Cruise Myths Which Must Be Dispelled

For many years my husband had wanted to take me on a cruise trip to the Caribbean, then the Med and then he wanted to go to Scandinavia. What quickly became apparent, was that not only did this basically mean that he was itching to take a cruise, but also that I very much didn’t want to. All of the destinations sounded fantastic but it was just this idea of going on a cruise that didn’t sit well with me, and I had no idea why. I had never been on a cruise and decided that I would take the plunge, given that I had no real reason not to. Thankfully I absolutely loved my time that I spent on a Cruise and Maritime ship, and they helped to change my mind forever. 

Since my trip, I have worked out that I got sucked into the myths that surround cruises, and I wanted to write a piece in order to set the record straight.

Myth 1 – Cruises are Full of Pensioners

If you are not a pensioner then it is unlikely that you would want to spend your vacation with a large group of them. Thankfully, this is absolutely not the case with a cruise, despite what any marketing campaigns may have you believe. I found there to be a great mixture of people on board our ship from families, singletons, groups of friends, couples, and of course, there were some pensioners. Any ideas that a cruise is some kind of over 80s club is just plain wrong.

Myth 2 – Cruises Cost The Earth

I was extremely surprised and delighted in equal measure when I began searching for cruises and saw the prices. I had bought into the myth that cruises were a once-in-a-lifetime-blow-all-your-savings kind of trip but this just isn’t the case. Naturally if you want to go around the world and stay in the first class suite, dining with the captain each night then it could cost you and extraordinary amount of money, but that is no different than flying no frills to New York, or going first class! Cruises can cost the same amount as any other vacation which you plan on doing, so don’t let the price myth put you off.

Myth 3 – Bored at Sea

I enjoy getting on boats but after a day or so, I find that the novelty wears off, and I become slightly bored. This was one of the concerns which I had about being upon the cruise ship for such a long time, something I now concede was a ridiculous notion. In fact these boats are packed with just about everything that you could need and are far more of a floating shopping centre than a seafaring vessel. On board our ship there was a swimming pool and jacuzzi, 6 different restaurants, a cinema, a theatre, a small casino and a huge number of shops, and places to relax. If you have any fears that you are going to be bored during your time at sea, you can forget about that right now, as the truth is the opposite of this.

Best RV Parks in New Orleans That Are Worth a Visit

If you want your vacation to be about reconnecting with friends and family, renting an RV is the way to go. There’s just something about hitting the road and staying in an RV that brings people closer together.

You may think that RV vacations include getting up close and personal with nature. That can be true, but it doesn’t have to be!

The truth is that you can just as easily vacation in an RV in the city. Even in a city like New Orleans.

Here are a few of the best New Orleans RV parks that will make your vacation one to remember.

French Quarter RV Resort

One of the best things to do in New Orleans is explore the French Quarter. There are so many choices that are perfect for the whole family. From exploring unique architecture to sampling the world-renowned cuisine, it’s worth it to make sure you’re close to this popular vacation spot.

No other park gets closer than the French Quarter RV Resort. It is located just a few blocks away from the historic New Orleans area, which means it’s easy to access by bicycle and car. It’s so close that you can even walk there!

The French Quarter RV Resort is unique in that it operates more like a luxury hotel and less like a camping ground. It houses a clubhouse, laundry rooms, and private baths, but the best amenity is the French Quarter-style courtyard that features a pool, hot tub, and a bar.

3 Oaks & A Pine RV Park

If you’re looking for an affordable vacation, consider 3 Oaks & A Pine. Not only does it offer some of the lowest rates in the area, it can also accommodate large rigs of up to 80 feet in length.

On-site staff will make sure you’re comfortable, and the secure facility will ensure you’re safe during your stay.

Jude Travel Park

Jude Travel Park has been a popular spot for over 30 years. Although it is five miles away from the French Quarter, it offers a shuttle service that makes it easy to explore the city. They also sell tickets for a wide variety of activities that include:

  • City tours
  • Swamp tours
  • Boat cruises
  • And more

New Orleans West KOA

Camping at a KOA is a lot like staying at a Holiday Inn. Because it’s a nationally owned and recognized company, you can expect a consistent experience when you park your RV.

When you stay at the KOA in West New Orleans, you’ll enjoy amenities like a swimming pool, but one of the most convincing reasons to stay at this campground is the fact that it offers tour shuttle services.

