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June 2011

June 30, 2011

Driver's Go Online to Learn How to Extend Car's Life

Drivers Head Online to Maximize Mileage and Extend Vehicle Life

By Famous Rhodes, eBay Motors

Cars and trucks on the road are flat out old – the National Automobile Dealers Association reports that the average age of vehicles on the road is at a 15-year high. This has more and more drivers investing in the maintenance and care of their existing vehicles. To not break the bank on repair costs, these drivers are saving money by fixing and upgrading relatively easy-to-install parts on their vehicles. Drivers are also finding ways to improve the fuel efficiency of their vehicles through do-it-yourself modifications. Where are they finding all of the necessary parts and accessories for these modifications? Online. To save costs, and time, drivers are increasingly turning to the Web to source simple maintenance items such as windshield wiper blades, all the way up to air intake and exhaust systems.
A full 90 percent of automotive parts buyers source the internet for information. These shoppers are expected to generate nearly $9 billion in online parts and accessories sales expected by 2014*. Before online shopping, consumers had to go to an auto parts store or a local dealership to find out what part was needed and when it would be in stock if not on the shelf already. If it was an unusual or not widely available part, the wait might be weeks long. Now, consumers can go online to sites such as eBay Motors, simply enter the make and model of their vehicle and quickly find parts that match their car or truck. [Read full article]

June 29, 2011

Top 10 Beach Destinations in America

Top 10 Beach Destinations

Family barbeques, picnics, festivals and beach parties are some of the ways Americans spend the summer. Enjoy the season in true summer fashion – at the beach.  Whether looking for a quiet seascape to catch up on a novel, or a bustling coastal town filled with events and entertainment, has the perfect shore spot for you.

  • Hilton Head, South Carolina - Renowned for its East Coast vibe, Hilton Head offers quintessential beach activities for couples and families alike. Spend your days biking the 100 miles of cycling trails throughout the Atlantic island – breaking only to catch waves, soak up the sun and savor the area’s fabulous restaurants. For cheap grub, head to the Sea Shack and roll up your sleeves for affordable shrimp, crab and blackened fresh fish. At night, check out The Salty Dog Café. A $5 admission is required to get in the restaurant, situated on a resort plantation, but the nightly live music and souvenir T-shirt you’re bound to buy, make it well worth it.

  • Hermosa Beach, California - The year-round beach destination pulls out all the stops every Memorial Day weekend for Fiesta Hermosa.  Hundreds of vendors set up shop along Hermosa Avenue, Pier Avenue and Pier Plaza in downtown Hermosa for three days of great food, drinks and live music. Kids can switch between amusement park rides and sand castles until 6 p.m. nightly as parents peruse local shops and the ever-popular beer garden. If you get to town by Friday, take part in the Samburu Project’s Walk for Water, an event that raises awareness and funds for clean water initiatives in Kenya.   [Read full story]

June 28, 2011

7 Common Travel Mistakes - How to Prepare

7 Common Mistakes To Avoid When Traveling

With 17 years experience in the travel business, Ellen Paderson has seen it all. Whether her clients are first-timers going on a Caribbean cruise or veteran world travelers headed for Australia, she has compiled a list of ‘7 Common Travel Mistakes’ from which all travelers can benefit.

(1) Take along your over-the-counter medications – Surprisingly they’re hard to find. If you do find them, they’re very expensive, especially on Caribbean islands. Bring your Dr. and insurance contact info list of prescriptions and RX numbers, Carry meds with you.

(2) Check your Passport expiration
– It cannot expire within 6 months of your return travel date.
(3) Expired passport? Take your confirmed itinerary to the immigration office. They will issue a passport that day if your travel starts within 10 days.

(4) Check your flight schedule the night before you’re scheduled to travel to make sure flights haven’t been changed or cancelled.

(5) Leave enough time between connections -- You need at least 90 minutes to go through Customs, pick up luggage and recheck before going on the next leg of your flight. Note that leaving the U.S., you don’t need to go through Customs, but you do on the way back, re-entering the country.

