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Traveling Overseas To Santorini

If you are looking for a unique spot to go on an international vacation that might not be around for much longer, consider going to the beautiful island of Santorini. This island is currently under volcano watch. Santorini is a wonderful place to travel to. If you need to get an expedited passport renewal taken care of before you leave, you can go online and find one of the many United States passport services that are available. It is critical to remember, if you are going to be doing any international travel, that you will need a valid United States passport. You will not be allowed to travel overseas, for any reason, if you do not have a valid United States passport to show to customs officials.

Passport Needs

United States passports allow their holders to travel anywhere in the world. If you do not have a passport, you will not be allowed to do any international travel. That is why these documents are so vital and important. Every single United States citizen is eligible to receive a United States passport. All you have to do is go online to a reputable passport agency and fill out the necessary application forms. Also, you will need to show documentation, such as a driver’s license or birth certificate, that prove your citizenship.

Greece

Many movies have featured the island of Santorini including the Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants, and Mamma Mia. Its peak tourism season is May through October, however visiting in the off season is much better as prices go down and the island is very quiet. Santorini, officially known as Thira, is an island in the Aegean Sea off the coast of Greece. It is part of the circular archipelago and is the most southern of the Cyclades islands. It is an island known for its sunsets, and picturesque scenes such as white buildings with blue domes.

International Destination

Santorini is a fantastic place to take an international vacation to. The island nation has some of the most breathtaking landscapes in the world. There are also many wonderful accommodations for travelers who visit Santorini. If you are looking for activities in Santorini, you can go online and find many that will suit any type of travler. You can go on a backpacking adventure with a guide, or you can even go on donkey rides through the island. If you are someone who enjoys wine, there are many great wineries to visit that offer some of the most delicious wines in the region. Also, there are incredible restaurants in Santorini that offer some of the local delicacies.

Lagoons

The lagoon is separated from the ocean by a smaller island known as Therasia. The eruption occurred about 3600 years ago during the height of the Minoan civilization. Santorini is basically the remains of the epic eruption that wiped out the Minoan civilization. This eruption formed the current geological caldera which is a giant central, lagoon with high steep cliffs on three sides.

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Minimizing the Impact of Vacations on Your Projects

As appealing as it sounds, here is a perfect-world scenario for business owners and project managers: employees never getting sick, or taking personal days off or even vacations; not a very realistic thought. Most project managers fail to consider and take into account the possibility of employee vacations or think about their own time off and the subsequent impact it can have on the productibility of your project.

The truth is that there will be times when employees will need to take an unplanned day off, a religious based absence, dealing with family emergencies or even want to go for a planned vacation. Not only employees though, being a project manager in no way means that you aren’t entitled to plan some time off. There will however, be leave and vacation scheduling conflicts, two or more employees asking for the same time off, and client and project deadlines to be met and dealt with. So how does one in the midst of all this chaos successfully manage time off, arrange and cover for employee absences, and at the same time minimize the impact of any of this on the project itself?

The answer, as always, is preparation.

Employee Vacation Policy – clearly outline a written vacation policy for any and all employees during hiring and orientation processes. If all employees adhere to pre-set terms and conditions, this minimizes chances of conflict. Highlight peak working time-periods during which vacation requests may not be entertained, mention deadlines for vacation requests. Allow workers in identical positions to trade off on vacation time and dates amongst themselves as long as it does not jeopardize quality of work.

Absenteeism Monitoring – Too many employee absences can prove to be bad for business. To avoid them, implement strict absence policies throughout the organization that effectively record time and attendance. Enforce probabilities of consequences of disciplinary action to ensure compliance. Offer incentives and bonuses for employees to minimize unwarranted absences.

Risk Management and Back-up Plans – Devise and design a system of distributing work and assigned tasks amongst other members of the team to compensate for any contingencies. Actively create back-ups by identifying and developing leaders within the team that enables them to stand-in and take over to efficiently manage the team in the off-chance of your absence, the project manager.

