Bus travel takes a different role in the car-driven culture of the United States than it does in most countries. Because the area of the US is so vast, flying is often the most attractive transportation option for traveling between cities and can be priced quite competitively when factoring in time and convenience. For shorter distances driving is usually the first choice for US domestic travelers. However, for routes that are under five or six hours, the bus is almost always the most economical and often the most convenient form of travel. Furthermore, as Amtrak (the national rail service) continues to see cuts in government funding, bus service is often the only ground transportation option for many destinations. Visitors who are planning to stick to major cities will most likely find having a car to be inconvenient, expensive, and unnecessary. Therefore, taking the bus between destinations is a great option.Many Americans view traveling by bus with some trepidation, and, whether deserved or not, bus service in the US often has the reputation of being rather basic. In truth, the level of service varies greatly among bus carriers. Some carriers, like LuxBus in California or Transfloridian in Florida, offer deluxe buses and feature services that are rarely even found on airlines today, such as on-board entertainment and complimentary food and beverage service. Still, standard bus service is generally more on the budget level and offers few amenities. Food options are more likely to be a ten minute stop at a roadside fast food restaurant than on-board meal service.The bus industry in the United States is dominated by Greyhound, which is the only remaining nationwide bus carrier. Several other companies such as Trailways and Coach USA are made up of independently owned bus companies that share marketing functions and branding. In addition there are several strong regional players in the bus industry. While these companies compete with Greyhound, they often end up sharing service on routes that do not have enough traffic to sustain two carriers. This is similar to code sharing in the airline industry. The most recent development in the U.S. bus industry has been the Chinatown bus phenomenon. Several years ago a few enterprising business people in New Yorks Chinatown started running buses from Chinatown in NY to Chinatown in Boston, charging less than half of what traditional bus companies did and a fraction of what it cost to take the train or fly. They targeted Asian immigrants who wanted to shop or visit relatives and needed inexpensive and convenient transportation. Although the buses were modern and comfortable, the service was bare bonesno advertising, customer service, or bus stations. Customers simply went to the bus stop, waited for the bus, and paid the driver upon boarding. For those willing to do without frills, these companies offered virtually the same service as Greyhound at a substantially lower price. Before long, word spread about the service and all kinds of travelers started using these bus lines. They became especially popular with students, budget travelers, and people for whom the service was simply more convenient. Soon more bus companies duplicated this model and started offering service in other markets. Now you can find this type of bus service in Philadelphia, Virginia, Washington DC, Los Angeles and San Francisco. At this point the term Chinatown bus is used more loosely to describe this sort of low-cost/low-frills service. Many, if not most, of the companys do not have Chinatown as there main location and may not cater to the immigrant population at all. When these companies first started operating, concerns were raised about safety standards. There is still controversy within the industry about whether these low-cost bus companies are complying with the same regulations as the traditional companies. Nonetheless, all bus companies operating in the U.S. must undergo the same inspection standards and must comply with the same rules. Finding information about scheduled bus service is not always easy for visitors to the US. Historically bus companies have sold tickets at on-site ticket booths. Many now sell through their own websites as well. Whereas for plane travel there are many online booking sites that allow travelers to compare different carriers, it is more difficult to find route information for bus service. GotoBus.com is a centralized booking site focused on bus travel. It offers search capability similar to Expedia or Travelocity and sells tickets for many different bus and tour companies. Overall, the bus is a great option for visitors to the US who are looking for transportation between major US cities. For most cities, a car is not necessary and will be inconvenient and expensive. In metropolitan areas there are more choices for bus service today than at any time in the recent past. Particularly for shorter distances, it is the best way to go for the budget minded traveler.
