Travel Reviews + Breaking News

    • Gleneagles Townhouse Edinburgh
      For the first time in Gleneagles’ history, this spring they are expanding the brand beyond the Perthshire hills to open a lively new 33-room hotel right in the heart of Edinburgh. Home to some of the most vibrant eating and drinking experiences in the city, Gleneagles Townhouse will include an all-day restaurant, The Spence, and roof terrace bar, Lamplighters, with views across Edinburgh’s iconic skyline. It will also be home to a members’ club with […]
    • YHA New Zealand managed hostels closes
      After operations running over 89 years Coronavirus has impacted yet another global travel brand with 11 YHA New Zealand manged hostels will shut down on the 15th December 2021, while the domestic bookings rose significantly it wasn’t enough to offset the drop in internationally travellers. YHA guest bookings up to and including these dates remain in place and hostels will be operating as usual until then. YHA are cancelling and fully refunding all bookings for […]
    • Switzerland to require negative Covid-19 test + 10 days quarantine
      The Swiss government has started to add a number of countries to it’s risk country list. The Swiss embassy in the UK has also just advised when boarding a plane and entering Switzerland, all persons travelling from the UK must present a negative COVID-19 test and quarantine for 10 days. The new variant Omicron has occurred in the Czech Republic, Belgium, Israel, Germany, the Netherlands, the United Kingdom, Egypt and Malawi. It seems a number […]
    • KLM will temporarily stop all long-haul flights
      Following the Dutch governments requirement for a double negative test from all travellers flying to The Netherlands, KLM has announced they will stop all long-haul and some short haul flights within Europe. The requirement for every traveller to have both negative PCR and a negative antigen test including crew has currently proved too much for KLM. KLM said the main reason was they didn’t want to risk having to leave crew members abroad due to […]
    • Schiphol ban all of South America, UK and South Africa flights
      The Dutch government announced on Wednesday 20th November that there will be a flight ban for air traffic from all over South America, the United Kingdom and South Africa from 23 January. This is to slow the spread of the new strains of Coronavirus from UK (B.1.1.7 variant), Brazil (mutation E484K) and South Africa (variant B.1.351). This is the first actual proactive steps made by the Dutch government to slow the spread of Coronavirus from […]
    • 51.3% of the South won’t change Christmas travel plans due to Coronavirus
      A survey we conducted using Google Consumer Survey platform with data from 500 US based respondents shows that 44.6% of people across the USA said No they won’t change their Christmas travel plans due to Coronavirus. But we didn’t have enough survey respondents to ensure a statically significant answer for all the regions in the USA just the Southern states The survey was started on the 23rd November 2020 and finished on the 27th November […]
    • Tokyo Highlights [Virtual Tour]
      Yoshi was great tour guide and fun we did this as a present for my wife as she has always wanted to travel to Japan but due to Coronavirus that wasn’t possible this year. It was also nice to get some tips from a local when we can hopefully travel to Japan in 2021. The virtual tour of Tokyo is run by Japan Wonder Travel who Yoshi and is a great ambassador for Japanese culture.-Yoshi […]
    • 45.9%* change Thanksgiving day travel plans due to Coronavirus?
      A survey we conducted using Google Consumer Survey platform with data from 501 out of a total planned 500 US based respondents* shows that yes 45.3% said the Coronavirus pandemic had changed their Thanksgiving day travel plans. The survey was started on the 23rd November 2020 and finished on the 28th November 2020 with our analysis was done on 383 weighted responses. It seems based on earlier smaller surveys run last week the amount of […]
    • 5% discount off your Airbnb booking fee
      Airbnb are ramping up their marketing activities again with a newsletter campaign offering you a 5% discount off your booking fee! The maximum coupon value is AUD$35 which is ok but is it enough for you to book your Airbnb by the 10th December 2020?
    • Qantas requires Coronavirus vaccine for international travellers
      In an interview on A Current Affair on Channel 9 in Australia the CEO of Qantas Alan Joyce said they are looking at adjusting their terms & conditions to require passengers to prove they have received a Coronavirus vaccine. Social media has something of a melt down over the idea with crazy anti-vaxxers trying to get #BoycottQantas trending but Alan Joyce has made the right decision in protecting his passengers and business. It’s still to […]
    • Disneyland Paris closes temporarily
      With actions intended to slow the spread of Coronavirus and in line with latest direction from the French authorities, Disneyland Paris will be closing end of day on October 29th. In anticipation of celebrating the Christmas holiday season we will be taking reservations from December 19 – January 3 and hope to be open based on prevailing conditions and government guidance at that time. Disneyland Paris will be closed from January 4 through February 12. […]
    • The Roosevelt Hotel closes
      In what might be one of the most high profile closes due to Coronavirus, the Manhattan landmark has closed after 96 years. The NYC hotel opened on September 22nd 1924 by American politician, hotelier and lawyer Frank A Dudley and was named in honor resident Theodore Roosevelt. The hotel is one of the larger hotels in NYC with 1,025 rooms with 33 suites over 19 floors. The hotel was shut by owners Pakistan International Airlines […]
    • Alitalia replaced by ITA
      The heavily indebted and failing national carrier Alitalia is finally due to be replaced, with the new state owned ITA. ITA stands for Italia Trasporto Aereo (Italy Air Transport) and might be much easier for tourists to stay. One bigger hurdle for the new airline is ensuring it can be found by travellers in Google as currently it faces competition from Google’s own Matrix software Also in The Netherlands ITA stands for International Theatre Amsterdam […]
    • Virgin Atlantic offers pre-flight Coronavirus testing for crew
