’s Restaurant, at the Southampton Inn, brings the distinguished taste of the Hamptons all holiday season and year-round for visitors to the Village of Southampton, New York. The beloved restaurant is the epitome of comfort, casual dining and entertainment. Claude’s served breakfast daily, weekend brunch and dinner Thursday, Friday and Saturday evening.

The fun and festivities roll into the New Year with Southampton Inn’s 22nd New Year’s Eve Gala. The New Year’s Eve package, at $475 for two adults, includes a one-night stay, dinner, dancing, open bar and midnight toast. Guests can add extra nights for $100. The gala is open to all residents and visitors for the ticket price of $125 (without a hotel reservation).

The Freaky Friday Theater/Dining package is perfect for a holiday outing with the family. Enjoy delicious dining at Claude’s and an amazing performance of Freaky Friday: “The Musical” at the Southampton Cultural Center. The theater is just steps away from the Inn at 25 Pond Lane, across from Agawam Park. (Freaky Friday, December 20, 2019 7pm and December 21 2019, 2pm & 7pm, General Admission: $20/adult, General Admission: $15/child; Dinner Package/adult: $60, Dinner Package/child under 12: $30; Brunch Package/adult: $45, Brunch Package/child: $25)

You can also book your own Holiday Party at the Inn. From gatherings in Claude’s Restaurant or their Library, to elegant celebrations in the ballroom, or one of the spacious banquet spaces, make your event unforgettable. Their events team will orchestrate your ideal celebration, from 10 to 200 people.

This time of year, Southampton Inn and Claude’s Restaurant provide the comforts of home for the holidays. Guests will enjoy holiday stockings stuffed with coupons and gifts from local village merchants, and a complimentary gift-wrapping room for guests after exploring the neighboring Village shops. The Inn is the perfect place to get cozy on a chilly day while enjoying a steaming mug of hot cider or holiday drink.

For the latest packages, deals and rates, call 631-283-6500, or visit http://www.southamptoninn.com. (91 Hill Street, Southampton, NY 11968).

Union Cantina

This time of year, guests can find a Hamptons-style Holiday fiesta at the award-winning Mexican eatery Union Cantina, featuring Live Music, entertaining daily happenings and signature specials. Bringing in the 2020 New Year, Union Cantina will host their Grand Fiesta New Year’s Eve Party featuring a Four-Hour Top Shelf Open Bar, Passed Hors d’oeuvres, A Full Dinner Buffet plus Dessert Table and a Live Musical performance featuring Deep C Revival and DJ Disco Pauly. Guests will also enjoy an assortment of party favors while watching live coverage of the Times Square Ball Drop.  All of this is included and tickets are just $75.00 each! If you’re interested in a la carte dinner service, that is available at our sister restaurant Union Burger Bar, adjacent to Union Cantina.

Award-winning Executive Chef Scott Kampf, previously featured on Food Network’s Iron Chefs of America, leads the kitchen all year-round, and will craft the contemporary holiday menu for the celebration. The sumptuous dinner buffet includes Tortilla Salad with mixed greens, heirloom tomatoes, avocado, mango vinaigrette; Beef Short Rib with apricot, jalapeño & habanero basted, crispy roasted corn and scallion polenta, charred brussel sprouts, queso fresco; Skillet Baked Salmon with paprika and ancho chili dusted salmon, rice medley of diced tomato, sweet corn, black beans and scallions in a cilantro agave glaze; Mexican Street Corn Pasta with chorizo sausage, sweet corn, asparagus tips and rigatoni finished in chipotle cream and topped with cotija cheese. The famous Deconstructed Chicken Enchilada satisfies a variety of palates, made with rojo chile sauce, queso blanco, asador cheese, pico de gallo, and avocado crema. The dessert table will include Union Churros, Tres Leches Cake and Apple Cinnamon Empanadas for a sweet ending to 2019.

Open Christmas Eve: 11:30 am to 8 pm, CLOSED Christmas Day. Open New Year’s Eve: 11:30 am to 4 pm; Open on New Year’s Day: 11:30 am to 10 pm Grand Fiesta New Year’s Eve Party at Union Cantina: 9 pm to 3 am Union Cantina, 40 Bowden Square, Southampton, NY. For reservations and more information, visit https://www.unioncantina.net/

Southampton Social Club

Heating things up in the Hamptons this holiday season, Southampton Social Club is the vibrant nightlife venue offering world-class fine dining, hip entertainment, private parties, weddings, corporate gatherings, special events and VIP occasions of all kinds. The Hamptons’ premier one-stop destination will host its 9th Annual New Year’s Bash featuring a passed and stationary hors d’oeuvres, a champagne toast at Midnight, assorted party favors and live coverage of the Ball Drop live from Times Square. DJ Loki will deliver an exhilarating soundtrack all night long as Southampton Social Club counts down the seconds of 2019, and that’s just the Silver Package Ticket ($95pp)!

The Premium level packages are: The Gold Package ($150pp) which includes all of the Silver Package and…. an exquisite Four-Course Dinner presented by award-winning Chef Scott Kampf featuring delicacies like Fresh Maine Lobster & Filet Mignon.  Please check out the website for the full menu and details. Seatings begin at 7pm. Wine and Cocktails are included throughout dinner service. The Platinum Package ($200pp) includes ALL of the Silver and Gold packages and…. you have your own table to party at all night long including bottle service. One bottle of Liquor and Champagne are included.

Southampton Social Club will re-open for nightly dinner service in early May but is available for private events all year long and of course for The 9th Annual New Year’s Bash Southampton Social Club, 256 Elm St, Southampton, NY. For reservations and more information, visit www.southamptonsocialclub.com or call 631-287-1400.

