Adelman Travel Newsline
Castles and countryside: Travel tales from Ireland
In the second of a three part series, Adelman vacation consultants share highlights from their travels throughout Ireland
After discovering the many delights in Dublin, Adelman's Marilyn Fare and Lisa Bright headed out in the magnificent Irish countryside as they continued their journey throughout the Emerald Isle.
Marilyn and Lisa visited several castles and other historic sites that dot Ireland's unique landscape. They climbed the 100 narrow spiraling steps to kiss the famous Blarney Stone located at Blarney Castle and visited King John's Castle near Limerick. Built along the River Shannon in the 13th century, this fortification is one of the best preserved Norman castles in Europe. Marilyn and Lisa also enjoyed a fascinating guided tour at the Rock of Cashel. "The 12th century church ruins, which are clustered high on a limestone outcropping, provide a spectacular view overlooking the vast countryside," Marilyn said.
Next, Marilyn and Lisa explored the Ring of Kerry. According to Marilyn, "The 100-mile road that circles the southwest portion of Ireland is full of beautiful scenery and features towering peaks on one side and a coastline of golden beaches and rocky headlands on the other." Two especially notable stops along the Ring of Kerry include Moll's Gap, which offers a striking panoramic view of the area below, and The Skellig Rocks, which are actually located 12 km off shore. Skellig Michael, the largest rock, contains beehive dwellings of an early Christian monastery and is accessible by boat. Skellig Michael was also the site of the ending scene in the most recent Star Wars movie, "The Force Awakens". As a word of caution, Lisa advises, "If you drive the Ring of Kerry yourself, it is recommended that you go counter-clockwise. The road is very narrow with many switchbacks so it would be less stressful to follow the tour buses instead of meeting them head on around every corner!"
Continuing up the Atlantic Coast, Marilyn and Lisa also took in the breathtaking views around the Cliffs of Moher. One of Ireland's most visited natural attractions, the wall of rock is almost 700 feet above the sea. Marilyn notes "The climb to the top was challenging, but very much worth the view!" She adds, "Be sure to bring a wind breaker!" The area around the cliffs is home to many flowers, plants and animals, including puffins. Be sure to visit The Cliffs Exhibition. This exciting interpretive center is built into the landscape. The underground building has a huge domed cave that contains fascinating images, exhibits, displays and experiences.
In summing up there journey, Marilyn said, "We thoroughly enjoyed Ireland and all of its history, traditions and folklore along with the many castles and outstanding natural sites!"
Watch for the final installment of our Travel Tales from Ireland series in the next News Line, as Adelman's Karen Allen will share some of the more unusual sites and experiences that were part of her recent trip to the Emerald Isle.
It will be epic: art, entertainment and Adelman Travel
Once again, Adelman is a sponsor of the Milwaukee Art Museum's Lakefront Festival of Art, June 17-19. This prestigious annual art fair, which features over 170 jury-selected artists from across the nation, has been attracting thousands of attendees for over fifty years.
As in past years, Adelman will host a vacations travel booth during the festival. Adelman's team of experienced vacation advisors will be on hand to meet with attendees to answer travel-related questions or to inspire festival goers with brochures from our participating vendor partners (Oceania, Funjet, Regent, Delta Vacations and Globus Family of Brands including Avalon Waterways). Visitors can pick up a complimentary Adelman tote bag and register for a chance to win some great prizes including two round-trip tickets on American Airlines for the 48 states and two Funjet tickets to Cancun, Mexico. Our partner co-sponsors will also offer special show pricing on select travel packages. These show specials are available to all Adelman customers and can be booked through any of our Adelman offices across the country.
The Adelman Vacations booth will be located in the main Performing Arts Stage area, just north of the Silent Auction tent and near the Beer & Soda stand. For more information on the Lakefront Festival of Art, visit http://lfoa.mam.org/.
For help with any of your vacation travel needs, give us a call at 800-749-7116, or visit our website at www.adelmanvacations.com.
American detailed upcoming changes to its AAdvantage frequent flyer program. Similar to other carriers, members will soon earn miles based on how much they spend instead of just distance flown. The amount of miles earned per dollars spent will increase based on the member's status level. The new system of accrual will begin Aug. 1, 2016. Then on Jan. 1, 2017, American will introduce a new elite status level, Platinum Pro, which will fall in between Platinum and Executive Platinum. With the launch of Platinum Pro, American will adjust qualification requirements for each level. American said it will also make changes to upgrade windows and prioritization, however those changes won't be launched until later in 2017. For more information please visit https://www.aa.com/i18n/AAdvantage/programDetails/AAdvantage2016.jsp?locale=en_US&cint=EML||20160606|ADV|MKT|SOLO|B2B_US|AAdvantageRedesign#elitestatus2017
In other news American recently launched 20 new routes from its six major domestic hubs. In addition, the carrier revealed it will begin new daily nonstop flights between Tucson and New York's JFK and between Boise and Dallas Fort Worth later this year.
Delta Air Lines
Delta is expanding its Comfort Plus fare product to include flights to and from Asia/Pacific and Latin America/Caribbean effective for travel starting Sept. 19. The Comfort Plus fare bundle includes added amenities such as extra legroom, priority boarding and free alcohol. Delta has also implemented a feature that gives SkyMiles Members the ability to set default preferences for complimentary upgrades for First class and Delta Comport Plus.
In separate announcements, Delta revealed that as of July 1, its collection of in-flight entertainment will be offered to all passengers free of charge. Delta Studio which contains 400 movies, 750 TV shows, 2,400 songs, games, and 18 live satellite TV channels will be available on all of the airline's two-class aircraft, or nearly 90% of its fleet. Passengers can access the content on seat-back entertainment systems where available or they can stream Delta Studio through their own laptop, mobile device, or tablet. Delta also unveiled its new Flight Fuel, buy-on-board dining program which is now available on routes over 900 miles in North America. Flight Fuel will feature "healthful" options plus menu items will be rotated on a more frequent basis to give passengers better variety.
