In recent years, Palm Springs has made itself known as a vacation destination that cannot be missed. Blasting hot springs, exquisite restaurants, great night life hotspots, and kitschy mid-century architecture, this spot is bustling with fun. From the senior community to the LGBTQ community, there is something for everyone who visits Palm Springs. However, getting picked up from the Palm Springs International Airport hasn’t always been so easy. Luckily, however, some new changes have been put into effect, making life easier for everyone who travels to Palm Springs.
Now, any passengers with Uber and Lyft apps can use them to call a ride at the airport. There’s no need to worry about hailing a cab, making the prospects of traveling to the small airport even more enticing for visitors. For many people, the allure of this enticing desert town encourages them to go out as soon as they arrive. With lots of shopping, casinos and more, this destination has a lot to offer all. After all, there’s a reason why stars of the Golden Age, such as Frank Sinatra and Marlene Dietrich, were fans of Palm Springs.
Many believe the desert air to be healing, in addition to the beautiful sights of the mountains surrounding the desert locale. Now that Uber and Lyft pick up passengers at the airport, there’s no excuse not to check out this incredible destination. For those who don’t want to spend an entire week in Palm Springs, it always makes for a great weekend trip from Los Angeles.
The Walt Disney Company announced this week that the presence of the popular Marvel franchises will be expanding at the Disneyland Resort in California. On the heels of the success of “The Guardians of the Galaxy – Mission Breakout!” ride last year, the company has decided to forge ahead with an even greater Marvel expansion at Disney’s California Adventure Park. Although details are slim to none as of now, Marvel has already stated that this will be a completely immersive section of the park.
The Marvel area will take over what is currently the family-friendly “Bug’s Land” section of California Adventure. Last week, the “It’s Tough to be a Bug” attraction closed after having been in operation for over a decade. The rest of the area will close by the end of the summer to make way for the Marvel expansion. Disney officials have said the new area will feature popular characters from the Iron Man and Spider-Man franchises to go along with the current Guardians of the Galaxy presence. In addition to attractions and shopping opportunities, the area will feature a new live show debuting in 2020. And as with all Disney parks, there will be sure to be an abundance of character meet and greet opportunities.
Disneyland Resort in Anaheim is not the only Disney resort getting the Marvel treatment. Officials also announced Marvel expansions at Disneyland Paris and Hong Kong Disneyland, delighting Disney and Marvel fans all over the globe.
For many years, one of the biggest complaints of travel agents has been the lack of cruise ships that operate on the West Coast of the United States. There has simply not been enough ships to accommodate the massive amount of people in major cities like Seattle, San Francisco, San Diego and Los Angeles. However, the good news is that things will be changing in 2018. There will be a number of cruise ships that will be adding West Coast cities to their schedules. This will be great news for the people in this part of the country who want to go on a cruise without flying to a different city.
June will see the Norwegian Bliss make its debut voyage from Seattle. This is a big deal because it has been 17 years since a ship from the Norwegian Cruise Line has had a home port on the West Coast. Carnival Cruise Line has announced a plan to have a new ship stationed in Long Beach, CA, in 2019. Seattle will also be the home port to a new ship owned by Royal Caribbean International. These ships will be able to accommodate 12,000 new passengers on a seasonal basis.
It has been the standard practice of many cruise lines to have their ships based out of ports located on the East Coast. This is because they are very close to tropical destinations like the Caribbean. However, these cruise lines now understand that many people on the West Coast want to take cruises as well.
Alaska Airlines announced on Thursday that they are cutting flights from Los Angeles International Airport, San Francisco International Airport, and San Diego International Airport. The company cited low demand and improved efficiency as the reason for the cuts.
Passengers looking to fly out from San Francisco will no longer be able to take Alaska Airlines flights to Minneapolis, Fort Lauderdale, or Mexico City after May 19. Flights from San Francisco to Denver will end on June 5, while the last non-stop flight from San Francisco to Cancún, Mexico will leave on March 3. Alaska Airlines has already cut back multiple daily non-stop flights to Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport to one flight a day.
Alaska Airlines passengers who use LAX as a hub also have fewer flights to choose from. The airline ended its non-stop flights from Los Angeles to Havana, Cuba and Cancún, Mexico in January. They are also planning to discontinue non-stop flights from Los Angeles to Orlando in July. In addition to flights departing LAX, Alaska Airlines plans to axe their service from San Diego International Airport to Mexico City in May.
