Keep dreaming & planning your meaningful travel

Coronavirus: a message from GoAbroad’s founder to travelers

Dear Travelers & GoAbroad Community,

We are still here. Our employees are working from home, but they are still hard at work to help make meaningful travel possible. We have heard from many of you, and know that some of you are still traveling somewhere in the world, some of you are still planning to travel in the future, some of you have postponed your travels, and regrettably some of you have had to cancel your trips. We understand that there are many challenges the COVID-19 pandemic has caused.

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These pups will add cheer to your St. Patrick’s Day

A little Irish cheer on this St. Patrick' s Day thanks to some rescue pups and a coffee shop. Enjoy!


This Coffee Company Helps Save Rescue Pups ' And They Have St. Patrick' s Day Goodies, Too

By Morgan Smith
March 16, 2020
People

When' s the last time you skipped the long line at a coffee shop and brewed your own cup of joe at home? Or hit snooze to sneak in a few extra minutes of cuddling with your pet before work?

Grounds & Hounds, a California-based coffee company, is encouraging people to do just that.

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Oliver the hiking ferret has climbed more mountains than you!

A light story about a world-traveler and her pet ferret. Enjoy!


This hiking ferret has summited 11 of Colorado’s highest peaks

Oliver enjoys camping, kayaking, touring national parks and napping (when he’s not stealing pens and socks).

March 13, 2020
By Jen Reeder
Source: TODAY

When paramedic Lauren Smith "impulse-bought" a baby ferret in 2015, she didn' t know much about ferrets. She just knew she wanted a pet and felt it wouldn' t be fair to keep a dog or cat alone in her apartment while she worked 12-hour shifts.

"Somebody mentioned that ferrets sleep 18-20 hours a day, and I was like, " That' s perfect,' " she told TODAY.

Little did she know that while awake, young ferrets are extremely energetic. Her ferret, Oliver, would run straight into the wall or try to dive under the TV stand and miss and hit his head. He also engaged in his natural instinct to burrow.

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Volunteer vacations to bridge the generational gap

Grandparents have little in common with their grandchildren, or so it seems. It may just take a shared experience such as a volunteer vacation in Guatemala to brdge the generational gap.


 Memories worth making

The gap in relating with grandchildren has grown so much wider in the last couple of decades due to the domination of technology in the younger generations. Some grandparents may struggle to relate to the world their grandchildren now live in. Despite this gap in understanding each other, there are still ways to come together, share experiences and make memories that will bring them closer together.

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How did Vanuatu become one of the happiest countries?

Largley rural with an agricultural economy, the small South Pacific island nation is a happy nation. 


Despite being prone to natural disasters, this Pacific archipelago’s unique combination of sustainability and tradition makes it one of the happiest places in the world.

By Bill Code
10 February 2020
BBC Travel

One of the happiest places on Earth sits in the middle of the Pacific Ocean. Vanuatu, a slingshot-shaped country that comprises more than 80 islands nearly 2,000km east of Australia, ranked among the four happiest nations in the world " and the happiest outside of the Americas " according to the Happy Planet Index. The rankings take into account a nation' s wellbeing, life expectancy and inequality levels, along with its ecological footprint.

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Top-trending Travel Locations 2020

India has many wonderful, magical travel destinations. Globe Aware offers volunteer vacations in this diverse, culturally-significant country.


Kochi or Cochin was voted the year' s trending destinations in the TripAdvisor' s Travelers' Choice Awards 2020.

By Clinton Moodle
Feb 27, 2020
Source: IOL

The city in southwest India’s coastal Kerala state saw the biggest spike in reviews and ratings on the travel website. And, judging by its many attractions, there' s plenty to keep you occupied.

TripAdvisor revealed why travellers were enticed by this Indian city:

"A blending of several small villages on the southwestern coast created the current incarnation of Kochi (or Cochin), where sunset strolls, sampling fresh fish from seaside vendors and boat rides through the islands just offshore top visitors’ to-do lists.

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Visa Travel Rules Changing for Travelers to Turkey

To encourage more visitors from the European Union and Western Europe, Turkey is relaxing its Visa rules by abolishing associated fees.


By Simon Calder
Travel Correspondent
The Independent

February 20 2020

One of the most popular countries for British holidaymakers will abolish its current visa rules for UK tourists from next month.

At present, British travellers must apply online for a permit to travel, which costs US$35 (£27).

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Ankara announced: "As of 2 March 2020, Turkey has decided to exempt visa requirements for the members of the European Union Schengen area, Austria, Belgium, the Netherlands, Spain, Poland as well as the United Kingdom citizens for touristic travels to Turkey for every 90 days within 180 day period.

