No Need for Persuasion: Teenagers Will Love Coming to Dubai With You


Teens can be too cool for a lot of things. It’s not that they have bad attitudes. Sometimes, the way things are presented makes a big difference.

Think of your kids as potential buyers of a vacation getaway. How would you pitch an exotic destination like Dubai, filled with sun, sand, and sites unseen anywhere else in the world? There’s no need for persuasion when you’re talking Dubai.

Get Their Feet Wet

The first destination is not foreign to most teens. Most major areas in the US and UK have access to one or more water parks, so going to the Atlantis park or Wild Wadi shouldn’t be a unique concept. But the Atlantis park isn’t just a waterpark with slides. It hosts rare fish and mammals – even sharks!

Get Really High

The Burj Khalifa is a massive building. The observation decks are open to the public as well as any teen who has the stomach to take in the amazing yet jaw-dropping sites from this mammoth that hosts over 150 floors.

Hop in a Balloon

There are several ways to see Dubai. The creative opts for hot air balloon rides. One can see the vastness of the desert, the contours of the land, and the bustle of the outskirts and middle of cities from above. Early morning ballooners get to see the sunrise like never before. Book your ride in advance or from the comfort of your JW Marriott Hotel, Dubai luxury room.

Get to the Mall

Most parents witnessed the once greatness that was the UK and American malls. The behemoth caverns of retail outlets are harder to find these days yet the business model is thriving in Dubai. A lot of today’s teens never got to see what it was like in a 90’s mall. It was a grand shopping experience and one you can replicate today in Dubai.

Take to the Ice

It’s a bit ironic to head to an ice rink in a land that features temperatures unseen in many other places in the world but the rink affords time for teens to socialize with others their age and mom and dad to be alone.

Play Tag

Of course, any teen would roll their eyes at the mention of a game of tag. Yet the Oasis Center Mall hosts a super cool Lazer Tag arena, where kids zap other family members who hide, duck and weave throughout the game maze.

Go Offroad

Tell your teen you’re all going on a 4×4 offroading adventure and that should pique their interest. Book your safari tour through a number of vendors. Some offer other amenities such as food and a tour of the inner cities.

See the Dolphins

Some feature flower gardens and other have koi ponds, but Umm Hurrair has a Dolphinarium. You’ll have access to watersports, boat tours, and of course, a chance to swim with the dolphins. The site has food, game centers, and enough to do for the entire afternoon.

Get Skydiving

The Skydive Dubai Desert Campus is the place for indoor skydiving. It’s a thrill that few facilities around the world offer. It’s an intense experience that is safe enough for teens and the entire family. The site promises world-class skydiving without the need of a plane.

How to Survive Your Next Family Vacation

Family vacations are fantastic. Now so many families are separated by cities, states, or even continents, getting the family together for a trip gives you all the perfect chance to have a proper catch-up and spend some quality time together without the distractions of everyday life.

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However, a family vacation can also be incredibly stressful, especially if you are traveling with children. Or your own parents! What starts as a fun catch up can quickly become an interrogation into your life, with all the old family dramas resurfacing. Here are some great tips to help you survive your next family vacation, without incident or heartbreak.

Organize Travel

Traveling can be stressful at the best of times, but if you’ve got the family all coming in from different locations to take a trip together, the logistics can be complicated. Even if there’s just a few of you, it can be tough to all arrive at the same time.

So, don’t try. Book a week or two for your vacation, give everyone plenty of notice and let everyone make their own way there in their own time.

Think of Accommodation Carefully

Accommodation is another thing that causes stress. If you are going away with family, it’s a good idea to stay in a cabin such as Birch Forest Lodge or on a campsite instead of trying to organize hotels. This way, you can have separate lodges to give everyone a little freedom, while still having a great location to spend lots of time together whenever you want.

Plan Activities

When it comes to activities, it can be hard trying to please everyone. So, again, don’t try. Book activities online beforehand if you can, or plan days fishing, trying local sports or visiting attractions. Let everyone in your party know what’s happening and when. Then they can join in when they want to but you’re under no pressure to spend the whole vacation together.

Take Some Time Off

Being in close proximity to your family can be challenging, especially if you aren’t used to it. So, when it all gets too much, take some time out. Go for a long walk on your own or spend some time exploring with your partner. Just because you are on a family vacation it doesn’t mean that you have to spend all of your time together.