In contrast with these new cuts, Alaska Airlines opted to add more flights from San Francisco to the Midwest and the East Coast late last year. These new flights travel to Raleigh–Durham International Airport, Baltimore–Washington International Airport, Indianapolis International Airport, and Kansas City International Airport.
Alaska Air Group, which owns Alaska Airlines, purchased Virgin America in 2016 for $4 billion. Despite disapproval from Virgin Group founder Richard Branson, the two companies officially merged in January. The merger has prompted a widespread reshuffling of flights and aircraft.
February 18 was National Drink Wine Day. This is a big day for wineries on the West Coast of the United States. Alaska Airlines got into the act in 2018 by expanding its extremely popular Wine Flies Free program.
How the Wine Flies Free Program Works
The Wine Flies Free program is for the Alaska Airlines Mileage Plan participants. Through the program, people departing from certain cities in California, Oregon, Idaho, and Washington were able to check an entire case of wine at no charge. As part of the Wine Flies Free program, the airline is also served a complimentary glass of wine to passengers who were 21 years of age and older.
In 2018, the Wine Flies Free program was expanded an additional 18 cities, resulting in 29 departure points being part of the program. The airline worked with various regional winegrowers’ associations in the four-state region as well as individual wineries and destination marketing organizations to widely promote the program. This resulted in more people taking advantage of Wine Flies Free. Alaska Airlines intends to continue to push the program in 2019 and beyond as well.
History of Wine Flies Free
Wine Flies Free debuted in 2007, and has been growing ever since. During the first year, the program allowed passengers departing from Santa Rosa and Sonoma County to check wine on their flights on National Drink Wine Day at no cost. This was in response to the high cost associated with shipping wine. The program immediately gained popularity on all fronts.
Are you wondering what the West Coast is like? Want to find out things you can do, places you can see and how its like when visiting there? Below are some highlights of the West Coast.
The weather on the West Coast tends to much more mild and sunny year round. One example is the city of Redding, California. It averages around 88% sunshine per year. That means almost 9 out of 10 days will be sunny!
If you love Coffee, then you should come to the West Coast. The area is known for having some of the world’s best coffee. Starbucks is also based on the West Coast, which tells you that the region is very welcoming to java drinkers.
There are plenty of beaches on the West coast. Some are well known and densely populated. Others are well off the beaten path and require exploration. Whether you want a crowd-filled beach or a private spot with no one else around, you are sure to find a beach that you will love.
Want to hear some new words and expressions? The West Coast is known for phrases such as gnarly and stoked. The demeanor of the people also tends to be much more laid back and relaxed than in other parts of the country. So relax and converse with some West Coast people who just might teach you some new expressions to bring back home.
One of the best road trips to take in the United States is the scenic Highway 1 in California. You will travel through iconic landmarks such as the Golden Gate Bridge, Big Sur, the city of Angeles and lots of other natural wonders, small towns, and other breathtaking sights. Be sure to bring a camera along!
When you are in California, you can try the original California burrito. These should have house-made fries inside. Other surprise ingredients include guacamole and salsa.
Carnival Cruise recently announced the plan to base a new cruise liner in Long Beach, California. Because the cruise company is based in Miami, a majority of their US-based offers are based in Florida. This announcement marked the first time in two decades that one of the company’s cruise ships will be based on the West Coast. This is a major addition to California’s already booming travel economy.
The name of the 3,960 passenger cruiser is Panorama. This massive ship weighs an astonishing 133,500 tons and is set to be revealed in 2019. In is currently undergoing construction in Italy. Carnival Panorama will be replacing an older version and still making the same cruise route to Mexico.
In true Carnival fashion, the new Panorama will sport a water park on top-deck, bars, countless places to eat and even a sky ride. The Panorama will be the third addition to a relatively new class of cruisers from Carnival that are the largest yet. The announcement is in perfect timing with the recent reveal of a reconstruction of the Long Beach cruise terminal.
The current Carnival cruise terminal in Long Beach was once used to house the famed Spruce Goose, one of the largest planes ever created. The reconstruction plans include a doubling of available facilities while creating a more efficient flow of passengers. The power system on the ports is also planned to be improved.
The Carnival Cruise company plans to have bookings available from March onwards for those interested travelers.
A well-practiced Californian hiker, declared missing for six days after exploring the icy regions of the state’s Yosemite National Park, was recently discovered in good health after a lengthy searching plan. Thanks to the aerial view offered by a helicopter, a search party was able to locate hiker Alan Chow above Wapama Falls, a region near the park’s center that regularly sees overnight temperatures descending past the freezing point.
