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Plan an Atlantic City Summer Escape… On a Budget

April 18, 2014 by

Atlantic CityOn the first of this month, United Airlines gave Atlantic City a leg up by launching daily service out of Atlantic City Airport to Houston and Chicago. The airport, which was previously only served by Spirit Airlines, lies just six miles from the Boardwalk. This makes it even easier for people from the Midwest and the south to get a first-hand glimpse of the waterfront casino town. Here’s how to do this city on a budget this summer: Read more

5 Hideaway Hotels on Mexico’s Pacific Coast

April 18, 2014 by

Mexico Verana HotelHuge, high-rise hotels have their benefits, but sometimes you just want an escape from the crowds, and a more intimate experience. Mexico’s Pacific Coast has a number of small, secluded boutique resorts where you can limit your exposure to others without limiting your choices of things to do. For your next trip, here are a few places to check out:

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3 Inexpensive Ways to See Alaska

April 18, 2014 by

Alaska - Columbia Glacier - Prince Williams Sound - 620 - by Nomadic LassBelieve it or not, there are many ways to see Alaska without taking a cruise, lovely and hassle-free though they may be. Whether you’re looking for a cheaper alternative to cruising, want to see the land up-close, or simply want more control during your trip, here are three excellent, affordable ways to travel through the “Last Frontier.”

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Fitness Buffs, Take Notice: Activities in Baltimore for $30 or Less

April 18, 2014 by

BaltimoreInnerHarborWith a tendency toward unhealthy habits, and a tough reputation earned through a certain television drama, Baltimore is perhaps not a city you would expect to be very favorable to such wholesome pursuits as outdoor exercise. A quick glance around the landmark Inner Harbor on any given morning, however, rebuts those preconceived ideas. Judging from the many joggers pounding the pathways, Baltimore is in fine shape.

Thanks to a handful of initiatives over the past couple of years, visitors can join in with the local fitness movement while taking in the sights. By signing up for one of the following programs, you can get out of your hotel and into an activity more challenging than the usual sightseeing stroll. And, all the better, you’ll feel like you’ve earned that inevitable beer and crab dinner.

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37,370 Steps Around the World for Travelers to Climb

April 17, 2014 by

Skellig MichaelBarcelona has its Sagrada Familia. Sydney has its white-hooded Opera House. And other places? Well, they’ve got steps – lots and lots of them. As the examples illustrate below, epic staircases aren’t just a way to reach higher ground. They can be major attractions unto themselves. From the fabled Ha’iku Ladder in Hawaii, to Norway’s never-ending Flørli Steps, these jaw-dropping ascents aren’t for the faint of heart. But once you get to the top, we think you’ll agree the views more than make up for the effort. Read more

Seoul, South Korea 2 Ways: Budget and Luxury

April 17, 2014 by

Seoul, South KoreaIn the hit K-pop song, Gangnam Style, Psy describes the trendy scene of Seoul’s Gangnam district, where your clothes, and how much money you have, matter most. It’s a tongue-in-cheek look at a neighborhood known for luxury and wealth in a country where people have acquired wealth so recently it’s still somewhat of a novelty.

South Korea’s newfound prosperity is most evident in Seoul, where the shopping malls are some of the biggest in the world and the pursuit of beauty has become an obsession. But not everyone in Seoul rolls “Gangnam style” and you don’t have to spend a lot to enjoy a visit. For every luxury hotel, you’ll find a much more affordable option. For dinner, you can sit down to a pricey gourmet meal in a restaurant, or grab some equally delicious fare from a street vendor. Here are some ways to enjoy Seoul on both ends of the spectrum. Read more

10 Ways a Cruise Agent Can Help You

April 17, 2014 by

cruise ship - Jim PennucciIn this day and age, it’s generally easy to go DIY when it comes to travel planning. Putting together your own itinerary and making your own bookings gives you the most control – and sometimes results in the best savings. But there are sill a few instances when seeking help is a good idea. Even seasoned travelers will tell you that booking a cruise is one of them.

Before we launch into the various ways an agent can help you, a quick thing to note: When we say “cruise agent,” we mean an agent who solely specializes in cruises or works for a cruise-specific agency. Some agencies we work with here at ShermansTravel include CruisesOnly, Cruise.com, and Online Vacation Center, just to name a few, and cruise lines will often have their own agents (though, obviously, they’d only be able to provide help with that line’s offerings and partners). Working with an agent usually won’t cost you a thing. Agents are compensated via commission, but don’t worry – the close relationships that they form with cruise lines are exactly what might score you extra perks. Keep reading for more.