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Tenaya Lodge at Yosemite National Park Named a ‘Best Hotel for the Holidays’ in USA Today Readers Choice Contest

December 19, 2019
Tenaya Lodge Yosemite-xmas e2

Tenaya Lodge Yosemite, California was recently named a top two “Best Hotel for the Holidays” by USA TODAY’s 2019 10Best Readers’ Choice travel awards contest for its array of family-friendly holiday activities like Dinner with Santa, Gingerbread House Workshops, Ice-Skating and Bubbles and Bowties New Year’s Celebration.

FISH CAMP, Calif.  There’s still time to book a holiday stay at Tenaya Lodge at Yosemite, recently named a top two “Best Hotel for the Holidays” by USA TODAY’s 2019 10Best Readers’ Choice travel awards contest for its array of family-friendly holiday activities like Dinner with Santa, Gingerbread House Workshops, Ice-Skating and Bubbles and Bowties New Year’s Celebration.

Nominated hotels were selected by 10Best’s expert panel, and the public voted to award this honor

“This year, there is even more to be merry about with our new, two-bedroom cabin accommodations and a fun variety of old and new resort traditions that make the resort a top destination for holiday celebrations,” said Michael Broderick, director of sales and marketing.

Set on 75 forested acres at the doorstep to Yosemite National Park, Tenaya Lodge is a family-friendly holiday getaway in a “tree-mendous” setting. Tenaya’s popular holiday activities and events include Gingerbread House WorkshopsKids Dinner with SantaFamily Paint Classes, ornament decorating workshops, cookie decorating, good night yoga and complimentary hot chocolate.

Tenaya Lodge is currently offering a two-night New Year’s Eve Package that includes two tickets to the Bubbles and Bowties New Year’s Eve party, New Year’s Day breakfast and a late check-out. The package starts at $490 per night. To learn more about spending the holidays at Tenaya Lodge, visit TenayaLodge.com/HolidayEvents.

Setting the standard for High Sierra hospitality and adventure, Tenaya Lodge at Yosemite is an award-winning, all-season resort adjacent to Yosemite National Park’s south gate. Lodge, cottage and cabin accommodations satisfy a wide variety of preferences and are set on 75 acres primed for outdoor recreation that invite visitors to explore and connect with nature. From the nourishing Ascent Spa to custom-curated Yosemite tours, guided hikes and seasonal activities, a deep appreciation for the iconic location is infused into every aspect of the resort experience that also includes world-class views, multiple pools and abundant dining options ranging from casual to candlelit. For more information, visit TenayaLodge.com.

Delaware North is one of the largest privately-held hospitality and food service companies in the world. Founded in 1915 and owned by the Jacobs family for 100 years, Delaware North has global operations at high-profile places such as sports and entertainment venues, national and state parks, destination resorts and restaurants, airports and regional casinos. Learn more about Delaware North at delawarenorth.com.

 

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Holiday Activities at American Dream Mall Include Big Snow Indoor Park

December 18, 2019
American Dream-Snow-Xmas

Lindsey Vonn, Kelly Clark, Red Gerard, Donna Weinbrecht, Don Ghermezian, Paul Ghermezian, Joe Hession, Hugh Reynolds are on hand to open Big SNOW American Dream, North America’s first indoor real-snow ski and snowboard park.

The holiday season has kicked off at American Dream mall, New Jersey, with festive activities for the entire family including free photos with Santa, face painting, and a winter market.

BIG SNOW AMERICAN DREAM OPENING

Big SNOW American Dream, North America’s first indoor real-snow ski and snowboard park opened December 5, Tickets and more information about Big SNOW can be found at  http://bigsnowamericandream.com/

PHOTOS WITH SANTA

American Dream’s Events Court is transformed into a winter wonderland this holiday season. Visit American Dream for a complimentary 5×7 print + digital photo with Santa between December 5 – December 24. Photos with Santa are available at your convenience, with no appointments needed. Suggested donations benefiting Make-A-Wish® New Jersey, our holiday non-profit partner, are encouraged. A complete listing of Santa’s schedule for the holiday season is available at www.americandream.com/event/santa. Santa is bilingual and is fluent in English and Spanish.

WINTER MARKET

The Winter Market at American Dream will debut this December and offer guests the opportunity to shop for unique gifts for loved ones, as well as sample snacks that will tease their appetites. Vendors include A’Jar Sweet Cream FactoryBang Cookies, Italian Alps Gelato, Grisini CoffeeLaduréePandoraRobin RuthSleet & SoleThe New Stand and Unique Flowers.

FESTIVE FACE PAINTING

Enjoy festive face painting during the weekend at American Dream. Face painters will be in the Tree Court and Nickelodeon Universe every Friday, Saturday and Sunday from December 6 – December 22, as well as Monday, December 23 and Tuesday, December 24. Hours will be posted on www.americandream.com.

CHANUKAH CELEBRATIONS

Celebrate Chanukah at American Dream. Join us for a special Chanukah Skate at The Rink on Sunday, December 22 from 5:00PM – 8:00PM, with DJ Jon spinning and a menorah lighting at 6:00PM. The community will gather to celebrate the last night of Chanukah on Sunday, December 29 from 5:30PM – 6:30PM, with a menorah lighting in the Events Court at 6:00PM.

SOUNDS OF THE SEASON

American Dream will welcome local schools and community groups performing holiday hits throughout the winter wonderland. Enjoy performances several times throughout the afternoon on Saturday, December 7, 14, 21 and on Sunday, December 8, 15, 22.

