Zika outbreak in Caribbean will make Hawaii the big winner in 2016

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Recently the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) issued a Level 2 travel alert for many countries in south and central America as well as several islands in the Caribbean where the Zika virus has been reported.  This rapidly spreading virus has been linked to significant complications for pregnant women and until more is known about the virus the CDC recommends that pregnant women at any stage of their pregnancy consider postponing travel to areas where there has been Zika virus transmission. I recommend that if you are concerned about this virus that one of the safest options is to consider Hawaii as your tropical vacation alternative in 2016 until this Zika issue has been contained. For the most up-to-date information about the Zika virus CLICK HERE.

After terror attacks in Paris the U.S. shuts off visas to some European and Asia travelers –

Over the last 20 years 38 countries had a Visa Waiver Program (VWP) with the U.S. that allowed for citizens to visit the U.S. without a Visa. After the Paris attacks the U.S. have restricted the program so that Nationals of the VWP can no longer receive waivers if they have traveled to Iran, Iraq, Sudan or Syria since March of 2011.  For a list of the 38 countries with the VWP CLICK HERE.

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I just returned from a trip to Vienna, Austria-

What an amazing city!  Vienna is of course the capital of Austria and is along-side the beautiful Danube River. Everywhere you go you can see and hear about the legacy built by Mozart and Beethoven. This is a city bursting with art, music, museums, majestic palaces and amazing food. The Viennese are very proud of their desserts and as a person with a passion for sweets I was almost in heaven. If you go to Vienna be sure to sample the famous Sacher-torte which was invented by Franz Sacher in 1832 and is found at the Sacher Hotel.

Should the airlines rename “Fuel surcharge” as “Profit surcharge” –

One of my biggest pet peeves with the airlines is that despite a 70% decrease in fuel prices around the world the airlines up to now have kept in place the high fuel surcharges they add to the ticket price. They justified the “fuel surcharge” with the rising price of fuel. Using that same logic I think the public should demand that any fuel surcharge should correspond to the rising AND lowering of fuel prices.

Putting off traveling the world until you retire is the biggest mistake you can make –

Many people I talk to tell me they are putting off traveling the world until they retire. That is the biggest mistake you can ever make. This came home to me first hand last year as I traveled to Istanbul for a meeting. I had a minor operation on my foot and had to use a push cart to get around. Having limited mobility when traveling turns an easy stroll in the park into a very difficult job.  Things as simple and beautiful as cobblestone streets made me cut short my touring as my cart wheels would get stuck in the ruts. My final advice: If you have your health don’t wait for your retirement to travel. Get out and explore the world while it is so much fun and before it becomes so much work.