(6) Notify your bank if you’ll be using a credit or ATM card outside the US. If the bank is not notified, the ATM will keep your card, and your credit card will be declined.
(7) Take comfortable shoes. To quote world travel expert Rick Steves, “Footloose and fancy-free is not so easy if you have the wrong shoes. Now is the time to start breaking in what you plan to wear on your next trip.” Take more than one pair of tested footwear in case one gets wet, torn or lost, or isn’t as comfy as you thought. Do you need hiking boots, walking shoes, or sandals?

[Read full story]

June 27, 2011

Make Summer Gas Prices Affordable

Keep Summer Gas Prices Affordable

Summer brings sunny visions of vacations, bathing suits and warm weather, but it’s also prime time for high gas prices. However, with a little creativity, gas prices this summer don’t have to be a boiling point for you. Learn more about the rise in summer gas prices and how to save gas and money this summer.

Save money at the pump this summer

According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, gas prices typically rise during the summer driving season, which is defined as April 1 to September 30. Try some of these easy tips to keep more of your hard-earned dollars in your wallet:

• Combine errands – Instead of making multiple stops throughout the week, run all your errands one night after work or on the weekend. Also, try shopping at one store where you can pick up a majority of needed items.

Drive slower – We’re all in a rush to get somewhere, but driving just a few miles per hour slower can save a significant amount of gas. Take your time and drive the speed limit for added savings.

[Read full story here]

June 24, 2011

Summer Safety for Teen Travelers

Teen Summer Travel Safety Tips & Advice

Tips for Parents & Teens from Industry Veterans

Whether you are sending your child to a traditional overnight camp, on a school field trip or half way around the world, safety is always paramount in a parent’s mind.  For 20 years a Chicago-based service adventure travel company called The Road Less Traveled has been providing teens and young adults the chance to embark upon unique, life-changing experiences in some of the world’s most incredible locations.  Whether participants are hiking the Andes Mountains in Ecuador or scuba diving and replanting underwater reefs in the Florida Keys, the programs’ first priority is always safety.
To ensure the best and safest journey possible, here are some safety tips for teens and parents from the staff of The Road Less Traveled:
For Parents…

Choose A Credible Company: With so many teen tours, adventure trips and service-focused programs available to teens these days it can be hard to know which one to go with.  Select a program that has a great track record and an established reputation.  Don’t be afraid to ask for references or testimonials from previous participants.  Another consideration is to choose a program that is accredited by the American Camp Association (ACA). [Read full story]

June 23, 2011

2011 Infiniti G37 Convertible New Car Review

2011 Infiniti G37 Converticle Review by Bob Plunkett

By Bob Plunkett

On Scottsdale Boulevard in the posh Phoenix suburb, warm desert sunshine floods the leather-lined 2+2 cockpit of Infiniti's stunning GT-style hardtop sports coupe which converts to a daring drop-top convertible with the flick of a switch.

Conversion from hardtop coupe to wide-open cabriolet convertible consumes only 30 seconds, as the G-car driver taps a console-mounted toggle one time and the car then does all of the work.

Side windows drop down into doors as a latch on the windshield header automatically releases the forward edge of a three-piece steel roof and an electro-hydraulic mechanism motivates the clamshell top to pleat and tuck into the trunk beneath a steel tonneau lid.

Now feast on what these mechanical gyrations reveal:  A daring design for a sleek but edgy open-top sports coupe with luxurious appointments in the cockpit and serious mechanical hardware concealed behind all of those sensuous sheetmetal bulges.

Infiniti delivers it as the 2011 G37 Convertible in three grades:  G37 Convertible, G37 Convertible Limited Edition, G37 Convertible Sport 6MT. [Read full review]

June 21, 2011

Asia's Top 10 Sacred Sites

Asia’s Top Ten Sacred Sites

Temples, Devotees and Rituals Enrich Travel to Asia

From the holy city of Varanasi in India, to the world’s largest Buddhist monument in predominantly Muslim Indonesia, to the Emerald Buddha in Thailand, this divine list of the top ten temples, shrines and places of worship portrays Asia’s most intriguing sacred sites:

1. TAKTSHANG MONASTERY (Bhutan) - Easily Bhutan’s most iconic temple and the country’s most sacred spot, Tigers Nest monastery clings dramatically to a cliff almost 3,000 feet above the Paro Valley floor.  

2. VARANASI (India) - It is said that this holy city for Hindus rests on the trident of Lord Shiva and a ritual cleansing in the holy waters of the Ganges at Varanasi absolves the believer of all sins, enabling a higher birth in the next life. Millions of Hindus make their way here annually and so do travelers from around the world.