RVing isn’t just for the woods! If you’re looking to stay within city limits and experience everything that New Orleans has to offer, make sure you check out one of these RV parks. They will ensure you’re comfortable while you explore the southern hospitality that this city is known for.

Family Friendly Florida – More Than Just The Sun!

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Now that Christmas is out of the way and the better weather is starting to return to some parts of the southern states now is the perfect time to start thinking about your next family getaway. Even if you aren’t in a position to book it now, it’s the perfect time to start looking at options for the summer holidays, or maybe a great option for spring break with the kids this year. If that sounds like you, never fear. Check out these great things that Florida has to offer and why you need to check it out this year if you haven’t before.

Amusement Park Central

Simply put, Florida is an absolute haven for amusement parks. Between Universal Studios, Discovery Cove, Legoland, Epcot and Disney World (and that’s just the tip of the iceberg!) you will have no trouble at all finding the perfect amusement park to entertain everyone in the family from the time you set foot in the Sunshine State until you depart! You can even stay at Walt Disney World to make it easy to access some of the best in Florida’s parks. What kid wouldn’t want to stay at the world famous Disney World?!

Cruises Galore

Speaking of Disney, did you know you can catch a great Disney Cruise from Florida? Not only that, but if you’re looking for a great option for getting away and you want to explore a bit of the Caribbean, Florida is the perfect point from which to sail. Many cruises around the Caribbean leave from Florida ports, so what better way than to take advantage of the close proximity than to add a short cruise to your Sunshine State holiday?

The Keys – What More Can We Say?

If you want some of the most pristine beaches without having to leave Florida, head to the Keys. This string of pearl-like islands in the extreme south of the state give the Caribbean islands a run for their money. With luscious resorts that cater to both couples and families it’s an easy addition to any Florida holiday that will have everyone jumping for joy.

Cape Canaveral And The Kennedy Space Centre

Quench the thirst of the budding astronaut in your family and take a trip out to the world famous Cape Canaveral to experience a live rocket launch. Watch real astronauts be blasted into outer space to work on the International Space Station or watch satellites get sent up for research purposes. Even if you can’t make a launch itself you can head over to the Space Centre where you can check out some impressive displays including Buzz Aldrin’s moon suit, still covered in dust.

The Everglades

And finally, for all the nature lovers in the family the Florida Everglades are an absolute ‘do not miss’. Bursting with wildlife and things to do such as going diving to see corals, hiking, jet skiing and more the Everglades is a great place to get the family out and enjoying nature and all it has to offer. Don’t forget to watch out for alligators!

So if you’re looking for a place that has everything for everyone, rest assured that Florida won’t disappoint. So what are you waiting for? Book your next epic trip to Florida today.

Why Not Try Somewhere New

As we start to enter holiday season again it’s time to look at some of the new emerging places in which to take a trip. Each year it seems new countries become more available to the average traveller and everybody is going to new exotic locations. The old one-week trip to Europe is no longer enough as travel becomes more affordable and our understanding of countries becomes clearer. They are no longer the distant scary places they once were, but are now easy to access, exotic and with a whole host of new experiences to offer us. This year is no different and in this article, we hope to look at a few countries which are more easily accessible than before, and which might spark your interest to travel further afield than you once might have had. We’ll look at some of its cultural and tourist hotspots to give you a flavour of some of the things these countries have to offer.

Colombia:

A country with a troubled past, it is a country quickly emerging as a hugely popular tourist location. As vast swathes of the country become more accessible to the public there are plenty of things to do and see throughout the country. You can experience the thrills of the cities of Medellin, Cali and Bogota, the jungles of the amazon and the beauty of the coast. All accessible through cheap airfare and a good transport network. The people are incredibly open and welcoming making them the main driving force behind this truly stunning country.

India:

A country and a continent in one. What better way to spend your holidays than attempting to transverse this astounding country. You can test your taste buds and strengths against the thousands of herbs and spices available throughout the country and visit manmade and natural wonders. Although some locations remain difficult to reach that is a given in a country so vast. Plan your trip carefully and you will be amazed with the differences and similarities that such a country can display to you. So go on a holiday to India.

South Africa:

One aspect of this country has been popular for a while now, but it has so much more to offer than simply a safari although this is a once in a life time event. South Africa is an ever changing and emerging country with a rich history to offer its visitors. Yes, some places would require extra caution but his is part and parcel when visiting any country be it your home country or somewhere completely new. Discover the history of the townships, the community development and of course the natural beauty of the country with its mix of European and African history mixing together.