Accurate Time Estimation and Appropriate Leeway – There are a number of project managers out there that fail to accurately estimate the time needed and required to finish a project without taking into consideration and giving appropriate leeway for the unforeseen. Choosing to micro-manage and disregarding the need for flexibility and latitude in a working environment only ends up generating unnecessary stresses for themselves and their team. Provide a certain breathing space to make up for any muck-ups, glitches and delays in the working process.

Absences, be they your own or the employees, have profound and measureable negative impacts on the ability of the team to make good on their services in a cost-effective and timely manner. They can create an unnecessary burden on present working employees, decrease morale, and add delays and business risks. Hence worrying about projects suffering in your or employee absence is only natural, but implementation of clear policies and risk management programs, some thorough advance planning and organizing is all it takes to ensure smooth running of the project like a well-oiled machine.

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How Do You Stick With Nutrisystem If You Travel Or Go On Vacation?

I sometimes hear from people who are wondering how the Nutrisystem diet is going to fit into their busy lifestyle which includes a lot of travel. Many worry that they won’t be able to stay in compliance when they travel. And some people travel quite a bit for their jobs or as part of their lifestyle. I heard from someone who said: “I travel 2 weeks out of every month for my job. I really want to try Nutrisystem but I’m not sure if it’s going to be possible with all of my travels. If I have to go off the diet when I travel, I’m not sure if I’m going to lose weight.”

I actually think that it’s possible to lose some weight if you had to go off of the diet occasionally. After all, people on the flex plan take off two days out of every week and many of them do just fine with their weight loss. However, I also think that you can stay on the diet and be in compliance even if you have to travel or even if you want to go on vacation. The reason for this is that many of the meals don’t require any preparation. And those that do sometimes only need hot water, which is typically readily available. Most of the Nutrisystem foods are packaged so that they don’t take up a lot of room or can lay flat. So it would not be too difficult to travel with your foods.

To show what I mean, I’ll look at a day’s worth of meals and what it would take to prepare them. For breakfast, you could have the chocolate chip scone which doesn’t require any preparation. Lunch could be the fettuccine Alfredo which doesn’t require anything more than a little hot water. A good snack might be the pretzels which only require removing the wrapper. Dinner could be mac and cheese with beef which also only requires water. An example of a good dessert might be a peanut butter cookie which is already made for you.

In short, it would not be too difficult to plan and then pack enough foods for the entire trip. If you chose the pre made meals carefully, you really shouldn’t need more than access to hot water in order to prepare your meals. Many places have water coolers that provide both hot and cold water. And access to a microwave is often quite easy in most travel hotels. In short, traveling or going on vacation with nutrisystem is actually not all that difficult in my opinion and experience. Alternatively, some people will adopt a program similar to the flex plan where they allow themselves to take a few meals off while traveling in order to give themselves some flexibility.

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Ski Vacation Reflection: Snow Cannons and Its Effects to the Environment

The cold breeze of winter season and the first flakes of snow puts your countdown to your most awaited ski vacation to its end. However, snowing patterns have changed due to global warming, forcing ski resorts to use artificial means to create snow through snow cannons. Ski resorts usually use this machine to create the first layer of snow.

Snow cannons create snow by combining cooled water and compressed air. The compressed air serves three functions in the process of making artificial snow. First, it “atomizes” the water or splits them into many tiny droplets. Second, it blows the water droplets into the air. Lastly, it helps cool the water droplets as they fly into the air. During warmer days, they use an agent known as Snowmax – a protein which provides a nucleate for ice crystals, enabling freezing at temperatures around -3C.

Although considered to be a savior to most skiing resorts, these cannons have undesirable effects on the environment.

Since it uses water to create artificial snow, it increases water consumption. Based on an article published on Chamonet.com, it is estimated that snow-making in France uses more water than in a town with 170,000 inhabitants. However, there are resorts now that utilize treated waste water in order to create snow instead of fresh waters from reserves.