Plan Meals

You probably won’t want to eat every single meal together, which is another reason lodges make an excellent choice of accommodation. But, arranging some family meals is a wonderful way to bring everyone together for some fun, even if you’ve spent the day apart. Try some local restaurants but also have nights at your accommodation barbequing, having a picnic, or you could even order food in. Make sure you’ve got some games and snacks prepared to keep the fun going once the food has finished.

The best way to enjoy a family holiday is to organize and plan in advance. Prepare plenty of activities and fun days out so there’s no chance for any old drama to resurface. Family time is important – make the most of it!

Traveling Southeast Asia

A first-timer’s guide on what to take

Before traveling anywhere, you’ll need to do some research on what to pack. Chances are the climate, culture and amenities are all going to be completely different to what you’re used to at home. If you’re heading to Southeast Asia, here’s a basic guide to what you’ll need as a Westerner.


A couple weeks before you leave, you’ll almost certainly need to start a course of anti-malaria tablets, which you’ll also take throughout your stay.

You’ll also want diarrhea medication – tap water might be ok depending on where you are, but your body will take a while to adjust. Even if you don’t drink tap water at all, a bad curry could have you man-down for a couple days. Pack the meds and hope you don’t need them.


Most of Southeast Asia is hot and humid. Pack loose, comfortable clothes – shorts and t-shirts are probably best, a swimsuit is essential. Take your sneakers for the days when you’re doing a lot of walking, as you definitely will. Flip-flops and comfortable sandals are also on the must-pack list.

Also bring a raincoat or poncho – at some point you will get caught in the rain. When it rains there, you don’t always get much warning. This is another reason why you should pack lightweight, quick drying clothes so that you won’t run out if a couple pairs get wet. The same goes for shoes.


Tissues, tissues and more tissues – you’ll be hard pressed to find a public restroom with toilet paper. You can pack tissues or toilet paper beforehand or buy on arrival, but they’re likely to become one of your most prized possessions, at least after your first encounter with the bum-gun.

Bug repellant. Mosquitoes are pretty prolific and probably bigger than the tiny nuisances you’re used to. Take bug-spray or a stick of repellant and don’t forget to use it.

Deodorant, preferably an antiperspirant. You’ll still sweat but you’ll feel a little more comfortable and you won’t smell quite so bad.


Hang onto your notebook, phone – whatever has your trip plan in it. If you need to contact places you’re staying or people you’ve made travel arrangements with, it’s your go-to method for planning. If your accommodation falls through, or you’d just rather not have to worry about it, consider renting an RV from a reputable website.

What not to take

Valuables – camera, ok, diamond necklace, not ok. Anything you can’t replace, don’t take with, you’ll survive without it.

Don’t take anything across the border that you didn’t pack yourself. I recently heard a horror story of a woman whose ‘friend’ asked her to collect some books while she was in Taiwan. The books were a ploy to smuggle heroin out of the country and she spent 16 years in jail – in Taiwan.

Even if you don’t speak the language, struggle with the currency and can’t sleep because of the heat or the bugs, it’ll be an amazing experience. Take lots of pictures, eat strange food, meet new people. Dive into the culture and come home with some amazing stories.

Six Things to Do When You Visit New York City


New York City is one the most visited cities in the world. In 2016, over 60 million people visited New York to take in the city so nice they named it twice. New York is home to over 8 million people who live within roughly 305 square miles of the city limits, making it one of the most densely populated cities in the world, second only to Paris. As such, every corner of the city holds unique wonders that visitors should try to see.

Whether you have just launched a few new business ideas that took off or are a traveler interested in a budget-conscious trip, this article will help you to discover parts of the city that only true New Yorkers know about.

  1. Avoid the tourist traps

Time Square, the Empire State Building and Circle Line Cruises are all tourist traps. True New Yorkers avoid these destinations like the plague. While you may be interested in visiting these locations due to cultural or historical significance, know that if you do you will not be seeing the city that most New Yorkers know and love. Instead, you’ll be experiencing a tourist destination that caters to the desires of out-of-towners.

Instead of going to the tourist traps mentioned above, check out some of the significant but less popular locations mentioned later on in this article.

