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Regent Seven Seas Cruises to Offer Free Wi-Fi

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Free, reliable Wi-Fi is becoming standard practice at many hotels—but not so for cruise lines, where passengers are expected to pay for the service. In a sign of good things to come for the industry, Regent Seven Seas Cruises will now offer free Internet access in all public spaces and suites for voyages setting sail after January 1, 2015.

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Money-Saving Cruise Tips Video

When it comes to saving money on a cruise, timing is everything. Here are three tips from our Travel + Leisure Quick Tips video series.

Tip 1: Plan ahead.

You always want to plan in advance. Cruise lines release early booking discounts up to a year in advance, and they may be as deep as 20 percent off.

Watch more Travel + Leisure Quick Tips videos here.

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What the Ebola Outbreak Means for Travelers

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The news coming out of West Africa this week as been alarming—to say the least. The latest outbreak of Ebola, which started in Guinea earlier this year, has now spread to Liberia, Nigeria, and Sierra Leone. (There’s even been a suspected Ebola death in Saudi Arabia.) To date, nearly 1,000 people have died of Ebola—a number that will surely increase in the coming weeks as public-health officials struggle to contain the virus. The crisis is such that the World Health Organization has now declared the outbreak “a public health emergency of international concern."

So…what does this mean for travelers?  

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Wellness and Spa Retreats Twitter Chat on Tuesday, August 12

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How do you stay healthy while traveling? From fitness tips to advice on scoring the best spa appointments, join our Wellness and Spa Retreats Twitter chat on Tuesday, August 12th from 2 p.m. to 3 p.m. EDT. Join along to ask the experts for tips and advice!

The Host:

T+L's Senior Editor, Travel and Beauty, Jacqueline Gifford, @jacquigiff

The Panelists:

Health Magazine, @goodhealth

Alison Sweeney, Author of Scared Scriptless@Ali_Sweeney

Hilaria Baldwin, @hilariabaldwin

Anastasia Ashley, @AnastasiaAshley

Huffington Post's Health Living, @HealthyLiving

SpaFinder, @Spafinder

Lodge at Woodloch, @lodgeatwoodloch

Lake Austin Spa Resort, @lakeaustinspa

Darlene Fiske, @dfiske

Rancho La Puerta, @RanchoLaPuerta

Dr. Nicola Finley, an Integrative Specialist at Canyon Ranch, @CanyonRanch

How does it work?

1. Log in to Twitter before the chat starts at 2pm ET and be sure to follow @TravlandLeisure.

2. Head over to http://twitter.com. Enter the hashtag #TL_Chat into the search bar and select the "All" search option to follow the chat in real time.

3. Remember to always add the hashtag #TL_Chat to your tweets.

4. We'll pulse out some questions for our expert panel to answer, but feel free to post your own responses. Or ask questions of your own! 

All tweets are subject to our social media terms and conditions and may be used in any and all media including editorial. See full social media terms and conditions.

Gabrielle Blitz is Associate Social Media Editor at Travel + Leisure.

New Catskills B&B: The Arnold House

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If the words "The Catskills" still conjure images of Milton Berle and Henny Youngman trading one-liners—or Jennifer Grey carrying a watermelon across a sweaty dance floor—you haven't been here in a while. While most of the Dirty Dancing–era bungalow colonies and Borscht Belt resorts are gone, a new generation of young innkeepers are opening up shop, luring New York City weekenders eager for a taste of country life.

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Utah Symphony Performs Under Backdrop of National Parks

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Time to book last-minute flights to Salt Lake City: The renowned Utah Symphony is running free open-air concerts against the backdrop of five of the state's—and country's—most treasured national parks.

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Pop-Up Beaches Bring Summer to Cities, Far and Near

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Summer in the city can be stifling, with its sticky-hot subway cars and the odor of leftovers slowly broiling behind every restaurant. For those of us who don’t have a Hamptons-home perched on a sandy stretch of beachfront, it can be hard to slip away from the city for the ultimate, sink-your-toes-in-the-sand summer escape. 

That is, until the pop-up beach became a thing.

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Vermin Disrupting Vacations Underground, in Gardens, and Up in the Air

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Hand sanitizers are no match for the creepy crawlies that have made headlines around the world this week: In New York, a bedbug infestation forced three subway cars out of service. In Paris, rats by the Louvre have tourists screaming. And in India, officials grounded a plane in New Delhi when scores of rats made an appearance.