Getting out of your comfort zone and visiting new countries is something everyone should do at least once. Maybe it will spark an increased interest you didn’t realise was there before or maybe it will be a once off, but either way a trip like this will not be something you forget to easily.

Making Extra Money Online – Anyone Can Do It

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These days it seems like everyone has some kind of side hustle going on, but how can you get started? What are your options? Can just anyone have a side job? Side hustles don’t always mean you need to get a second job or even have some grand business idea in place and in fact many people make money on the side without ever having to do much of anything aside from think of ways that work for them to make money. If you aren’t sure where to start on the saving money and making money bandwagon, here are a couple of great suggestions that will get those creative juices flowing.

Playing Casino Games and Lotteries

This sounds a bit like a bit of a strange one for making or saving money, doesn’t it? But you can play the lottery online and save yourself not just money but time too. Add to this the fact that there are all kinds of games to play online that have prizes of real cash nowadays too such as through online casinos. Lottery sites often have direct debit and deposit options too, making it easier than ever to pay and play. In the case of direct debit you won’t even know that the money is going out of your account to play your favourite lottery games each week and you won’t have to rush out or remember to pick up your tickets to be in it to win it. So what are you waiting for?

Freelancing

Freelancing in various fields is fast becoming one of the most popular ways to make some extra money with many freelancers eventually leaving their day jobs behind in favour of full time freelancing. Freelancing can be done in a number of fields from web page design, coding, writing, graphic design and art, music mixing, video editing and more. A lot of freelancing websites like People Per Hour, Fiverr, Upwork and Elance offer a platform on which people just like you can provide services of all kinds on a freelance basis. Check out how you can get started today.

Sell Online

Selling online? Selling what, exactly? Well the answer is – anything! From various things laying around that you no longer need or get joy from to old clothes, CDs, VHS tapes and more you never know the absolute treasure trove you’re sitting on top of in terms of things you can sell. With sites like Music Magpie and other examples of selling sites out there these days you can make a fair penny off some of your old stuff. Check out sites that take old mobile phones too – newer models can fetch a good price if you have recently upgraded.

So whether you’re just starting out in trying to find a way to make money on the side or you have been already doing a job or two on the side for a while, these suggestions may be a great addition to your side hustles. Side work is anything you make of it and the sky’s the limit. So how will you make money today?

The 5 Best Countries for Nursing Jobs Outside the US

The comfort and security that comes with working in your home country is convincing enough for most, but many nurses are moving overseas to pursue their craft in hopes of better pay and working conditions. The great thing about being a nurse is that your profession is always in high demand around the world.

If you’ve put in the work and have gone through one of the best DNP programs in the country, your expertise will be acknowledged worldwide, giving you the opportunity to choose where you want to go. Whether it be for the high pay or the beauty of the country itself, here are five of the best countries for nursing jobs outside the US.

Australia

Down under may be known for its dangerous animals and vast, uninhabited landscape, but it’s also a great place to kick off your nursing career. With average salaries ranging between $45,000 and $80,000, it won’t be long before you can afford a waterfront view near the Sydney opera house. The great thing about working here is that you can always continue studying through online doctoral nursing programs on the side to further your knowledge and experience.

United Arab Emirates

If your expertise is within the nursing field, you won’t be sitting jobless for long in the Gulf. While salaries aren’t as exuberant in the interim, you’ll often be spoiled with the numerous benefits that come with working in the UAE, such as tax free earnings and complimentary medical insurance. The Dubai Health Authority is constantly on the lookout for nurses from abroad to take care of the quickly growing metropolis.

Denmark

Being in the nicer part of Europe, there’s no shortage of great people and beautiful views in this Nordic country. With yearly salaries in the $45,000 range, you can live comfortably while excelling in your nursing career. You’ll want to pick up a work permit before you enter, which requires authorization from the local government.

New Zealand

With more sheep than people, Australia’s close neighbor is always in need of great nurses from abroad. The local government has set a goal amount of just under 400 nurses to enter the country annually. New Zealand is known for its world-class medical working conditions and positive workplace culture. This translates well into the salary that you can expect to earn, which ranges from $42,000 to $65,000 per year.