  1. Understand the reputation of each neighborhood

New York is divided into a series of neighborhoods. Due to social norms and zoning laws, each neighborhood has developed a unique characteristic that is all its own. Before planning your trip, take a minute to survey a map of New York neighborhoods and try to visit as many as possible.

Among a few of the neighborhoods to visit is the Upper West Side, home to the Museum of Natural History, the Metropolitan Opera, and famous apartment buildings like the Dakota and the Apthorp.

SoHo is another great neighborhood to check out, it features trendy popup stores, cute bars, and high-end restaurants like Balthazar and the Mercer Kitchen.

Williamsburg Brooklyn is yet one more great New York neighborhood. Many credit its residents for giving rise to the “hipsters.” Visitors should check out Output or the Music Hall of Williamsburg for great music, grab a drink on the rooftop bar at McCarran Hotel, and head to Fete Sau for great barbeque.

  1. Head to Queens for great ethnic food

One study found that Queens New York was one of the most diverse places in the world. It is because of this diversity that Queens is home to a number of fantastic ethnic eateries that allow visitors to sample from a wide variety of delicious and hard to find food. Among the restaurants to check out are the Arepa Lady, which serves delectable South American pastries, and Mu Ramen, which features authentic Japanese ramen.

  1. Check out a show at the Comedy Cellar

Located in the iconic Greenwich Village, the Comedy Cellar is one of New York City’s great comedy clubs. Famous comedians like Jon Stewart, Chris Rock, Sarah Silverman, and Louie CK all got their start performing at the Comedy Cellar. As a result, it is not uncommon for these and other famous comedians to take the stage from time to time.

  1. Listen to Jazz at the Village Vanguard

Nothing says old New York like a great jazz nightclub. Founded in 1935, the Village Vanguard is an important historic center of New York and of American music history. Great jazz musicians like Miles Davis, Thelonious Monk, Bill Evans and John Coltrane either performed live or recorded albums there. Today, the Vanguard regularly hosts world-famous jazz musicians.

  1. Got to the Whitney to check out great art and fashion

The Whitney Museum is located in the Meatpacking District, near the Highline. This makes it well situated within a great New York neighborhood, and next to another great New York attraction.

Visitors should check out the exhibits inside of the Whitney (which change on a regular basis) and should then head to the trendy shops and restaurants in the Meatpacking District before taking a stroll on the Highline.


There are always numerous reasons not to take a trip. Maybe you don’t want to leave the house before you fix your leaky faucet or you are simply waiting for a big raise before setting off for the Big Apple. Whatever your excuse, know that when you do eventually make it to New York City, there are a plethora of intellectually stimulating, fun, and eye-opening experiences waiting for you when you arrive.

Top Five Most Beautiful Libraries to Visit in Europe


For those currently studying their online masters in library science, what better way to enhance your education and really make it come to life than by planning the ultimate dream trip to Europe to visit some of the most beautiful libraries? Here in the United States, there are all kinds of gorgeous and important libraries worth visiting, but Europe can provide you with something that you just won’t find here. It can give you a new appreciation for all you’re learning in your library science degree.

Here’s a look at the top five most beautiful and historic libraries in Europe.

Wiblingen Monastery: Ulm-Wiblingen, Germany

For those who have an appreciation for Baroque architecture, this library in Upper Swabia just can’t be missed. The library’s interior is considered by many experts to be the absolute best example of Rococo architecture in the world. Besides the stunning library, visitors can also take in the monastery museum. The building dates back to 1714, so it oozes history and opulence.

Admont Abbey Library, Admont, Austria

Here’s another example of Baroque architecture, this time in Austria. This happens to be the oldest monastic library in the entire world, so you know you’re going to get a glimpse into history. Be sure to leave yourself plenty of time to take in the many murals painted on the library’s high ceilings.

Trinity College Library, Dublin, Ireland

While beautiful libraries may not be the first thing that pops into your head when considering a trip to Dublin, Ireland, in reality, this is where you can find one of the most stunning and incredible libraries in the world. This library is currently home to the Book of Kells, which is believed to be dated at 800 AD. It is a scholarly library and is the largest one in the country.

