Tag: UK TravelView All Tags
Train Travel / Harry Potter / UK Travel / Orient-Express / Orient Express / Literary Travel / Movie Travel / Tours / → All Tags
The Wizarding World of Harry Potter theme park at Universal Studios Orlando may be working on building a full-scale Hogwarts Express train, but little do they know one already exists.
Over in the UK, the famously opulent Orient-Express "Northern Belle" train attempts to recreate the Hogwarts Express experience on special kid-friendly departures that include more than just a choo-choo ride; the train actually transports its passengers to and from Hogwarts or, well, the Harry Potter Studio Tour experience outside London, where the movies were filmed.
Curious to see what exactly goes down in the Studio Tour? What a coincidence! We recently visited it ourselves.
Airport News / London Heathrow / The Queen's Terminal / LHR / London Travel / Airport Construction / UK Travel / → All Tags
This summer hasn't even officially begun and we're already looking forward to a European trip in 2014, thanks to the opening of the newest and flashiest new airport: Heathrow's Terminal 2. Besides the fresh new airport smell, the building will walk through the halls of The Queen's Terminal, the official name of the modern building.
The countdown is officially on for The Queen's Terminal as we are just under 12 months until the ribbon cutting, with the first passengers arriving on a United flight June 4, 2014. The terminal will hearken back to the airport's history; Queen Elizabeth opened the original building in 1955, just 3 years after she took the throne. Since then, that structure was demolished to make way for a sustainable airport that will grow with the amount of tourists planning to head to the UK and transit through the mega-hub.
Travel News / Virgin / Virgin Trains / Train Travel / UK Travel / Britain Travel / London Travel / Richard Branson / Photo Gallery / → All Tags
Forgive the obvious train headline pun.
You wake up and inevitably roll over to check your phone. Emails, Twitter replies (none), and finally Facebook. Based on what you see there, you're going to have your first instinct on calling it a good day or a bad day.
Well, my friends, today's already one of those bad days as the first bit of news we caught was the end of Britain's Virgin Trains. You can read all the details behind the line's impending closure at BusinessWeek, but essentially Virgin Trains rebid to continue running their services on the privatized west coast lineslines they've been running for 15 years at currently 30 million passengers per yearand LOST.
Virgin will continue running until December, when the switch will take place to see Virgin out and UK rail company FirstGroup in. This means the end of slick, red-painted tilting Virgin Pendolinos on routes including London to Birmingham, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Manchester, and Liverpool (our favorite).
"It takes how long from London?!" is the usual response we get when suggesting that our friends visit Cornwall, Britain's most southwesterly county.
Stuck out into the Atlantic as it is, it's either an hour's flight from Gatwick to Newquay, a five hour day train, or our favorite: the overnight sleeper train that lets you save a night's hotel costs while being rocked to sleep by the clickety-clack of the rails.
Go to bed in London...and wake up on the Cornish Riviera, Britain's version of the Côte d'Azur, with sea, surf, sand andif you're lucky, because it's still the UK, sun.
Money / Customs / UK Travel / Luxury Travel / Luggage / → All Tags
Mo money, mo problems. Sounds like a problem we all wish to have, if at least for a minute.
Even millionaires, billionaires, and trillionairs have cash problems and Christo Wiese is no exception. Back in 2009, South Africa's third wealthiest man ran into some issues with border officials in the UK when he tried to fly from the London to Luxemburg with 3 suitcases full of cash. We're talking full of cash to the tune of the equivalent to $1 million US dollars.
Airline Mergers / Airline News / BMI Baby / BMI / British Airways / Iberia / IAG / UK Travel / → All Tags
We all know that bmi ownership has changed hands from Lufthansa to IAG, the parent company to British Aiways and Iberia. When the merger is complete, bmi will be no more, a casualty in the battle that is the European aviation industry. But first, we bid a fond adieu to bmi's low-cost little brother, bmi baby.
With all the necessary signatures put to paper, IAG is starting to figure out the best way to combine operations and surge to airline dominance. The baby painted planes are the first ones to get the axe and it's all happening very quickly.
Shopping Travel / UK Travel / LHR / Airplanes / Boeing / British Airways / Airlines / Flight Simulator / Airline News / Holiday Travel / Layovers / London Travel / → All Tags
Perhaps you have people on your holiday shopping list for whom you completely dread finding gifts...or maybe it's you falling into that category on your loved one's lists. Whatever direction the holiday shopping stress is coming from, British Airways has a solution.
Last week, BA decided to spice up Black Friday and tweeted about gift ideas, like vouchers for the general public to get into their Flight Simulator Experiences.
