Europe

Oktoberfest | Ingenious Travel

Posted in Europe, Food, Groups, Theme Vacations, Unique Getaways, Weekend Getaway, on 7 June 2019, by , 0 Comments

Imagine a two to three week festival dedicated to beer and traveling funfair. Not only does it exist, Oktoberfest happens every year in Munich, Bavaria, Germany! In fact, this annual festival has been held since the year 1810, and even though several celebrations exist worldwide, the one in Germany was the first, and is still the biggest.

When to Visit Oktoberfest

The best time to visit Oktoberfest is generally in September. Yep, this beer fueled event actually kicks off before October officially arrives. The weekdays of the event are the quietest, and understandably so the weekends are the busiest. For full details of the best days to visit, click here.

Costs

While the grounds of the official Oktoberfest are free to enter, everything inside has a fee. From samples of beer to amusement park rides, luggage storage to special events – Oktoberfest can get expensive fast if you’re not keeping track of your budget. One liter of beer at Oktoberfest was nearly 12 Euro (roughly $13.50 USD) in 2018. Keep your eye out for specials. Also, consider going during the quieter times when vendors offer discounts to keep the beer tap flowing.

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Seljalandsfoss waterfall Iceland | Ingenious Travel

Posted in Europe, Travel, on 24 May 2019, by , 0 Comments

Iceland has become an increasingly popular destination for luxury travelers. It is the perfect trip for seasoned travelers, solo travelers, or adventurous families looking for a unique experience. Iceland is considered to be one of the safest countries on earth, so it is a popular destination for solo female travelers.

An Icelandic vacation can be filled with outdoor adventure or laid back and focused on its vibrant art and restaurant scenes. Regardless of what brings you to Iceland, it’s guaranteed to be a vacation you will never forget.

Most visitors are attracted to Iceland’s unique and varied landscape – this ice-capped, unspoiled, land is almost indescribable. Iceland’s dramatic vistas take center stage in many movies and tv shows. Its spectacular black volcanic fields, rocky beaches, majestic mountains, impressive glaciers, and vast areas of pristine snow have been the setting for productions such as Interstellar, Thor: The Dark World, Journey to the Center of the Earth, and Game of Thrones.

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River Cruising | Ingenious Travel

Posted in Africa, Asia, Europe, River Cruising, on 4 May 2019, by , 0 Comments

Over the last couple of years, river cruising has become one of the fastest growing travel trends around. It a vacation option I recommend to many of my well-traveled clients looking for a different type of experience for their next vacation.

If you’ve been curious about river cruising, here are a few things you ought to know…

Where do they go?

While Europe may be the most popular river cruise destination, it is definitely not the only choice.  Some of the other places you’ll find river cruises are along the Volga river in Russia, Amazon river in Peru and Brazil, the Nile river in Egypt, the Yangtze River in China, and the Mekong River in Vietnam and Cambodia.

In Europe, some of the most popular itineraries include the Danube, Rhine, Rhone, Saone, and Seine. I typically recommend European itinerary for most first-time river cruisers unless there is another location that you have been dreaming of for quite some time.

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Posted in Europe, Luxury, Miami, New Zealand, on 19 April 2019, by , 0 Comments

Private pools, breathtaking views, dedicated 24-hour butler service, delicious cuisine, impeccable service, and decadent suites are a few of the things that come to mind when you think of the ultimate romantic luxury vacation. Whether you are planning your honeymoon, celebrating an anniversary, or just ready for a dream-come-true romantic holiday, we’ve got something spectacular for you!

Escape to an elegant but rustic riverside lodge in New Zealand, bask in the seclusion of a private island resort, relax at a luxury spa, or delight in a five-star hotel on the Grand Canal in Venice. Here are some of the world’s best luxury vacations for couples…

Blanket Bay – New Zealand

Blanket Bay is a stunning rustic luxury lodge in the shadow of the snow-capped Southern Alps on the shores of Lake Wakatipu in New Zealand. Voted one of the world’s best lodges by the likes of Conde Nast Traveler, Virtuoso, The Robb Report, National Geographic, and Andrew Harper’s Hideaway Report, Blanket Bay is a year-round adventure getaway. Enjoy activities such as fly-fishing, heli-skiing, hiking, kayaking, 4WD tours, vineyards, flight-seeing over the World Heritage Fiordland National Park or Milford Sound, and so much more then retire to your luxurious room or suite at the lodge before an evening of elegant dining and fine wine. (photo ©Blanket Bay)

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Luxury | Ingenious Travel

Posted in Africa, Australia, Europe, Food, Golf, Luxury, New Zealand, River Cruising, Tours, Travel, Wine, on 23 March 2019, by , 0 Comments

Here at Ingenious Travel, we’ve always defined our “niche” as luxury travel, but I’ve found that this means different things to different people.

There are some people to whom “luxury” means gilded walls, gold chandeliers, velvet covered furniture… and of course a hefty price tag. That’s not how we define luxury, and it’s not what most of our luxury travelers are looking for when it comes to their vacation.

We tend to focus more on exceptional, authentic experiences, a high level of service and hospitality, and a focus on comfort and convenience. Each client’s experience is customized and personalized to their wants, needs, and expectations. Moreover, we don’t focus solely on price because “more expensive” doesn’t always mean “better.” We look at the value rather than the price when evaluating travel experiences.