Israel

While this Middle Eastern country may not be making headlines for their medical work, it’s a well-known fact that English speaking nurses are always in high demand in Israel. Once you’ve obtained the applicable qualifications and have gone through the necessary licensing exams, you can expect to earn a decent living working as a nurse in Israel.

It’s worth noting that you needn’t make your stay permanent. Israel is especially known to have a higher cost of living, even more than some European countries. So be sure to have a plan to move back or spend your earnings traveling, using your knowledge to help those in need around the world.

Quiz – How well do you know your Christmas Tunes?

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‘Tis the season to be jolly… and that means Christmas tunes for all! There’s no easier way to get in the festive spirit than cranking up the stereo and indulging in some yuletide classics. Just a brief listen of a song like Mariah Carey’s “All I Want for Christmas is You” evokes images of children frantically opening presents and eating succulent turkey dinners. There’s no shortage of musical options to get you in the mood either.

And that really is the beauty of Crimbo songs – there are just so many memorable hits. From the crooning perfection of Bing Crosby’s “White Christmas”, to The Pogues toe tappingly good “Fairytale of New York”; stick on a Christmas album and you’re bound to cheer up any lingering Ebenezers.

Our favourite festive songs do have a caveat however. And this caveat becomes more apparent during the run up to Christmas. Around this time, it’s fair to say that various radio stations and streaming services really leverage the seasonal angle. And understandably so, Santa is coming to town after all.

But… you may be secretly glad once the festivities are over that you won’t have to hear “Do They Know It’s Christmas?” for at least another year. It’s a great song for sure – but once you have heard it a gazillion times… you may want to use one of your Christmas baubles as makeshift ear plugs.

True, you could hide away in a grinch-y sort of way,  – or you could show how much of a Christmas song genius you are with this quiz from the guys over at BGO. We have teased a lyric from a famous Christmas tune… and it’s your job to guess the song. Good luck!

How to Get The Best Deal on Travel Insurance

If you have ever had the thought before going on vacation “do I really need to get myself travel insurance?” The answer is a resounding yes and whilst it can be a pain to pay for something which you may very well never end up using, it is always, always worth having on hand should something bad happen whilst you are on your vacations. If you are robbed or have an accident abroad, this will of course stain your vacation but if one of these things takes place and you’re not insured, it will absolutely ruin your vacation. Getting travel insurance just makes sense, and so to does getting the best deal possible, and here’s how to do it.

Don’t Focus on Price

You should always pay attention the price of course, but this should not be where you place your focus, instead you should be looking into the types of cover which you need. Travel insurance differs from person to person and you need to make sure that the policy is tailored to your needs. For example if you, like me, have a pre-existing medical condition, you’ll need insurance which will cover those issues at a good price. Incidentally, a pre-existing medical condition does not always mean that the price will skyrocket and Canadians like myself can still get great deals of insurance despite existing medical issues. Understand what your needs are, and then find the policy that best covers them.

Compare, Compare, Compare

When it comes to getting the best deal on your travel insurance, the best way of doing so is to shop around, and make sure that you look at all of the best, and the second best deals. And with the magic of the internet, you can do exactly this in the comfort of your own home on any one of the many comparison sites which exist. These comparison websites take the hard work out of finding and comparing insurers and you can find the policy and price that you want in no time at all.

Try a Broker

Whilst the internet is the perfect place to look for great deals, you shouldn’t ignore the possibility of hiring a travel insurance broker. Brokers often have access to special deals and discounts thanks to their contacts which we couldn’t possibly find ourselves and you can often save huge money when you  book your insurance through a broker. Another benefit of having someone do this for you is that you can give them your exact specifications for the policy which you’re after and they will be able to fit your needs.

Don’t Get Caught Out

Your decision on which travel insurance company to go with should be dictated by the price, whether or not the terms meet your requirement, and finally, what the excess cost is. The excess is what you’ll pay on each aspect of the insurance should you need to claim and usually this will be high on cheaper policies, and lower on more expensive policies. The decision is yours but most recommend paying more on your premium, to save on the excess should the worst occur.

Always get travel insurance as it really could be a lifesaver for you as well as ensuring that your trip is as stress free as it should be.

How to Become a Travel Nurse

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If you ever wanted to travel and stay in the healthcare industry at the same time, you should consider a career as a travel nurse. Depending on its nature, the length of each assignment may vary, but generally, it’s around the 13 weeks mark. If you are willing to put in the necessary work, even international travel might not be out of question in the long run. Now, the question is how to become a travel nurse? Let’s find out.