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Richard Linklater's Boyhood: A Texas Valentine

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In Richard Linklater’s new Boyhood—a masterful film documenting twelve years of a boy’s life—little happens but everything seems monumental and emotionally charged. The same could be said for the film’s cinematography by Lee Daniel and Shane F. Kelly. Texas has never looked so good, so colorful, so inviting.

From an Austin dawn seen through the bleary eyes of up-all-night high school kids, to a sparkling swimming hole at Pedernales Falls State Park; from a peyote-enhanced sunset in Big Bend National Park to a family visit to a working ranch, the Lone Star State is observed through a loving and nostalgic lens. There are myriad reasons to see the movie (really), but it almost works as an extended Texas travelogue. The porch of an old stone house, a broad alley running behind small-town shops, the lacquered pine panels of an historic ranch cabin, every frame takes on the kind of atmospheric magic that state tourism boards dream of creating. The kind of magic that makes a person start planning a trip.

Opening shot: a seemingly blissed-out New Yorker drives a lonesome West Texas highway in the cramped cab of a Toyota pickup, the Sir Doug Quintet on the radio…

Ann Shields is a senior digital editor at Travel + Leisure. You can find her on Twitter at @aegisnyc

Big Bend National Park photo: Steven Stokan, via the T+L Photo Contest

Crystal Cruises Set to Journey Through the Arctic

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Crystal Cruises, a perennial World’s Best winner, is going where no luxury cruise has gone before: the Northwest Passage. Starting in 2016, the Crystal Serenity (voted best cruise for families) will journey the Arctic wilderness from Anchorage, Alaska to New York City.

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Summer Beach Essentials, Part 2

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Just back from the Hamptons, T+L editorial assistant Katie James reveals her packing musts.

Nearly every Friday in July and August, I find myself toting a weekend bag to work—and rushing like mad to catch the 6 o’clock train en route to the Hamptons. Growing up, I spent summers out East, where I play golf in the morning, hang at the beach club in the afternoon, and eat dinner with family before heading to John Scott’s Surf Shack for a Corona with friends. And while my beauty regimen tends to be low maintenance out at the beach, I never leave home without these essentials:

La Prairie Foam Cleanser: I love feeling squeaky-clean after a day on the beach, where I often leave covered in sand and surf. This La Prairie formula provides a deep cleanse, and natural plant extracts counter balance for a soothing, moisturizing effect that keeps skin hydrated, and never dry. Not to mention the packaging and rosy scent are super luxurious. $80

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Test-Driving the New Foursquare

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Today, Foursquare unveils its newly refreshed self to the masses—and we got an early look at the overhauled app. The verdict? Falling closer to Yelp than Facebook, the decidedly less-social app is better suited to travelers than ever before.

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Orbitz Rewards Adds Restaurants to Loyalty Program

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On the heels of Priceline’s OpenTable acquisition, Orbitz is getting into the restaurant space—the company yesterday launched Orbitz Rewards Dining, a new program that allows loyalty members to score extra perks for dining at specific restaurants. It’s the result of a partnership with Rewards Network, a Chicago-based company that maintains a database of 11,000 restaurants.

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“Dronies” Take Flight on New Zealand Slopes

Sick of the selfie? Tourism New Zealand’s new take on the trend may peak your interest. Enter the “dronie,” a video taken by a high-flying, remote control-operated drone. Through August, the company will hit the slopes with its own miniature aircraft to shoot 8-second HD clips of visitors to several South Island ski areas. The drone-toting representatives email the videos to participants, free of charge.

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Surf’s Up in Munich Airport

201408-hd-munich-airport-surfingjpgWe already know that Munich International Airport is one of the best for a long layover—and now it's even better, thanks to “Surf & Style,” an indoor wave-riding pool located between Terminals 1 and 2.

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The World's Most Epic Outdoor Cinemas

201408-hd-thrillist-outdoor-cinemajpgDinner and a movie is pretty much the lamest date idea ever. Dinner and a movie while soaking in a hot tub or sitting in a castle? Better!

Because nothing's better than watching The Goonies under the stars and drinking beer out of a Nalgene, we've tracked down some of the most stunning, scenic, or otherwise odd outdoor theaters around the globe.

SEE THE LIST AT THRILLIST

Summer Beach Essentials

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Just back from vacation to Rosewood Jumby Bay in Antigua, Jacqueline Gifford, T+L’s Senior Editor, Travel & Beauty, shares her makeup, skin, and hair musts. 