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Free & Easy Things to Do in Berlin

April 17, 2014 by

ReichstagCompared to most of Western Europe, Berlin is a bargain. Hotel rooms cost about half the price of rooms in Paris or London, and it’s easy to fill your belly for fewer than five bucks. The city’s affordable activities and creative spirit make it a budget traveler’s dream. And there are plenty of free things to do — from museums and monuments, to public parks and open-air karaoke. Here are some of the best free things to do in Berlin. Read more

Quiz: Which Cruise Should You Take?

April 16, 2014 by

crystal-cruisesBeen itching to set sail? Can’t resist a good quiz during your lunch break? Our new quiz helps you find your perfect cruise based on your travel style. In your results, we’ll provide a few expert recommendations for all budgets. Take the quiz here.

Forget the Casinos and Mega-resorts: 7 Ways to Enjoy a Relaxing Nature Retreat in the Bahamas

April 16, 2014 by

Grand Bahama - Gold Rock Beach at Low Tide - 620x400The Bahamas is often synonymous with Nassau’s bustling casinos and the sprawling Atlantis resort – a great vacation for those looking for a mix of partying, gambling, and sun. However, if you’re opting for a crowd-free beach retreat and outdoor activities, look 55 miles east of Florida to Grand Bahama Island. I discovered this tranquil paradise first-hand on a recent trip courtesy of the Grand Lucayan Resort. Here are seven ways for you to do the same.

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What’s New (and Affordable) in Santa Cruz

April 16, 2014 by

SantaCruzBest-known as a home to college kids, surfers, and hippies, the California town of Santa Cruz has a few less stereotypical, newsworthy attractions to boast of this year. Best of all, most of these are cheap (or even free) and you’ll spend less than $25 on gas to make a round-trip from San Francisco. Here’s what to do on a day trip. Read more

Checking In: The San Juan Marriott

April 16, 2014 by

SanJuanMarriottWhether you’re a family of four, a group of girlfriends, or a young couple on a tight budget, you know that tropical travel can come with a high price. Sure, all-inclusives offer the bang-for-the-buck factor, but what they provide in savings they often lack in culture and distinctiveness.

For all of the above travelers (and anyone in between), the San Juan Marriott Resort & Stellaris Casino offers the best of both worlds: comfort and culture at reasonable rates. Rooms start as low as $185 per night in low season; about $200-$220 in high season. (Note: there is an 18% resort fee per room, per night.) Read more

Cuba 101: Planning Your Visit

April 16, 2014 by

havana - cuba 1For a minute, let’s remove those Cuban stereotypes – you know, Castro, communism, and Teddy Roosevelt riding through Santiago, Cuba like the mustached maven portrayed in Night at the Museum. For decades, while America upheld its embargo on Cuba, millions of tourists from Canada and western Europe have flocked to the white sandy beaches at Jardines del Ray, or strolled the cobblestone streets in colonial Trinidad.

But things are rapidly changing: already, in the first third of 2014, Cuba’s seen more American tourists than Germans, Brits, and French visitors from all of last year, accounting for the second highest tourism earnings behind Canada. But that doesn’t mean traveling to Cuba from the U.S. is suddenly easy: the U.S. still holds a fifty-year trade embargo on the communist nation, and, without the guise of a foreign passport (or perhaps a fake Canadian accent), navigating those 90 miles south of Florida requires careful planning. Here’s how to do it… Read more

3 Charming Cartagena Boutique Hotels That Won’t Break the Bank

April 15, 2014 by

i-stockThere are many reasons to visit Cartagena, Colombia’s Caribbean gem, from its stunning old town, to its proximity to tropical islands and white-sand beaches, to its incredible Creole cuisine. For lovers of stylish boutique hotels, this fairy-tale city impresses with a wealth of affordable options, all of which offer great style (from traditional to quirky), impeccable service, and great rates.

Here are our three favorite Cartagena boutique hotels that won’t break the bank:

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Deal Alert: $89 Round-Trip NYC to Montreal on Amtrak

April 15, 2014 by

AmtrakAdironNow that spring has sprung, it’s become much more comfortable (and sensible) to head north on vacation. What better way to take in the blooming landscape than by traveling at ground level? You can with Amtrak’s “Weekend Getaway Fare” on its scenic Adirondack train between New York City and Montreal for $89 round-trip.

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