Moreover, it uses too much energy. It contributes further to the problem of global warming due to the amount of energy output it creates. In addition, these machines contribute to noise pollution. In fact, a single snow cannon creates sound between 60 to 80 decibels which is equivalent to the noise created by heavy traffic. This noise disturbs wildlife in the mountains.

In addition, let’s not forget that these machines also use certain chemicals in order to produce artificial snow. And when the artificial snow melts, the residue of chemicals coming from the snow may affect vegetation.

Furthermore, artificial snow is much denser than natural snow so it melts much later than natural snow, thus increasing the volume of melted water that runs down the mountain, causing natural erosion.

Plus, the chemical additives used in creating artificial snow may find its way into rivers which supplies potable water for the resorts.

The use of treated waste water also raised alarms. They argued that chemicals used in treated water may cause further harm to the environment.

Bottom line is, while snow cannons may help sustain businesses, its detrimental effects to our environment could not be ignored. So how can we ski vacationers take an active role on helping keep the ski industry alive while still being environmentally responsible? Here are a few ways:

  1. Take steps to reduce energy use. Unplug seldom-used appliances and turn off all the lights when you leave the room. While we can’t put an end to the use of snow cannons for now, we can take necessary actions to eventually end climate change (and render snow cannons useless in the process) in our own little ways.
  2. Go for alternatives. When snow’s scarce, it’s high time to consider other fun activities that don’t require snow. Go waterskiing, or hiking.
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Cruise The Stress Away

We are all entitled to treat our overworked effects and indulged our hard earned remuneration to some well-deserved vacation.To go cruising is definitely an awesome idea to beat the stress out of your system.

Going on a cruise is not really a far-fetched idea today. Planning your dream vacation is already easy because everything is accessible via the internet. You just need to decide on a particular place or area you wished to visit then find an available cruise line within that area. Websites like Cruisedeals.com, Cruise.com and Expedia.com are just some examples of those trusted sites that you can use to find great deals and also to book a trip online.

Now that you have your bags, tickets, passport and swoon worthy sunglasses in tow, finally its boarding time! So what’s there to expect during the boarding process?

According to Cruisecritic.com, boarding on a cruise ship is not that different with the check-in procedures when boarding on a plane. Therefore, it’s not going to be overwhelming because everything is fairly organised. Your cruise line will send you the information regarding your schedule like when you’re expected to check-in. Like in the airport, you are also given a several hour window to check-in at the port and if you’re late you don’t get to board on the ship.

Upon reaching the cruise terminal, be ready with your boarding documents and keep them handy for check-in. Precautionary measures are still being implemented so be prepared. Carry-ons are still subject for x-ray inspections before entering the queue lines of the check-in station. If you have large suitcases with you hiring a porter can be helpful. You can expect your luggage to be delivered to your cabin by dinnertime.

When you reach the check-in counter you’re expected to hand over your boarding documents to the representative. You will also be asked to fill in a document regarding your medical condition. This is a prerogative of the cruise lines to prevent a possible spread of illnesses in confined places.

Once cleared, they will give you your cruise card with your picture on it for security purposes. This cruise card will serve as your all-in-one boarding card, room card and onboard credit card, be sure to take good care of it at all times. They will also provide you the schedule of events and a handy map of the ship.

Once you are done with the check-in and you have acquired your cruise card, you can already board on the ship. Don’t shy away from photographers on your way to the ship. They will usher you to pose on the ship’s backdrop or the ship’s life ring. These pictures will be available for purchase on board and they are great souvenir items, too! But if it makes you uncomfortable to have your pictures taken, you can always politely decline the offer.

Once you finally set foot on the ship, crewmembers will check you in via your cruise card. From there you can also ask the crewmembers to take you to your cabin or straight to the food options if you’re already famished from all that boarding process. Whichever way you choose, once on board you’re officially on vacation!

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Family Vacation Resorts Guide – What Should You Consider When Researching Family Vacations?