WEAR THE SEASON WITH WHOOPI

Wear the season in Whoopi Goldberg’s amazing, amusing, limited edition Christmas and Chanukah sweaters. Holiday sweaters are available for sale in Whoopi = American Dream, open through January 2020. While you’re there, check out Whoopi’s new book ‘The Unqualified Hostess’ for inspiration and tips for all of your holiday soirees.

American Dream, developed by Triple Five Group, offers a curated mix of entertainment, retail and dining options. American Dream is approximately 3 million square feet and projects 40 million visitors annually. When complete, the destination will include over 450 retail, food and specialty shops, complemented by over 15 entertainment offerings including: fully-enclosed DreamWorks Water Park and Nickelodeon Universe Theme Park; Big SNOW American Dream; Kidzania; live Performing Arts Theater; 300-foot tall Observation Wheel; Merlin Entertainments’ Sea Life Aquarium and Legoland Discovery Center; The Rink – an NHL-regulation sized ice rink; and The Dining Terrace with over fifteen full service restaurants and the world’s only Munchie’s Food Hall. For more information visit www.americandream.com or follow on Instagram @americandream.

American Dream, 1 American Dream Way, East Rutherford NJ 07073.

 

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New York Gilbert & Sullivan Players Present ‘The Mikado’, Dec. 27-Jan. 5

December 18, 2019
NYGASP-Amy Maude Helfer-SarahCaldwellSmith-Rebecca Hargrove e2a

Mellifluous mezzo Amy Maude Helfer as adventurous Pitti-Sing, soprano Sarah Caldwell Smith as self-aware Yum Yum and Rebecca Hargrove as maiden sister Peep-Bo in the New York Gilbert and Sullivan Players’ “The Mikado.”

New York – Since its founding in 1974, the New York Gilbert & Sullivan Players (NYGASP) has presented more than 2,000 performances of the Gilbert & Sullivan masterpieces throughout the United States, Canada and England, captivating audiences of all ages. America’s preeminent Gilbert & Sullivan Repertory Ensemble, continues its 45th season with its novel production of The Mikado, one of the most enduring musicals in theatrical history.

With 8 family friendly performances after Christmas, this production, which premiered to critical acclaim in December of 2016, will run at The Kaye Playhouse at Hunter College, 68th Street between Park and Lexington Avenues, Dec. 27, 2019 through Jan. 5, 2020.  Annual favorite special events include multi-generational Bring Your Grandparents Day (Dec. 30 – with pre and post show attractions) and Family Overture presentations before Saturday matinées (Dec. 28, Jan. 4 – musical introduction and plot summary made entertaining and free to all ticket holders).

The New York Times describes this production of The Mikado as “a comic gem” with “handsome designs, sharp acting and impressive singing.”

First performed at London’s Savoy Theatre in 1885, The Mikado pokes fun at topical aspects of Victorian society, but Gilbert & Sullivan cleverly cloak their satirical barbs behind a charming love story set in an imagined town in Japan, and NYGASP continues the time honored tradition of topical updating for a modern audience.  You’re sure to recognize someone on the “Lord High Executioner’s” comical list of people who “never would be missed”.

The show abounds with absurdity and astounding wit, clever wordplay, memorable tunes and endearing characters.  The romantic love story follows Nanki-Poo, the son of the Mikado (the Japanese emperor), who has fled his father’s court in disguise as a “Wand’ring Minstrel” to avoid marrying Katisha, an elderly suitor, and to find and marry his own beloved, the delicious maiden Yum-Yum, one of “Three Little Maids From School”. Yum-Yum, however, is the ward of Ko-Ko, the “Lord High Executioner”, and has become betrothed to him against her will.  As usual in a Gilbert & Sullivan imaginative plot, the tangled web unravels and everyone (well, almost everyone) lives happily ever after.

The NYGASP production features an original prologue that introduces the audience to the real life characters of the D’Oyly Carte Opera Company, which originated The Mikado in 1885 London, and emphasizes the work’s satire of human foibles and excesses that transcend generational and national bounds.  The comic opera will feature original choreography and direction by NYGASP Associate Stage Director David Auxier, who also authored the show’s prologue, and Assistant Direction by Broadway performer/director Kelvin Moon Loh.

The show’s cast includes: dynamic bass David Wannen in the title role; clever patter man David Macaluso as Sullivan and Ko-Ko; blustering Matthew Wages as Richard D’Oyly Carte and pompous Pooh-Bah; creative David Auxier as author Gilbert and town leader Pish-Tush; charming John Charles McLaughlin as romantic hero Nanki-Poo, formidable Caitlin Burke as lovelorn and overbearing Katisha; beautiful soprano Sarah Caldwell Smith as self-aware Yum Yum; Rebecca Hargrove as maiden sister Peep-Bo, and mellifluous mezzo Amy Maude Helfer as adventurous Pitti-Sing.

The production will showcase scenery designed by Anshuman Bhatia, costumes by Quinto Ott and lighting by Benjamin Weill.  The Mikado is produced by NYGASP Executive Director David Wannen.

NYGASP has been hailed as “the leading custodian of the G&S classics” by New York Magazine and has created its own special niche in the cultural mosaic of New York City and the nation.  According to the Company’s Founder/Artistic Director/General Manager Albert Bergeret, NYGASP’s mission is “giving vitality to the living legacy of Gilbert & Sullivan.” He further adds that “everyone loves The Mikado and our new production, with its celebrated premise of imagination, keeps the revered story alive and colorful.”  As for his own participation in the storied production Bergeret states “I’m delighted to once more be involved in elevating the humor and musical values of this evolving and very theatrical production, while alternating on the conductor’s podium with my colleague, Joseph Rubin, as part of NYGASP’s commitment to the future development of the Company”.

