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A Travel Blog from the Editors of T+L

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CBS Early Show: Rental-Car Rip-Offs


Should you decline the rental-car insurance? Why is the prepaid gas option almost always a bad idea. And why should you take a picture of your rental car before you drive off and when you return it (no, not for your vacation scrapbook)? T+L International Editor Mark Orwoll sat down with anchor Russ Mitchell on the CBS Early Show to talk about unexpected charges that can hit an uninformed consumer at the rental-car counter. For more on rental-car rip-offs, read the full story based on Mark's October 2010 Smart Traveler column.

Alaska Travel: There's an App for That

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Our friends at MSNBC Travel are reporting that Denali National Park is maxing out on visitors. We knew Alaska was a popular summertime destination, but it seems travelers are turning its most famous (and accessible) park into the next Yellowstone. So with all the people exploring the 49th state, we thought we’d give you the heads up on a great app we found to research your trip and use while you’re there.

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TODAY Show: Best Travel Apps + Websites

Visit msnbc.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

Features Director Nilou Motamed dishes on the best travel apps and websites right now. Check out Travel + Leisure's top must-know resources for the connected traveler.

TODAY Show: Cruise Deals (Mediterranean from $71 a night, more!)

Visit msnbc.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

Features Director Nilou Motamed reveals Travel + Leisure's top picks for the very best fall and shoulder season cruise bargains. Find out how to set sail and save!

CNN American Morning: How to Enjoy a Tech-Free Vacation

Do you get the shakes just thinking about traveling without your iPhone or Blackberry? Maybe what you need is digital detox. On the set of CNN American Morning today, T+L International Editor Mark Orwoll gave some examples of hotels and resorts that are helping travelers go through electronic rehab.

TODAY Show: Staying Overnight for Less

Visit msnbc.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

T+L Features Director Nilou Motamed shares great resources for saving money on accommdations. Plus, family-friendly summer deals!

Hong Kong Debuts Sightseeing Smartcard

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Anyone who visits the world's great cities as a tourist knows it gets expensive making the rounds to all the must-hit sights and spots. Hong Kong is no exception, which is why we were happy to hear that its first smart sightseeing card launches there this month—also the first in China.

Created by iVenture, the company behind similar cards in Australia and Singapore, the "See Hong Kong Pass" ranges from $59-$115, and offers deep discounts at 15 top sights, hop-on hop-off bus access, and even dim sum lunches and a side trip to Maccau.

Special Sweepstakes for T+L Facebook Fans!

201107-b-globalbazaarjpgAt T+L, we’re pretty excited about our upcoming—and first ever—Travel + Leisure Global Bazaar, taking place in New York City from September 16-18. In celebration of this revolutionary travel event that will bring together authentic sights, tastes, sounds, and products from around the world—from capoeira performances to simulated safaris to craft beers from Belgium, T+L is also announcing a Global Bazaar Sweepstakes.

The winner will receive round-trip airfare for two to NYC from within the contiguous U.S.; three nights at the Renaissance Hotel’s New York Times Square Hotel, two tickets to the first annual Travel + Leisure Global Bazaar; two tickets to the Travel + Leisure epic 40th anniversary party; and a VIP event gift package.

Entering is easy! Returning fans to the Travel + Leisure Facebook page can visit the Global Bazaar sweepstakes tab on the main page www.facebook.com/travelandleisure.com.  First-time visitors can also visit the main Travel + Leisure Page and “like” it to access the sweepstakes entry form. Fans can enter the sweepstakes up to once a day until the sweepstakes ends on August 1.  One winner will be randomly selected for a VIP weekend at the Global Bazaar.

Good luck, and see you in September!

What’s Your Travel Score?

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Ladies and gentleman, pack your suitcases. Travel is now officially competitive—and that’s a good thing. This week marks the launch of Traxo Travel Score, a new feature from mileage and travel points tracker (and all-around travel organizer) Traxo.com that uses a specialized algorithm to calculate all of your trip information and generate a unique number to crow about.

What does this mean, really? Well, for one, the scene in Up in the Air where George Clooney and Vera Farmiga’s characters one-up each other with who has the most air miles, best hotel benefits, and fattest wallet stuffed with upgrade cards would have been a lot shorter. With TTS, a single number says it all.

But here’s where TTS gets interesting: depending on your score, top travel companies will offer you special perks. The higher your score, the more upgrades, freebies, and extras you’ll rack up from companies like Avis, Briggs & Riley, Virgin America, and South African Airways. Hello, two roundtrip tickets to Cape Town?!

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Chatting Up T+L Features Director at the Food & Wine Classic in Aspen

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T+L Features Director and Food Editor, Nilou Motamed, talks (with GenConnect) about the Food & Wine Classic in Aspen, and the upcoming Travel + Leisure Global Bazaar (Sept. 16–18, NYC).

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