The beginning of the new millennium will be remembered as one of the worst times for event organizers world-wide. A sequence of disastrous events caused hundreds of thousands tourists to cancel their holidays. Weddings, family events, children’s summer camps, and thousands of commercial events and conventions were cancelled. Hurricanes, earthquakes, tsunamis, terror attacks caused not only direct vast hurts but also collateral hurt to millions of individuals and businesses.
The resulting financial hurt is huge. Empty hotels, lost deposits, travel agencies with no income, airliners that glide nearly empty, lost income to wholesalers, organizers and many individuals – and the list goes on. The estimated losses are stated in billions of dollars (according to the publications of the numerous insurance companies).
This scenario is familiar to the insurance industry: those companies who write Travel Insurance that includes a Cancellation Fees Clause; those who write Special Events with Cancellation Fees Clauses; and those insurance companies who write Political Coverage (many of which are state-owned organizations).
Although this scenario is well-known, the actual loss sustained by the insurance industry is by far lower than the actual loss sustained by the tourism industry, the canceling individuals and many others. The reason is Awareness.
In the past century the world witnessed many events, which should have caused people to know the need to protect their investments. Although rates in the past decades have been quite reasonable, most prospective customers did not buy any kind of protection. The saying, “It won’t happen to me,” led millions of travelers all around the world to refrain from purchasing travel insurance (or to ensure that their cover includes a Cancellation Clause), which resulted in somewhat higher premium rates, as the spread of risk was smaller than the potential. Most of those organizing events – private or commercial – ignored history, and smiled when nothing happened and the event was over. For those who saw the risk materialize, no smile could help.
The insurance market can only offer the products. It cannot buy them instead of the at-risk customers. But, it is vital to elevate the level of awareness in the general public, to ensure better protection to the public.
The huge numbers look a bit remote from the individual whose tale is the wedding reception of his son or daughter, and whose relatively small deposits for the reception hall and the caterers are now lost. An additional average expense of $100 could now save this money, and ensure his ability to celebrate the occasion at a later date.
The small tales are those that should alert you, the reader – personally or as an insurance broker or agent – to ensure that next time, you will not be caught without protection.
Chris Linch is an expert on worldwide travel. From his site offering Cheap Hotel Rates, to his extensive business experience in operating travel agencies.
Spain is one of the better countries in the world with rich culture based on religion and customs. The country is inhabited of about 45 million people of whom 80-94% are Roman Catholics. This is the reason why local as well as national events are based on Catholicism and faith. Spain is also home to several fantastic things to do. While in this country, you will never have to worry how to spend your days because believe it or not, Spain travel can give you total vacation experience.
Here are some of the events you can catch and the things you can do if you choose to travel to Spain:
Run with the bulls. If you dare and tough enough to face the challenge of running with the bulls or simply want to join the fun without really getting face to face with the bull, Pamplona should be your destination. The festival happens every July and has already attracted visitors from all parts of the world. The celebration is offered to San Fermin, the patron saint of Pamplona. This religious and unusual celebration makes Pamplona a excellent destination for your Spain travel.
Skiing and Mountaineering. Visit Catalunya, Aragon, and Torremolinos and Malaga in Andalucia and stay at one of the top winter resorts in Spain. Perfect time to go is during the late spring where you can have your winter sports by day and go at the beach and sunbathe in the afternoon.
Watch the Primera Liga Live. See you favorite football stars like Zidane, Raul, Roberto Carlos, Figo, Ronaldo, and David Beckham as they all play for the best football team in the UAFA Cup: Real Madrid.
Caf all Day. Treat yourself in the relaxing day at one of the caf in Spain. The country has lots of cafs in every village, town, and city where you can spend your whole day chatting with friends or alone savoring the Spain environment.
Go to local village fiesta. Spain travel might not be complete if you haven’t seen any local village fiestas. Since every town has their own patron saints to offer thanksgiving, you can never miss attending one. Fiestas normally have parades, religious activities, and parties during the night.
Meet the Artists. Spain travel would introduce you to several world-renowned artists. Visit Frank Gehry’s Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao, Barcelona beach’s giant copper fish and other Gehny’s contemporary structures. Know more about the art of Antoni Gaudi in his structures at Barcelona and get introduced with his unusual tile style and graceful organic curve.