      First airline in the UK to introduce a rapid point of care pre-flight Coronavirus testing trial for their cabin crew and pilots Virgin Atlantic will ensure that the new rapid testing testing programme complements NHS Lighthouse Lab-based testing and does not compete for, nor divert, vital gold standard NHS testing resources Virgin Atlantic continues the demands for UK and US governments to introduce a pre departure testing solution to remove quarantine and minimise travel restrictions Virgin Atlantic has announced that it is the first UK airline to introduce Covid-19 pre-flight testing at its […]
    • Paris bars & cafes to close due to Coronavirus
      As the second wave of Coronavirus continues to hammer parts of the world, the French government have announced the capital is on maximum alert from Monday 5th October 2020. All bars and cafes in Paris will be shut for atleast 2 weeks to try and slow the rapid rise in new infections, hospitalisations and deaths in France. Over the weekend France reported almost 17k infections on Saturday 3rd October and just under 13k on Sunday […]
    • Train from Amsterdam to Paris Nord
      While the International train service to and from The Netherlands has largely resumed after border lockdowns. Thalys and NS rail staff do ask you to avoid crowds and to keep as much distance as possible on the train. Facemasks remain mandatory for all passengers on the train. Station staff also explicitly ask you to wear a Facemask from the moment you enter the station, also while waiting on the platforms. If you don’t wear a mask a […]
    • Amazon Explore livestreaming launches
      Amazon has announced a new virtual way to see the world around us, their new interactive livestreaming service is called Amazon Explore. The platform allows consumers to discover new places from the comfort of your home but also to photograph and shop at the same time. This seems to be a supercharged version of what Viator launched several months ago with Virtual Sightseeing Experiences. But sadly this is new Amazon virtual experience only available to […]
    • Disney Parks cuts 28,000 employees
      Today Josh D’Amaro the chairman of Disney Parks, Experiences and Products announced the true impact of Coronavirus on Disney parks. Disney will lay off around 28,000 employees of the 100,000 after initially furloughing a large number of their employees who were not necessary on the 19th April 2020. Disney Parks has had a massive impact to its resorts across the US but also globally with their profits dropping 91% during the first quarter of 2020. […]
    • United Airlines uses Google maps to find destinations
      In an effort to help keep customers on it’s platform United Airlines have launched an interactive Google maps search for their customers. United is the first airline to offer this feature but it may appear on other airlines soon if it’s found to be help drive an increase in passenger bookings. The new explore destinations map allows travellers to find new travel destinations based on destination but also set a maximum price if they are […]
    • Marriott Bonvoy points expiration
      For 2019 Elite status earners as previously announced, your Elite status expiration was extended one year to February 2022 due to the Coronavirus impact on travel around the world. Marriott Bonvoy Members must remain active in the Loyalty Program to retain Points they accumulate. If a Member Account is inactive for twenty-four (24) consecutive months, that Member Account will forfeit all accumulated Points. Members can remain active in the Loyalty Program and retain accumulated Points […]
    • Heathrow Rail Link delayed another 2 years
      The consultation period was originally due November 2019 but was postponed until after the general election but the 2020 consultations were also delayed due to Coronavirus. NetworkRail proposed a new direct link from Slough (Langley Station) to Heathrow Airport Terminal 5. The 6.5km rail link from the Great Western Main Line allowed passengers from the South Coast, South Wales and West Midlands to avoid extra travel into London Paddington and then back out to Heathrow. […]
    • United Airlines close Hong Kong, Tokyo & Frankfurt attendant bases
      One of the biggest impacts of the Coronavirus has been airline and hotel groups around the world. So CNBC announced in June 2020 that United Airlines had planned to shut 3 out of 4 international flight attendant bases as their international travel demand had crashed through the floor. There was 840 flight attendants that work in those 3 locations and the memo said there was a chance of transferring to US bases if eligible (US […]
    • Premier Inn & Brewers Fayre owner Whitbread cut 18% of employees
      Whitbread is one of the largest hotel and restaurant operator in the UK with over 35,000 employees working across their brands of Premier Inn, Brewers Fayer, Beefeater, Cookhouse & Pub, Bar + Block Steakhouse, Thyme and TableTable. Their team serve around 5 million customers across the UK every month so Coronavirus has had a massive impact on their business as hotel demand has fallen off a cliff. Whitbread announced 78% lower figure for hotel revenue […]
    • Singapore airlines cuts 20% of staff
      One of the world’s leading airline groups SIA Group that employees around 28,000 employees across 3 airlines has finally made a decision to start to cut staff. The airline that operates no domestic flights has had no option but to reduce it’s workforce as Coronavirus continues to impact travel demand around the world. SIA Group announced they were terminating around 4300 employees across Scoot, SilkAir and Singapore Airlines which is 20% of their 28,000 employees. […]
    • Courtyard by Marriott in Herald Square closes
      It was announced last week that another NYC hotel has been caught up in the wave of closures linked to demand drops linked to Coronavirus. The 167 room 3 star hotel located on the corner of West 35th and 6th Avenue was opposite Herald Square and opposite the world’s largest store Macy’s so perfect for visitors to NYC. The hotel was just a 10 minute walk to Times Square or 4 minutes walk to the […]
    Summary

    David Iwanow

    I have been travelling around the world since I was young and travel is in my blood. I've travelled to almost 40 countries around the world and can now be found based in Amsterdam, The Netherlands. I've visited over 6283 places with 12,449 checkins on Foursquare/Swarm and I'm a level 9 Google Local Guide with 497 reviews and having posted 9,133 photos which have been viewed 108 million times.