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Road Trips / Top Gear Travel / TV Travel / Cars / Britain Travel / Awesome Stuff / Racing / → All Tags
Fun fact: BBC's Top Gear is the most popular automotive show in history, broadcasting in about 170 different countries. Hundreds of millions of people tune in and watch the ragtag trio of presenters race, destroy cars, and chide each other in the process every week, so there is a pretty good chance you're one of those fans. If so, good news! The Top Gear Test Track is now open to the public, for a price of course.
That’s right. You can drive on the same track at Dunsfold Park (near Guildford in Surrey) where they do most of their tests and challenges, visit the Top Gear TV Studio, and catch a glimpse of that looming Boeing 747 in the process. The Top Gear Track Experience, as it's called, offers 8 different options ranging from the “Star In a Reasonably Priced Car” timed laps to off-roading in a Land Rover Defender.
Fraser Island Field Trip / Fraser Island Travel / Australia Travel / Queensland Travel / Nature Travel / Road Trips / Cars / General Aviation / → All Tags
No silly sayings or Tom Cochrane references here! Just the fact that Australia's Fraser Island has some pretty cool things to see and do.
While most activities revolve around nature, fresh air, and enjoyment of the outdoors, we couldn't pass up the chance to rent a 4x4 and head onto the Eastern Beaches for the island's most popular activity: speeding up the coast, on the coast. Yep, you've heard correctly; not only is driving on the beach legal, but it's actually encouraged and one of the best ways to see a huge portion of this island off Queensland.
Rental Cars / Drug Travel / Colorado Travel / Airport News / DEN / Cars / → All Tags
So you probably know that Colorado has legalized marijuana—in all kinds of forms—for recreational use. However, you probably didn’t know that there’s a new place to acquire the state’s latest cash crop. It’s your rental car!
Okay—not really, but it does sound like unwanted marijuana has found a second home within the rental car garage. Most of the stuff is left behind at Denver International Airport right in the rental car, and sometimes it’s even offered up to the agents by those departing the state.
Hertz / Rental Cars / Cars / Road Trips / → All Tags
There’s nothing worse than a dirty, smelly, or otherwise not up to par rental car. We always get a little thrill getting in our rental for the first time, and that’s especially the case if we’re doing a good chunk of driving. Thankfully Hertz understands our passion for an awesome set of wheels, and they’re introducing a new set of promises and certifications.
In a way this just sounds like they’re putting a new spin and marketing angle on something they should—and might be—already offering; however, we’ll try to give them the benefit of the doubt here. Basically the new Hertz Certified Clean & Safe program is a 35-point checklist to ensure the car you’re picking up is truly good-to-go.
Travel Tips / Road Trips / Cars / Candy Travel / → All Tags
Classic candy is quickly coming back into style. The return of Sugar Daddies, Pop Rocks, Bazooka Bubble Gum and Ring Pops means an old fashioned sugar high never really goes out of style, but we're most interested in that last one: the Ring Pop. We've recently discovered that enjoying one of these treat gems can be handy for keeping alert and awake during long drives.
For example, we drove from Palm Springs, CA to Tucson, AZ in spring, and entertained ourselves on the 4-hour desert drive with a Ring Pop and some loud music. It wasn't until this last weekend that we discovered the true power of the Ring Pop, however, as we faced 9 hours of solo road tripping across the Northeast, into the Midwest. After loud music failed to keep our focus on the road and drowsiness (combined with the monotony of middle of Pennsylvania scenery) threatened, we reached for a Ring Pop.
Beyond the addition of sugar into our system, the act of enjoying a Ring Pop engages another sense (taste) into activity. It goes without saying that, if you're truly tired, it's time to stop at a motel for the night. A Ring Pop is no substitute for a good sleep, but it has its uses.
Rental Cars / Cars / Driving / Avis / Zipcar Car / Sharing / → All Tags
Back when Zipcar first starting doing its thing there was a little less competition then there is now, and that’s why the rental car company is expanding its offerings to provide customers what they need. This fall is when Zipcar ONE>WAY will start doing its thing, as it is designed to offer up one-way rental options thanks to fleet of 2015 Honda Fit automobiles.
Free Stuff / iPhone Travel Apps / Car Shares / Car Sharing / Lyft / Cars / Travel Apps / → All Tags
When done correctly, those newfangled ride share programs can be pretty darn convenient, and even better they're often a great alternative—as in cheaper—than a taxi or town car. Options like Sidecar and Uber are just a couple of examples participating in this model, and there’s also Lyft. Speaking of Lyft, they just announced a significant expansion of their offerings to a slew of new cities.