Take a glimpse of Diego Velazquez’s art in Prado Gallery in Madrid. Diego Velazquez painted the “Ancient Woman Cooking Eggs” and “The Rokeby Venus”. And of course, who would not recognize Pablo Picasso? See his work Guernica at the Reina Sofia. Or visit the Picasso Foundation in Malaga.
Stay during the Holy Week. Spain travel is also ideal during holy week where the whole country commemorates that passion, death, and resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ. See all the plays, activities, traditions, and the celebration of the country. If you are not a Catholic, you can still witness this activity.
Eat Snails. The Snail Festival happens every snail Lleida give you a different appetite for food. Although snails are the main course, you can also drink, dance, and eat other local foods all day and all night.
Chris Linch offers a free newsletter on Cheap Hotel Rates right to your inbox on his website. Chris has owned and operated a travel agency for many years and he knows his destinations.
Sports teams usually travel frequently for competitions and games, and each team member must carry certain belongings and equipment for the trips. Sports equipment bags provide an simple way to carry these belongings while also building team morale. Team logo bags are duffle bags or other similar bags with a printed team logo. Sometimes even the players’ names and numbers are printed on the bags.
When traveling overnight or on a day trip, many sports equipment bags have plenty of room for a uniform, personal hygiene items, shoes, and even protective gear. Team bags come in your team’s colors and have the logo custom printed professionally to give a uniform look. Team bags are often made of very durable materials to prevent wear and tear for the active lifestyle.
Who Uses Team Player Bags?
Any sports team or scholastic team can benefit by using team player bags. Team bags are designed to fit any need. Those involved in active sports such as basketball, baseball, hockey, lacrosse, soccer, and football can use sports equipment bags for local games or games that are played in other towns. Either way, the duffle bags are convenient for keeping all their necessary items for the game.
Swim teams can use team logo bags for their swimsuit and gear. Some swimming team bags are designed to be water-resistant and include a wet pocket. Those who take gymnastics classes can use team bags to keep all their gymnastics gear. For lacrosse teams, there are special team bags made with a Velcro section to carry a Crosse. There are also special “Crosse” logo bags made to accommodate two Crosses. For cheerleaders, team bags are designed for various levels of competition. Hockey players can benefit from specialized hockey stick bags or hockey garment bags.
Team bags are also convenient for non-sports teams or clubs such as chess clubs, honor clubs, beta clubs, science teams, and college fraternities.
Finding the Right Sports Equipment Bags for Your Team
Before buying sports equipment bags, consider the quality of the bags first and foremost. Bags for sports teams should be made to withstand frequent carrying and use. They should have reinforced stitching and be made of thick, durable material. Buy team logo bags that are appropriate for your team’s sport. The bags should be large enough to accommodate your team’s usual gear and a few personal items. Look for your school or team colors, and be sure to provide a clear copy of your team’s logo for quality screen-printing. If ordering online, consider the screen-printing set-up charges as well as shipping. These can greatly affect your final cost when ordering, but you can find excellent deals and even save money with some Internet companies. Many sports bag printing companies offer a quantity discount, so be sure to check out the specials before choosing your bags.
When traveling, team logo bags can help all your team members feel a sense of belonging and help boost morale before each game or competition. You can order the logo bags online with just a few simple steps. Check out the types of team bags available for your particular sport so you can start boosting team spirit today!
Chris Linch offers a free newsletter on Cheap Hotel Rates right to your inbox on his website. Chris has owned and operated a travel agency for many years and he knows his destinations.
Positioned on the largest estuary in the world, the fantastic city of Baltimore dominates Chesapeake Bay’s commerce, tourism and arts. Also known as Monument City, Baltimore is a living legacy of America’s heritage and historic foundations. Today, the city is thriving with nearly 700,000 residents and a booming industrial seaport. Airfare to Baltimore is a convenient alternative to flying into Washington D.C.