Just after launching service between New York-JFK and Edinburgh, Delta said it will introduce flights from New York to Glasgow starting May 25, 2017.
JAL is bringing new dining options to its economy and premium economy class cabins on select international routes over the next several months. The new in-flight menu items will feature popular local dishes. European-style cookies and Haagen-Daz ice cream will also be added.
SAS, which has been in the process of upgrading the cabin interiors of its international aircraft, said that newly enhanced planes will be flying on routes to and from the United States. The new product features many state-of-the- art amenities and a 1-2-1 configuration in business class.
Adelman Hotel Collection
Did you know that among the many added benefits that can come when booking an Adelman Hotel Collection property, IHG Rewards members will receive a bonus award of 250 Rewards points on top of their regular IHG earnings? If you are not currently enrolled in the IHG Rewards program, consider registering at https://www.ihg.com/content/us/en/offers/mb2accelerate2016/registration before your next stay in order to take full advantage of the extra amenities that come with membership and booking with Adelman Travel.
Carlson Residor Hotel Group
Starting July 1, members of the Club Carlson loyalty program will be able to redeem points for TSA PreCheck membership. Carlson, which is the first hotel company to offer this perk, will cover the $85 Precheck enrollment fee in exchange for 65,000 points.
InterContinental Hotels Group
IHG announced plans for a major brand update for its Crowne Plaza Hotels & Resorts in the Americas. Upgrades will be made to public areas and meeting spaces. The $200 million investment will also bring more tech-focused amenities to room design.
Wyndham Hotel Group
Hotel officials unveiled plans for a strategic repositioning of Wyndham's 16 brands with the goal of making them more appealing to middle class Millennials. The company will redesign hotels and will add what it's calling "distinctive touches" to each brand. A large expansion of its midscale properties in Canada is also in the works. Starting next year, the hotel group will launch 25 new Wingate by Wyndham locations and 15 Hawthorns Suites throughout Canada.
In other news, Wyndham revealed details of its revised Wyndham Rewards loyalty program. Through four different status levels, Blue, Gold, Platinum and Diamond, members will receive a variety of increasing benefits such as free Wi-Fi, rollover nights, annual point bonuses and more. Plus, when members redeem their points for a stay in one of the program's top 25 destinations, they will now automatically receive an additional enhancement to their award night. These bonus opportunities are aimed at helping guests take advantage of local experiences near their destination such as an authentic cooking class in Shanghai or complimentary indoor skydiving in Orlando. For more information on the new Wyndham Rewards program visit https://www.wyndhamrewards.com/trec/consumer/aboutMemberBenefits.action
Delta expands its operations guarantee
Building on its industry-leading Operational Performance Commitment (OPC) to its corporate customers, Delta has unveiled new enhancements to the program. Delta's innovative performance guarantee, which was first launched last year, will now include metrics for international and regional operational performance along with uncontrollable delays and cancellations.
The updated OPC will also include U.S. Department of Transportation mishandled baggage complaints, an area where Delta already leads the industry, and only stands to improve upon, thanks to its recent implementation of RFID baggage tracking technology.
In response to customer feedback, Delta also created a tool to help quantify the savings associated with using Delta. An on-demand Operational Excellence Calculator provides data specific to each corporate account.
Brussels Airport recently fully reopened its departure hall. All 21 airlines that were operating their check-in desks in a temporary area have now returned to their regular location in the departure hall. The airport also recently opened an independent new lounge, named the Suite, which is located in Terminal B.
Norway is assessing a new national Air Passenger Tax. The fee is 80 Krone, or about $10 USD per person, and will be levied on both domestic and international travel. Passengers transiting through Norway on the same airline are exempt from the new tax.
Safe Rental Car Act was passed into law. The new U.S. legislation requires car rental firms with more than 35 vehicles to fix all open safety defects before the automobile can be rented. Prior to the passage of this law, there were no regulations governing car rental company policies in regards to auto manufacturer recall notices. The legislation came about after a driver died in a car rental that had been identified in a safety recall but had not yet been repaired.
Great reasons to hold a duplicate passport
If you are a frequent traveler, possessing a duplicate passport can be a very valuable tool for mitigating potential travel issues, according to travel insurance and safety expert, Joe Cortez. And now that the U.S. State Department has increased the validity period for the second passport from two years to four years, obtaining a duplicate book is even more appealing.
A second passport can ease access: Travel to politically sensitive countries can cause issues when you want to travel to certain other countries including being subjected to additional questioning at customs. For example, a passport stamp from Israel can make it very difficult to enter certain countries such as Algeria, Indonesia, Malaysia and the United Arab Emirates. Also, reducing the number of stamps and visas in a book can help ease the immigration process.
Alleviate visa processing issues with a duplicate book: The visa process for some countries can be complex and lengthy. Having a second passport book to submit can help alleviate issues if you need to secure a visa from two countries at the same time. A duplicate book also allows frequent travelers to keep up with current international travel plans while applying for a visa for a future trip.
Reduce your risk of being stuck by a lost passport: While travelers can apply for an emergency passport if a book is lost or stolen, the process can be difficult and the emergency replacement is only valid to return home. Citizens who hold a second passport book can avoid travel disruption if their first book is lost or stolen abroad. After a missing report is filed with local authorities and the U.S. State Department, the holder can continue to travel internationally with the second book while they wait for a permanent replacement to arrive.
Visit our Web site at www.adelmantravel.com for more travel information, resources and unique services including corporate travel management and vacations.
Adelman Travel Group
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