Be a Traveler, Not a Tourist!

You may ask yourself, what is the difference between a traveler and a tourist? If I travel then I’m a tourist. Well, I’m here to tell you there is a difference. There is more to embarking on an adventure to other country than just sightseeing, buying souvenirs, or sunbathing on a resort. That conventional mindset of traveling only deprives one of a truly exciting and memorable experience. So what is the difference between a traveler and a tourist? Let’s first address, what is a tourist?

A tourist by definition, according to dictionary.com, is a person who travels for pleasure, usually sightseeing and staying in hotels. A traveler, according to my definition, is a person who takes great pleasure in coming in contact with other cultures. A traveler is always seeking and opened to explore some feature of another culture. If that means they have to walk around Granada or Madrid for hours taking in the structures of buildings, trying the local cuisine, or striking up a conversation with a new friend, they will do it. On that note, another trait that sets a part a traveler from a tourist is that they enjoy interacting with the people of another country. They are not afraid to communicate with the locals. Moreover, usually travelers are also foreign language learners due to their appreciation for other cultures. They enjoy preparing themselves for their time abroad because they envision themselves being able to handle themselves within the culture. Furthermore, I would I have to say this is caused by passion for other cultures.

Also, the mindset of a traveler is always to learn and experience what a country has to offer which, as a result, aids in their personal growth. It also adds to their general world knowledge and makes them more knowledgeable and experienced travelers. While abroad a traveler desires to absorb all the positive aspects of a new country and views it not only as a learning experience but all as an adventure. What I mean by an adventure is that they are opened to unexpected events that may occur at any time. They can adjust to unexpected changes, maybe because of meeting new people in their travels or just deciding on a whim to change their plans because they may have discovered something else would be interesting to see or explore. In a nutshell, they are not confined to excursions or their immediate surroundings but journey to a distant land to experience all that it has to offer. With this mindset, you are sure to become a traveler and not the ordinary tourist who just looks at famous sights while taking hundreds of pictures. You’ll be too busy making friends, enjoying a cultural event, possibly speaking the language with natives, sitting on a hill overlooking a city, or dancing with that special someone that crossed your path which, in my opinion, will always leave you with lasting and memorable experiences for years to come.

What Will Start the Electric Car Revolution?

While there is no doubt that electric cars receive more publicity than they ever have before, there is growing concern that the sector may be losing momentum in the short to medium term. As a consequence governments and car manufacturers around the world are now looking at new ideas to kickstart the revolution and attract the attention of consumers across the globe. So what will kickstart the electric car revolution?

Journey capacity

Time and time again the issue of journey capacity is never far from the headlines and when you bear in mind the vast majority of electric vehicles today can do no more than 100 miles per full charge, this concern is justified. However, many motorists seem to forget that on average very few of us will do in excess of 80 miles per day, therefore one charge per day will be more than enough to cover our average journey.

It is perhaps the use of electric vehicles within the business arena and for leisure time, where we will on average travel more than 80 miles per day, which is perhaps foremost in the minds of consumers at the moment.

Increased journey capacity

There is no doubt that great progress has been made with regards to journey capacity for electric vehicles but there is also no doubt that further progress needs to be made. The Nissan Leaf will be updated and re-released in 2013 with an extended journey capacity approaching 140 miles per charge. This has been achieved by using the latest battery technology, improved aerodynamics as well as efficiencies with regards to the electric engine itself.

If we can get towards the 200 miles journey capacity per full charge then we are certainly in a different ballpark and this would open up a whole new market for electric cars. Until we get there the chances are that many consumers will, rightly or wrongly, be concerned about reduced journey capacity and more importantly the lack of electric car charging stations around the world.

Charging stations

Despite the fact that the cost of electric vehicles is significantly greater than that of more traditional vehicles this is perhaps not the major problem in the eyes of consumers. Those who have traditional fuel vehicles will never likely be more than just a few miles away from a garage or petrol station where they can refuel and extend their journey capacity. The same cannot be said with regards to the electric charging station networks available at the moment which are at best few and far between. Will this change?

Finally governments and car manufacturers around the world are now coming together to create a viable investment programme for charging stations around the globe. This will likely see hundreds if not thousands of electric car charging stations introduced over the next few years which will take away one of the headaches which is concerning consumers.