Performances:

Friday, Dec. 27, 2019 — 7:30 PM

Saturday, Dec. 28, 2019 — 2 PM* & 7:30 PM

Sunday, Dec. 29, 2019 — 3 PM

Monday, Dec. 30, 2019 — 3 PM**

Saturday, Jan. 4, 2020 — 2 PM* & 7:30 PM

Sunday, Jan. 5, 2020 — 3 PM

*Family Overture – Sat., Dec. 28 & Sat., Jan 4, at 12:45 PM (prior to the 2PM show) – Musical introduction and plot summary made entertaining for the entire family. Free to all ticket holders.

**Bring Your Grandparents Day – Monday, Dec. 30, at 1:45 PM – Respect your elders with a pre-show Family Overture and a backstage tour after the performance.

Ticket Prices

Orchestra: $95

Balcony: $50

Rear Balcony: $25

(Note: there is no elevator to the balcony)

Special Discounts:  50% off for children 12 and under accompanied by an adult. 10% off for seniors 65 and older.

Order by Phone:  212-772-4448

Order Online:  www.nygasp.org

Purchase in Person:  The Kaye Playhouse Box Office, 68thStreet between Park and Lexington Avenues. (Box Office Hours: Monday-Friday 12 PM-7PM)

 

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Gift of Travel: SkiCom Introduces 12 Deals of Christmas

December 12, 2019
Park City, Utah

Save up to 20% on lodging at Snow Flower Condominiums in Park City, Utah, the largest ski resort in the United States offering 7,300 acres of world-class terrain © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

Aspen, Colo. – To make things easy and encourage shoppers to give the gift of travel, Ski.com has compiled a list of 12 packages offering up to 40 percent off lodging at top destinations in the United States, Canada and Europe.

Whistler Blackcomb, British Columbia 

Westin Resort and Spa

Save up to 40 percent on lodging I Feb. 23 – April 30, 2020 I Book by Jan. 31, 2020  

With over 8,171 acres of terrain and over 200 marked trails, Whistler Blackcomb is North America’s largest ski area.

Sample package includes:

  • Six nights’ lodging in a Deluxe studio king, mountain view
  • Two, five-day lift tickets

From $1,414.58 per person based on double occupancy

Sample dates: 3/7/2020 – 3/13/2020

https://www.ski.com/whistler-blackcomb-deals/401452

 

Breckenridge, Colo. 

Beaver Run Resort 

Save up to 40 percent on lodging | Travel through April 30, 2020 | Book by April 30, 2020 

Breckenridge is the perfect blend of everything a skier could want out of a Rocky Mountain ski vacation: world class skiing for all levels, a hopping nightlife scene, a wide range of lodging options, great restaurants and a historic downtown.

Sample package includes:

  • Five nights’ lodging in a studio
  • Two, four-day lift tickets

From $998.11 per person based on double occupancy

Sample dates:4/6/2020 – 4/10/2020

https://www.ski.com/breckenridge-deals/401575

 

Chamonix Mont-Blanc

Ski.com To The Mountains Trip

Save $200 I March 1 – 7 

Situated beneath the shadow of 15,767-foot Mont-Blanc—Europe’s highest peak—are three legendary ski destinations: Chamonix, France, Courmayeur, Italy and Verbier, Switzerland. All three resorts are perfect for advanced to expert challenge-seekers and all three are accessible as part of this guided experience.

Package includes:

  • Airport and resort transportation

Prices start at $2,799 per person based on double occupancy.
https://www.ski.com/guided-trips/chamonix

 

Vail, Colo 

Grand Hyatt Vail 

Save up to 30 percent on lodging | Travel through April 21, 2020 | Book by Dec. 31, 2019

With wide-open pristine bowl skiing to intermediate and beginner trails, Vail has terrain to impress every type of skier.

Sample package includes:

  • Five nights’ lodging in a deluxe king room
  • Two, four-day lift tickets

From $1,284.75 per person based on double occupancy

Sample dates:4/5/2020 to 4/10/2020

https://www.ski.com/vail-deals/401554

 

Steamboat Springs, Colo.

Steamboat Grand 

Save up to 30 percent on lodging | Travel through April 30, 2020 | Book by April 15,2020 

From its celebrated Champagne Powder to its deep Western heritage and Winter Olympic history, Steamboat is known as one of the most memorable ski towns in North America.

Sample package includes:

  • Five nights’ lodging in a deluxe king room
  • Two, four-day lift tickets

From $1,039.25 per person based on double occupancy

Sample dates:4/6/2020 to 4/11/2020

https://www.ski.com/vail-deals/401554

 

Aspen Snowmass, Colo. 

Limelight Hotel Aspen / Limelight Hotel Snowmass 

Save up to 25 percent on lodging | Travel through April 29 / April 19 2020 | Book by April 15, 2020 

With four mountains offering beginning to expert terrain and great dining and nightlife, Aspen Snowmass has something to offer for everyone in the family.

Sample package includes:

  • Five nights’ lodging  in a deluxe double room, king bed
  • Two, four-day lift tickets

From $869.50 per person based on double occupancy

Sample dates:4/6/2020 to 4/11/2020

https://www.ski.com/aspen-deals/400806

 

Beaver Creek – Save up to 25 percent on lodging

Beaver Creek features wide-open runs and ski terrain for every type of skier and is home to a luxurious Barvarian village – featuring shopping, dining and an ice skating rink. Ski.com is offering a 25 percent off of lodging at Charter at Beaver Creek, valid for travel between January 5 – March 5, 2020. Book by date is December 15, 2019.

