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The Most Clever Way to Save Money at Universal Studios!

By December 13, 2016 Destinations, Family Travel, For Your Journey, Hacks, Products, Travel
Clever Way to Save at Universal Studios Florida

If you are planning to attend Universal Studios, you’ve probably seen some of the pricing, and likely taken a deep breath. I can imagine its more than you first expected! Wouldn’t you like to save money on your trip? Wondering what is the most effective way to save money at Universal Studios?

The Most clever, and effective way to save money going to Universal Studios, is to attend as a GROUP! Seriously, its that easy, and the group does not have to be a large group either! In fact, the larger the group, the better the pricing for park tickets, but group pricing can begin with less than 20 people! With day tickets exceeding $100, group ticketing gets the price under that threshold.

But the savings are not just for group day tickets! In fact, if you have interest in staying for multiple days, you can really save a tremendous amount of money with a group package at Universal Studios Orlando. Here is what to expect in savings exclusively for groups:

  • Savings on Park Tickets
  • Early Park Entry Passes
  • Special discounts on select merchandise
  • Free Discount Savings Booklet worth over $150 in savings
  • Group Leader complimentary meals and services
  • Reduced hotel costs

How to Qualify as a Group

By now, you may be thinking – gee that’s nice, but its only my family, how is that going to help?

This is how easy it is to get group discounts – get a few families together, and commit to travel at the same time, and stay in the same hotel. 10 paid hotel rooms will qualify for the exceptional rates available. That’s 10 couples, and maybe less if  large families are booking 2 adjoining rooms.

A family of 4, could have the families of their children’s friends invited. Now you have 3 rooms booked. They all ask grandparents to come, and you have 9 rooms done. If every family just invited one more family or person, that would be 13 rooms, and the family organizing the trip get extra perks to offset their trip, such as free meals for one adult, and the room for free!

Or perhaps you belong to a youth sports program, club, or church group. Just about any group can qualify.

Next is to contact your Travel Professional, and work with them in arranging your group with Universal Studios. They’ll know the ins and outs of the many benefits to groups at the park, and advantages to the many options that are available. They will know of blackout dates, and when group travel is not the best savings available.

They can also offer additional options and tours to experience while in the Orlando area.

Tips for Extra Savings

One more way to save, is by booking your air travel or ground transportation as a group. It can be done on your own, Shrek 4-Dbut the easiest way is to work with your travel professional. It usually doesn’t cost you anything if this person is booking your entire package,  so you not only save money by group booking, but you’ll save lots of time and frustration too!

Traveling by motorcoach is an excellent way to save money on ground transportation. and can cost less than traveling by auto if the group is 15 or more passengers. And you’ll enjoy less hassle, have better comfort, and how cool is it to not stop every time a little one needs a potty break?! (Motorcoaches have on-board lavatories)

If you decide that you want to book your own ground travel, contact ANGL. Tell them Shawn at East-West Global Traveler sent you, and they will take good care of your needs.


If you book this winter, but wait to go to Universal Studios until after June 2017, your group ticket package will include Volcano Bay – Universal’s newest theme park, That’s 3 parks for the same price as 2! Just more more way to save!



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Excellent Source for Travel Brochures!

By December 7, 2016 Adventure Travel, Cities, Countries, Cruising, Destinations, Family Travel, Fishing, For Your Journey, Products, Solo Travel, Tours, Travel, Wild Places, Wildlife & Safari

If you travel at all, you appreciate the value of good travel brochures that inspire, and educate you about great destinations .

It does get frustrating when I lose them, or want to review one while I am abroad, and don’t have access to them.

Ah, but technology can fix this! If you have internet access, I have found an online source for hundreds of up-to-date travel brochures. They update regularly, and I don’t need to re-order or carry around glossy copies. I can download those that I really like, to keep with me on my laptop, or tablet.

And look, you can even sort them by location and other parameters. I’m always discovering something new in these brochures!

You can see the entire selection by clicking the image or get your Brochures Here.