Going on a family vacation is hardly cheap, but that doesn’t mean you can’t cut some costs on your hotel, cruise ship, or airfare. If you book at the right time on the right travel discount site, you might also be able to save money on entertainment and dining as well. No matter where you plan to go, there are family vacation resorts located throughout North America as well across the globe.

One thing you need to look for is a hotel that offers free meals and activities for kids. When you’re traveling with kids, the cost of meals can really add up day after day. At a hotel where kids get to eat for free, you can save a lot of money. If the hotel itself does not offer free meals for kids, you could at least look for a restaurant nearby that does. Ideally, this restaurant should be easy to get to from the hotel so you won’t have to spend money on cab fare or use up gas in your rental car.

Resorts that offer free, fun activities for the entire family will help you save money since you won’t have to go out as much. Don’t forget about your own enjoyment. The best all-inclusive family vacation resorts have programs that will give the adults a bit of space as well. They offer more than just standard daycare, but fun camps tailored to kids in various age groups, each with its very own facility.

Don’t forget about airfare when looking for family vacation deals. While airlines usually let kids fly for free or at a discount rate, you don’t want to spend a fortune on your own airfare. Check and see if there are any airfare + hotel combo discounts available. Also, if you need to rent a van or SUV, look for vacation packages that include a discount on car rentals.

Want to stay in warm weather near an exotic beach? Or visit snow capped mountains at a ski lodge? There are some really fun ranches that offer horseback riding and hiking activities. A lot of cruise lines offer fun programs for kids. If you can afford it, an African Safari will be both a fun and educational experience for both you and your children.

Ideas for Family Vacation Resorts

Here is a list of some of the best family vacation resorts in the world:

• The Ranch – Emerald Valley, CO

• Skytop Lodge, PA

• Coconut Bay Beach Resort and Spa in St. Lucia

• Ocean Blue and Sand, Punta Cana

• Rancho de los Caballeros, AZ

• Lewa Safari Camp, Kenya

• Hideout Lodge & Guest Ranch, WY

• Snowshoe Mountain Resort – Snowshoe, WV

• South Seas Island Resort – Captiva Island, FL

• Wyndham Reef Resort – Cayman Islands

• Club Med Pragelato Vialattea, Italy

These are just some of the best – there are many other great resorts and hotels out there that offer fun for the entire family.

Do a bit of research on all of the family vacation resorts you are interested in and compare prices.

Your search for the cheapest family vacation resorts should begin online. Discounts are available with this travel company that can’t be found anywhere else. There are around 300,000 properties all around the world, and you can easily search or browse through them. Be as specific or as flexible with the dates and locations as you want. Get deals on airfare and car rentals as well.

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How To Pick A Vacation Destination For Your Blended Family

Choosing vacation destinations, in general, can be quite the hassle. When you have to factor in specific vacation days, flight & hotel information, not to mention reservations of any kind at the vacation site, there is a reason why you hear the adage, "I need a vacation from my vacation." Nowadays, there is one more particular element to factor in that perhaps is the most sensitive of topics — the blended family.

It can be traumatic enough for a family to deal with the dissolution of a marriage & an end to the family you've come to know, but it can be even tougher to become part of someone else's family all because your parent met another parent who has kids of their own. Though the idea of ​​the blended family is sitcom gold because of the general mismatches & hijinks, the notion of just becoming someone's new nuclear family member is not a simple matter.

How, then, do you pick a place for everyone to go on vacation? There are a lot feelings to take into consideration. 'Mom and Dad' might want to do something fun, exciting, and even a little romantic, but that may not be great for the kids. What about vacation traditions from the previous family unit? Those may be some of the things kids will attach themselves to for a sense of normalcy. The new siblings may also find it hard to spend time with each other & may even have resentment toward one another.

It is for these reasons, and many others, that family counselors agree it is important for any vacation planning to readily involve the kids. See what each one wants out of the vacation. Any activities that seem cool? Is there a type of food they'd like to try? Give the kids some ownership of the trip, and let them know they matter. At the same time, though, it's important to maintain a sense of accountability with this ownership. You want the kids to feel at ease with all of this change, but you don't want them to run the show.