The Codrington Library, Oxford, London

Of course, the list of stunning European libraries wouldn’t be complete without at least one from Britain. The Codrington Library in Oxford is an academic library with more than 185,000 books. Now here’s a really incredible statistic: of those books, one-third of them were actually published before the 1800s, which means you will be completely surrounded by history. This is one of those libraries that takes a long time to browse through, so be sure to leave adequate time.

Clementinum National Library, Prague, Czech Republic

And not to be outdone by the others on the list, the Clementinum National Library in Prague is yet another not-to-be-missed European gem. This library was named after Saint Clement and was founded in 1781. As you can probably guess by the year it was built, this one features that lovely Baroque architecture that is just so incredible to see in person. It features ivy-covered walls scattered through various courtyards, a commanding library hall, and works of art on the ceilings.

You Can’t Go Wrong

It really doesn’t matter which library or libraries on this list that you choose to visit, you can’t go wrong. Each has its own distinct style and an incredible selection of books.

How Should You Pick A Great Cruise Line?

If you want to go on a memorable cruise a very big part of the experience is going to be dictated by the cruise line you choose. There is definitely no shortage of options available at the moment with countless agencies offering trips all around the world. Obviously, some are going to be great while others will not be so suitable for your personal wishes and needs.

At the end of the day you want to gain access to the best services for the money you pay, as with With this in mind, here are some really simple tips that are going to help you to achieve exactly that.

Read Online Reviews

Some time ago the only real way to get information about the services offered was to talk with friends or family members. Now we have access to the internet and people can so easily share the experience that they had with practically everyone. It is a shame not to take advantage of this opportunity.

The large travel sites like Trip Advisor are the first ones that you want to look on. They allow users to share their experience and review different destinations and agencies. See if people were happy with what was offered and look for good inside information that will help you to decide whether or not the cruise line is a great choice.

Compare Deals Offered By Different Cruise Lines

There is a very good possibility that there will be different cruise lines that will offer packages for the desired destination. That is why you need to get the deals from as many as you can. You will obviously focus just on those that fit your current budget but this does not mean you choose while only thinking about how much you are going to pay. What is very important in choosing a cruise line is receiving as much as possible for your dollars. You can only see if this is the case when you see exactly what is included.

What you are interested in the most is the itinerary and the different stops that are included, together with the time spent at every single destination. This can easily shift your decision towards one cruise line over the next.

Check The Staff

The last thing that is highly recommended is to learn all that you can about the staff that will be around you as you are on the cruise. See how the cruise line handles employment and see if really good professionals are hired or if people without experience are employed. Such information is not always available but by using a Google search you can learn a lot about the people that are publicly presented.


Take as much time as you can when you choose your cruise line so that you can get as much information as possible about the quality that is going to be offered. Do not blindly trust the marketing material that is presented since all cruise lines will say they are the best. It is normally better to trust past clients.

6 Best Hot Springs in Japan You Need to Visit


With over 3,000 hot springs, Japan is the undisputed land of amazing hot springs. Locally, they are called onsen and it is one of the most indulgent ways to pass your time when in Japan. Eager to experience the best the country offers? Here are some of the best that you should not miss.

  1. Takaragawa Onsen

Located in Gunma, Central Honshu, this riverside hot spring is considered one of the best in Japan. The clue is in the name – Takaragawa means “treasure river” – and it indeed houses a wealth of beauty.

The outdoor onsen has four slate-floored pools that are a few hundred meters from Tone-gawa. The water is alkaline and is believed to aid in treating fatigue, nervous disorders, and digestive problems. All the pools are for mixed bathing except a single ladies-only bath. The setting is enchanting, surrounded by a forest, pathways, wooden huts, and statues.

  1. Kiroro

Enjoy a hot spring bath in this onsen situated in Kiroro Town. Large and surrounded by nature, this is a caldera hot spring that comes from Akaigawa Village. It presents an utterly relaxing experience as you soak in a wonderful tub of hot bubbling water. The views are so mesmerizing you will forget the passing time.

  1. Hakone Yuryo

Only three minutes from the Hakone-Yumoto station, this is a beautiful outdoor onsen that is embraced by forests. The pools are large and shaded by trees, allowing bathers to feel close to nature.

  1. Oedo Onsen Monogatari

There is no need to go far to find a worthwhile hot spring in Tokyo. Check out this inner city onsen in Odaiba Island. The setting is super cool since it’s located right after an Edo period town.

