These small groups of Islands are definitely in the bucket list of every nature enthusiast, and it is not a surprise as the archipelago offers something that many destinations don’t, which is close encounters with the endemic species that inhabit the Galapagos Islands.

Due to the islands’ remote location and unique environmental conditions, the species that inhabited them got to evolve without human intervention. So, when Charles Darwin arrived in 1835, he was immediately caught into the archipelago’s unique features that will later inspire his famous theory of evolution, changing natural history forever and the Islands became instantly known worldwide.

But what was special about the Galapagos islands? –Darwin wrote the Journal of Researches into the Natural History and Geology of every country he visited during his expedition on board the H.M.S Beagle, and in its first edition, he stated that the species that he found in the Galapagos were very similar to the other species in South America. Of course, in future editions, he changed this statement. During his voyage in the Galapagos, he realized that there were species that varied from Island to Island in order to adapt and survive. The most famous example is the different types of finches that could be found on each Island. This was what inspired his theory of natural selection.

Galapagos tourism evolution

More than 150 years has passed, and the Galapagos wildlife is still not intimidated by the presence of human activity around them. Even though tourism has become the main economic activity in the Galapagos, you will still encounter with playful sea lions resting in the middle of the towns, land iguanas roaming around and waiting for you to visit them.

Is there a way to explore the archipelago just like Darwin did? -A way that can evoke the nostalgia of the times when Charles Darwin visited the Galapagos or when the first researchers explored them, the old fashioned way of cruising making this trip of a lifetime filled with unforgettable experiences.

An indulgent way to follow Darwin’s footsteps is to get on a barefoot luxury cruise in the Galapagos.

Most of us are not really related to that concept. But it is definitely something you will be looking for during your vacations in the Galapagos Islands. Getting away from the 24/7 world and its technology, admire the jaw-dropping landscapes and fearless wildlife of the Galapagos without worrying about anything. Enjoy the simplicity of the world and feel adventurous without sacrificing comfort.

Two perfect vessels that will give you a barefoot luxury experience in the Galapagos Islands are WildAid’s Passion and Alya:

Alya Catamaran:

This First-class catamaran is one of the newest in the Galapagos Islands. Specially designed to provide you a luxurious experience on board. Every detail has been taken care of, from food to service, accommodations, and equipment.

You will enjoy the endless views of the ocean during this cruise. Eight of its nine cabins have a private balcony where you can enjoy the breeze of the ocean during navigations. Offering an ultimate level of intimacy with the archipelago.

The cruise itinerary was designed to take you to iconic visitor sites, making the experience not only about comfort, but experience too. You will have the opportunity to visit San Cristobal Island, Española Island, Santa Cruz Island, North Seymour Island, Genovesa Island, Santiago Island and Batholomew.

WildAid’s Passion:

This former private yacht was never used before for tourism. After being refurbished, it started operating in the Galapagos Islands. This yacht features 2 suites and 4 staterooms that can fit no more than 12 passengers in its exclusive 159 feet. You can choose from two itineraries of 8 days each that go to the main visitor sites of the Western and Eastern part of the Islands.

On the Western itinerary, you will visit iconic Islands such as: Santa Cruz Island, Floreana, Isabela, Fernandina, Santiago, North Seymour, and Mosquera.

During the Eastern itinerary, you will visit: Santa Cruz Island, South Plazas, Santa Fe, Española Island, Rabida, Santiago Island, and Genovesa.

Or you can take a 15-day itinerary where you will do a full route!

This itinerary was designed by Andando Tours’ CEO, Fiddi Angermeyer, one of the first men who started the business of cruising the Islands.

Just like Charles Darwin did on the H.M.S Beagle, you will visit Floreana Island, Isabela Island, Genovesa and Santiago (Wolf and Darwin can only be reached by liveaboards, and there is no landing allowed on those Islands).

Are you ready to follow Darwin’s footsteps in a fancier way?

Ideas of corporate travel and the role of corporate travel managers are changing and evolving. This doesn’t mean that corporate travel or the people who manage it are obsolete. What it does mean is that there is the unique opportunity, primarily through the use of technology, for corporate travel to be a key part of business strategy. Corporate travel should drive revenue, and there should be measurable objectives linked to it.

The following are some specific things to consider to create or maintain a strategic corporate travel program.

Expense Management

The cornerstone of a strong, modern travel program should be streamlined expense reporting. In the past, the idea of expense management and expense reporting was all about having travelers keep up with receipts and fill out long, tedious expense reports. Those expense reports frustrated employees and took their time away from other things. The risks of fraud and error were also problematic.

With expense reporting software and mobile tools, there are many opportunities to improve strategy. First, there is the ability to see where spending is happening and where it could be lowered without diminishing the employee experience. There are opportunities to determine a finite ROI that aren’t possible otherwise.

There is also improved compliance, and with expense reporting tools there is likely to be inherently lower costs associated with travel because of the elimination of fraud, waste, and error.