Travel to Baltimore for the most intimate of American History, including one of the most well-known battles sites against the British. During the Battle of Baltimore in 1812, the British naval fleet found itself in a stalemate with Baltimore’s Fort McHenry. Without reinforcements available and facing a formidable enemy, the British retreated, inspiring Francis Scott Key to write “The Star Spangled Banner.” The Battle Monument was erected in the city’s center to commemorate this significant victory for the United States and you can visit the grounds of historic Fort McHenry today.
Baltimore is the restingplace of the U.S.S. Constellation, the last all-sail battleship built by the US Navy and a very well loved attraction. It is also the last vessel from the Civil War era that is still afloat. Baltimore was the second heaviest traveled port-of-entry for immigrants into the United States during the nation’s infancy, adding to the incredible diversity in cuisine and culture.
More Sights, More Sounds, Baltimore
Today, Baltimore is a mosaic of sophisticated American culture, the offbeat arts and music scene, and riveting professional sporting events. Make sure to visit the funky strip of Baltimore Boulevard known as The Block. Not for the entire family, this stretch is full of sleepless nightclubs, burlesque bars, quirky restaurants, and other forms of adult entertainment. For an alternative outing for the whole family, visit the Baltimore Streetcar Museum, dedicated to the preservation of Baltimore’s transportation history. The National Aquarium is also located in Baltimore on the seaside Inner Harbor. The aquarium offers a unique rooftop rainforest, an intimate dolphin encounter and it is the most well loved attraction in Maryland.
Baltimore is also full of dedicated sports fans, committed to their city’s athletic history and legacy. The Babe Ruth Birthplace and Museum celebrates sports legends throughout history in its museum, Sports Legends at Camden Yards. Nearby you can see the Orioles or the Ravens play in stadiums full of diehard fans.
Baltimore and Breakwater
Baltimore’s position on the shores of the Chesapeake Bay is ideal for sightseeing and dining alike. Spend an afternoon on top of the Top of the World Observation Level & Museum, the 27th floor of the World Trade Center on the bay’s shores, and view the city’s skyline, seascape and familiar sights. Then, head down to the market place in the Harbor area for some delectable Chesapeake Bay blue crabs, prepared any way you like, and delight in live jazz in the evening by the shore.
Secure your cheap airfare to Baltimore and dive in to the city’s eccentric age-ancient traditions. You, too, will soon be drinking National Bohemian and cracking open steamed crabs on a newspaper covered table while watching your new favorite team play.
If you are looking for travel business information or even just Cheap Hotel Rates Chris is an expert in both.
There are many things to do while visiting Seattle Washington that are either free or inexpensive. Many of the free things to do in and around Seattle are outdoor activities. Because of the incredible views and magnificent scenery in and around the area it makes perfect sense that several of these would be visiting the many state parks in the area.
Keep in mind that not all state parks are free to visit but below you will find information on some that are. If you are a lover of nature and the outdoors then this should really get your blood pumping. Remember to bring along all the fun equipment that makes the outdoors fun.
First of all there is Deception Pass State Park. This park has salt water, fresh water, camping, hiking, boating, spectacular views, and a few areas with playground equipment for the small ones. There are many activities available and appropriate for the island: hiking, horseback riding, boating, fishing, swimming, white water kayaking, diving, clamming, crabbing, bird watching, mountain biking, and simply viewing the wonderful scenery that nature provided.
Next, there is Fort Worden State Park. Fort Worden was originally used to guard the entry into Puget Sound. Fort Warden became a state park in 1955 and remains a well loved park and convention center. Convention and camping facilities are opened on the park year round and there is plenty to do to keep guests busy, pleased, and entertained. In addition to the traditional hiking, biking, diving, water skiing, swimming, boating, and animal watching, Fort Worden offers baseball, basketball, softball, and volleyball facilities. If that isn’t enough there is also a museum and incredible views that simply invite the photographer within to come out and play.
Fort Flagler State Park Fort Flagler, like Fort Worden originally guarded the entryway into the Puget Sound. Also like Fort Worden, Fort Flagler became a state park in 1955. Fort Flagler still has some of the original military structures that tell the proud history of this island. It is also surrounded on three sides by salt water. While there are many similarities between Fort Worden and Fort Flagler, the latter is only open for campers for part of the year. Day visitors are allowed year round, but. It is the stunning view of the Sound and the surrounding mountains, but that makes this park so spectacular. I hope you have the chance to visit.