Enjoy over 100 Travel Brochures provided by East-West Global Travel

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Housekeeping between Travels…

By December 3, 2016 For Your Journey

Follow my blog with Bloglovin
I really desire for this blog to be useful for others to read, and to help inspire them to travel. That’s not going to happen if  people aren’t reading it, seeing all the nice photos, and making comments about their own experiences.

To help make that happen, I’ve done a little housekeeping. I’ve added my various social media links on the sidebar, and at the foot of the blog. I have also shared the blog at BlogLovin’.

Follow my blog with Bloglovin

And then to validate the RSS Feeds for accuracy…
valid-rss-rogers[Valid RSS]
Have other ideas – leave them in the comments below!



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Traveling with Birds…

By November 28, 2016 For Your Journey, Travel Apps, Wild Places

Many years ago, I took a 400 level college course in ornithology. I figured it would be an easy extension of my love for birds, and the outdoors. While the course was not easy, and much to be learned about these fascThe Big Yearinating creatures, there was at least one major takeaway- maintaining an accurate “lifelist” or list of bird species sighted and identified.

Not too long ago, my family enjoyed watching “The Big Year.” Its an entertaining movie on the competition of three birdwatchers seeking the title of the most species sighted in one year. I wondered how many I could find in one year…

And with that, I decided to abandon my almost 300 strong list, to start anew. With all the traveling, and opportunities to be among the American fly-ways during migrations, it seemed like a achievable, exciting challenge. Could I get at least 150 in one year, without specifically going birdwatching? Could it be achieved as a casual traveling observer? Time to find out!

I did want to make some adaptations to this endeavor. No books, or paper field guides. No paper lists. If I discovered a species out of place, or rare, could I report it without making a call, or visiting social media? Tough expectations for birdwatchers!

I began doing some research on possible applications. Then testing and evaluation for a few months. Gradually, I narrowed my choices down to possibly the finest options available from my needs, and likely they will suit yours as well.


Far and away, the best app for bird identification within the United States was created by Cornell University. Any birder will appreciate the value of this product coming from Cornell, as it is highly regarded in avian research.

The app is called Merlin. Its a wizard of sorts, that is useful to bird watchers of any skill. While its database is limited to a total of about 400 species, that’s more than most folks will find in a lifetime, so its robust enough for many users.

Watch this video for details on Merlin:

Now the app is easy to use, has photos, range data, and even audio, but to take full value of its features, you should probably download and install at least one region – which will take almost 200mb of storage.

The app allows you to verify which bird you identified, and that information is geotagged and anonymously sent back to Cornell, to assist them in updating flight patterns, reductions in species localities, etc. But it doesn’t allow you to keep a list for your own records. Hopefully this will change in the future. You can install Merlin here.


Since Merlin does not yet have a record feature to allow personal sightings to be kept in a file, I had to do much more trials on software that would work for my needs.

Ultimately, I decided on an app, that has worked wonderfully. It allows me to log a wide range of information with each sighting, geotag, and I can even export my list, which could be used to save, or submit to other organizations such as Audubon, who are always looking for sighting information.

My choice is Bird Jar.

Bird jar can be used worldwide, as it maintains a list of 10,000+ birds, which you can narrow to regions you travel if you wish. It also allows  you to note the location, and details of a bird you cannot identify, so later, that information can be researched to make a positive ID.

You can download Bird Jar here.

Added value? Both apps are free!

I have been able to identify 120 species do date. All of them were confirmed through Merlin, and logged in Bird Jar. I hope that you will find value in these apps, as birdwatching can enhance travel to any destination. The species you will see just around a big city, or new state, will make your trip more enjoyable. And honestly – its more exciting than Pokemon Go.


Be sure to share your experience, or other information you might have on this topic. In the meantime, I have a few more birds to find!

Laughing Gull sighted in November 2016, Bimini, Bahamas

Laughing Gull sighted in November 2016, Bimini, Bahamas


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