3. SHWEDAGON PAGODA (Myanmar/Burma) - Sheathed in gold plates and topped by a 76-carat diamond, the great golden dome that rises 322 feet above its base in Yangon is Burma’s most sacred site, visited by Buddhist worshippers and monks daily. You can perform a clockwise walk around the complex that is believed to have been constructed over 2,500 years ago, praying at various stations, to complete a personal pilgrimage. 

4. DAMBULLA (Sri Lanka) - The most impressive of Sri Lanka’s cave temples, Dambulla is a World Heritage site consisting of five caves with over 6,000 square feet of painted walls and ceilings, creating the largest continuous series of paintings in the world.

[Visit Ful List of All 10 Sacred Sites Here]

June 20, 2011

Essential Insurance Tips for Travel

by Miles Walker

Travel insurance is an essential investment for every traveler. With so many unpredictable factors threatening vacations, business and emergency travel, the small price to pay for such a beneficial accessory is crucial. This post will explain the most essential forms of coverage to purchase before traveling.


Road trips warrant the need for travel insurance, even though they're the most commonly-overlooked type of trip when it comes to travel insurance. There are hundreds of things that could happen while driving, but there are a few very necessary types of insurance to purchase for any road trip.

Medical Coverage

Even when personal medical insurance is available, travel medical insurance is a good investment. For the small price of a premium payment, medical expenses will be covered well, assuming the company sells a solid policy. Make sure emergency care is covered, as well as lost or stolen prescriptions. Many people lose their medication while on vacation. If narcotics are lost and there is no travel insurance, it could be virtually impossible to obtain more. Most personal medical insurance policies have a high deductible for emergency care, especially out of the country. Always be sure that a travel insurance policy has generous medical coverage for both international and domestic travel. Also, the deductible must be affordable. [Read More]

June 17, 2011

2011 Honday Odyssey Minivan Road Test Review

2011 Honda Odessey Road Test Review

2011 Honda Odyssey Road Test Review
A minivan in edgy design presents new features

By Bob Plunkett

After years topping the best-seller charts with models based on the third generation of model-year 2005, Honda's Odyssey minivan rolls out of a Honda manufacturing plant in Lincoln, Ala., in an edgy new design for 2011 models.

The revamped 2011 Honda Odyssey, configured in a wider stance with more cabin space and three tiers of seats for as many as eight passengers, dresses in an enhanced aerodynamic package and stocks a high-tech V6 powertrain which delivers class-leading fuel economy figures.

Honda introduced the Odyssey in 1995 as cast on a platform borrowed from the popular Accord sedan and equipped with the then-novel concept of not one but two doors on the flanks.

That original Odyssey focused on a sedan-height chassis and user-friendly interior features, as Honda incorporated favored traits of rival minivans and developed creative new concepts driven by Honda's research of the minivan market.

A second design for Odyssey emerged in 1999 on a larger and broader platform and the floor still set low like a car so you could step inside or climb out easily. [Full Article]

June 15, 2011

Teen Driver Safety Tips

Teen Driving Safety Tips

Driving Safety Tips: Teach Your Teen to be a Safe Driver

Teaching your teen to drive is a big responsibility. These driving safety tips will help you help your teen to be a smart and safe driver.  

Tip 1. Teen driving safety tip - Eliminate distractions.

Staying focused while driving can reduce the risk of an accident. Have a discussion with your child about common driving distractions such as cell phones, the radio and passengers. Set rules together about the use of electronics and the number of passengers permitted in the car when he or she is driving.

Tip 2. Teen driving safety - Wear a seat belt.

Seat belt use is lower among teenage drivers than any other age group. Make sure your child understands that wearing a seat belt is the best way to be protected in case of an accident. Your teen and any passengers riding in the car must wear a seat belt at all times as required by state teenage driving laws.

Tip 3. Teen driving safety - Know your state’s teenage driving laws.

Driving laws differ from state to state. In addition to seat belt laws, they may include a curfew for teens under the age of 18 or a passenger limit.  Check with your local DMV for specific teenage driving laws, and make sure your teen understands the laws and the consequences for breaking them.  [Find More Tips Here]