Finally, there is Lime Kiln Point State Park. This park is a 36-acre park that is only for day use. The park is located on the western side of San Juan Island and is an brilliant location from which to watch Orca whales from land. In addition to whale watching you can go hiking, tour the lighthouse, and delight in viewing various other wildlife here as well. Diving is possible here but very perilous as the currents are quite strong. The lighthouse here still serves as a navigational aid for ships in the Haro Strait. While this particular park offers less in way of amenities it remains my favorite simply because of the lighthouse and the possibility of seeing whales while visiting. The months of June and July are the best for whale watching but any time during the months of May throughout September, whale spotting remains a possibility.
While not everyone is interested in nature or experiencing the fantastic outdoors, state parks such as these mentioned above make it much more enjoyable-especially when you consider the fact that there is no admission fees for visiting these parks. If you like the outdoors and nature as much as I do then you would probably have been more than willing to pay for the privilege of visiting any one if not each and every one of these parks. It is my sincerest hope that you will find something that is fun, frivolous, and most importantly free to do while you are on vacation. You know how the saying goes, “the best things in life are free”.
If you are looking for travel business information or even just Cheap Hotel Rates Chris is an expert in both.
Is your kitchen a dreary and uninteresting area to work in? It does not have to be like that, you can modify it honestly easily either yourself or by getting in contractors to do it for you. The trick is to know what you desire before you take a sledge hammer to your existing kitchen.
So, before you go about taking down what you already have, go about collecting thoughts for replacement. You can get fantastic thoughts from the home restoration TV programmes, from home design magazines, by looking at friends’ kitchens and by reading my tips below.
Maybe the best place to start is to reckon about how to reflect your own personal style. This could be a broad trend like farmhouse, Tuscan, Mexican, modern, or it could be a small bit of many styles to make up your own. But, do not forget that there is plenty of scope to express your own individuality even if you choose a broad style.
One snare to avoid is trying to get all the latest gadgets from a broad style. For example, if you pursue the modern broad style to its logical conclusion, your kitchen will look like a cold, clinical hotel or hospital kitchen full of stainless steel. If you like all that sort of stuff , then okay, but it is hard for a family to feel at home in.
If money is small, you could just repaint the cabinets a different colour and replace the handles. That will make a huge difference. Changing the background lighting is another pretty cheap way of varying the accent of your kitchen. Install subtle lighting under the wall cabinets and if you already have those, try adding some spot lights to the ceiling and if you already have those, try using some wall sconces for candles.
If you have attractive pots and pans or want to get a set, why not show them off by fixing a rack to the wall from which to hang your pots and pans? it adds a very fascinating effect to any kitchen.
You can also make a huge difference to the kitchen (or any room for that matter) by changing the flooring. Solid timber is stunning, but if you cannot afford that, you could try veneered flooring or stone, if the floor will take the weight. It is a excellent thought to endeavor to use the kitchen flooring to reinforce the broad image of your kitchen’s new style.
If you do not already have one, reckon about making an outdoor kitchen for use whilst the weather permits. An outdoor kitchen really frees up a lot of room and ‘usage’. People flow to the outdoor kitchen when the weather is fine and your indoor living space suddenly seems less chaotic.
Last, but not least, the kitchen table. Just changing the style or shape of your kitchen table will have a huge influence on the general look of your kitchen. Go from timber to glass or from square to round.
Owen Jones, the author of this article, writes on a range of subjects, but is now involved with contemporary dining room tables. If you want to know more, please visit our website at Solid Oak Dining Tables.
Twenty or thirty years ago, no-one in their right mind would have gone to Croatia, unless they were in the army, but that has all changed. Nowadays, Croatia is part of the European Union and is much more hospitable to tourists.
One of the tourist activities that Croatia is building its reputation on is skiing. It is a warmer country than northern France, Switzerland and Scandinavia, so it is feasible to take a skiing vacation in the mountains and end the holiday off with a week at the seaside.