Sample package includes:

  • Five nights lodging in a lodge room
  • Two, four-day lift tickets

From $1,342 per person based on double occupancy

Sample dates:2/9/2020 – 2/14/2020

Link: https://www.ski.com/beaver-creek-deals/401576

 

Breckenridge

Pine Ridge Condos 

Save up to 25 percent on lodging | Travel through April 30, 2020 | Book by April 15 

Breckenridge is the perfect blend of everything a skier could want out of a Rocky Mountain ski vacation: world class skiing for all levels, a hopping nightlife scene, a wide range of lodging options, great restaurants and a historic downtown.

Sample package includes:

  • Five nights lodging in a one-bedroom, two-bathroom, platinum condo
  • Two, four-day lift tickets

From $918.11 per person based on double occupancy

Sample dates:4/6/2020 to 4/10/2020

https://www.ski.com/breckenridge-deals/400622

 

Park City, Utah

Snow Flower Condominiums

Save up to 20% on lodging  | Travel through April 30, 2020  | Book by April 15

Park City Mountain is now connected with the Canyons Resort, to form the largest ski resort in the United States – offering 7,300 acres of world-class terrain. The charming, historic town of Park City also offers great nightlife, dining and shopping.

Sample package includes:

  • Five nights lodging in a one bedroom, one bath
  • Two, four-day lift ticket

Starting from $1,160 per person based on double occupancy

Sample dates:4/13/2020 to 4/18/2020

Link: https://www.ski.com/park-city-mountain-resort-deals/401500

 

Jackson Hole

Teton Mountain Lodge and Spa 

Fourth Night Free | Travel through April 6, 2020 | Book by Jan 1, 2020  

Jackson Hole Mountain Resort offers breathtaking, rugged Teton mountain views, some of North America’s best terrain and the authentic and welcoming Wild West atmosphere that pervades both Teton Village and downtown Jackson Hole.

Sample package includes:

  • Five nights’ lodging in a lodge room king
  • Two, four-day lift tickets

From $1,102.68 per person based on double occupancy

Sample dates: 3/9/2020 to 3/13/2020

https://www.ski.com/jackson-hole-deals/401571

 

Zermatt, Switzerland 

Le Mirabeau Hotel & Spa 

Seventh Night Free | Travel through February 6, 2020 | Book by January 27, 2020 

Located at the foot of Switzerland’s iconic Matterhorn peak, Zermatt offers some of the most iconic skiing in the Alps, spectacular views and is home to a charming village with great restaurants and a bustling nightlife scene.

Sample packages include:

  • Seven nights’ lodging in a standard double room
  • Daily breakfast included

Starting from $2,033.71 per person based on double occupancy

Sample dates:1/30/2020 to 2/6/2020

Link: https://www.ski.com/zermatt-deals/401448

 

The 12 Deals of Christmas can be found by visiting the Ski.com website at https://www.ski.com/12-deals-of-christmas or by calling 1-800-525-2052.

Founded in 1971 in the heart of Colorado ski country, Aspen-headquartered Ski.com is one of North America’s largest providers of mountain vacation packages and an industry leader in online travel technology. The company specializes in booking custom ski vacations at more than 120 of the most popular ski resorts and heli- and cat-skiing destinations in North America, Europe, Japan and South America and offers the largest collection of mountain lodging and ski-vacation components, including discounted lift tickets, flights, equipment rental, ski school, activities and more. Providing unsurpassed mountain-travel expertise, Ski.com’s 70 Mountain Travel Experts average 26 years of experience in the ski travel industry.

 

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Gift of Travel: Ski Vermont Offers Holiday Gift Guide

December 12, 2019
Okemo 010316_20160105_165e2 (c) Karen Rubin

Skiing Okemo Mountain Resort, now part of Vail Resorts and included on the Epic Pass. © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

Getting the perfect gift for the skiers and snowboarders on your list doesn’t require busting doors, battling crowds of fellow shoppers or waiting in long lines at the checkout.Ski Vermont has compiled a handy guide to holiday shopping ideas that will bring a smile to the face of everyone who enjoys Winter In Its Original State.

Ski Vermont Wine: Ski Vermont has once again partnered with New England-based 90+ Cellars on a limited-edition red wine just in time for the holidays. This year’s release of Ski Vermont wine is the newest vintage of the same delicious Cabernet Sauvignon from California, a full-bodied red with hints of vanilla, dark chocolate, blackberry and warm oak spices, making it the perfect wine to cozy up with after a day on the slopes. The label features artwork from one of Ski Vermont’s official posters and encapsulates the feeling of watching the sun set over Vermont’s beautiful mountain ranges while squeezing in one last run.  One dollar from the sale of every bottle will be donated to Ski Vermont and used to support a scholarship program for Vermont students in areas of study relating to the snow sports industry.

Ski Vermont Take 3 Beginner Package: The Take 3 Beginner Package allows you or someone you love to take 3 beginner ski or snowboard lessons at participating Vermont resorts for one low package price of $129. Beginner skiers and riders can choose to redeem all three lessons at the same resort, or they can choose to visit a new resort for each lesson – it’s up to them. Each pass will include rental equipment for the day plus a group lesson with a professional instructor and a lift ticket to access limited beginner only terrain. Some restrictions apply. https://skivermont.com/take-3

Ski Vermont Fifth Grade Passport: Skiing and snowboarding are magical sports and that can change lives, supporting healthier decisions and experiences that can last a lifetime. There is no better time to fall in love with snow-covered mountains of Vermont than during a student’s 5th grade year. To help our youth get to the hills, we offer participating fifth graders, from both in-state and out-of-state, up to 88 days of skiing and riding at Vermont’s alpine and cross country resorts for just a $20 processing fee. https://skivermont.com/fifth-grade-passport