One final key item that is an absolute must is the need to establish new traditions. Everyone in your new blended family still remembers life as it was before. While it is still important to maintain a sense of stability through those old ways, it is important to make new memories & traditions with the new family. Once again, have the kids chime in a little about what they think would be a neat idea. Maybe something like "Silly Selfie Sunday Seafood" would be a great way to break the ice & realize that what's new isn't such a bad thing.

For the blended family, vacation destinations hold a sense of the unknown & perhaps the unwanted. With the right approach, though, your new family may find just the right way to open their hearts to new possibilities.

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Reasons Why Traveling to Borneo is a Great Idea

Florida, Mexico, and the Caribbean are very popular places to go on vacation these days. It seems that whenever someone is going on vacation they are going to one of these three places. If you are getting sick of the same old vacation to these places year after year then you should look to Borneo for your new vacation spot. The island of Borneo has many great features and attractions that will allow you to have a great vacation. Borneo is different from all those other places that people usually go on vacation. Borneo Travel plans should be in your mind when thinking about where to book your vacation this year.

Borneo is the third largest island in the entire world! This island is located around Indonesia and the Philippines. Borneo consists mainly of jungles and mountains. Many of the land surface of Borneo has yet to be explored because of the rugged landscape. Many of the places on the island of Borneo are hard to reach because of the mountains and other obstacles. The jungles are a great attraction to the island because of the wide variety of animals that call Borneo home. Borneo travel plans are sometimes made just because of the jungles and the animals in them.

The island of Borneo has a unique history. It really wasn’t explored until around the 1500s by the Portuguese. The island was used much, if at all, for trading purposes, and that’s why the island wasn’t really inhabited. The Spanish also claimed some rights to the island, and both Spain and Portugal owned a shore of the island until modern time. The island is now broken up into three different districts. Don’t worry though, these three districts won’t interrupt your Borneo Travel plans. The island is very accessible.

Let me give you a few more facts before you make your Borneo travel plans. The island hosts a variety of different kinds of peoples. The many different kinds of religions that the island of Borneo has gives tribute to its vast array of cultures that are on the island. This means that there will be plenty of great experiences for you on your vacation to Borneo.

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Best Cheap Vacation Packages – 6 Great, Affordable Places You Should Consider Visiting

Everybody loves going on vacation, but nobody likes paying for it. Just because travel costs money doesn’t mean that it can’t be affordable. You can book your next trip with peace of mind if you choose an affordable destination. Where should you go? This list of best cheap vacation packages includes a variety of domestic destinations and international destinations that won’t hurt your wallet too much.

Newport, RI

Airfare from most US cities to the Newport airport is reasonable. There are several budget hotels to choose from and tons of free or inexpensive activities to do. You can explore stately mansions, like the Rose Cliff, the Marble House, and the Breakers. There is also the Newport Cliff Walk, the 3.5-mile public walkway that has been designated as a National Recreation Trail.

Las Vegas, NV

It might sound cliché, but Vegas really does have some of the best cheap vacation packages. As long as you’re not a hardcore gambler and don’t get carried away by all the games, you can spend a few days in Las Vegas without spending much money at all. Most of the hotels have cheap basic rooms and you can get entertainment just by walking down the street.

Lexington, KY

Get some Southern charm by spending a few days in this historic affordable city. Just grab some inexpensive airfare to the Blue Grass Airport, or fly to nearby Cincinnati or Louisville and rent a car and drive to Lexington. Since it’s the birthplace of bourbon, you might want to go on a tour at Woodford Reserve Distillery. There are plenty of budget hotels and restaurants to choose from.

Sofia, Bulgaria

If you’re looking for a cheap European vacation, Sofia is a great place to visit. There are a number of museums to check out, like the Earth and Man Museum, National Art Gallery, Museum of Natural History, Ethnographical Museum, etc. For airfare from North America, check with airlines like Air Canada, JetBlue, Iberia, and Lufthansa.