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Summer Culture Twitter Chat on Tuesday, August 5

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One of the best ways to explore a destination is through its local (or visiting) culture. From theater to the arts and performances, we're discussing Summer Culture in our Twitter chat on Tuesday, August 5th from 2 p.m. to 3 p.m. EDT. Join along to ask the experts for tips and advice!

The Host:

T+L's Associate Research Editor, Maggie Suozzi, @maggiesuozzi

The Panelists:

Central Park, @CentralParkNYC

Met Museum, @metmuseum

Lynne Cooke, Senior Curator of Special Projects in Modern Art, National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C., @ngadc

Eva Respini, @MuseumModernArt Curator, @CuratorOnTheRun

PBS, @PBS

Clark Art Institute, @the_clark

Julie R. Widholm of @mcachicago, @ChicagoCurator

Brooklyn Museum, @brooklynmuseum

Los Angeles Philharmonic, @LAPhil, and Hollywood Bowl, @HollywoodBowl

Amy Meyers, Director of Yale Center for British Art, @YaleBritishArt

Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, @MFAH

Santa Fe Opera, @santafeopera

Michael Martin, Trumpet Player, Tanglewood/Boston Symphony Orchestra, @bostonsymphony

Jacob's Pillow Dance, @JacobsPillow

Francesca Zambello, Artisitc and General Director of Glimmerglass Festival, @FZambellow

Bryce Pinkham, Actor, "A Gentleman's Guide to Love and Murder" on Broadway, @PinkhamBryce

Alessio Bax, Classical Pianist, @alessiobaxpiano

Lucille Chung, Classical Pianist, @lucillechung

James Whiteside, Principal Dancer, American Ballet Theatre, @JamesBruceWhite

Robbie Fairchild, Principal Dancer, New York City Ballet, @robbiefairchild

Miranda Carroll, LACMA, @LACMA

Stephen Costello, Opera Singer, @CostelloTenor

Ranaan Meyer, Double Bassist, Time for Three, @tf3

Mark Coetzee, Executive Director and Chief Curator, Zeitz Museum of Contemporary Art Africa (Zeitz MOCAA), @MarkCoetzee

How does it work?

1. Log in to Twitter before the chat starts at 2pm ET and be sure to follow @TravlandLeisure.

2. Head over to http://twitter.com. Enter the hashtag #TL_Chat into the search bar and select the "All" search option to follow the chat in real time.

3. Remember to always add the hashtag #TL_Chat to your tweets.

4. We'll pulse out some questions for our expert panel to answer, but feel free to post your own responses. Or ask questions of your own! 

All tweets are subject to our social media terms and conditions and may be used in any and all media including editorial. See full social media terms and conditions.

Gabrielle Blitz is Associate Social Media Editor at Travel + Leisure.

Pay-What-You-Want Hotel Program Launched in Paris

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Last winter, we loved Switzerland’s creative “pay what you want” hotel initiative—and for three weeks this summer, Paris is following in its neighbor’s footsteps. Now through August 10—peak high season—five Right Bank hotels in the City of Light are letting guests spend the night and then decide what they think their experience is worth.

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Star Trek’s George Takei on How He Travels and His New Documentary, ‘To Be Takei'

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Actor George Takei, best known for his role as Lt. Hikaru Sulu on the Star Trek TV series and films, is the focus of a new documentary, To Be Takei, which opens in selected theaters on August 22. The affable Takei, who, as Mr. Sulu, boldly navigated the Starship Enterprise where no one had gone before, is quite a terrestrial traveler, as well. In fact, he is currently on board the Cunard Queen Mary 2 as a guest lecturer. We caught up with him at a pre-sailing press conference on the ship followed by a one-on-one travelandleisure.com interview to ask him about traveling, Howard Stern, his long-running feud with Star Trek co-star William Shatner, and why he agreed to play a talking head, literally, on the animated series Futurama.

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TSA Offers $15,000 for Ideas to Improve Airport Security Checkpoints

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Think you know what it takes to make airport security checkpoints less hellish? The Transportation Security Administration has put a call out for ideas on Innocentive, asking for ways to create a more efficient screening process that accommodates all levels of travelers—standard, premier, and TSA Pre✓™—employees, flight crews, and passengers in wheelchairs.

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Which Credit Card Points Program is Right for You?

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It’s pretty much indisputable that airlines are making frequent flyer miles harder to use. Across the board, we’ve seen programs increase the amount of miles needed for awards—all while restricting the amount of seats available at the lowest level and adding new fees. However, it isn’t all doomsday. Luckily, credit card bonuses are extremely lucrative and there are now more ways to earn miles than ever before. Whether from online shopping or dining out, you should be getting miles for almost every purchase.