Ski Vermont 2020 50th Anniversary Poster: This very special 50th anniversary Ski Vermont poster (right) was designed to honor some of the very foundations of our organization – families, learning, history and, of course, skiing in Vermont. Made in the signature throwback style Ski Vermont’s posters are known for, it features period-correct outfits and gear as a nod to Ski Vermont’s 50th anniversary (1959-2019). https://skivermont.com/store

Killington Resort: 3-Day Discovery Program – Earn ‘Best Gift’ this year without breaking the bank with Killington’s 3-Day Discovery Program for adults (16+). Not only will you learn to ski or snowboard, but you’ll walk away with a brand-new set of skis or snowboard – all for under $400.Dinner at the Ledgewood Yurt – Earn major points with your partner this year and get the Adult Dinner Excursion to Killington’s Ledgewood Yurt this year! It’s one of their most unique slopeside dining experiences on the mountain, complete with a snowcat-drawn sleigh ride to get there.

Okemo Mountain Resort: Okemo Gift Card – This Christmas, give the gift of skiing. A gift card in any amount purchased at an Okemo retail shop can be redeemed for new items in those shops (outerwear, skis, helmets, goggles, etc.) OR apply that amount toward rental equipment for the day. Rental equipment that includes skis, boots, poles and a helmet will run from about $45 a day for a junior kit. Junior skis are designed for children under the age of 12 with varying ability levels. Sport Skis, about $65 a day, feature a softer, more forgiving flex which makes them best for beginner skiers who are looking to build confidence on the mountain. Performance skis, about $74 a day, are designed for beginner and intermediate skiers who are looking for a stiffer ski that will perform better at higher speeds. Demo skis, about $87 a day, are the best for any ability level and any condition. These are the newest and best skis Okemo carries. Choose from all mountain, women’s-specific and powder skis.

Smugglers Notch Resort: Top of the Notch Snowshoe Adventure Tour and Dinner: Treat your special someone to an unforgettable mountain adventure and leave the work to us (and gravity)! The Top of the Notch Snowshoe Adventure Dinner offers a unique opportunity to see the top of beautiful Sterling Mountain during the quiet evening hours. Sunsets, the glowing city lights of Montreal in the distance, and a four-course meal provided by the legendary Hearth & Candle restaurant, all complement this romantic evening in a rustic post and beam cabin. Diners are brought to the top of the mountain via chairlift and have the chance to enjoy a relaxing guided trek around the top of the mountain. After dinner, enjoy a downhill hike back to the base, set to a backdrop of moonlight, stars, and the glowing peaks of some of the tallest mountains in Vermont. This event even runs at the same time as Kids’ Night Out event, so if need be, the little are all taken care of! For more info, visit https://www.smuggs.com/pages/winter/amenities/top-of-notch.php

Sugarbush Resort:
First Timer to Life Timer Program: The best gift a skier can give a non-skier is an introduction to the sport, so consider giving your buddy the best learn to lesson package around. January is Learn to Ski and Snowboard Month and you can grab a $49 beginner package that includes a beginner lift ticket, lesson, and rentals. But it gets even better because that $49 ticket can be upgraded into the First Timer to Life Timer Program (normally $315, but with $49 ticket it’s only $244), where upon the completion of three lessons you get a FREE Sugarbush Premium Season Pass. Add a fourth lesson to that and you get your very own FREE pair of Elan skis or a Rome Snowboard to take home with you. https://www.sugarbush.com/plan/deals/learn-to-ski-and-ride-month/

Cabin Cat Adventures: Give the gift of adventure with Sugarbush’s Lincoln Limo cabin cat. Sunrise First Tracks with early morning cabin cat skiing, Sunset Groomer Rides with beautiful summit sunset views, and Allyn’s Lodge Remote Fireside Dining with a cabin cat ride to a candle-lit gourmet feast followed by a moonlit ski down are all available for you, your friends, and your family. Rates and availability available online. https://www.sugarbush.com/activities/cabin-cat/

Pico Mountain:
Rent Pico – The ultimate gift for 2019 can only be found in Vermont at Pico Mountain. What says ‘I love you THE MOST’ like an entire mountain? Rent Pico for an epic proposal, party with your closest friends, company retreat or just because.

Adaptive Ski & Ride Lessons – Give the gift of freedom through hitting the slopes at Pico this season. Vermont Adaptive offers ski and snowboard clinics at Pico, where Vermont Adaptive instructors teach lessons for all ability levels. Students may book lessons as individuals or as part of a group.

Mount Snow Resort: Peak Discovery Program: This year, give your loved ones the gift of skiing and riding, with the Peak Discovery Program. We all have that one friend or family member that we’d love to get into the sport and now you can. With the Peak Discovery Pass, you get three lessons, rentals, and lift tickets, for just $199, so all you have to do is show up ready to learn a new lifechanging sport. Designed for the true beginner, these lessons start with the basics and work with you to grow your confidence and expertise in a fun and supportive environment.  Take all your lessons at Vermont’s Mount Snow, or mix and match across 10 resorts in the Discovery Pass program, it’s up to you.

Darn Tough Vermont: Outer Limits Ski and Ride Sock: Secret stashes are a source of pride here in Vermont, but we’re going to let you in on a little secret of our own: Darn Tough Vermont makes the best ski and ride socks out there. Added mesh panels on top of the foot and back of the leg combined with light cushion underfoot will guide soft landings lap after lap. https://darntough.com/

Skida: Extra Blue Alpine Hat: The Alpine Hat, is the perfect weight for colder days. Skida’s printed poly-blend outer fabric is fully lined with cozy mid-weight fleece – it wicks moisture, cuts the wind, and always leaves you warm and dry. Great for chilly runs, hitting the slopes, or just cruising around town. This hat goes from casual to performance without skipping a beat. And as always, Skida is made in Vermont. Visit https://skida.com/.

