Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Ship Inspections and What They Mean For You

When a new ship is built, travel companies will know about it before the general public. By making a travel agent your friend, you can stay up to date on the latest trends in the travel industry. Know what the hottest destinations are and the best prices. 

Travel agents do ship inspections for a number of reasons. One of the most important reasons is it gives you hands on knowledge of what the ship has to offer. Have you ever looked at an ad online and then went to the destination and were disappointed? Travel agents are in the know. They work hard learning every detail of the new ships and itineraries so that they can help meet your needs.

Below you will see one of my YouTube videos of when I did a ship inspection of Royal Caribbean's Freedom of the Seas. While I did pay for my air travel to Florida, it was worth it to experience this ship first hand.  

Let me share my knowledge and experience with you. Visit us at http://sweettravelgroup.com 

Golf Vacation Planning

Planning a golf trip? Have a group of friends going with you? Wish you had someone to help you coordinate the details? No problem. Sweet Travel Group is here to help. 

We have golf vacation packages available or we can create a custom itinerary for your group. 

We can take care of it all:
  • air, hotel, course reservations, cart, etc. 
  • We can even have your golf clubs shipped to you, so you don't have to fly with them.
Some current offers:
  1. Casa de Campo in Romana, Dominican Republic. Package includes:  Full American breakfast for two at Lago Grill Restaurant; Daily round of golf for one guest including shared cart on any of the 3 golf courses: Teeth of the Dog, Dye For or The Links. (Subject to availability) Unlimited Club Storage Free Replay rounds at Dye For and The Links golf courses. (An additional fee applies for replay rounds at Teeth of the Dog).
  2. Los Suenos Marriott Ocean & Golf Resort Rainforest View. Exclusive $100 Off per booking. Daily buffet breakfast for ALL. Kids 12 & younger stay FREE.
  3. Hyatt Regency Maui Resort & SpaLocated on 40 spectacular oceanfront acres on Ka'anapali Beach, the award winning Hyatt Regency Maui Resort and Spa offers unlimited activities and amenities in a setting of tropical luxury. This resort truly offers something for everyone: a rooftop astronomy program; oceanfront Kamaha’o Spa; 750,000-gallon pool with a 150-foot water slide; sand bottom children's pool; tennis; nightly live entertainment including "Drums of the Pacific” Polynesian Luau; nine restaurants and lounges; and plenty of glorious Maui sunsets.

Monday, February 20, 2017

Why it's better to book shore excursions before you board the ship

Many travelers wait to book their cruise shore excursions until they are onboard the ship. You run the risk of having the tour you want sold out, it will also you cost you more to book excursions while onboard. Cruise ships make a profit from your onboard excursion bookings. It's cheaper to book it directly before the trip or with your travel agent. 

The cruise line will tell you that outside companies are not trustworthy. There are many companies out there that are not only reliable, are trustworthy because they guarantee that you will return to your ship on time. 

Shore Trips Guarantees that in the unlikely case that you miss your ship's departure, at no fault of your own, they will move you to next port of call at their expense. 

I really like the multi-port packages. It makes it easier for me to budget my trip expenses and it saves you money by bundling the cost. If you're traveling with a group, let the Shore Trips know how many people and see how you can save on a group price. 

Try Shore Trips next time you need to book a sightseeing tour, activity, or shore excursion. 

Thursday, February 16, 2017

Stanford Pow Wow. Experience Native American Culture.

Each year Stanford hosts a Powwow in May. This year it will be May 12-14, 2017. If you've never been to a powwow, it is similar to fair. There's vendors, food, and entertainment. It's a free event with donations accepted for camping and parking. 

The vendors sell handmade items and other native supplies. I've seen everything from fox tails to turquoise jewelry. 

 Food is your typical food truck items: corn dogs, fries, and chicken skewers. 

Entertainment typically begins with the grand opening, which includes a parade of all the participants, the flags, and signing. Then the show is divided into various dance competitions that are divided by age and sex categories. 

The traditional outfits are amazing. I've enjoyed sitting in the crowd and watching the participants put on their very elaborate and ornate garb. The musical accompaniment is done by at least two groups of native singers who also beat drums to the tune of the music. They often take turns singing in order to rest after each song. 

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Carnival Goes to Cuba

  • Four-day cruises Carnival Paradise will depart from Tampa, Florida on June 29, July 13, August 24, September 7 and 21, and October 5 and 19, 2017 as well as May 3, 2018 and include a daytime and overnight visit to Havana.

Day 1: Depart from Tampa, FL 4pm
Day 2: Havana, Cuba. Arrive at 11:30am. Overnight stay.
Day 3: Havana, Cuba. Depart at 6:30am. 
Day 4: Fun Day at Sea
Day 5: Arrive in Tampa at 8am 

  • Five-day voyages will depart August 14 and 28, September 25 and October 9, 2017, and include a daytime and overnight visit to Havana, as well as a stop in either Cozumel or Key West.
  • Guests will be able to choose from a range of exciting shore excursion experiences that showcase Cuba's vibrant culture and majestic beauty, along with the island's warm and friendly people and centuries-old architectural landmarks.
  • The visits to Havana comply with regulations of the U.S. Department of Treasury that permit travel operators to transport approved travelers to Cuba to engage in activities as defined by the U.S. Department of Commerce, Office of Foreign Assets Control.
  • A passport is required for all guests cruising to Cuba.