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Delta Airlines to Roll Out Free In-Flight Entertainment

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In a move that dramatically challenges the monetized world of inflight entertainment, Delta Airlines announced that all classes of passengers on domestic and regional flights longer than one and a half hours will be able to access movies, television shows, music, and video games for free.

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Finnair Opens New Helsinki Airport Lounge Complete with Finnish Sauna

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On August 4, Finnair is upping the airline lounge ante with a new Premium Lounge at Helsinki Airport, open to Platinum and Gold Finnair Plus members and other oneworld top-tier customers. Set near Gate 36 in the non-Schengen area, the space has interiors by dSign Vertti Kivi & Co—and includes everything you’d expect from the design-forward carrier: Eero Saarinen’s renowned Tulip and Womb chairs, Marimekko tableware, and Iittala Ultima Thule glasses—originally created for the airline in 1968. Other perks: private shower suites and a Finnish sauna, complete with Finland-made toiletries that incorporate forest berries.

Brooke Porter
Brooke Porter Katz is an Associate Editor at Travel + Leisure. Follow her on Twitter at @brookeporter1.

 

Photo courtesy of Finnair

Hawaiian Airlines Update: New Premium Economy Seats, Inter-Island Flights, and More

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Hawaiian Airlines—one of T+L's World's Best Airlines for food (and the only U.S. carrier to still serve complimentary meals in coach)—is the latest to invest in a new premium economy class, launching today. Installed on all A330 aircraft, the Extra Comfort seats have five more inches of legroom for a total 36 inches of pitch (on par with most other domestic carriers, though Virgin America and JetBlue both have 38 inches). Other benefits include priority boarding; free on-demand, in-seat entertainment; and personal power outlets. On international flights, travelers will also receive a souvenir pillow and blanket and premium meals.

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New App Targets Last Minute Flight Deals

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Last week during our Twitter chat on Best Apps & Websites for Travelers, we asked participants what travel app they’d invent, if given the opportunity. The resounding ask? HotelTonight for flights. Dear readers: ask and you shall receive.

This week, Hopper, a data-driven fare finder that’s largely flown under the radar, is jumping into the spotlight with its new Flight Tonight app. Available for iOS 7 devices, the app aggregates last-minute fares and offers a snapshot of where you could go if you wanted to—quite literally—fly by the seat of your pants. Today’s searches pulled up flights from New York to Savannah for $280, Los Angeles to Vancouver for $352, and Miami to the Bahamas for $282—all round trip fares.

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What Customers Need to Know Before Booking with Airbnb

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

Apartment and house sharing services like Airbnb are only becoming more popular. T+L's Sarah Spagnolo shares what travelers need to know about the site.

A Boogaloo Road Trip Playlist

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Ever heard of Latin Boogaloo? I'm crazy about this spicy fusion music genre from the 1960s; it's having a moment again. The Boogaloo Assassins, LA's hottest crossover band, is playing in New York City at Nublu on August 1 during Fania Records 50th anniversary celebration. Drop by or download this road trip playlist they've created exclusively for T+L. Vamos!

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CheapTickets Loyalty Program: $75 Back on Any Flight

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The OTA wars rage on. Last week, CheapTickets.com launched a loyalty program so worthwhile, we had to do a double take. The proposition: sign up for free at checkout, and you’ll automatically get money back on each booking—the rewards are paid out in the form of credits that can be applied to your next transaction. What you get: $50 back on any flight you book on the website, $75 for any flight booked on mobile, $25 for any hotel booked online, and $50 for hotel bookings on mobile. Unlike almost every other OTA, CheapTickets puts the emphasis on unbundled bookings—the only non-eligible purchases are package deals. And there’s no minimum spend, either, so a $150 ticket from New York to Nantucket would remain eligible for a $75 kickback if booked on mobile. This makes CheapTickets the second OTA to incentivize in-app bookings—Orbitz similarly offers roughly twice the rewards points for bookings made by smartphone.

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Want to Eat in a New York Chef’s Home? EatWith’s New Series Makes it Happen.

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We first wrote about EatWith—a website that connects locals with amateur and trained cooks for private, home-cooked meals—last year, when we identified “eating with a local” as one of the most important travel trends of 2014. While the company continues to champion its original vision, last month it launched a chef series in New York, inviting guests into the homes of professionals.

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