Lyft works just like a lot of the other peer-to-peer ride programs in that there’s an app that connects drivers around you to take you where you need to be. They try to have a little fun with things as well, so be sure to remember to sit up front when you get in your ride and maybe even fist bump the driver.
There’s a new
sheriff mayor in town, and he doesn’t really see the charm and nostalgia of the horse drawn carriages doing their thing in and around New York City’s central park. Mayor Bill de Blasio has only been in office for a few months, but he’s made it clear that he wants the horses to head elsewhere for a variety of reasons. We won’t agree or disagree with his thoughts and opinions, but we will let you know of an alternative—old timey horseless carriages.
The New York International Auto Show is busy doing its thing, and as part of the show The Creative Workshop showed off a prototype of what it calls a Horseless eCarriage. There’s oversized wheels, room for up to eight tourists, a lot of shiny brass, and a really big battery—as the whole thing is electric.
Booze Travel / Drinking Travel / Beer Travel / Bars / Florida Restaurants / Road Trips / Florida Travel / Florida Keys Travel / Subaru XV Crosstrek / Cars / → All Tags
Dive bars are a place you can go without needing to dress up and drench yourself in cologne. Each has its own character which makes the casual wanderer-in want to be him/herself. While in the Keys recently, we found a few such dive bars worth mentioning.
· Green Parrot Bar - 601 Whitehead St. Key West - Open Daily 10am - 4am
This dive bar is a long time favorite among locals and tourists. Formerly called The Brown Derby Bar during WWII, it was a favorite among the submariners and sailers stationed a few blocks away. Now called Green Parrot bar, some of the retired sailers still come back to the bar to find it virtually unchanged. I’m sure it can get very busy during the summer but the bartenders are quick and knowledgable so you won’t be waiting for your drink for too long.
Road Trips / Florida Travel / Florida Keys Travel / Subaru XV Crosstrek / Cars / Key West Travel / → All Tags
There's a good chance that, if you're reading this, you're well aware of the seemingly endless winter weather impacting much of the United States. And you're probably also wishing for some sun and warmth right about now. An easy remedy comes in two words: Key West.
We recently made the popular drive along the Keys in a new 2014 Subaru XV Crosstrek Hybrid, and discovered a few things along way, aside from the fact that fresh air and sunlight does a previously snowed-in traveler a world of good.
The Overseas Highway (part of US 1) runs from Key West to Miami and allows access to the Keys in between. Consisting mainly of leftover bridges and road sections from the original railroad system constructed by Henry Flagler, the completed highway opened to traffic in 1938. It is a destination of its own, and allows vacationers easy access to the sandier beaches south of the state's continental limit.
FlightCar / Rental Cars / Cars / Road Trips / Car Shares / Car Sharing / Driving / Airports / LAX / SFO / BOS / → All Tags
We’ve talked about FlightCar before, and in case you don’t remember—we will fill you in. Basically it’s a car sharing program over at the long-term rental car parking lot. When you drop your car off it’s paired up with someone looking for a car. The renter gets a better deal by borrowing your car, and you get a better deal because you make some money instead of paying for parking. It’s all licensed, insured, and what not, as they realize that there needs to be some guarantees and promises to get everyone comfortable with things.
Right now FlightCar is an option at airports in Boston, Los Angeles, and San Francisco, but what we wanted to share is how they’re changing things up for business travelers. The company isn’t just interested in the leisure market, as they’re now trying to get road warriors interested in their services.
Rental Cars / Hertz / Arizona Travel / Cars / Road Trips / Travel Deals / → All Tags
There’s been plenty of deals to drive rental cars out of certain states and into other states as well; however, we’re not sure that has been the case at the same time. Hertz is either confused, or they just are really excited about the state of Arizona. The rental car company is now offering up one-way deals for those looking to depart from or arrive to the Grand Canyon State.
Heading into the state is the better option, so we’ll start with that. Drive into Arizona deals can be had starting at $5 per day on economy cars, and if you’re looking for something a little better—they also promise a good deal on other car classes. You need to book your reservation sooner than later, and pickup the car prior to March 10. Just utilize RQ “ICFLT1” to score the deal, and be sure to grab your car at a participating location. This includes options rented in and around Southern California, Las Vegas, San Antonio, Austin, El Paso, and the state of New Mexico.