Have your sit on a chair of a street portraits artist and get your fun profile in just seconds!! Close by Campo de Fiori will entertain your evening with outside caf and bars where you can enjoy fresh beers, cool drinks and meet a lot of young people!If you feel like shopping we do not recommend Piazza di Spagna and the adjacent streets running off. Shopping there could be frustrating if you do not have much money to spend and also why spending so much for any top fashion pocket or key holder while you can buy a load of things with the same amount of money?? Think better and consider these places also: Piazza Navona, Campo de Fiori, Trastevere and surrounding streets are full of very nice and original shops ( from book shop --see the Almost corner book shop located in Trastevere, Via del Moro, 45; ph: 06 583 6942 or The Lion Bookshop and caf in Via dei Greci, 33/36-; clothing shops, gourmet shops, toy shops, etc..) or, close to Piazza di Spagna, Via del Corso offers a variety of megastores that sell everything from leather goods to athletic wear and casual clothing.For antiques see Via Margutta. For chocolate specialties try the tiny Neopolitan chocolate shop that sells delicious chocolates in a charming interior. We would also recommend some open air markets or flee markets in Rome. For example, in Piazza Campo de Fiori every morning you can enjoy one of the most picturesque market made up of fruit, vegetable and flower stalls.. There you can ask a caff al vetro (served on a tiny glass) just to fell like a local (any time of the day is fine) and ask for some panna on top . You will be ready to sit and cherish some time looking at the people passing by.Another authentic flee market is in Via Sannio, 8-13 (Mon-Fri; 8-1pm; 8-6pm on Sat): there you can still find seventies and eighties hippy clothes.Another market is in Piazza Testaccio where you can find excellent objects on sale at reasonable prices. At Porta Portese market every Sunday is a tresure hunt: they sell just about everything in a stylish organised disorder from clothes to shoes, furniture, bijoux, plants, piece of furniture, Russian cameras, posters.. Watch out fro your oods while there. Many rubber are just waiting for innocent tourist So, every Sunday in Via Portuense and Via Nievo from 6.30-2pm!!If you have a passion for antiques a market fro you is held at Ponte Milvio along the banks of the river Tiber on the first weekend of every month. Myriad of stands specialized in antiques and collectors items. How to reach Rome? Well, beside the 2 airports (now served by Ryanair) the cheapest way would probably be by train especially if you are a backpacker minding his budget, right?Most trains travelling to Rome from other Italian cities and Europe terminate in Termini Station (ph:06 4775). It is right in the middle of the city centre. (National train tickets: ph: 06 47306250). If you arrive by night, do not worry: the area has plenty of youth accommodation to offer as hostels for backpackers, youth hostels for students and families and so on. If you travel with a laptop, or you are in a internet caf the better thing (instead of knocking several doors for a hostel bed night) would probably booking directly online with a credit card. There are many bookers that provide cheap accommodation in hostels in Rome: among the others we mention Flashbooking.com.While in Rome consider travelling by public transports as metro andBuses (ATAC; Ph:06 4695 4444):easy to use and quite cheap. There are 200 different bus routes that criss-cross Rome from 5.30 am to midnight. Fast or express lines, electrical buses, night buses, disabled buses. Buy single, 75-minute multi-journey ticket (1) or a day pass (4) from automatic ATAC machines or tabacchi. Stamp upon boarding. All bus routes state clearly on the front where they are going.
The first section when film-makers were expected to send their works ended in December and the Staff is now undergoing all preparations to be ready by April for this 2008 Film Festival. The organization estimates that for this festival there will be around 200 films competing for different sections. Here the list:International Competition section, reserved for feature length fiction or documentary films or animations. In order to be included in this section and compete for the "Golden Tulip" award, authors/film-makers have to focus their attention on themes on "arts" or "the artist", and literary adaptations.There is a particular section where films shown in other leading festivals (including many award-winning) will be projected at the World of Festivals Section In competition also the films at the Human Rights in Cinema Section that comprises both documentaries and features investigating the politics behind social and individual life changes. Documentaries Other NON-competitive sections are the Retrospective section & the Tributes section where tributes to a film-maker influential to film history are selected, The Mined Zone section reserved for innovative, unconventional and unique fiction films in terms of style or content and Masters of the Future Section featuring works by new directors who received critical acclaim Beside the International competition theres also the National Competition for recent Turkish films: Turkish Cinema.As the Istanbul International Film festival keeps evolving every year, the sections of the festival are of course subject to change.For further information please visit IKSV web site.To organize your trip in Istanbul, (Turkey) there are many free and useful tools on-line, from city guide to ticket-bookers, to accommodations advices and flight reservations. In the words of French poet Alphonse de Lamartine, if one had but a single glance to give the world, one should gaze on Istanbul. Indeed, this is a city of astonishing beauty. Its architecture, cuisine, history and culture make up a fascinating tapestry of yesterday and very much tomorrow. A metropolitan capital with an imperial history stretching back for over 1500 years, Istanbul is today the commercial, historical and cultural core of Turkey. But most of all, its a buzzing, living-breathing metropolis that is knocking at the doors of the European Union. It wont be hard to find a suitable accommodation (there are many youth hostels for backpackers or travellers on a budget up to enchanting hotels featuring Turkish interior designs, typical pieces of furniture, mosaics, spa and thermal baths at affordable prices). We found some in this website (Flashbooking) featuring gorgeous views over Bosporus and Istanbul Blue Mosque and markets.