Moreover, there are a slew of activities that can be done here. On top of the list is the hot spring, of course, but you can also go for massages, spa treatments, restaurants, relaxation rooms, and various shops. You can opt to stay here for an entire day and never get bored.

  1. Kinosaki

If you are truly crazy for hot springs, there is no better place to be than the town of Kinosaki. Located in northern Kansai, it offers the best onsen ryokan experience. There are seven public baths and numerous onsen ryokan. Most of the hotels have their own baths to indulge in but nothing should stop you from going onsen-hopping in the many public baths in town.

  1. Lamp no Yado

Hidden in the Noto-hanto peninsula in Central Honshu, this sanctuary is as secluded and indulgent as a hot spring can get. From the seaside, a country road leads to a narrow path that opens to a switchback hill that you climb on foot. It sounds like a lot of work but it’s all worth it as the onsen is to-die for. The private outdoor pools are stunning and the view of the Sea of Japan is unrivaled. While the trip may be a bit costly, it is certainly well-spent once you’ve experienced its beauty.

Things to Know Before Flying to Tel Aviv

Travelling to Tel Aviv is one of the most unforgettable trips I’ve ever had. Did I enjoy it? Definitely. However, if I could go there again, there are some things I’d do differently. If you’re a first-time traveler to the Holy Land, you might want to learn some important things first.

Familiarize the City’s Weather

Fall and spring seasons are the best time to book Tel Aviv flights. During these months, the city will usually experience rain. However, they are better than winter when it’s cold or summer when it’s dry and hot. According to the Ministry of Tourism, August is the peak season in Israel’s tourism industry. If you don’t like the crowd, you can go to the city in April, May, June, July, or September.

If you are going to go to higher elevations such as the mountain fortress of Masada, prepare for cooler temperatures. Bring clothing that you can easily layer, so you can cope with the changing temperature of the daytime and nighttime.

Know How to Communicate with the Locals

The language barrier is a common problem among travelers. Though Arabic and Hebrew are the official languages of the country, people widely speak English. Thus, you’ll have little trouble finding someone who can understand you.

Aside from the language, you must also know about the culture of the country you’re going to. It will pay to read about the history of the Tel Aviv and Israel so that you will not find yourself in any awkward conversation.

Deal with Merchants and Businessmen the Right Way

If you’re planning to visit the Carmel Market in Tel Aviv, then you should learn how to haggle. Merchants usually give a much higher price for their items as they already expect their buyers to negotiate over their cost.

When it comes to tipping, the average tip in bars, restaurants, and tour guides is around 10% to 15%. However, tipping is not common outside the tourism and food industry.

Learn How to Deal with Shekels

Shekei is the currency of Israel. Before you go to the country, it’s better that you exchange your currency to shekels. You will have a better deal if you go to an independent  money changer station than your hotel. Hotels usually give a lower rate than those posted in the bank of Israel.

If you are using an ATM, there are machines that process international withdrawals. You will receive cash in shekels. However, you should be aware of the transactions fees as they are usually high.

Listen to the Latest News

Tel Aviv welcomes more than a million of visitors a year. Thus, the police and military forces are trained well to keep them safe. True enough, Israel is safer than many other nations. Their crime rates are lower than the US. Still, conflicts can arise and escalate without warning. Be sure to listen to the latest news before the day of your trip to learn whether there threats to the safety of tourists.

Final Thoughts

Be a smart traveler and plan your trip to Tel Aviv carefully. That way, you can enjoy your holiday in the Holy Land to the fullest.

6 Ways to Fly Coach in Style

(Image Credit: Pexels / Maile Ortiz)

Flying coach might be an affordable way to travel, but it isn’t always the most luxurious. If you’ve ever felt like you’re just participating in a mass cattle call during your trip, you’re not alone. What if you could start enjoying your travel experience before you reached your destination? Here are six tips to make flying coach a more comfortable and enjoyable experience, even if your airline of choice doesn’t seem to care.

1. Choose Your Airline Wisely

Nothing says cattle call more than sitting halfway in your neighbor’s seat or having to battle for legroom. One thing that most people don’t realize is that your assigned “pitch” (airline language for legroom) various by carrier, with the standard being 31 inches.