It all sounds like something right out of the Nieman Marcus Fantasy Gift section in their catalog, with prices to match. Normally reserved for their own flight crews, the simulators are offered to any self-proclaimed aviation geek. Vouchers are available from £399 for a 1-hour flight on a Boeing 737-400, to £1,347 for a 3-hour flight on a 747-400. Sorry Airbus fans, aircraft options are limited to Boeing only and also include 757-200, 767-300 and 777-200.
Traveling with Children / Travel Safety / Historical Travel / Europe Travel / UK Travel / Travel Tips / → All Tags
First things first. Here at Jaunted, we like kids. Hecksome of us even have them! Thus we don't typically advocate the use of kid-leashes because they look stupid, are dehumanizing, and keeping kids in line shouldn't require strapping something around them. On the other hand, we understand their practicality in certain tourism-related settings. Here's the top three places it may be okay to put your kid on a leash:
· At a medieval castle
It was in one of the eight tall turrets at Conwy Castle in Wales that we first noticed the high percentage of little kids on leashes, and for once it all made sense. These turrets have very thin, steep steps. The walkways can be precipitous, not to mention scarily uneven. Parents had prepped for the outing by breaking out the harnesses, and we watched in awe as they easily navigated their way down spiral staircases and around the medieval layout (with a 91' deep well!) knowing their children wouldn't fall into the many abysses at any moment.
Are you ready for this? British Airways has just announced that they will soon introduce a "signature brand scent" onto their airplanes, to make flyers think of luxury stores or anywhere other than a metal tube full of passengers with questionable hygiene. How do you prefer your airlinepowder fresh or mountain spring? Finally we can say this: "We like our airlines like we like our deodorants: unscented."
The scent details haven't yet been released, although we're guessing a top note of bacon roll is off the table. Likely Eau de BA will follow in the fresh trend of the scent already found throughout British Airways' Heathrow lounges, that of cut grass and ocean.
Manchester Travel / UK Travel / Music / Music Travel / Arts / Arts Travel / Summer Travel / Festivals / Festival Travel / → All Tags
Manchester is a city of industry, art, and, if you ask certain diehard ManU fans, football. However, it's the juxtaposition between the first two that most vividly colors its landscape. This is the city that birthed both a significant textile boom and Joy Division, each playing a significant role in the development of its social fabric.
Last weekend marked the final days of the Manchester International Festival, a nearly month-long celebration of performing, visual, and pop culture arts set against the city's hardened urban environs. Jaunted took a train northward from London to take in the last of MIF's programming, the highlight being Icelandic songstress Bjork's much-lauded Biophilia show on Saturday evening.
TripAdvisor / UK Travel / England Travel / UK / England / Technology / Social Media / Bad Ideas / → All Tags
From the Department of Not Getting The Concept, here's a really strange story out of the UK. Two thirty-somethings were midway through their stay at the Golden Beach hotel in Blackpool when the manager stormed into their room and demanded that they leave. Police were called and told to evict the couple, though everyone acknowledges that no crime was committed. Instead, the hotel manager was ballistic because he believed that the guests had left a negative TripAdvisor review of the hotel.
How could this story get any worse for the establishment? The guest was apparently a cancer patient getting out of the city for the first time since completing an 18-month course of chemotherapy. So perfect is this clusterfark that we're still not convinced that it isn't some kind of prank or social media publicity stunt.
Immigration / Borders / Visas / UK Travel / → All Tags
The guy probably had it all planned out before they searched his bags. A Mexican national, he declared his intent to visit a few friends in the U.K. before returning back home via Los Angeles. But his suitcase told a different story, and after customs found a note from a friend wishing him a "new life," he was forced to confess that he was planning to stay and work illegally -- and subsequently deported.
He's not alone: After years of relative open-door policies, the three leading British political parties are all calling for greater regulation of who gets into Britain, which could mean trouble for long-haul travelers without visas. And, spurred by a report from the Office of National Statistics which showed that some 214,000 foreign nationals had gained jobs in the U.K. while 278,000 Brits had lost theirs, most of the country is behind them.
The new policies include fingerprinting all visa applicants and tacking fees onto the entry visas for various countries, but it may also mean turning up the heat on legitimate vacationers. Perhaps packing a datebook showing you have something to get back to wouldn't be a bad idea.
· Hasta la vista, baby [Reuters]
· UK slump poses challenge to support for an open economy [The Australian]
· New visa regulations may harm UK tourism [ASAP.co.uk]
· 2008: UK Stepping Up Its Immigration Game [Jaunted]