Travelling... Page 72

  • JoelStinty 14 Feb 2020 18:31:41 8,927 posts
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    Thanks again Ab.

    Next week is going to be a but frustrating. 9 new cases of Coronavirus in the last two days. It seemed relatively contained up until now, but it feels a little bit ominous. Not too concerned about my own health if I do catch it, but more passing it on, and then from a visitor perspective, the shutdown of various attractions etc. Guess this time next week we'll know more.
  • Armoured_Bear 16 Feb 2020 17:56:46 28,864 posts
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    @JoelStinty
    Hi Joel
    A couple of things we liked in Takayama:

    Takayama

    Super cute wee sushi place in Takayama :

    Sushi Bar Monte Feliz
    It's in beside a load of other wee eateries and bars, all small cobbled together in a wee collection of tiny alleyways. Really friendly too.
    Looks like this:



    Fukutaro is a nice, cosy place for a coffee, tasty snack.
    They do beef skewers, rice dumplings on sticks etc. and it's delicious.

    When wandering around the touristy area, the beef buns are great in Kihachiro.

    We did a day trip from Takayama and did some hiking in Kamikochi, it's really, really beautiful. Couldn't recommend it enough :




    It's easy hiking but very scenic, you get a 1h bus to Hirayu Onsen then change and get another 20 minute bus or something.

    Coronavirus seems to be calming down thankfully.
  • JoelStinty 23 Feb 2020 09:51:04 8,927 posts
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    So I've cancelled my Japan Trip. I'm gutted. Just felt it wasn't worth the risk. Wasn't really the virus I was worried about but them closing down attractions etc. Tokyo have cancelled all in door public events, Osaka all public events. Studio Ghibli and Various attractions have shut down for a month in principle. Its really shit. But can't be helped. People have been asked to avoid crowds etc. CDC upgraded Japan to a 2 (out of 3) on the travel alert yesterday too.

    I feel a bit sick. Been looking forward to it for so long. But didn't want to spend a shit load of money to get half the Japan experience. I don't think I will be able to do a two month trip again, so I have to see about doing smaller trips later on in the year when it clears over.

    Honestly, I'd say the olympics are 50/50 at the moment too. China seems to be stabilising so there may be some hope.
  • Armoured_Bear 24 Feb 2020 12:47:29 28,864 posts
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    Thatís crap Joel but youíll get other chances and youíre super well prepared now!
  • RyanDS 6 Jul 2020 15:50:11 13,278 posts
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    6 months to the day I landed back in the UK from my last trip. Feels like forever and the longest I have been without leaving the country in my life I think.

    Anyway, with the lockdown easing I have just booked my Eurotunnel tickets, and riding my bike over wednesday night, returning Sunday.

    Any suggestions on where to go? I want a town less than 90 minutes from Calais for day 1, then 3 more towns to do a loop, preferably no more than 2-3 hours driving per day.

    Places I have been:
    Le Touquet
    Lille
    Amiens
    Ypres
    Bruges
    Ghent
    Antwerp

    Tempted by:
    Rotterdam
    Lens
    Arras
    The Hague
    Rotterdam

    Have no plans or ideas on what to see or do, just more soak up the vibes and see somewhere new. Usually I do France / Belgium but I am not sure on border issues at the moment so may just stick to France.
  • Nexus_6 6 Jul 2020 16:10:26 5,072 posts
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    I have been to Rotterdam several times over the years. Man and boy.
    Thoroughly recommend it certainly over Amsterdam which isn't on your list right enough. You might like Utrecht as well if you're in Netherlands it has some brilliant little urban squares and bits of canal etc.
  • Rhaegyr 6 Jul 2020 16:21:29 5,176 posts
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    You're tempted by Rotterdam twice. I'd go there :p
  • elstoof 6 Jul 2020 16:26:34 25,868 posts
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    If the weatherís nice, Trouville or Deauville. If you want to avoid Belgium and head the other way, thereís golf do morbihan in Brittany which has some beautiful parts

    Edited by elstoof at 16:30:59 06-07-2020
  • Psychotext 6 Jul 2020 17:13:53 67,170 posts
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    Still waiting for my flights to be refunded, still absolutely no contact from the travel agent (not even a "we've got your request").

    Never, ever using a travel agent again.
  • elstoof 6 Jul 2020 17:25:23 25,868 posts
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    I booked an itinerary with a travel agent for a trip to HK and Japan, supposed to have gone in March. They were the cheapest on Skyscanner, didnít realise their refund policy was absolutely zero even in the face of flights being cancelled/rescheduled and wouldíve missed all my appointments, probably gotten stuck in Asia. Donít think Iíll book with an agent again either
  • reddevil93 6 Jul 2020 17:54:28 15,532 posts
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    Psychotext wrote:
    Still waiting for my flights to be refunded, still absolutely no contact from the travel agent (not even a "we've got your request").

    Never, ever using a travel agent again.
    Who did you use? I had flights home to Ireland from Mexico booked with JetAbroad leaving this past Saturday.