Use Data to Negotiate with Vendors

Some businesses mistakenly believe travel managers don’t have a pivotal role like they once did. This isn’t true. It’s just vital to shift that role. One of the most important roles a travel manager can play is to look at the data, see patterns and trends and then use that data to drive strategic decision-making.

One example of where this works is by negotiating with travel suppliers. The data can be used as leverage during negotiations.

Travel managers also play a role in compliance and enforcement, but more importantly than that, they can make sure their actual travel policies are strategic and keep up with modern traveler needs and preferences.

Identify Key Performance Indicators

KPIs are such a pivotal part of most other business decisions, but somehow they’re not integrated into corporate travel planning. It’s important to know what matters most within the travel program. What do you want employees to be working toward when their traveling?

How is the success of your strategy measured?

Choosing the Right Technology

Finally, technology isn’t something travel managers should shy away from. It is, however, something travel managers should be careful when selecting and implementing. Technology is one of the best ways to create a more strategic corporate travel program when applied correctly.

Assess what the current limitations are within your program, and look at technology solutions that could reduce those inefficiencies or issues. One example of technology that can completely shift a travel program is automated expense manage, but there are others as well.

Identify pain points, and then select the solutions that will alleviate those pain points while providing a demonstrable ROI.

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One of the advantages to living today is the myriad of freelancing jobs online that allow you to work from your laptop while you travel.

From freelance writing to eBook publishing to web design to programming to graphic design to affiliate marketing to virtual assistant work, there are very few limits to what you can do to earn money online these days.

Here are five tips for working freelance jobs while traveling the world:

1 – Make Sure Your Established Before You Travel

Since traveling is undeniably expensive, no matter how many money saving tips and hacks you use, you want to make sure that you are very well-established with whatever it is you’re doing before you embark on your traveling adventures. You should have ideally built a name and reputation for yourself, and have two or three steady clients going so you always have backup options should one drop out.

2 – Discipline Yourself

While traveling it’s very tempting to get out of your hotel room and explore the area, and indeed, you should. But still, you need to discipline yourself to get assignments completed, and that’s why you need to find the right balance between work and fun. The best way to do this is to schedule your days at least a week ahead of schedule.

3 – Consider Hiring Help

If your freelancing work or online business eventually grows to the point to where you can’t handle all of the work on your own, you can always hire another freelancer from somewhere in the world to handle at least a portion work for you as well. All you’ll really need to hire a freelancer is a thorough vetting process and an account with a money transfer service of some kind so you can easily convert between currencies to pay them.

4 – Always Have Internet Connection

This is huge for freelancing. Without a steady and reliable Wi-Fi connection, you can’t work or at least you can’t submit work, and it really is that simple. Even though restaurants, libraries, coffee shops, and hotels from around the world may claim to have Wi-Fi, you can’t always guarantee that it will be fast or reliable either. For this reason, consider bringing along your own portable Wi-Fi router.

5 – Don’t Get Too Caught Up In Work

Finally, while it is important to get plenty of work done while you travel, you also don’t want to focus solely on your work until things reach the point where you neglect the entire purpose of traveling in the first place. Traveling is a unique opportunity to explore the world and experience new cultures, and you don’t want to give up that opportunity when it’s right there in front of you. In other words, make sure you get out of your hotel room on a regular basis.

Working Freelance Jobs While Traveling

If you love the idea of where you can work remotely while exploring and traveling across the globe, the five tips covered in this article will help you turn that idea into a reality.

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You may have heard the expression medical tourism bandied around many times in the past. But what actually is medical tourism? Medical tourism is going to another country to have a procedure performed at a much reduced rate than the home country. There are pros and cons to this, and you have to decide for yourself what is worth it and what isn’t. We bring you a list of some things for your consideration. 

Cost 

Generally, the foremost reason why people go with medical tourism is cost. Sometimes the difference in cost is quite amazing. For example: A dental crown in Los Angeles can cost $800 to $1,000, in the Philippines or India that will cost $100 to $150 with a western train dentist. You can still get it much cheaper than that but you’re taking a lot of risks then. You have to remember though that like anywhere in the world all doctors are different. There are dentists in the United States that are terrible and will mess your teeth up, just like there are dentists overseas that will do the same. So look at reviews and ask around. 

Elective procedures 

Most insurance in the United States does not cover elective procedures. These are things to make you feel better or look better. These procedures don’t have a life-threatening aspect to them. If you want plastic surgery, it’s going to cost you. So jumping back to our first point, cost is an issue. A good rule of thumb for elective surgery, such as liposuction, between the United States and a country such as Thailand, is you will be paying 30% of the cost that you would pay in the USA. 