While it’s true that most of our clients book exclusive cabins and high-end suites, that isn’t the case for every vacationer. We also have clients who are less selective when it comes to accommodations and choose to focus instead on activities, experiences, and dining options for their vacation.

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Travel Insurance | Ingenious Travel

Posted in Africa, Australia, Cruises, Europe, New Zealand, Travel, on 8 March 2019, by , 0 Comments

Think about the last time you rented a car.

Did you take the optional insurance?

Do you see that insurance as a good investment or a waste of money? It seems like a good percentage of travelers say no to this optional upgrade for a variety of reasons.

The most common reasons are that they believe themselves to be a “good driver” and that they have car insurance at home that will cover them in a rental car… or that the credit card they used to pay for the rental offers additional coverage as well.

I don’t have strong opinions on rental car insurance, but when it comes to travel insurance, I’m always ready to hop up on my soapbox and let my clients know what I think!

I, like any travel professional worth their salt, recommend travel insurance to each and every one of my clients. Unfortunately, most travelers don’t understand what the policy covers and when they really should be spending the extra money to purchase travel insurance.

“We know we aren’t going to cancel so we don’t need cancellation insurance.”

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Collect Experiences | Ingenious Travel

Posted in Adventure Travel, All-Inclusive, Baby Boomers, Europe, Family Travel, Golf, Groups, Luxury, River Cruising, Unique Getaways, on 22 February 2019, by , 0 Comments

As a travel professional, I value great experiences. The moments spent in awe of a beautiful view, a priceless piece of art or the wonder and pure joy on the face of a child as they experience something new and exciting are worth far more than the price of admission.

We all have a limited amount of time and money, and we are often faced with the dilemma of what is the best way to spend – or to invest – both of those resources.

We can choose from an endless assortment of high-tech gadgets, sparkly things, and material luxuries that will impress our friends and family… for a short time at least. Children (and some adults) have lists of the gaming systems, toys, and fashion labels they want for their next birthday or holiday gift.

But once we’ve bought the latest smart phone or the expensive shoes, how long do they last? How long will they continue to bring joy? And how likely are they to be truly treasured by those around us after we are gone?

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Group | Ingenious Travel

Posted in Adventure Travel, Baby Boomers, Europe, Family Travel, Girlfriend Getaways, Golf, Groups, Theme Vacations, on 30 November 2018, by , 0 Comments

Going on a trip with a group is a wonderful way to travel. You’ll always have someone to explore with, you get to see things as a group you might not get to on your own, it’s safer to travel in numbers, and each person in the group will bring a different perspective to the experience. For these reasons alone, the idea of hosting a group trip often comes up as a good idea for families, friends, and even companies looking to host retreats.

If you decide to do a big trip as a group however, it’s no secret that it can be a little overwhelming. This is especially true if you’re the one putting it together. With that in mind, here’s a step-by-step checklist you can use to take the stress out of hosting a group trip:

Step 1- Decide where you want to travel to, and when you want to go.

Your best bet will be to initially come up with three options for the vacation as well as three separate times to go on the vacation. This is one of the perks of being the group organizer. Because you are setting the whole thing in motion, you can pick places you want to go and times that you are available.

Step 2- Consider the people you want on your group trip.

Will this group getaway be for business or pleasure? If it’s pleasure only, will this event limited to friends, family or a combination of the two? Or is this more about inviting people that you have common interests with, such as a networking/hobby/wine club/golf trip?

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Christmas Market | Ingenious Travel

Posted in Europe, Family Travel, Gift Ideas, Groups, Holiday, River Cruising, Tours, on 21 September 2018, by , 0 Comments

Starting around July, travel vendors, and city tourism boards begin promotions for upcoming Christmas Markets, in hopes of enticing travelers to come to their cities to visit and shop. But, what exactly is a Christmas Market, where do they happen, and which ones are the best ones to visit? We’ll answer these questions and more below.

A Christmas Market is a street market that involves vendors selling goods and gifts in celebration of Christmas. Some of these are more religiously focused on Christ and the church than others. They are usually set up about a month before Christmas day the week of Thanksgiving, but some are much shorter in length.

The best and most popular Christmas Markets also entail live shows and entertainment making it more than just a shopping event. For example, you could watch a Christmas play, try some new desserts, or spend the evening ice skating on a temporary ice rink.

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Tour | Ingenious Travel

Posted in Europe, Family Travel, Gift Ideas, Groups, Tours, Travel, on 7 September 2018, by , 0 Comments

What is the difference between an escorted, hosted and an independent tour? This is a common question in the travel industry, and in this post we’re breaking down what they are, and the advantages of each. We’ve got a lot to cover, so let’s dive right in!

Escorted Tours

An escorted tour is one that is conducted by a tour director. They will take care of everything from beginning to end. For example, your transportation to and from the airport, as well as transportation to and from your hotel for daily activities. You’ll also typically be with a group throughout your tour.

For some escorted tours it’s a one day affair where they will pick you up from your hotel in the morning, take you to see the sites, and then bring you back to your hotel in the evening. Typically there is a strict agenda with meal times, and places to visit set up for you as well.

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