Public relations

Whichever angle you look at the electric car market there is no doubt that the public relations situation has been a disaster for many years now. Indeed the stigma of the earlier electric car market still hangs over the much improved sector like a bad smell. We need investment in public relations, we need good news from the industry and we need to see savings set out in a very simple format so that consumers can understand what they are buying into and what they can expect to save. Until the message is received loud and clear by consumers across the UK and across the world what chance does the industry have?

Conclusion

While the electric car market today is very different to that of 20 years ago or even 10 years ago, there is still much work to be done and indeed changing public opinion will not be easy and it will not be cheap. Governments, car manufacturers and green campaigners have all come together to applaud the potential for eco-friendly travel but for some reason consumers have not yet grasped this potential.

The next couple of years will be vitally important to the electric car market, the next couple of years should see with the worldwide economy improve and funds become available to consumers. It will be interesting to see whether this stabilisation of the worldwide economy will lead to better sales in the electric car market and indeed more interest in general.

Actual Facts of Self Vs The Opinions of Others

Have you ever heard this powerful statement “Do not allow the opinion of others to outweigh the actual facts”. What are your actual facts? An actual fact is a fact that is real, existing in reality, existing at this time and based on truth. An opinion is a belief based not on certainty but on what seems true or probable. Opinions are uncertain, doubtful at times, not dependable and not sure in knowledge. An actual fact should never be outweighed by someone’s opinion. The truth of an actual fact must be attached to a belief. If we do not believe the actual fact, that does not reduce or limit its truth. What it limits is our actual knowledge about us or about a thing. Knowledge and belief are related. Knowledge requires belief, yet belief does not require knowledge. I believe that knowledge of self (who we are), (actual facts) helps us avoid pitfalls made by the many that came before us. How? These facts keep us focused on the truth of who we are, which is the foundation for the principles of belief, so we are not affected or misguided by what others think about us.

Belief has Power
Why is it easy to let go of an actual stated truth (ex: you are beautiful or you are a goddess) and let come into our mind someone’s uncertain opinion (ex: you are worthless or any other disrespectful name)? We take the opinion of others and act on them, as if they are truthful. It should not be easy to ignore actual facts but sometimes the truth hurts, especially if we are not ready for it. If a person can convince us with their opinions that we are worthless, failures, unworthy of success, less than, no good, not smart, not motivated, lazy, not good wives or mothers, excuse makers, will never amount to anything, are just bad people, sometimes those opinions will block our motivation required to strive.

We mistakenly take their opinion as a belief, based on the way we feel about ourselves or we do not know who we are. Again, belief does not require knowledge. Normally, if a person states an opinion that does not represent us; we would either correct them or ignore them because we know it is not an actual fact. We would then move about unaffected. If we feel we are worthless, ignorant or unworthy of greatness, the opinions of others will substantiate our belief. What you believe sometimes controls your actions. Belief has power and this power can be used to move individuals into higher levels of consciousness. It also can alter potential and destroy dreams, lives and aspirations through inaccurate opinions, knowledge, assessments and analyses from people who dictate misinformation.

What are the Actual Facts of Self?
Knowledge is the application of lessons learned that effectively guide decision-making. It cannot be obtained without believing in something. I like to use the analogy of automobiles when describing our lack of understanding our actual facts. Many of us are traveling along the highway of life at rates of speed that are much slower than what was placed in our original design. We are created by the most excellent originator whose talent surpasses all. We are truly built with unlimited ability and potential, with specifications that are state of the art. We are also designed to travel at an expeditious rate of speed. These specifications that are placed within the original design are the actual facts of our automobiles ability. This ability is present regardless of our use of our ability. If we rely on someone’s opinion regarding our ability and do not know the actual facts of our ability, we may find ourselves being left behind by others who know who they are.

Who are we?
We are truly the Mother’s of Civilization. We are not what we do. We are not what we have achieved educationally. We are not what we have. We are not what other people think we are. We are not reduced or limited in ability based on the opinion of others. We were innately spiritual with high skills and abilities. We are exceedingly intelligent, righteous women, with the ability to be compassionate, supportive, loving, a mother, sister, aunt, teacher, grandmother, doctor, scientists, etc……….. We are the best at everything we do, only if we would like to be that. We are the Master influencers of our communities, societies, the nation and the world.