Safety 

People often have worries of health safety in other countries, but if you choose a top hospital or clinic, and have checked it’s reviews, then this is usually not a problem. Many doctors and dentist are western trained. The facilities are up-to-date and clean. Medical tourism is a business, and they want to do the best they possibly can so they can get continuing business. Obviously, if you go to a smaller Hospital it will not have the same quality or level as the larger hospitals that are familiar with medical tourism. Just like the USA or anywhere, do your research. Check out the doctors and the hospitals that you will choose as you will be putting your life in their hands. 

If things go wrong 

Unfortunately, things can go wrong in any medical procedure. This is one of the main reasons that you need to do research to make sure you are selecting the best professional you can. There is not too much you can do. One of the reasons the hospitals and doctors in the USA are so expensive is the amount of insurance they carry for litigation when patients to sue them. Good luck trying to sue a doctor in india. Your choices are to fly back to the country and have them fix it, or go to a local doctor to fix it instead. Local doctors can cost you a lot more than you originally paid depending how badly things have gone wrong. It’s a gamble, but remember, things go wrong in the USA too. Do your research. 

Travel 

Depending on what procedure you will be doing, some hospitals that cater to medical tourism are like staying in a luxury hotel, with a nurse on staff to check you. Thailand has some hospitals that you would mistake for a high-level Hotel. If you can get the time off to travel and get some medical procedures done, very often the price of the whole vacation, including the travel and the medical procedure, will be half the price of the procedure alone back home. 

Medical tourism is great, as long as you understand its limits. You have to do your research like you would with any hospital or doctor back home. Check reviews, and anything anybody else says about them. You can get world class attention and medical treatment with medical tourism, as long as you do your research. In the last 10 years I don’t think we have had any dental procedures done in the United States, we have always had them done as we travel, and we have never regretted it yet. Just remember this is your life so make the effort to do the research.

We have all seen those funny movies where they make fun of the woman toting along 10 suitcases and a few steamer trunks as they travel. As funny as that seems, sometimes it feels as if we need that much space. You really don’t need to travel with all that. In fact there is a whole culture called one-baggers that only travel with one carry-on. They don’t even check a bag. This of course takes a little bit of work and planning but it is possible. 

Only what you need 

You might have to be a bit brutal in what you bring with you, and squash all those emotional feelings of things you might need. But “might use” is not the same as need. Bringing things “just in case” is how you get to those 10 suitcases and steamer trunks. How many times have you traveled and not worn things that you have brought with you? So bring just what you need, and be honest with yourself. 

Carry-on bag 

A good carry-on bag can make all the difference. Things have changed in recent years, and weight has become more important. So choose a very lightweight bag and you can carry more. Although a backpack is not the most stylish thing in the world, you can pick one that looks good and will fit in the overhead compartment as a carry on. Just make sure that you keep the weight down and you don’t go oversized. We tend to avoid wheelie bags, as they are just extra weight we can use. 

Wear the heaviest pieces 

When you travel, it’s a good idea to wear the heaviest items you have. As a silly example,if you are going to go hiking on your trip, wear the hiking boots on the plane and not pack them in your luggage. You may want to wear those lightweight slip-ons while you travel, but you will end up paying a lot more money for the extra weight of those hiking boots in your bag. Wear that heavy shirt and coat and fill the pockets with anything else heavy that you can find in your bag. You can always move it back into your bag later on. 

Multi-use 

There are certain things every woman should have when she travels. Sarongs and scarves are two of the most important. You can use them for almost anything. You can wear them as a wrap from the beach, or you can use them to dress up an outfit for going out on the town. A nice sarong can even replace the little black dress. There are many sites online that will show you how to tie a sarong into a multitude of different types of dresses. 

Shoes 

Okay, here’s where most women fail. Take two pairs of shoes only. If you have a very small pair of sandals you might be able to squeak three pairs of shoes. Take one set of shoes for casual walking around, and one set of shoes for the evening if you plan on going out. Sandals will be an easy backup that can be used for both. Again, avoid the Trap of you “might” wear them. 

Matching colors 

Make sure that everything you bring can be worn with everything else you bring. Stick to a basic color set, and use the scarves for the different flashes of color. You can boast a new look every day with only a few pieces of clothing if they are all complementary. 

Give and take 

Buy things when you are there that you don’t need to bring, such as shampoo, or toothpaste, or half the things you bring with you. If you need a hat, buy one when you are there, it will give you the benefit of making you look more like a local (depending what you buy) and when you leave? give the hat away or wear it on the plane. Point is, don’t get attached; buy things there as you need them instead of toting all that extra weight with you. 

A woman can travel light, even if she won’t admit it to herself, it just takes a bit of ingenuity and forethought. Hard to imagine, but you can travel to exotic locations with just a carry on, imagine that? No waiting for checked bags, or the hassle of the anchors (as we call full size luggage) as you move from one location to another. We have managed to get almost everything we need into a 25 Liter backpack, though it did take us some time to get it down to the essentials over the years, but honestly? We would never travel with full size luggage ever again. Go for it girl