For travel ideas and deals, visit us at http://sweettravelgroup.mtravel.com/cruises

Thursday, February 9, 2017

Cruise with Oprah

Join Oprah on a cruise to Alaska!! Talk about an opportunity of a life-time! 

Holland America is hosting an O, Oprah Magazine, Share the Experience Cruise to Alaska. July 15-22, 2017 Round-trip from Seattle. 

Special Events for this sailing:
  • Behind the scenes with O's Editorial Team. Learn how the magazine comes together, from rough ideas to the newsstand.
  • O's Onboard Book Club. Read new books, share your insights with new friends.
  •  In-person style advice from Emmy Award Winner, Adam Glassman.
  • Find your Zen with meditations, tai chi and more.
  • Healthy eating options. Choose from specialty crafted meals or O' inspired meals.
An opportunity you won't want to miss!

Sunday, February 5, 2017

Cheap 3 Star Hotels in Orlando, Florida

Orlando is probably one of the most popular travel destinations in the U.S. If you travel to Orlando to do the theme parks with your family, you know that you will already be spending a lot of money on the tickets, purchases, and food. A good way to save money while you are there is to choose a cheaper hotel to stay at.

1. Clarion Inn Lake Buena Vista, A Rosen Property - $52 average nightly rate. Located in Downtown Disney. Makes it a convenient bus ride to Disneyworld. Provides complimentary parking and wifi in public areas. Rooms have microwaves and mini-fridge. Buffet breakfast available at an additional cost. 

2. Orlando Vista Inn at Lake Buena Vista, Ascend Collection- $59 average nightly rate. Located in Downtown Disney, near Disney Quest and Disney's Typhoon Lagoon. Provides complimentary shuttle to the parks and parking. This hotel is pet friendly, but charges a pet fee.

3. Courtyard by Marriott Orlando International Drive- $62 average nightly rate. Located near Riples Believe it or Not and SeaWorld Orlando. Self parking is complimentary. Provides a shuttle to the parks at an additional cost. 

Saturday, February 4, 2017

Got Tired of People Abusing My Time and Talents

After several months of getting travel inquiries from people who were interested in cruising. Spending time researching, putting together an itinerary, double-checking the details and making sure there weren't any additional discounts, freebies, many times going back and forth on revisions, etc. 

I was disappointed time and time again when my prospective client would take all my hard work and either decide that they really weren't serious about traveling or that they would purchase it elsewhere. 

I've used Fiverr in the past to purchase services and I have always found that it was an affordable way to get expert advice for cheap.
 I went ahead and created a Fiverr Gig

My cruise planning prices start at $5 and go up depending on how much more you want to add to the itinerary. If you choose to book your travel with me, I refund you the $5, if you don't, then at least I made $5 for the hours I spent developing your trip. 

Providing Social Responsibility When Traveling with Trails of Indochina

Trails of Indochina provides many customized itineraries for the countries of Vietnam, Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar, Thailand, Indonesia, China, Hong Kong, and Singapore. 

Unlike other tour operators which sell you a pre-set package, Trails of Indochina allows you to focus on what your particular travel interests might be. For example, for individuals interested in contributing to the economic and social development of the countries they visit, they offer some optional opportunities to add value to a poor village. 

Social Responsibility

Visit Cambodia and donate a clear water pump. For $300 you can help provide clean water to an impoverished village. It is engraved with your name. You can choose to have it dug up, but not turned on until you arrive or you can be part of the excavation process during your visit. 

Visit Laos and donate books to the Book Boat. This program allows poor children to have access to reading materials. This boat like library travels along the Mekong River in Luang Probang providing students with much needed early literacy skills. 

You can bring with you books to add to the library in English, since the children do learn English as a second language or you can donate money through the Laos office for the books to be purchased on your behalf. 

Don't just travel, add life-long value. Change the world.

Interested in planning your next adventure. Contact us at http://sweettravelgroup.com or email us at sweettravelgroup@gmail.com

Friday, February 3, 2017

Super Bowl Cruise Sale- Get up to $1700 Cash back!

Super Bowl 51 is this weekend. I already have my wings and appetizers planned out for the big game. 

This weekend only, in honor of Super Bowl 51 in Houston, Texas, we're having a big sale. Book any cruise with us and get up to $1700 cash back! This offer is combinable with current posted specials. Savings on top of savings. Gotta' love that!

Offer valid February 3- February 5, 2017 at 11:59 pm PST. Purchases must be done online on our website. Amount of cash back depends on the cruise fare per person. Cash back will be mailed 4-6 weeks after sailing.

Visit us at http://sweettravelgroup.com