Monthly Archives: December 2018 - Page 2

Benefits of Health Insurance

Health insurance is always a major topic of concern among people at election time, but it is also a good idea to take a look at your health insurance when you are about to embark on a trip abroad. While the many benefits of standard health insurance are well-known to most people, there are also some very good reasons why travelers should have a policy specifically tailored for those trips that will take them out of the country.Benefits of Health Insurance

Travelers Need It Frequently

We tend to think that the possibility we might need health insurance while we are on a trip is remote, but that is actually not the case. According to the U.S. Center for Disease Control and Prevention, half of the travelers from the United States to another country experience some sort of health problem. A statistic like that indicates that it is a big benefit to having insurance because of the strong likelihood that you will need care while you are abroad.

Benefits of Health Insurance

Protect Your Financial Future

Carrying health insurance specifically designed for your international travel can protect you from being stuck with the sky-high bills that can be incurred when travelling internationally. Most U.S. insurance companies do not include coverage at international facilities or for emergency international medical evacuation. According to World Wide Medical Corp., these costs can run as high as $90,000. An insurance policy is well worth knowing you are protected from that risk.

Benefits of Health Insurance

Save the Cost of Your Trip

A big benefit to having health insurance is that you are covered for costs that will be incurred should you have to cancel or cut short your trip. Airlines, cruise companies, and tour operators have big penalties for itinerary changes and many have no refund policies should you cancel. Traveler’s insurance will give you peace of mind and financial protection in case you get sick, injured, or need any type of medical attention that causes you to be unable to continue your trip.

About Whale Watching

The majesty of a whale in the water can’t be conveyed on video or by watching a movie. Seeing one in person is an awe-inspiring and amazing sight. Whale watching tours provide safe and legal means to enjoy these impressive aquatic mammals, but you needn’t even get on a boat to fully enjoy.

About Whale Watching

Migration Patterns

Whales travel well-known paths between their winter breeding grounds and summer feeding grounds.

Tours

Whale watching tours provide a means to enter the waters near migration areas to observe whales, and often newborn calves. These tours operate under strict guidelines to avoid crowding the whales.

About Whale Watching

Maui

While in Maui, a good pair of binoculars is all you need to observe humpback whales right from your lanai or beach chair during migration season, in early fall. The channels are close enough that the whales are easily visible from land.

Warning

International laws vary, but if you’re kayaking or surfing and find yourself amid a pod of whales, back off. Most laws specify at least a 300 foot distance between you and any whales. Be especially wary if there’s a newborn in the midst. Stay calm and slowly paddle away.

warning

Clothing

If you’re heading out on a boat, layer up. Breezes on board can be stiff in many areas, so make sure that you have adequate coverage to keep yourself warm.

Salton Sea, California Restaurants

Located in Southern California outside of Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, is the Salton Sea both boasting the largest state park and lake in the state. The water has become saltier than that of the Pacific Ocean over time. The thousands of brine shrimp feed fish and thousands of resident and migratory birds who call the lake home. The lake has been a popular recreation spot for decades with visitors enjoying water sports, fishing, hiking and camping. You can always find a great spot to eat in any one of the surrounding areas while seeing the local sights.

Travertine Grill

Travertine

One of the few restaurants located next to the sea, Travertine is a favorite for visitors and locals alike. Serving up American fare with some Mexican choices can make it difficult to choose between the fajitas or the Barbette ribs. You can sit at the bar and watch a game on the TV or dine in the dining area and check out the view to scope out your next spot on the lake.

Travertine Grill
1209 Van Buren Ave.
Salton City, CA 92275
(760) 394-0040

Subway

subway

Subway is a familiar favorite chain restaurant for many and home of the famous foot-long sandwich. Whether you create your own healthy sandwich or choose one of the many prefixed menu options like the Big Philly Cheese-steak, you will be satisfied with a convenient and tasty meal to take on the road.

Subway
3095 State Highway 86
Thermal, CA 92274‎
(760) 395-1390‎
subway.com

Steakhouse at the Inn

Steakhouse at the

Just south of the lake the Inn offers a great place to stay or grab a bite to eat. You will find a fine dining experience with a casual atmosphere here as you can dine inside or out in the courtyard overlooking the pool. Being a steakhouse many choice cuts of beef like rib-eye and New York are on the menu as well as other favorites such as fried shrimp and fish tacos. Each meal comes with rolls, salad, a vegetable and potatoes so be sure to bring your appetite.