Phuket, Thailand

Some of the top budget lodging accommodations are located in the north beach provinces. The north beach area is also ideal if you want a laid-back setting. Public transportation in Phuket is plentiful, with choices of local bus transfers and motorbike taxis. The best vacation packages last for 7 days, so make you travel plans accordingly.

La Paz, Bolivia

If you want to stay in the Americas, Bolivia is an affordable and gorgeous country to visit. Some of the best cheap vacation packages are in La Paz, which is perched on a high plateau over 12,000 feet above sea level. There are natural attractions nearby like Lake Titicaca, as well as markets, shops, colonial landmarks, and a variety of other attractions.

Online websites that provide the best cheap vacation packages are always worth checking out. You might find exactly what you are looking for. If you’re not looking for anything specific right now, you can still browse the deals to find out what is available. Whenever it’s time to book your trip, don’t forget to use online coupons.

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Hit the Slopes: Dreamy Snowboarding Vacations

The Thrill of Snowboarding

Snowboarding, the art of gliding across snowy slopes on a single elongated board, has become highly popular among lovers of winter sports. Even those who don't like the cold, but love the thrill of physical activity, have found joy in snowboarding. No matter where in the world you live, there is a dreamy snowboarding location nearby. Before you plan your next vacation, you may want to consider the condition of the slopes.

Snowboarding Resorts

The nation is peppered with resorts that offer snowboarding lessons, to suit any vacation plan. You'll find snowboarding resorts in states across the US, if you know where to look. In Canada, Lake Louise and Whistler are two highly popular spots for snowboarding and snowboarding lessons. California's Squaw Valley is a great, dreamy snowboarding vacation resort for those wishing to learn the craft of snowboarding. Sun Valley in Idaho, and Moonlight Basin in Montana are popular Rocky Mountain snowboarding vacation destinations.

In Nevada, Heavenly is the best resort for snowboarding, and Jackson Hole is where you want to go if Wyoming is the state of your choice. If the resort you choose features snowboarding, there will be a bevy of other winter sports to enjoy as well. Amid lush mountain scenery and crisp white snow, you may discover that snowboarding is the answer to your dream vacation.

Utah is filled with great resorts; where you can do all the snowboarding you please and even receive lessons. Deer Valley, The Canyons, Snowbird, and Park City are all well-known and beautiful resorts that you might want to check out if you're visiting Utah. For snowboarding, you can hardly do better than the beautiful peaks of Utah.

Unless, of course, you go to Colorado. The US capital of winter resorts, Colorado is known for their famous resorts … and their beautiful snow. No matter what winter activity you wish to engage in, this is one of the best places to go. Aspen is probably the most well-known of Colorado snowboarding and skiing hotspots. Other Colorado vacation locales include Snowmass, Copper Mountain, Crested Butte, Keystone, Breckenridge, Telluride, Steamboat Springs, Vail, Winter Park, and Beaver Creek.

A Dreamy Snowboarding Vacation

To have the perfect snowboarding vacation, location is important. But the willingness to try something new is also a must when it comes to snowboarding. Snowboarding is a sport that can be very thrilling and exciting, but also dangerous – so be sure to have all the right gear and take all the proper precautions. Inexperienced snowboarders should receive instruction from experts for safety's sake. With proper instruction, snowboarding can be one of the greatest life experiences. A snowboarding vacation is not just a trip to a snowy land, but a true adventure.

Consider where you will go, and be sure to take all the equipment and gear you need for your dreamy snowboarding vacation. Proper planning is a must, so try to leave snowboarding lessons pre-arranged if they are needed. Once you get to your snowboarding vacation destination, you don't want to waste any time. You want to get out there and hit the slopes right away, and get boarding out in the snow. So get everything ready beforehand, to get your dreamy snowboarding vacation off and running right away.

If you're planning a snowboarding vacation, then you're in for a lot of fun and excitement. Remember to stay safe, your dreamy snowboarding vacation will be a dream come true.