Scott Gedimen, a ranger for the park, explained that the 36-year old resident of Oakland managed to lose his way because the park’s reliable trailer markers had been obscured by snowfall. Gedimen went on to remark that Chow had been prepared for the worst possible hiking scenarios. Upon realizing that he became lost Chow stayed in place, rather than trying to walk about and wind up even turned around. Further, Chow set up his tent, relied on melting snow for drinkable water and had brought provisions and warm attire.
Chow, a regular when it comes to outdoor activities, had planned an overnight solo trip backpacking through the area and was last seen on February 17. He was not declared missing until three days had passed without Chow arriving to work in Alameda County and a co-worker expressed worry over Chow’s absence. Chow’s search party consisted of 60 people, most of whom focused the search efforts around the park’s Hetch Hetchy Reservoir; the location where Chow was last spotted. Upon being discovered, Chow was said to be in a healthy state and was reconnected with family members.
Yosemite National Park is located within the Sierra Nevada mountain range within California and takes up 747,956 acres. Although declared a world heritage site in the mid-’80s, the prior establishment of Yellowstone as a national park meant that Yosemite helped inspire America’s National Park System.
Norwegian Cruise Line is betting big on 2018. On the heels of a positive fourth-quarter earnings report, Norwegian is set to launch its newest ship when The Norwegian Bliss embarks on its maiden voyage on April 23. The 167,800-ton ocean liner will rank in the top ten of the world’s largest ships. Beginning in May, the Bliss will set sail out of Seattle, as it boasts its status as the largest ship to ever sail to Alaska. The 7-night itinerary will feature stops in Victoria, B.C., Ketchikan, Juneau, and Skagway. After the Alaska sailing season concludes, the Bliss will head South and spend the rest of the year sailing out of Miami with stops in the Caribbean.
Like its sister ships the Norwegian Joy and the Norwegian Escape, the Norwegian Bliss features a multitude of extravagant and never seen before amusements designed to attract new passengers. The Bliss debuts the opportunity for guests to compete against one another driving electric cars on a racing course which spans two decks. The sprawling multi-level water park will delight passengers of all ages. Norwegian is stepping up its entertainment game with actual productions of Tony award-winning shows. Passengers will feel pampered in the luxurious full-service spa. Bliss will satiate any type of appetite with the classic Norwegian Cruise Line offerings, as well as new concepts including a new barbeque joint featuring live country music. Starbucks will also make its debut on a Norwegian ship with a full-service coffee shop on board.
A number of maritime companies which have continued to support trading with the North Korean regime may soon find themselves excluded from sending vessels into U.S. waters. In an effort to ratchet up diplomatic tensions on the government headed by Kim Jong Un, the Trump Administration recently decreed the “largest ever” set of economic sanctions in support of United Nations resolutions. Recently, Vice President Pence told the news media he had anticipated meeting with representatives of the Pyongyang regime, but the discussions had not occurred.
Tough Sanctions Against Smuggling
The new measures announced by Treasury Department officials reportedly will impact some 28 maritime vessels, including several flying flags located in nations outside North Korea. The BBC reports the list names one individual and 27 business entities, including some 16 shipping companies. The stiffening of U.S. economic sanctions may reflect frustration following years of disregard for the trading prohibitions imposed on North Korea by the United Nations and the international community. Despite economic sanctions, the regime in Pyongyang has continued to develop its nuclear missile weapons program.
Ships which will no longer enjoy welcome access to West Coast ports include a number of vessels flying flags based in North Korea, as well as five from Hong Kong, two from the Peoples Republic of China, two from Taiwan, one from Panama and one from Singapore. In an effort to stymy the North Korean weapons program, the United Nations has sought to prevent the export of North Korean products to other nations and the import of 90% of fuel into North Korea. At the beginning of 2018, Kim Jong Un bragged he keeps a nuclear launch button available at all times.
West Coast Trade
Several ports along the West Coast have witnessed thriving trade during recent years. As a group, the ports of Los Angeles, Long Beach, Oakland, Seattle, and Tacoma enjoyed a sharp increase in business during 2017. In nearby Canada, the Pacific ports of Prince Rupert and Vancouver have also prospered. All of these ports frequently handle container shipping, playing a crucial role in commerce across the Pacific.
President Trump today addressed the audience attending the Conservative Political Action Conference. He mentioned the new ban against the vessels and trading companies which have violated trade restrictions involving North Korea. He hopes the measure provides the “heaviest sanctions” ever brought against the Hermit Kingdom’s disregard of weapons prohibitions.