Calipatria Inn and Suites-Steakhouse at the Inn
700 N. Sorensen Ave.
Calipatria, CA 92233
(760) 348-7348
calipatriainn.com

Assaggio Ristorante Italiano

Assaggio Ristorante

About 20 miles west of the Salton Sea, you can find traditional Italian cuisine at Assaggio in Borrego Springs. The menu here provides a variety of choices from antipasti and soup to numerous chicken, veal and seafood. The house specials include Osso Bucco and the Fish of the Day with three cooking options to ensure each customer is happy with her dish. This restaurant is not open on Mondays.

Assaggio Ristorante Italiano
1816 Palm Canyon Drive
Borrego Springs, CA 92004
(760) 767-3388
assaggioitalian.com

While Facebook Changes, Google+ Grows… A Lot

The topic of conversation in the social media space for the past week or so has been about the changes Facebook announced last week during it f8 Conference. But while the dust is still settling and the love/hate comments continue to pile in, Google+ quietly made some news of its own.

I, like most of you, waited patiently for the news re: Facebook’s latest round of changes. And I, like most of you, am still disseminating just what they all mean for both individuals and brands alike. I wrote a post What The Changes To Facebook Mean To Marketers And Advertisers last week in which I give a high level overview of Timeline and Open Graph and what marketers and advertisers need to do going forward.

g+

And while Amazon Wants A Piece Of The Social Media And Social Games Pie and Bing Continues To Add Social Media Features, Google, very quietly some might say – which is shocking considering it’s Google, made news over the past week or so by opening up Google+ to the masses and the results have been overwhelming.

According to data from Experian Hitwise…

Visits to Google Plus increased by 1269% following the release of Google+ to everyone
In the US alone, Google+ received 15 million visits, compared to the little more than 1 million the week before the grand opening, if you will
In Hitwise’s Social Networking and Forums category, Google+ rose from 54th to 8th in overall rankings
And as the folks at ReadWriteWeb point out, “That’s not all the traffic, either. These stats don’t include mobile users or visits from the ubiquitous black Google toolbar. The data still show that Google Plus is disproportionately comprised of “influencers” and “early adopters” compared to other social networks, but the removal of invitations seems to have jump-started visits to the service.”

So while Mark Zuckerberg basks in the glow of the Timeline et al, and 500 million daily active users, Google keeps on trucking with the number of users at or around 43 million and growing. Google is also poised to officially announce the creation of the much-anticipated Business Profiles on Google+. In case you missed it, when Google+ first came to be, some brands tried to set up Business Profiles – Mashable, Sesame Street to name a few, only to see Google put the kibosh on them. To date, there are only two officially recognized Business Profiles on Google+ – Ford Motor Company and General Motors.

g+ vs facebook

However that hasn’t stopped some others from cropping up such as Verizon, Snapple and Starbucks. These were apparently “set up surreptitiously by companies, fans or squatters registering the brand name” as reported in Ad Age. But fear not legitimate businesses worried that an impostor is staking its claim, Google is watching… “It’s not a land-grab situation,” said Google spokesman Jim Prosser. “Right now it’s very clear, because there’s only two business we’re testing with, so in a very binary way, it’s clear that anyone who’s acting as a business on there [is not authentic].”

Not to belabor the Business Profile topic but one thing to keep in mind when they do become available to everyone and every business, it will not be like Twitter where only account could be created for one given name. If you recall there was a mad land-grab as Twitter became more popular and many big name brands realized they missed the boat and had to either pay for their Twitter handle or create a different one, then slap the Verified Account label on its profile. With Google+ there will be no such limit as one name can be registered multiple times. Google+ will however provide those legitimate businesses and representatives therein with a similar type of verification badges to identify the real from the fake.

Facebook’s World Dominance… For Now

chart
There’s a chart (to the right) going around which shows Facebook’s dominance in the online space. I first saw it on allthingsd.com and the writer of the post which included the chart uses the line “… Google is so freaked out about Facebook.” The writer was referring to the obvious stranglehold Facebook has right now. But call me crazy but I don’t think Google is freaked out, freaked in or freaked anything when it comes to Facebook or any other social media network or platform.

Why? Well as Josh Spiegel, one of our Search Marketing Managers likes to say… “Because it’s Google.”

And you can be damn sure many others are taking the same approach…

“We’re always looking at new opportunities to engage our fans. We’ve been monitoring Google+ since it launched and will actively seek ways to incorporate our brands when the time is right.” – Robert Stone, Director of Interactive for the Dr Pepper Snapple Group.

“Given Google’s strong track record, both +1 and Google+ are platforms that we are closely watching. We are most interested in +1 because of its potential impact on search.” – Michael Zuna, Chief Marketing Officer of Aflac