Travelers: don’t forget ‘overhead’ costs

By: Ed Perkins
Posted on: June 10, 2019

Over the years, you’ve probably seen many “tips” about avoiding high city-center hotel prices by staying in suburban hotels. But when you factor in the “destination overhead,” you often conclude that rather than fight the hassle and time of commuting, you’re better off finding a cheaper hotel in the city. By “destination overhead,” I mean the daily or hourly out-of-pocket ... READ MORE

Feeding stomach and soul on Italian trail

By: Don Mankin
Posted on: June 04, 2019

Long ago, religious pilgrims trudged up and down the Camino de Santiago in Spain, the Kumana Kodo Trail in Japan, and other lengthy footpaths to achieve spiritual enlightenment. Many still do. Not only do these trails lead to sites of profound religious significance, but the physical challenge, even suffering, is believed to help pave the way to enlightenment. Similarly, the... READ MORE

Miami’s South Beach is funky, funny and fun

By: Glenda C. Booth
Posted on: June 03, 2019

Miami’s South Beach — a 10-mile stretch of fine, white sand and sparkling, turquoise water along Ocean Drive — is the setting of seemingly endless happy hours, a bohemian playground for all ages, nationalities and ethnicities. SoBe, as locals call it, has attracted celebrities like Frank Sinatra, Sammy Davis Jr., Marilyn Monroe, Princess Di and Michael Jackson. Desi Arnaz got his... READ MORE

Car rental gotchas and how to avoid them

By: Ed Perkins
Posted on: May 16, 2019

Renting a car, like buying most travel services, exposes you to a few gotchas that can make your experience more expensive, less pleasant or both. But you can also avoid most of them, most of the time, by vetting your rental company and reading the fine print before you put down your credit card. Insurance catches Insurance has always been the main minefield of renting a car. The rental... READ MORE

Grandparent’s quandary: what’s my name?

By: Alice Shapin
Posted on: May 13, 2019

We’re about to become grandparents! And to be honest, since we are the last of our friends to have that honor, I’ve heard some unique stories about choosing a name. Not the baby’s name. Thank goodness that’s not our problem. My husband and I are trying to figure out what we will be called by the grandkids. It seems that whenever I get together with my peers, this topic always... READ MORE

Alabama’s Gulf coast popular year-round

By: Victor Block
Posted on: May 07, 2019

My first thought was that I must have taken a wrong turn. The scene outside the car windows — Dollar Stores, Waffle Houses and tattoo parlors — hardly matched the almost poetic name of my destination: Gulf Shores and Orange Beach, Ala. Small, aging wooden houses, some of which had seen better days, lined the narrow lanes off the main road. Before long, though, I came upon glitzy... READ MORE