You can travel to Asia for half of what others spend. No, that isnt a phony promise, but if you properly research your options you will find that its easy to save money on airfare to Asia. Start preparing for your trip months in advance by signing up online for mailing lists. Sounds crazy, right? No one likes to junk up their inbox by useless offers for credits cards or so-called discount travel packages. But there are some mailing lists that you can sign up for and specify what youre looking for. In this case, express your interest in traveling to Asia and youll receive newsletters on last-minute and discount flights. If you cant afford to get in through the front door, go in the back. Thats what stand-by flights are all about! You should never rely on a "stand-by flight" as a definite way to travel, but if you arent picky about your dates, then its an excellent way of saving money especially on international travel. You can improve your chances of making a stand-by flight by arriving at least one hour early to the gate. (Remember, you did not purchase a confirmed seat.) Immediately approach the check-in agents and let them know you are a stand-by passenger. If someone with a confirmed seat fails to show up before the scheduled departure time, theyll know to come to you with the seat first. Again, if you have a flexible schedule and dates are not an issue, then traveling on a courier flight may be a great option. You can travel to Asia on a "courier flight" for significantly less than commercial fares, but the downside to courier flights is that they dont usually work well if you are traveling with other people. You run the risk of being placed on separate flights and arriving to your destination at different times. However, it still remains a possibility if you are traveling alone or with just one other person. If youre a frequent traveler by plane, chances are youve racked up some major reward points with your airline. Use those points to your advantage and apply them towards your trip to Asia. You can reduce your airfare by 50% or more depending on how many reward points you have saved over time. Also remember to ask for any specials or discounts when purchasing your plane ticket. Lots of airlines offer a variety of discounts, such as senior citizen, student, or military. Finally, look into discount travel websites. These sites will often list airfares at a discounted rate depending on the date you travel. With these helpful tips, you are sure to "save money" on your trip to Asia!
Ever wondered how to go about emigrating to Australia and go about getting an Australian visa? Wondering what the various options were and how to go about the different schemes without too much red tape or expense? There are lots of ways to emigrate to Australia. This article spells it out in 9 easy stages.1. The Australian economy has never been stronger and the Australian government are particularly looking out for skilled people with a specialization in many business and trade areas. In order to emigrate you could go the route of an expensive lawyer, or you could get the advice of specialist Australian immigration consultants to see if you qualify for "Australian immigration" eligibility.2. If you are wondering about work skills needed to "emigrate to Australia" or qualifications needed to emigrate to Australia then it's worth bearing in mind that there is a points system for applying for what is known as the Skilled Visa. You can fill in an online form to see if you satisfy the Australian immigration points system as set out by the Australian Department of Immigration and Multicultural Affairs (DIMIA).3. An Australia working visa. Managers, qualified professionals and skilled tradespeople are especially in demand under the Skilled Visa program. Schemes are available for skilled visas on a permanent or temporary basis, and are all based on points needed to emigrate to Australia as set out by the Australian Immigration Department. With the Australian job market advertising over 150,000 jobs each week and unemployment at its lowest in 10 years, being eligible for an Australia work visa has never been more possible. There is a huge demand in the plumbing, security, printing and the building trades in particular. However, despite the huge demand across the board there was a shortage of candidates for jobs in 2004.4. An Australia working holiday visa. These are exactly what they sound like. There are many people who dream of being able to emigrate to Western Australia or, more specifically, emigrate to Perth Australia for the amazing weather and facilities there. If you are between 18 and 30 and are looking to spend 12 months in Australia then you may qualify for one of the many Australian working holiday visas that are available every year.5. Family Visa. If you have an Australian partner, or members of your immediate family are permanently based in Australia then you may qualify for one of several family stream visas. Your application to emigrate to Australia can be done online. The Government of Australia encourages emigration in order to bring families together. Under the Family Visa Emigration Programme, migrants considering emigration must be sponsored by a close family member or fianc(e) living in Australia. There are 4 schemes to choose from in order to find out if you are eligible for emigration. Select the one that best describes your situation. The sponsor must be either an Australian citizen, permanent resident or eligible New Zealand citizen, and would usually be 18 years of age or older.6. Visitors and tourists. All travelers, except New Zealand citizens, must obtain a visa or travel authority before they travel to Australia. But now there is no need to worry about visiting the Australian Embassy or High Commission to get your visa. You can now get your visa online. If you are planning to travel to Australia as a visitor or even on a business trip then you may need either a visa or an ETA (Electronic Travel Authority). An ETA will allow you to spend up to 3 months in Australia and you are free to travel anywhere you like.7. Business and investment visas. If you have had a successful business career either at a senior executive level or as an owner of your own business you may qualify for one of several visas under the Australian business visa program. Under the two-stage arrangements introduced on 1 March 2003, business migrants are granted a Business Skills (Provisional) visa for four years and, after establishing the requisite level of business presence required by the DIMIA or maintaining their minimum investment, are eligible to make an application for a Business Skills (Residence) visa.8. If you are an employee who is headhunted or moved to your company's Australia office then you can apply under the Australia sponsored work visa. Your employer can effectively sponsor you for this by becoming your Australia Immigration Sponsor. Under this system, if you are an established professional, you can emigrate to Australia without a degree.9. Retirement visas. If you wish to emigrate to Australia on retirement then you may be eligible for an Australia retirement visa given each year. If you are financially secure and would like to spend some of your retirement years in the warmer climates of Australia, find out if you qualify with our free online assessment.There has never been a better time to emigrate to Australia or to apply for an Australia Work Permit or Australia visa application.