Know your Attributes
We must know what our attributes are. An attribute is an inherent characteristic or a distinguishing quality. Quality is the essence of standard that makes one person or product better than the other. The qualities of a person are the attributes that determine the person’s basic nature. What makes you a great women? Some attributes can be described as trustworthy, helpful, motivated, problem solvers, creative, detail-oriented, compassionate, caring, loving, energetic, organized, dependable, responsible, focused, articulate, kind, generous, wonderful and so on…
There are two ways we can uncover our attributes:

1) What characteristics have we demonstrated in the past? We can use our past experiences to highlight attributes or characteristics that best define us.
2) Identify the best image or attributes of the ideal self (personal)? We can also acknowledge the attributes that would represent our ideal self and strive to achieve our best image.

More importantly, what do we believe or think about ourselves? A great adage that I will always remember is “Those who control the diameter of your thinking, controls the circumference of your actions”. We must be able to see beyond the majority with our vision and imagination. We have the power of belief to achieve whatever we visualize. Know the actual facts of self. Know who you are and disregard the opinions of others that do not truly reflect the true self. Let us be patient and watch all that we desire manifest.

New Travel Sites For Those Coveted Tips on How to Get There and What to Do

To me, there’s something special about searching to discover bits of secret travel and sightseeing tips about exotic places from all over the Internet and then anticipating a great vacation that will benefit from all of them. When I research the area of the world I plan on traveling to, I’ll frequently find little hidden treasures, secret restaurants, ignored little tourist gems and little-advertised local events that no one else knows about, and of course, I’ll find some of the best fares to everywhere. I’ve come by quite a few useful travel resources over my years trotting the globe; some of them are new, and some of them have seen many travel seasons. Information being power and all, here is my list of the best travel sites that I’ve ever had the pleasure of using.

Let’s start with the places that will give you an edge in the race for the cheapest air tickets. Everyone knows about the mass-market ones like Kayak, Expedia, and Bing Travel (Microsoft’s relaunched travel service that’s supposed to so creative, they call themselves a travel decision engine (as opposed to a travel search engine). But how about some of the new upstarts (or should I say startups?) that have come up over the past year or two – the ones that claim all manner of innovative discount searches? There are just so many of them – Dohop, SideStep, Mobissimo and Vayama are some of the more interesting new names in this business.

In my opinion, these travel sites deserve at least one visit at least for the kind of psychedelic names they’ve managed to come up with. On a recent trip that I made from New York to London, I decided to try all of these. Still, for me, the travel giant Bing and the upstart Dohop both did better than any of the other ones. On these two sites I could hit Buy on a round trip to London at $771; not every one of the others though, if I had hits Buy, I would have taken a hit for an extra $100. There is another booking site called cFares that’s picqued my fancy recently. The first and the most intriguing part to this travel site is the fact that they try to keep the rif-raff out by making you pony up the cash for a $50-a-year membership before they let you do anything on it. When I tried looking for the same flight on cFares, it saved me a further $70 on the fare. So the moral of the story is, travel sites for low fares, as great as they are, are not perfect. They don’t all win all of the time. The best I know how to snag cheap flights now is to take the advice of Dohop and cFares, and always pick Thursdays and Wednesdays to fly – lots of fares are predictably cheaper these two days of the week.

So these travel sites can help you buy a ticket, and book a hotel room; and everyone knows about SeatExpert and SeatGuru as the people to go for the best seat on the flight you’re taking; but is there such a thing for hotels though? That should be much more useful – you spend a lot more time in the hotel. As it happens, there is.It is called TripKick and it’s a really neat idea; it has an alarming amount of information on which particular rooms in a hotel of your choice have a bigger bathroom, a better view, and so on. For my London trip, told me to take room number 218 at a hotel on Oxford Circus, for a great view out on a park. The only problem with TripKick though, is that it only covers expensive hotels, and not the budget ones.

But enough of the mundane in travel sites; how about ideas and how to enjoy your destination once you get there? For anyone traveling to Japan, I found AitaiJapan, a great well-informed tip surce for the entertaining in the obscure. It is a great site that aims to bring a touch of local flavor to your travels; anytime you visit Japan, you could get in touch with this site to find a local volunteer who will be happy to walk around town with you and show you around. It’s so much better than being part of a travel group – with a tour guide who gives you the same old spiel everyday. It’s a wonderful feeling to just show up in Japan and find a new friend waiting for you – and every volunteer speaks English too. The best part is, they refuse to accept anything for the service.

For some wonderful from-the-heart recommendations for places to go to anywhere in the world, you’ll need to try out AtlasObscura. As the name suggests, the site tries to give you ideas for places to go to that are exotic, wonderful, and just off the wall. The great thing is, it covers the whole world; and if you are traveling, it wouldn’t matter where, this is the website you need to look up – if it is the only one you ever did.