One of the best skiing regions to visit is Zagreb and in particular Bjelolasica, which is where the Croatian Olympic skiing team trains. The facilities in this area are brilliant and the prices are a lot cheaper than you would pay in either in the French or in the Swiss Alps or in Scandinavia. In fact Croatia offers fantastic skiing facilities at a very affordable cost.
The Croatian skiing community is of very high quality and they know that they have to compete with the history of the more well-known French and Swiss ski resorts so they really pull all the stops out to make sure that the tourists and sports people who come to their country get value for money and want to come back again.
They comprehend that word of mouth advertising is the best and the cheapest form of advertising that you can get.
Another well loved Croatian skiing destination is Platak. Platak is located nearer the Adriatic and can be a bit more expensive than Bjelolasica because it is a bit cut off, but it just depends where you want to go and what you want to do.
Platak is a excellent all round skiing resort which has plans for improvements on a huge scale. Over the coming years, Platak will have more ski slopes of different levels of difficulty and more hotels and chalets of all price ranges.
You would be forgiven for thinking that there may be a language barrier in Croatia and to be honest there can be, but the ski resorts are all staffed by people who have learned most of the common European languages. It shows how much can be done in twenty years if the government and the populace have the right and the same perspective.
Croatia has a very varied cuisine, so tourists and skiers from all over the world ought to be able to find plenty of suitable food and drink. Croatia has a border with Hungary and their wine is very excellent. All in all, Croatia offers excellent skiing facilities at a knock down cost, but quite how long they will be able to offer these brilliant facilities at these attractive prices is still to be seen.
If you are a dedicated skier, it could be worth going to Croatia and buying a time-share or some other type of accommodation now before the inevitable cost rise when the rest of Europe realizes how cheap skiing in Croatia really is.
Landscape architecture plays an vital function in the development of all contemporary cities. The principles of landscape architecture are used in order to make open ‘breathing spaces’ so the city has some fresh air and does not look cluttered. Landscape architecture is taught in Thailand and is acknowledged as a profession offering professional qualifications at degree level.
If someone wants to practice as a landscape architect in Thailand, then he or she has to have a bachelor’s degree in landscape architecture from one of the two universities offering the course. Chulalongkorn University and Thammasart University turn out around 100 post graduates between them in landscape architecture each year.
Bangkok is home to most of Thailand’s landscape architectural firms. There are around thirty large companies and about eighty freelance landscape architects.Lots of the post graduates want to continue their study or gain more experience abroad before settling down to practice in Thailand. In order to work as a landscape architect in Thailand, one needs to get a license from Thailand’s official Association of Architects.
The Thai Association of Architects plays an vital function in maintaining standards of landscape architecture. The Thai government, both local and national, use landscape architects to help with the design of such projects as highway development, inner city renovation and airport design. On a more understandable level, landscape architects are concerned with the Royal Flora Expo in Chiang Mai, northern Thailand.
The Association of Architects in Thailand is a private organization but it works hand in glove with the Ministry of the Interior. It assists the government control four professions which can have an effect on the environment and one of these is the occupation of landscape architecture. But, landscape architecture does not make up 25% of the Association’s work. At 15% of the association’s workload, it is valid to imagine that landscape architecture is under represented in Thailand.
The Association of Architects grants licenses to applicants based on the results of three concepts. These concepts are education, experience and examination. The principle of education is satisfied by gaining a BA in landscape architecture. Then the applicant has to supply evidence of work experience and finally, the association has its own examinations which the landscape architect also has to pass.
Landscape architecture is still in its infancy in Thailand. That is to say that, landscape architecture has just recently started being applied to public developments. There have been landscape gardeners working on the gardens and palaces of rich Thais for centuries, merely like in each other country with a wealthier ruling class.
Two of Thailand’s most well-known landscape architects are Somwang Leevanjikul and Chanvudhi Varavam, both of whom have been concerned in substantial government projects in Thailand using their skills in landscape architecture to make Thailand’s cities and countryside a better searching place to live.
Europe is the birthplace of skiing. The first drawings of a skier were found in a cave in Nordland, Norway. The drawing has been dated at 5000 BC. Norway was nearly certainly the home of skiing or what is known as Nordic Skiing anyway.