Burton: Step On Binding: Experience the simplicity and convenience of snowboarding’s most intuitive connection. The Burton Step On Binding offers the ultimate boot-to-binding connection for riders seeking both convenience and performance. Three connection points – two by the toe and one at the heel – deliver unmatched simplicity, security, and board control, while a quick release lever ensures quick and easy exit. The Step On is universally compatible with all current snowboard mounting systems.

Rossignol: Experience 88TI (Konect): Experience the all-mountain freedom to carve high-speed groomers and explore further off-trail. The Experience 88 TI is Rossignol’s most versatile all-mountain ski. It blends the heart of a high-performance carving machine with a freeride-inspired profile for playful fluidity and ease in any snow. The race-inspired build gives you the confidence to explore all sides of the mountain in all conditions. This ski is available in Men’s and Women’s. Give the gift of skiing this winter. Visit https://www.rossignol.com/us/ for a holiday gift they’ll never forget.

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Deer Valley Resort Named 2019 United States’ Best Ski Resort By World Ski Awards

December 8, 2019
Deer Valley Utah 19 e2

Deer Valley Resort, in Park City, Utah, maintains the coveted title of the 2019 United States’ Best Ski Resort by the World Ski Awards for the seventh year in a row.

DEER VALLEY RESORT, PARK CITY, UTAH– Deer Valley Resort maintains the coveted title of the 2019 United States’ Best Ski Resort by the World Ski Awards for the seventh year in a row. The accomplishment was announced at the World Ski Awards Gala Ceremony at the world-class winter destination of Kitzbühel, Austria, on November 23, 2019.

The competition continues to see a rising number of votes year after year from leading ski tourism professionals and hundreds of thousands of ski consumers internationally. Out of 17 U.S. contenders, Deer Valley rose to the top to receive the nation’s most prestigious award for the seventh time.

“It’s an extraordinary compliment to receive such a distinguished honor from our guests and international industry leaders each year since the awards began,” said Todd Shallan, Deer Valley Resort president and COO. “Earning the United States’ Best Ski Resort title is a testament to our incredible Deer Valley staff who always strive to provide the most exceptional experience for our guests of any ski destination in the world.”

The 2019 World Ski Award for the U.S. Best Ski Resort was accepted by Deer Valley Resort President and COO, Todd Shallan.

World Ski Awards is the sister organization of World Travel Awards™. For more information on the World Ski Awards, visit worldskiawards.com.

Deer Valley Resort located in Park City, Utah, is organized around the concept of providing the first-class service one would receive at a five-star hotel. The ski-only resort offers 21 chairlifts, 103 ski runs, six bowls, 300 annual inches of powder, 2,026 acres of alpine skiing, limited lift ticket sales, 14 restaurants, three elegant day lodges, hundreds of luxury accommodations and a renowned Ski School and Children’s Center. Deer Valley is honored to be ranked as the United States’ Best Ski Resort by the World Ski Awards for seven consecutive years (2013-2019).

For additional information on Deer Valley Resort, visit the resort’s website at deervalley.com.

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New Developments to Entice Travelers to the Caribbean this Season

December 8, 2019
St Barth-The Christopher e2

This season, The Christopher on St. Barth will open three new villas designed by French interior designer Olivia Putman.

Here are some of the new developments to entice travelers to the Caribbean this season:

The Christopher, St. Barth

This season, The Christopher will open three new villas designed by French interior designer Olivia Putman. Two of the four-bedroom villas will open in December, with the third following in 2020. The new villas allow guests all the space of a private home that is completely open to the sea and all the amenities of a luxury resort. Guests can dine onsite at Christo and Mango Beach Bar restaurants, enjoy Sisley Spa with its open-air treatment rooms, or simply relax and order room service.

What else is cool?

The Christopher has partnered with Artireef to help rebuild the reef of Pointe Milou, the peninsula on which the hotel sits, by creating marine cement that is three times denser than concrete. The growth rate of coral there is three- to five-times that of natural coral. In addition to creating a barrier to the shore, the reef will be more resistant to high water temperatures and pollution.

 

Belmond Cap Juluca, Anguilla

Sisters Nadia and Katia Narain, Kate Moss’s health gurus and authors of Self Care for the Real World and Rituals for Every Day, will bring their life philosophy to Belmond Cap Juluca for a wellness retreat from July 5–9, 2020. The duo preaches the value of taking time to care for one’s body and mind to open oneself to fully embrace life and maintain balance. The four-night retreat will leave guests feeling refreshed, with sunrise yoga and meditation, snorkeling with sea turtles, self-care workshops in the sand, nighttime kayaking, Taino (indigenous Caribbean) healing salt spa treatments, and sunset cruises through the Caribbean Sea.

What else is cool?

Travelers can seamlessly experience two Leeward Islands in one trip with Belmond’s ‘Island to Island’ package, including accommodations in both Anguilla and St. Martin – and a smooth connection via a 25-minute Caribbean boat ride. Complete with $100 resort credit and daily breakfast per stay at both Belmond Cap Juluca and Belmond La Samanna, the trip offers a taste of both St. Martin’s cosmopolitan buzz and Anguilla’s world-famous, crystal clear beaches.