The good news is that you can score 34 inches of pitch with JetBlue as well as a standard leather seat and seatback DirectTV. If you’re flying international, you can get up to 36 inches with some of the planes in the Thai Airways fleet.

2. Pick Your Seat Quickly and Carefully

When you book a coach ticket, you should also choose your seat immediately if given the option. The best seats are taken early, so picking a seat quickly can guarantee the most comfortable journey.

If you’re not sure which seats are the best, use a site like that will rank a flight’s seats based on legroom as well as distance to the bathroom. Seats that you want to avoid are the ones against the bulkhead and in front of exit row because these either won’t recline at all or will have limited reclining ability.

3. Stay Hydrated

Many people don’t realize just how dehydrated they can become when flying. If you’re planning to travel, have water with you at all times and make an effort to stay hydrated. If you want to leave the plane feeling refreshed, it also might be a good idea to pass on the alcohol.

4. Dress Appropriately

Comfortable clothing when you fly coach is a must. Avoid wearing anything that could potentially be constricting, even blue jeans. Dress in layers so that you can remain comfortable as temperatures change. For example, a nice t-shirt under a sweater or jacket is a good choice. You may also want to bring along an extra pair of socks so that you can take off your shoes during a long flight.

5. Use Intelligent Earbuds

Airports and airplanes can be nerve-wracking environments due to the noise levels and degree of overstimulation present. Smithsonian Magazine reports that the noise from an aircraft alone can reach 85 decibels. Using noise cancellation headphones or earbuds has become popular with travelers, but there is a better solution to this problem.

Intelligent earbuds like Nuheara’s IQbuds™ make travel more relaxing and enjoyable. These wireless earbuds have a “plane” setting that will reduce aircraft engine noise and still allow you to balance audio between the digital and physical world according to your preferences.

6. Plan Some Diversions

Most of us have busy lives, so a forced time-out in a plane for a few hours doesn’t have to be a bad thing. Take advantage of that downtime to do something that you enjoy such as reading a book or magazine, doing a crossword puzzle, or watching a movie through those IQbuds™. If you have these activities lined up, you just may look forward to your next flight in that coach seat.

If you want to travel from point A to point B, flying may be the best option. Use these tips to turn that unavoidable travel experience to something that is not only tolerable but even comfortable and enjoyable.

A few ways to make your trip more memorable

When you go on any kind of long term journey there are a few things that you need to consider before you depart. What are the reasons for your trip, is it for business or for pleasure? What are you hoping to gain from the journey and more pragmatically what method of transport will you take. Let’s consider you are going for pleasure, this allows you more freedom and choice on your methods of transport and the time you want to spend on your trip. This freedom will allow you to undertake your journey in a number of ways which will add to your experiences. Below we will look at some of the more unique ways that you can travel which can add some extra adventure to your plans:


This is probably the riskiest of these suggestions. We have all seen horror movies with a bad ending for hitchhikers, but the truth is this can be one of the most rewarding ways to travel. You will gain insights from locals that you would not have learnt. You may take unexpected detours and discover areas that you may not have come across otherwise and you will also save a ton of money on transport. This is the best method for those with complete freedom in regard to time and plans.

Book a last-minute trip:

When it comes to double edged swords this can be one of the easiest or most difficult journey decisions you can make. Last minute plans can save you a lot of money and bring you to some of the most exotic locations on the planet that you may not have been able to afford otherwise. The best option to minimise your risk is to book a last minute cruise deal with a trusted source and discover a huge range of offers that these companies have. Flights are trickier as you will also have to arrange accommodation, activities and transport etc, although sometimes this can suit certain travellers who enjoy the risk factor involved with last minute flights.

Say yes:

There are many times when we are travelling that we take too long to consider an offer given to us by new friends. They may ask you to join them on a tour or to visit a local café. Many times, we will consider all the variables before giving an answer and then the opportunity might be gone. The simple solution to this is to just say yes and then go on your trip and see how it goes. Often it will turn out to be much more fun than sitting there thinking about it.

Although these suggestions might be a little outside your comfort zone or financial plans, they are sure to make your trip more fulfilling. If it is your whole trip or just part of it, spontaneity and risk are always a sure way to make the journey more memorable. So, hitch-hike take a cruise or simple say yes.