Alpine or downhill skiing probably comes from central Europe in the neighbourhood of Switzerland. There are so many skiing resorts in Europe that there is a fantastic number of slopes for every degree of experience.
You can ski in nearly every country in Europe. The least well-known skiing resorts are nearly certainly in Scotland, but they do have them and the most well-known resorts are in the French and Swiss Alps, which are essentially the same place, but they span two different countries.
The French and The Swiss alps are the most developed for luxury and are also the most costly. Not far east from there is Austria which, although less well-known is also a magnet for skiers from Eastern Europe.
If you want skiing at a more affordable rate try Italy up on the Swiss border. There you will see practically the same skiing conditions as in the French and Swiss Alps but with Italian food and language, which means less English is spoken though, if you see that as a downside.
Roughly the same price is Andorra which is Catalan (Spanish to you and me, but not to them). Andorra sits in the Pyrenees Mountains with borders on France and Spain. The Spanish influence is the greater of the two. Skiing in Andorra is renowned for its teaching. It is a fantastic place to learn skiing or to take the family.
If you want to visit a rising star in the skiing firmament, try Croatia. Skiing in Croatia is also among the most reasonably priced in Europe. The facilities are fantastic, but local wages are low which keeps the costs down. The food is excellent and so is the wine, though not perhaps a match for French, Italian or Spanish cuisine.
Bulgaria is another growing location on the skier’s map. Skiing is not well commercialized in Bulgaria but the locals have been skiing for centuries, it is only that they are only just beginning to learn how to commercialize it. The people are friendly, but do not expect much English to be spoken.
We should not forget the home of skiing, Norway and the rest of Scandinavia. Expect top class facilities in Scandinavia with top class prices to match. The locals are very friendly, but might not speak English. The food is more probable to be local as well. You are more likely to find decent skiing conditions all year round in Scandinavia as well.
There are so many skiing resorts in so many European countries, that if you wanted to, you could organize a skiing tour of Europe. If you wanted to ski in Scandinavia and Andorra, you would have to glide, but you could do the Swiss, French and Italian Alps. Or Austria and Bulgaria or Bulgaria and Croatia.
Most individuals dream of going away on vacation to somewhere warm or even hot, but there are some who seek out the cold and the snow so that they can go skiing. It is right, lots if not most of those who go skiing in the winter can also afford a summer break somewhere warm too. Skiing in the French Alps is one of the favourite choices of novice and practiced skiers alike.
But what if you cannot ski at all and want to learn? Well, you could go the French Alps anyway and learn there or you could learn the fundamentals at home, maybe on an all-weather slope, so that you receive full value for money when you get to France. There are quite a number of all-weather nylon slopes dotted around most Western countries, normally located at leisure centres.
If you learned how to get dressed, the basic moves and the safety aspects of skiing and being on snow, than you could get on with learning better techniques from the experts at the French Alps resort after you get there. This way you will not miss out on the fantastic skiing in the French Alps, which along with the Swiss Alps, which it adjoins, is one of the best regions for skiing in the world.
Learning how to stop is a wise thought, but before you can practice your stopping technique, you have to be moving, which can be honestly scary. This and health and safety codes are the first items that you will be taught when you take lessons either at home or in the Alps.
Knowing that you know how to stop inspires the confidence to get you going and practicing other techniques like turning. You see, one of the difficulties with skiing is the novices, they tend to get in the way, so you need to look out for them and learn how to come to a halt before hitting them or how to go around them.
There are normally at least a few types of slopes at these French alpine resorts ranging from moderate slopes for beginners to steeper, quicker courses with obstacles like trees and rocks for practiced skiers. The weather can change in an amazingly small time even within an hour, but at the best times of the year, the weather is normally honestly warm from about 10 AM until 2 PM.
This allows you time for a pre-breakfast walk, a relaxed breakfast and four hours on the slopes, before lunch and apres-ski activity. The evenings’ entertainment is legendary, which is another excellent reason for a late beginning. French food and drink is world renowned and the food and drink in the French Alps is no exception.
Skiing is quite physical and necessitates the aspirant skier to be fit and strong. Therefore, if you have let yourself go a bit, you might reckon it wise to visit a gym for a couple of weeks before your vacation to get back into shape.