The Necessary Education

As is obvious, you will need the proper education and for that, you will have to become a registered nurse first by completing an accredited college nursing program after high school. In case you are already a registered nurse, it is recommended that you complete your RN to MSN as well. While even BSN is not always a requirement for working as a travel nurse, it will most definitely help during appointment if you have the higher qualifications on your resumé. In case you can’t leave your job as a nurse at the moment, you can complete your MSN online because the program is much more flexible and economic when done on the internet.

Obtain Experience

Experience is another necessity if you want to be a travel nurse and although the requirements may vary, check out the following general requirements that usually apply in case of most jobs.

  • You must have the experience of being a nurse at a registered institution for at least a year or preferably more
  • You may also need to have specialization in certain fieldslike critical care, emergency and trauma, cardiac nursing, etc.

Licensing

Nursing licenses are necessary to practice in any location and in the US, a nurse practitioner’s license from one state isn’t valid in another. The good news is that you don’t need to apply for a license each time you change a state as a travel nurse if your home state is a part of the Nurse Licensure Compact (NLC). If it isn’t though, your employer will likely have to take care of the temporary licenses necessary for you to practice in a particular US state.

Tax Home

Tax free stipends are a big incentive for working as a traveling nurse, but you need to first understand how that works. Consider the points below to take full advantage of what’s in place.

  • You will have to establish and maintain a “tax home” first
  • You will have to establish that your office or place of employment is sufficiently distant enough for you to stay there overnight
  • If you do not have a tax home established, your stipends will become taxable

Basically, these four are all that you need to concern yourself with in order to work as a traveling nurse. However, just like any other job that is a bit out of the ordinary, there are a lot of other details as well, which you will come to know with time. Nevertheless, as long as you have your degrees, experience and license, there’s little that can stop you from becoming a travel nurse.

3 science objects used in various businesses

Businesses nowadays have to make a lot of effort to keep up with the technological advances and many developments of their competitors. Some areas are well-known for integrating science devices into their basic processes whereas others are only starting to implement them.

If you would like to find out more about how science manages to become an essential part of most businesses these days, just keep on reading. We have compiled a list of three items you might not have known prove their worth in specific industries.

  1. Ultrasonic cleaners

Ultrasonic cleaning is utilized in a broad variety of domains. One you might be aware of is that these devices are excellent for cleaning tableware and jewelry. Depending on the soiling level of the item that needs cleaning, such products can be used either with water or appropriate cleaning solvents.

While many ultrasonic cleaners are used in watchmakers’ establishments, jewelry workshops, as well as electronic repair businesses, maybe you didn’t know that these devices are also extremely useful in dentists’ offices. A plethora of dental practices utilizes ultrasonic cleaners on a daily basis in order to remove blood and saliva residues from instruments commonly used on patients.

While the capacities of most of the alternatives employed by professionals are larger, jewelry cleaners are on the smaller side of things. This sanitation method is safe and effective, as long as the instructions per every device size and components are abided by.

  1. Microscopes

Microscopy is used for a broad array of scientific purposes, but few people might know that it is exceptionally efficient in veterinary medicine. Many such devices with magnification ranges of 40x to 1000x can be found in vet practices. Some are equipped with batteries, which render them portable, and so the vet can take the microscope with them if an analysis has to be done on the field.

Even some USB microscopes, despite their simpler design and limited capabilities, prove their worth when it comes to making the difference between one type of external parasite and the next. Skin modifications can also be discovered and diagnosed with the help of a simple microscope.

  1. pH meters

Medical professionals probably know that pH meters, and strips, in particular, can be utilized for a variety of measurements such as testing the pH of urine, saliva, and even tap water. However, something that some individuals might not be aware of is that some pH meters, albeit different in design and capabilities compared to strips, are used for brewing purposes. Some digital choices can also be utilized for measuring other factors, such as the temperature of the liquid, its electrical conductivity, as well as the total dissolved solids.

Because of their handy design and features, brewing pH meters can also be utilized for checking the acidity and alkalinity of water in spas, pools, as well as aquariums and even fish tanks. Many models are outfitted with a waterproof case, and that of some units is very resilient, which means that they are capable of withstanding the test of time.