    Submitted a refund request maybe 2 weeks ago and got confirmation it was bring processed on Friday. I think it was due to the flight being canceled though. Yet they're still charging $200 or so for the refund.

    They're saying it could be between 4 weeks and 4 months for it actually getting to my account, and that they won't respond to any further questions before that 4 month timeline passes.

    Oh also, my email from them ended up in my spam in case you haven't checked there.
  • Vortex808 6 Jul 2020 18:19:31 13,862 posts
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    Nexus_6 wrote:
    I have been to Rotterdam several times over the years. Man and boy.
    Thoroughly recommend it certainly over Amsterdam which isn't on your list right enough. You might like Utrecht as well if you're in Netherlands it has some brilliant little urban squares and bits of canal etc.
    Utrecht is definitely nice. Leiden is also worth a visit. It's been ages since I was in the Hague, but it was nice too.
  • Salaman 6 Jul 2020 20:33:08 23,838 posts
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    RyanDS wrote:
    6 months to the day I landed back in the UK from my last trip. Feels like forever and the longest I have been without leaving the country in my life I think.

    Anyway, with the lockdown easing I have just booked my Eurotunnel tickets, and riding my bike over wednesday night, returning Sunday.

    Any suggestions on where to go? I want a town less than 90 minutes from Calais for day 1, then 3 more towns to do a loop, preferably no more than 2-3 hours driving per day.

    Places I have been:
    Le Touquet
    Lille
    Amiens
    Ypres
    Bruges
    Ghent
    Antwerp

    Tempted by:
    Rotterdam
    Lens
    Arras
    The Hague
    Rotterdam

    Have no plans or ideas on what to see or do, just more soak up the vibes and see somewhere new. Usually I do France / Belgium but I am not sure on border issues at the moment so may just stick to France.
    Rotterdam and The Hague are a good call.
    Also nearby and worth a visit: Leiden, 's Hertogenbosch.
  • Armoured_Bear 6 Jul 2020 20:36:11 28,864 posts
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    Man, I miss travelling, I hope next year is different from next year.
  • elstoof 6 Jul 2020 21:44:35 25,868 posts
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    Chances are itíll be next year
  • Psychotext 7 Jul 2020 00:47:44 67,170 posts
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    reddevil93 wrote:
    Who did you use? I had flights home to Ireland from Mexico booked with JetAbroad leaving this past Saturday.
    TravelUp, they've been complete shit. Definitely nothing in my spam either as I have to obsessively check it because it's too aggressive.

    Wouldn't be so bad, but if I'd have booked direct then I'd have had this sorted at the start of March.

    Thankfully I booked it with my Amex and I have pretty solid travel insurance, so I have places to go if it doesn't work out my way.
  • Armoured_Bear 7 Jul 2020 09:07:00 28,864 posts
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    Why do people use travel agents nowadays (apart from oldies)?
  • Dougs 7 Jul 2020 09:14:29 94,651 posts
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    Ease, presumably. Not everyone has the time to plan their own trip, sourcing the best deals etc.
  • barchetta 7 Jul 2020 09:43:29 2,522 posts
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    @RyanDS We did a stopover in Arras a few years back on the way down to the Dordogne. My great grandfather's WW1 grave is in a small military cemetary just south of Arras, and since my eldest was doing WW1 at school it was a good opportunity to make it fit. Was strange, since they share names, to see one looking at the other...

    So, Arras. Was quite nice from the evening spent there - a nice public square with options to eat etc. Not sure how much is available right now of course, but it had a pleasant, relaxed feel.

    However, if you are at all interested in WW2 history. Approx halfway between Calais and Arras is 'La Coupole. Was to be the big V2 assembly/launch base but was never 'allowed' to start operations. Spent a powerful and interesting afternoon there. Seems they are open, with visitor reductions etc.

    I prefer my history a little older, but the scale of it both impressed and appalled.
  • barchetta 7 Jul 2020 09:45:53 2,522 posts
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    Oh, and I saw you'd visited Ghent/Gent already. Still, may be worth a revisit! My company HQ is there but, sadly, I don't get many chances to visit. Did consider relocating many moons ago. Not really an option anymore though is it.....
  • Trafford 7 Jul 2020 10:18:28 8,579 posts
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    Armoured_Bear wrote:
    Why do people use travel agents nowadays (apart from oldies)?
    I was a flight broker for 20 years and there's a lot more to it than saving 50 quid on a flight to Bangkok.
    If someone is spending 5-100K a year on leisure trips they tend to want someone who is reliable to oversee things. To be responsible when things go tits up.
    Also provide guidance and inspiration on where to go next. Plan complex itineraries for business travellers etc.
    People would pay more to book with us because we were good.
    Sadly there are a lot of cowboys in the industry, new companies come and go. All have pretty much the same terms and conditions but it's how they act on them.

    I was lucky in that I worked for a well established independent who looked after us and more importantly clients when things went wrong, acts of God.
    I could bend rules to help people out and they let us do some of the shadier aspects of the industry as long as the client was taken care of.

    Edited by Trafford at 10:19:43 07-07-2020
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