 

Belmond La Samanna, St. Martin

Set on the glamorous French side of this northeastern Caribbean Island, Belmond La Samanna reopened for the season on November 7 with a fresh new look. Redesigned by London-based interior design firm Muza Lab, the property’s 83 rooms and public spaces, including the new L’Oursin restaurant and Laplaj Beach Bar, have a new pastel-chic flair. With a color scheme of light blues, greens, pinks and peaches, the design was inspired by the natural tones of the Caribbean Sea. Accents of shells and corals are featured alongside botanical-printed fabrics, artworks, lighting and mirrors.

What else is cool?

Guests of Belmond La Samanna can take a Caribbean impressionist painting class inside a French Créole townhouse. The home overlooks early eighteenth-century French soldier barracks, floral gardens, and two centuries of antique architecture. Guests can hone their artistic skills alongside Sir Roland Richardson, one of St. Martin’s most celebrated painters, as he guides them through the study of light and color on living subjects through the technique of ‘Plein Air’ painting.

 

GoldenEye, Jamaica

The FieldSpa at GoldenEye is built into the jungle-like landscape on the edge of the crystal-clear blue lagoon, allowing guests to swim or kayak to their spa appointment. As part of a one-year expansion, two new standalone spa huts will open in mid-December 2019, along with a new yoga deck. A selection of elixirs, juice, and healthy bites incorporating fresh ingredients from Pantrepant, the private farm of music executive Chris Blackwell, and a new therapy menu will be introduced. This expansion will provide direct access to the new spa cove, a crescent of sand nestled along the property’s signature lagoon. GoldenEye will also unveil three new accommodations – a three-bedroom lagoon villa and two lagoon cottages in summer 2020. Additionally, a new dive shop, available to guests and the community, opened on neighboring, James Bond Beach in November 2019. The shop offers scuba certification and excursions, boat tours of the Bay and coral planting opportunities in the underwater coral nursery. All profits of the dive shop will go to the Oracabessa Foundation, which is responsible for improving marine life in the Bay.

What else is cool?

The 25th James Bond movie, No Time to Die, which will mark Daniel Craig’s final appearance as 007, is heading back to Jamaica. In celebration of the April 8, 2020 release, movie buffs can retrace the island life of Bond’s creator, Ian Fleming. The author was a former British intelligence officer and discovered Jamaica during a WWII mission in 1942. Four years later, he purchased 15 acres of under-developed tropical land and named it GoldenEye to pay homage to his naval operation that first brought him to the island. He resided at GoldenEye every January and February for more than two decades and wrote a new Bond novel each winter for a total of 14 books. His beachfront bungalow, which is now called The Fleming Villa with five bedrooms, is part of the 52-acre GoldenEye resort. Fleming’s writing desk and sunken garden, where he would entertain the likes of Noël Coward and Katherine Hepburn, are available for guests to enjoy.

 

PONANT, Caribbean Sea

During the 2019-2020 season, the recently launched PONANT EXPLORER ships, Le Champlain and Le Dumont-d’Urville, are offering 29 sailings with seven new itineraries, including the eight-day ‘Pearls of the Caribbean’ journey roundtrip from Fort-de-France. With an experienced diving instructor on board throughout the duration of the cruise, guests will enjoy scuba diving and snorkeling in the crystal-clear waters as the ship island-hops from Guadalupe to Saint Lucia to Grenada. Other highlights include a spot at the private Mayreau Island, the smallest in the Grenadine archipelago. PONANT guests can enjoy a beach barbeque and an optional excursion to pilot a Zodiac along Grenada’s coast before jumping into the water to explore the world’s first underwater sculpture park.

What else is cool?

Back on board, PONANT guests will be able to see the Caribbean like never before onboard two of its new PONANT EXPLORER ships, each featuring an industry-first underwater lounge. Located eight feet below water, the unprecedented views from the Blue Eye lounge offer a peek into underwater life through the whale-eye shaped portholes; as well as project images of the sea onto screens in real time. For a completely immersive experience, the lounge also brings the sounds of the sea inside.

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Countdown is On When REAL ID Will Be Required to Travel by Airplane

November 27, 2019
Flying into West Palm Beach, Florida

The countdown is on when air travelers will be required to have REAL ID – an enhanced drivers’ license, passport or military ID – in order to get on an airplane. The deadline for REAL ID enforcement is October 1, 2020 © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

The countdown is on when air travelers will be required to have REAL ID – an enhanced drivers’ license, passport or military ID – in order to get on an airplane. The deadline for REAL ID enforcement is October 1, 2020.

According to the US Travel Association, 99 million Americans are likely without any form of REAL ID. Anyone who shows up at the airport next October 1 without the correct ID risks being turned away from getting on a plane.

U.S. Travel leaders fear that individuals who only travel occasionally, such as to visit family over the holidays, are most likely to be affected.

“Significant lack of awareness is one of the challenges we face as the REAL ID enforcement deadline approaches next year,” said U.S. Travel Association President and CEO Roger Dow. “We are concerned not only about the post-deadline effects for major travel times like Thanksgiving, but also about the significant crunch at state DMVs throughout next year as people scramble to obtain their REAL ID.”

The message that must be repeated to get people #RealIDready, Dow said. “At a minimum, check for the star that appears in the top right-hand corner of most REAL IDs—but ideally, contact your DMV directly to find out if you’re compliant.

“The holidays are a time when less-frequent flyers might be thinking about air travel, and there is always ample news coverage of holiday travel projections and conditions at U.S. airports,” Dow said. “The next two months are going to be critical for closing the REAL ID awareness.

Over the course of the year, people who need to renew their licenses should make sure it is upgraded to be REAL ID compliant. Also take into account the time-lag to renew a passport, which can take six weeks (and many foreign countries require at least one month extra time before expiration).

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