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Travelling to a Disaster Zone

Considering a vacation to a country or region recently damaged by a natural disaster? Here are some of the ethical questions.


Australia' s recent bushfires are the latest in a spate of terrifying natural disasters across the planet. Can tourists help more by visiting or by donating?

By Tim McDonald
BBC – TRAVEL
19 February 2020

Lorena Granados and Gaspar Roman have set up a temporary leather goods stall by the edge of the road in Mogo, a bushfire-ravaged town in New South Wales, Australia. It sits in front of their old store, which was reduced to warped corrugated iron and ashes when the fires tore through this tiny tourist town of about 300 on New Year' s Eve.

"We can continue to have a purpose in life and get up in the morning and have something to do," Granados told me. The next few months will be a grind, they said. They' ll be seeking government assistance and dealing with insurers and depending on help from family and friends.

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Global tourism and the coronavirus

What impact will the coronavirus have on tourism in 2020? Some predict the effects will be felt globally, into 2021.


The Coronavirus' s Effect on Tourism Will Carry Into 2021, Experts Say And it won' t just affect China, either.

By Nikki Ekstein
February 13, 2020
Blookberg

Coronavirus May Affect Tourism Into 2021

Earlier this week, even as infections of the novel coronavirus seemed to be slowing, the effects of the epidemic on the global tourism industry were accelerating rapidly.

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Spain’s Popularity as a Tourist Destination Soars

 Spain is a popular tourist destination, second only to France.


This country’s tourist arrivals hit a new record high in 2019 – can you guess where?

TOURISM is a key element to every country’s infrastructure, providing an opportunity to increase revenue and awareness to what the country has to offer – and one particular location reached a tourism record high.

By LEAH SINCLAIR
Express
February 4, 2020

The number of international visitors to Spain hit a record high of 83.7 million in 2019, Industry and Tourism Minister Reyes Maroto said last month.

According to Reuters, tourist arrivals rose one percent last year. Spain is officially the world’s second-most visited country after France.

"We address 2020 with optimism, because we have a strong and consolidated sector, capable of tackling the challenges ahead of us," said Maroto.

The minister added that one of Spain’s main priorities will be to lure visitors from new countries along with working to have visitors all year long and not only in the summer season.

The Secretary of State for Tourism, Isabel Oliver said: "This magnificent data allows us to face 2020 with solid foundations and with the confidence that we have a strong sector capable of maintaining Spain as a world leader in tourism competitiveness.”

Britons still represent the highest proportion of tourists visiting Spain, with 18 million Britons choosing Spain to visit in 2019. However, this was a half a million less than in 2018.

Additionally, Spain has seen more visitors from Asia and the United States which offset the decline of travellers from Britain and Germany.

spain fields

A recent study from CompareTheMarket.com found that Spain remains as one of the key holiday destinations for Britons of all generations.

Spain is most visited by those aged 65 and over and in 2018 it was least visited by 24 to 34 year-olds, accounting for only 13.6 percent of their holidays " but it was still one of their top choices.

Other countries which were popular among all demographics were France, which like Spain, is popular across all age groups, and again fares best among the 65 and over group. 12.5 percent of their holidays were to France in 2018. And like Spain, 25 to 34 year olds visited France least, with only 10 percent of their holidays taking place across the Channel.

For those looking for ways to save money on holiday, the experts from Travelzoo say that you could be saving money before the holiday has even begun.

During the booking process, it can be hard to know whether you are overspending on flights and hotels, especially with so many to choose from.

According to Mr Clarke, though, timing is everything when it comes to making savings.

"Look at shoulder season " this is the time outside of peak, either side of the main holiday periods," Mr Clarke told Express.co.uk.

"There are some serious bargains available if you can be flexible with your time."

Shoulder time is an industry term which tends to mean the period outside of school holidays.

During school holidays, popularity for flights and hotels skyrockets, dragging the cost with them.

However, the time between these periods is the perfect opportunity to get your hands on a budget-friendly trip.

"Traditionally this means outside of school holidays and peaks," explains Mr Clarke.

However, some destinations prices are affected on a seasonal basis too.

"Places like the med are wonderful in May and October," Mr Clarke continued.

"Always wanted to go to New York? Prices plummet in Jan and Feb due to the cold.

"But if you prepared to wrap up warm there are some seriously good packages.

"And a winter day in New York is usually bright blue skies so it can be a lovely experience.

"Or try Iceland in October before the peak season hits " you can still see the Northern lights but also there the benefit of whale season too before it all freezes over!"

Self